Have you ever wondered which anchorages have the most views on Navily? Regardless, the Octopus is in a good mood today and decided to give out the info in his unreleased 2021 ranking.
An in-depth list of exceptional anchorages across the most beautiful cruising destinations in the European Sea! In this first part we will review the South of France to the Balearics hopping by Corsica. Without further ado, let’s set sail for a one-way trip to the most popular anchorages on Navily in the Mediterranean Sea.
The most popular anchorages in the Mediterranean Sea (Part 1)
Port Cros et Porquerolles : Mystical islands of the French Riviera
Not surprisingly, it is the islands of Porquerolles and Port Cros which take the first places on the French Riviera. The anchorage of La Baie de Portman in particular for its exceptional wind protection and the absence of Posidonia meadows in its depths. A few miles away, on the island of Porquerolles, La Courtade and the Bay of Alicastre are the most popular on Navily.
La Baie de Portman
La Baie de Portman is quite simply the best place to take shelter from the Mistral which can blow viciously over Port Cros. Generous in space, it offers an idyllic setting with exceptional comfort, similar to that of a marina as many boaters mention on Navily. Hang your dinghy on the pontoon near the sandy beach, to start your hike to the village (1 hour to 1 hour 30 minutes of walking or cycling). Overcrowded in the high season (which seems like a redundant information for the islands in summer), it remains a true paradise for regulars in between September and April. The many photos of the anchorage shared on Navily are enough to effectively describe the rugged beauty of the bay, so The Octopus selected a few to let them speak for themselves.
Further east on one of the most beautiful coasts of the Mediterranean, you will find the anchorages of the Bay of Alicastre (Notre Dame beach) and La Courtade, jewels of the island of Porquerolles. Two anchorages nested in neighboring natural bays sheltering pristine sandy beaches. Well protected from southerly and easterly winds, they are prized for their beauty and comfort.
Baie d’Alicastre (Plage de Notre-Dame)
Notre Dame beach is well known to boaters used to sail in the region. Nestled in a picturesque natural setting and bathed in crystal clear waters with effervescent aquatic life, it is the main attraction of the Bay of Alicastre and a sanctuary for sailors. On land, you can enjoy bucolic walks in the silent pine forests that border the bay.
The clear blue waters makes anchoring easy in the sand banks composing most of the bay’s seabed (be careful not to drop anchor on the Posidonia banks, there is plenty of room to avoid them) . Absolutely wild, this is the perfect place to fully immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Porquerolles, a true sanctuary for the Navily community.
La Courtade offers a more lively atmosphere but no less popular with boaters. It is located just next to the famous port of Porquerolles, making it the perfect place to anchor and enjoy the village’s restaurants and fine distinctions. Its two white sandy beaches welcome you comfortably with many services available for a lazy afternoon in the sun. The anchorage is close to the port but the setting remains wild. Indeed, the community’s pictures almost make us forget that a few hundred meters away civilization takes back its rights.
This characteristic plays a big role in the La Courtade’s popularity, which is taken by storm every year in high season. Obviously more enjoyable when it is deserted, it is nonetheless a bucket list stopover in the Hyères Islands.
Corsica : The Beauty Island’s wild paradises
On our itinerary of the most popular anchorages in the Mediterranean Sea on Navily, The Octopus had to make a stop by Corsica. The French island and its 400 anchorages listed on Navily are a dream come through for sailors all over the world.
Benefiting from exceptional wind protection, located in a sheltered natural cove, the anchorage offers a comfortable spot in the front row of a stunning natural spectacle.
The mountains covered with a thick green mantle fall into the crystal-clear waters of the bay in the most dramatic fashion. Nonetheless, in some places like Girolata, the cliffs and thick vegetation give way to small sandy beaches, spitting images of exotic Caribbean paradises.
Our friends from the Sailing Ti Ama team had a great time there, which they describe in a comment dropped on Navily earlier this august:
” Ideal stopover after or before crossing to the mainland, the port of Girolata is a timeless moment…In fact only accessible by boat or after a hell of a hike, the evening is a 100% soothing atmosphere. We stopped there in a westerly wind of over 20 knots and a strong westerly swell, and slept very well. The staff members are awesome !!! Very efficient mooring with help to secure the boat, it was a race because everyone was arriving at the same time but they remained focused and efficient 👏🏻. We paid € 95 for a 42-foot catamaran (note the price advertised on Résa port Corse is not correct). 🍽 on land the Bel Ombra is really one of our favorite restaurants in Corsica. In the evening, the view is magical and the service is top notch. We spent a magical moment there. ‘’
Sailing Ti Ama – August 2021
Cala de Roccapina
At the top of our list we find another breathtaking setting located in the extreme south-east of Corsica. A Cala bathed in crystalline waters made up of high rocky formations softened by millennia of erosion, giving access to one of the most beautiful beaches of Corsica… You will have guessed it for the regulars, we are talking about the very popular Cala Roccapina.
This is the mooring for the wild and adventurous minds… In high season it gets very crowded during the day, but when evening comes, the paradise that lies before you is simply touching. La Torra di u Lioni di Roccapina, is the only vestige of human civilization on the green coast, the rest is absolute wilderness . In terms of comfort, you will anchor carefree in the shallow sandy sea floor of the cove which constitutes a natural refuge protecting you from westerlies and easterlies by the North. The many photos shared by boaters on Navily testify to the beauty of the anchorage where time seems to have stopped.
There is not much to say… A postcard anchorage! It’s beautiful, it’s wild, an end-of-the-world paradise only 2 hours from Bonifacio. The sand offers good holding but be wary of the rocks that edge this magnificent creek while manoeuvring.
Fred on Navily
Balearic Islands : Diversity of atmospheres & landscapes in a Mediterranean fairy tale
The four Spanish sisters, Menorca, Mallorca, Ibiza and Formentera, which form the Balearic Islands, are the third most visited destination on Navily and for good reason : they are a true paradise for boaters. Benefiting from warm temperatures throughout the year and a coastal geography offering numerous Bahia Calas, Radas and Caletas, the islands are a destination of choice in the Mediterranean. But what constitutes their main asset is the diversity of atmosphere and landscapes that you will find there.
From the wild paradises of Menorca and Mallorca where nature has retained its rights to the developed beaches of the touristy Ibiza and Formentera coastlines, you will find it all in the Balearics.
l’Enseada de Tramontana
It’s no surprise that La Cala Saona is one of the most popular anchorages on Navily. But having already described it in our article on Ibiza and Formentera, the Octopus has decided to present the Enseada de Tramontana, a lesser known anchorage (which suits most of us) but no less exceptional on the island.
Far from the crowdy north of Formentera, in the south-east lies this magical cove. Protected from westerlies and easterlies (be careful in easterly winds the anchorage can still be very rolly), it features sandy bottoms at a depth of 8 meters,offering good holding. The untouched wilderness of this cove is a majestic sight. Bathed in waters of divine blue, cliffs of clear rocks dotted with reckless vegetation dominate the landscape. It is quite unusual to have such a wild anchorage in Formentera, especially when it is minutes away from a town and its amenities! Indeed, a taxi boat will take you to the small pontoon in the coastal village of Es Calo, where you will be able to refuel and have a good meal in one of the local restaurants ( Can Rafalet for instance). Finally, Ses Platjetes beach will welcome you for a relaxing afternoon gathered with friends and family.
Although very busy in summer, l’Enseada de Tramontana is spacious enough to accommodate several dozen boats comfortably. In the evening the daily boaters leave and you can enjoy this paradise in a calm and peaceful atmosphere. For many sea travelers, it is the most beautiful anchorage in Formentera, an address worth noting down, for a cruise in the Balearics.
To truly taste the sweetness of a sailor’s dream, do not miss Cala Macarella. On the south coast of Menorca, the smallest and best preserved island of the Balearics, this exceptional anchorage had to appear on our list.
In a natural cove bounded by the Punta de Macarella, the anchorage offers very good protection from winds blowing from West to East by the North.
It is a Cala with crystal clear waters home to aquatic life rare in the Mediterranean that will captivate you : a true paradise for snorkeling. The wild coast offers an idyllic setting for you to witness the natural beauty of the island. The light-toned rock formations dressed in rich vegetation drop abruptly into the waters of La Cala forming numerous half-submerged natural caves. They are an ideal playground for modern day explorers.
Even though Menorca remains less visited than its sisters, this exceptional anchorage is a victim of its success in high season when hordes of small boats take over the cove during the day. You will therefore have to choose the right moment to anchor there, because despite its popularity, the Navily community speaks of it highly. A place not to be missed while cruising the Balearics.
A final stop for The Octopus, who will take advantage of the anchorage’s teeming waters hunting and feeding on small mollusks and shellfishs,before resuming his route eastward towards Italy, Greece and Croatia! Rendez-vous in our upcoming newsletter for the next episode of our tour of the most viewed anchorages on Navily in the Mediterranean!
And to enjoy the Balearics with the Octopus while waiting for Part 2, go take a look at the most beautiful anchorages in Menorca!
Fair Winds Captains,