Neilson in Vassiliki, Greece

Anything about particular resort, hotels, equipment, sailing conditions, & other experiences.

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Graham_U
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Neilson in Vassiliki, Greece

Post by Graham_U » Tue Jun 21, 2005 10:13

If anyone thinking about going there, I can give you a recent update having just spent 2 weeks there (june 05).

Like Bitez, they are now teaching Fast Forward which I can recommend for those who pre-level 5 stage. However they are not very gear to the RYA levels beyond L2. I went to do L4 over the 2 weeks and there was not a group dedicate to this, despite it being offered in the brochure.

The instructor, although OK- to very good in standard, do not seem that keen on following an official syllabus to complete an RYA Level beyond L2. It took a lot of effort from me to get one of the 4 books for L4 signed off. Many of the people who go are "experts" and more interested in more extreme moves, which is probably of more interest to the instructors. However many of these experts do little until the wind kicks in, and I think this attitude impacts the attitude or approach of the instructors.

The wind was "interesting" :shock: It was better at Axbridge on the training day in June, than any say at Vass. In the mornings there was often nothing, not even worth getting on the water for basic free-style. As a result the instructors tended to turn this into Q&A session, where some of the formal theory could have been completed and signed off.

In the afternoon, it was often a case of waiting for the wind, hoping it would arrive in time for the sessions which finished at 4-30. It often didn't.
Of the 14 days we had 2 no planning days, 1 when there was a blow at lunch time and 2 more where it was marginal for half an hour or so. The rest had some reasonable wind, arriving any time from about 3-00 but more often nearer 6. This adds to the frustration as its hard to relax when you've got both eyes on the flags and the mountain for signs of on-shore turning to cross, and is the mounting getting hot enough.

The special nature of the wind at Vass means it goes from next to nothing to anything from 4 to 6+ in minutes when it "kick in". However I found it surprisingly gusty with significant lulls, normally where I wanted to try a Carve Gybe. If it arrives before 6-30 pm. they keep the beach open until it goes or gets dark. There was at least one if not 2 days that the wind did not arrive until after the beach was closed.

When it starts it a mad dash for the best kit you can find. The kit at the site was good (Mistral, Starboard boards with Tush and North sails mainly), and only one day did I struggle to find a suitable board.

The hotel Cosmos is basic but Good, and Stelios and crew are very good. I enjoyed the holiday, but had a few frustrations. I probably would return, but I would be very vocal with Paul the manager on Day 1 to make sure I got the training I was looking for. However if I was not looking for the L4, I would probably have been able to relax much more, and pick the session of interest to me. Alternately you could go site seeing until about 4-00 pm, and still catch most of the best wind, if you were not interested in training.
Graham

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Al Donald
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Post by Al Donald » Tue Jun 21, 2005 11:53

The peak season for wind is July/August. I went there in 1990 in late July for 2 weeks and only had two flat days, one of which we were going motor biking anyway. Otherwise we had full on wind from about 1 or 2pm through to about 7pm or so. To give you an idea, I only took two sails with me (and a BIC Astro), a 4.8 and a 4.0. I used the 4.8 every day except one when it was too windy even for the 4.0.
I learnt to waterstart and do short-board carve gybes there and would recommend Vassiliki for that sort of thing. I suspect it's a lot busier now though, which would put me off going again. Great place though, and fond memories I must say.

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Post by Graham_U » Thu Jun 23, 2005 17:00

Not sure its as busy as it once was Al, there are 3 main watersports sites, Neilson and Club Vass for Windsuring, and Wild Wind for Dinghies, plus a couple of smaller sites and the locals at weekends. But that may be an advantage of going in June.

Although no one knows 100% why the wind works there is some element of thermals to it, so no doubt the extra hot weather in July and Aug would be better. However Club Vass figures have June at 93% F4+ days compare with 80% in July and 77% in August. So it may get going in the later months, but not as often. Also there are a lot of people who regularly go this time of year who where saying that the wind was bad this year, but maybe it was getting progressively worst (Global Warming was mentioned, but who knows).

The smallest rig I used for planning was 5.5, although I was often over powered on the days when I was out on 6.8 and 7 m when it kick off. I couldn't turn for toffees but it was great to scream past the instructors on their own kit. there were not many days would a 4.8 got me very far.

As for the Vassiliki its self, it was like a typical small tourist resort, with a small harbour, some tacky shops, and bars/taverna. I quite liked it as it was not over developed. If anything it looked like it had been stopped mid expansion as there were quite a few unfinished buildings. We were staying at the other end of the Bay as Porti, was was far less developed, much quieter and had some very nice and cheap resturants. Which I liked a lot.

I'm sure with a cut and paste here we could have an artical for the main site. Although my main intention was to offer feedback should anyone be thinking of going in the near future.
Graham

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dro
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almost there

Post by dro » Fri Oct 06, 2006 07:57

Feel I can not let my fans down
So even though patients hamering on the door
(can not be that ill if they can generate such violence!!!)

I will continue with my quest
What do you mean not ENOUGH wind ?

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