From May to October, in Prasonisi, you can learn to uphaul, learn to carve gybe and learn to vulcan. From beginner to winner, this place rocks! Very flat water on one side, onshore waves on the other, very chilled, nice accommodation, good food but most importantly…WIND!
|Windy Season||May – October|
|Average Wind Speed||15-30 Knots|
|Flight Time (From UK)||3.5 hours|
- How To Get There
Monarch Airways go to Rhodes and charge £60 per windsurfer. www.flymonarch.com Tel. 0870 458 2861
Don’t be daft!
The Boardseeker Team travelled with Sportif who send over 300 clients a year to Prasonisi. We were very impressed with their service. Contact them on 01273 844919. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Prices start from £429 staying at Lighthouse I, half board including flight and transfer and using the Pro Center Christof Kirschner.
Staying at the Oasis hotel and using the Fanatic Centre costs from £439.
- How The Wind Works
It’s the NW “Meltemi” trade wind that blows across the whole Med in the summer. Hot weather in mainland Europe creates a very dry and very stable high pressure which funnels this NW wind through the Greek Islands. Due to local topography, the wind funnels through the island opposite Prasonisi and the large hill behind it therefore Prasonisi will usually have a force stronger than elsewhere on the island. The windsurfing season is May to mid October with the strongest winds in July/August.
Don’t bother going in the winter as the Meltemi wind shuts down and it gets pretty cold.
Typical daily wind: June and Sept: 6m in the morning, 5m in the afternoon, July and Aug: 5m in the morning, 4m and less in the afternoon.
You do get the odd windless day but even then you will get going on a 6.5m/freeride board by the afternoon.
The wind can vary in strength from day to day but will pick up as the day progresses. Regular sail changes aren’t a problem if you’re hiring as they are already rigged for you!
- The Sailing Spots
There are two beaches:
Cross off side: flat as a pancake on the inside with a very slight chop on the outside when it’s 5m or less weather, sandy bottom
Any hazards?: Other windsurfers. It’s quite a big bay and a long beach but we all like to sail at full speed into one area to show off are latest trick 6 ft from the shore line. Do watch out for full power, Polish windsurfers sailing on slalom kit with total disregard for other waterusers.
Suitability/levels: perfect for every level from beginner to freestyle master to slalom guru.
Onshore side: Onshore to cross onshore with rolling swell outside the breaking waves. Average size of waves is waist to head high. The onshore conditions require more work to get big air but it is a great training ground for onshore wave riding & a real change from the super flat waters on the other side of the peninsula.
Any hazards?: The waves break onto a sand bar and can be quite steep and punchy on a windy day so be careful of kit and body breakage. If you’re really unlucky you will step on a sand eel whilst walking your kit over the shallow channel between the two beaches. This can hurt like hell and ruin your day’s sailing.
Kitesurfers tend to favour this side and it can get quite hectic.
Suitability/levels: need to be fairly confident in waves if its head high, good practice for sailing in chop, waterstart essential.
For more information on local weather, please visit the Prasonisi Pro Centre website
- Instruction And Kit Hire
We went through Pro Centre Christof Kirschner. This is one of three centres and is the most established. The other two cater mainly for Polish sailors but if you’re a Fanatic fan then it is worth going through the Fanatic Centre and it is slightly cheaper Speak to Sportif Tel. 01273 844919 .
The Pro Centre stocks JP boards (full range) and Neilpryde sails (3.3m to 7.9m Cores, Zones, Search, Jets and Sabers).
You can hire kit from 1 hour to two, three weeks etc. They are really flexible.
You choose a board and that becomes yours for the hire period BUT you can change it or try other boards if they are available. You help yourself to whatever sails you require from the rig pool. No one was short of a sail when we we’re there.
One week hire of standard kit (F2/Neilpryde): 175 euros + 25 euros optional but well recommended insurance
One week hire of upgrade kit (JP boards, F2 Maui Projects, Neilpryde sails): 214 euros + 35 euros optional insurance
Kit hire is part of the Sportif package.
5 hrs Beginner instruction including kit: 88 euros (10hrs : 150 euros) with 5 people max in group
5hrs Intermediate inst (no kit): 75 euros (10hrs : 135 euros) with 3 people max in group
Private hour instruction for any level, no kit: 35 euros per hour.
Jem Hall is a regular at Rhodes running Clinics for Intermediate & Advanced sailors. For more info click on his name or phone Sportif: +44 (0)1273 844919
All of the above includes video feedback and can be paid for at the centre by cash or credit card.
Rescue cover is provided (boat moored just off shore and watch tower manned all day).
Bringing your own kit
The centre has an area for private equipment and the staff are more than happy to help you rig it, tune it and fix it! We got a small dent in one of our wave boards fixed for free!!
In fact the staff are a nice, helpful bunch who all speak English but hail from Czech, Slovenia and Germany.
Camping in the specified areas is FREE and there are several outdoor showers and toilets. In mid summer, the place is full of camper vans who didn’t think the ferry was such a daft idea.
However, most windsurfers go on package deals and stay at ONE of the following hotels.
Twin rooms with verandas, fridge, fans, en suites AND half board.
These are studios sleeping up to 4 per room with kitchenette and air conditioning.
You can have breakfast for 6 euros and the set dinner for 14 euros.
Twin rooms, en suite, fridge, air conditioning and half board.
Check out www.oasis-windsurfinghotel.com
Prasonisi comprises of two restaurants and two not very well stocked supermarkets. The nearest town is 40 mins away so you’re stuck with what you can get in Prasonisi.
If you like feta cheese, smoked meats and dodgy flavoured croissants you’ll be fine!
Best bet is to eat in one of the two hotel restaurants. If you’re on half board you get two choices every night, for example, Greek salad, meatballs, chicken and rice, spag bog. You can also pay extra to have anything off their extensive menus. The fish is excellent. Breakfast is typically European with cheese, meats and hard boiled eggs. Again, if you’re missing the traditional English breakfast, it can be cooked to order.
Beware that credit cards are not accepted in the restaurants so take plenty of cash.
The tap water is very salty and totally undrinkable. Bottled water costs 1.20 euro.
Make your own entertainment & enjoy some drinks in the hotel bars. The locals are very friendly even if they do have a habit of playing awful Greek pop tunes! There is a varied international windsurfing community as well so you can swap gybing stories with Hans from Munich.
If you want a change of scene, head to Lindos (a 40 mins drive away costing 40-50 euro one way for a 4 person taxi). Lindos is a traditional Greek fishing town not yet ruined by the tourist trade. Fantastic food on open, roof top restaurants followed by some dancing in one of the Euro bars makes for a pleasant evening.
Large beer: 2.50 euro
Home to Sky TV’s Greece Uncovered, Faliriki is over an hour away. If you’re into drinking 24/7, flashing your naughty bits and degrading your fellow countrymen, then it could be worth the trip!
- Bored Of Windsurfing
Here lies the small problem with Prasonisi, there is not a lot else to do other than windsurf. The Pro Center will organise car or motorbike hire so you can explore the Island of Rhodes. Other than that it’s volleyball or sunbathing.
It blew every day over clear, flat water and we all learnt loads. The Sportif package is hassle free and good value for money and we can’t speak highly enough about the Pro Centre. Yes, you can go it alone but we recommend using the centre to at least pick you up and store your kit. Very chilled place, maybe too chilled for some and boring for non windsurfers.
www.prasonisi.com: Check it out for wind stats and nice pictures of the beach.
Name: Louise Emery & Adrian Jones from the Boardseeker Team
Local beach in UK: West Shore, Llandudno & Troon
How many years sailing: 6 yrs (Louise) 18 yrs (Adrian)
Last windsurf move you cracked: 360 in the straps (Louise) Spock 540 (Adrian)
What you’re working on now: vulcans (Louise) grubbies (Adrian)