The Biggest Little Secret
Very few people have actually heard of this kiteboarding spot. It's a great thing. Why? … space & peace. Hallelujah!
Also spelt Lemnos with an 'e', this Greek island is all about its pristine beaches, warm crystal Caribbean-clear waters, wild deserts, thermal springs, history, wildlife, and awesome un-touched sprays!
There are loads of things to do on and off the board. And with so much space, a lovely sandy base and almost zero tourists. Limnos was only really discovered in the kiteboarding world a few years ago. With no direct flights to the island (indirect, usually via Athens or by boat from Thessaloniki), it can be a bit of a mission to get here. But everyone else's loss can be your gain! Empty beaches, a varied playground, no crowds, really safe bay and wind (of course) - it ain't gonna take long until this place is on mainstream radar. So do it while you can, replace cars with donkeys, luxury hotels for campsites and step back in time to a refreshingly unspoilt Greece!
When to go?
Just like some of the other Greek Islands, Meltemi winds whip up in this region, blowing from the northeast with a lovely warmth to it – like a blanket giving you a cuddle in your boardies (not in a weird way). This cuddle pretty much runs throughout the summer from May (ish) to September or October, with the best winds falling between June and September, averaging 17-25 knots.
The water temperature is a luke 24°C so a rashy works for many and you can top up your tan a bit too. Outside summer, wrap up a bit more, and even go so far to say, bring a hoodie for the evenings. Days will be warm averaging 25 - 30°C so, bring sunscream!
Where to rig up?
Keros Beach - What is super cool is that this small little kiteboarding spot in Limnos really has it all; flat water in the north, bump’n’jump in the middle and bigger waves to the south, making it one of the most versatile spots, but also one of the best places to learn to kitesurf in the world. Keros Bay gives you some small wave chop, as well as Red Rock beach, which offers side-shore winds (for the most part). With a lovely sandy cushion underfoot, I'd go as far to say that it is perfect for everyone. Literally everyone – so go ahead, bring your nan!
Occasionally the winds will kick, flip, reverse and blow from the south … so it would be obvious to note that when this happens, the flat water section moves to the south, chop in the centre and bigger waves to the north. As most places do, Limnos gets cooler in the winter (October to April). And so what does exist on this teeny tiny island, pretty much shuts down during this period. There really isn't much going on here, out of summer.
Mother Nature tends to give 4 out of 7 kiteable days here, but it does vary so keep your eyes on the forecast! When its windy, it works, but the down days tend to have nada! Throughout the summer months, the winds kick-in in the morning, so you'll need to prepare to have some early starters if you want to enjoy it fully. 09:00 – 10:00am is when it starts to build, and between 10:30 – 15:30 it whips onshore to perfection. Like a sweet, sweet Greek yoghurt. It calms down after then, flipping to an offshore breeze.
If you're a chick, this is a particularly popular spot. Why? Well, there are less people fighting over one wave so you can discount any possible territory wars, there is so much space, and it is a super relaxing place to learn as a complete beginner or perfect your kiteboarding skills!
Gomati Beach - If you go to Limnos in spring (March/April) or autumn (September/October), it is worth checking out Gomati Beach, about 30 minutes drive to the south. A mini “Sahara” of the Island. The beach has the longest sand dunes in Greece, accessible by dirt road. This sounds mega weird, but it's flipping cool - a sandy area which might remind you the vast African desert … During this time, Gomati Beach offers some of the best waves in Greece. It's not really worth a visit during summer though.
Greek mythology has taken a walk on the safe side, and Keros Bay is definitely one of the hotspots! This little Greek island in the Aegean, edges towards Turkey … and we all know Turkey has awesome kitesurf spots already. ‘Nuff said!
FLAMINGOS!!!! Sorry for the outburst, but Limnos is an amazing spot for loads of rare animals, including hundreds of flamingos that flock here, ya know, hanging out on one leg, giving it the flamingo walk. If you are cold-hearted and don’t like flamingos, then don’t worry, there is so much other stuff to keep you occupied on your down days:
1. Pretend to be a flamingo.
2. Pretend to be the Greek God of fire and volcanoes (check out the cave of Philoctetes or the ancient theatre at Hephaestus – both are pretty impressive)
3. Pretend to be a mermaid/sailor – Stay water bound and enjoy some tranquil stand-up paddle boarding or surfing around the Keros Bay.
4. Pretend to be sober. Did you know that Ouzo is made here in Lakaria, local Ouzerie distilleries dotted around the island? Now you do! Enjoy!
5. Pretend to be cold. If all of those other things don’t interest you, then go and enjoy the thermal springs of Therma. Reaching 35 - 45°C, the therapeutic properties may help you relax after an intense ride.