There are a few ways to leave an island. Airplanes and ferries are the most readily available means of transportation. But, if you can swing it, I highly recommend leaving islands the way I left the Greek isle of Kos: by sailboat.
You can charter your own sailboat most anyplace in the Med and sail yourself around if you're an experienced sailor. If you aren't and still want to sail, you can either hire a boat with a skipper, or do what I did - join a G Adventures tour. (G Adventures in no way sponsored this post or this blog, wouldn't it be nice if they had?)
I have to say, sailing around the Greek Isles on a sailboat is THE way to see Greece. Think about it - Greece is a land of seafaring people, so what better way to see those ancient islands than from the sea?
G Adventures did NOT disappoint. I'm actually thinking of going on their sailing tours in the Maldives and in Indonesia...eventually, because seriously, this sailing tour was THE BEST thing I've ever done while traveling. EVER.
Before our tour left Kos, we spent one night in the harbor there. It gave everyone on the tour a chance to get acquainted, do a bit of grocery shopping and explore the main port area. That night, in stark contrast to the previous three nights I spent on Kos, I didn't sleep cooled by air conditioning in a lush bed in a room overlooking the sea. My last night on Kos, I slept in a teeny-tiny 2-person v-berth on a 50ft sailboat (I had it all to myself because my charter, meant for ten people, only ended up with four- including skipper). No air conditioning, (so it was BAKING hot) No screens on the hatches, (so the swarms of mozzies on the island of Kos all feasted on me all night long) No hot water in the standing head (bathroom/shower) because the engine hadn't been run that evening (cold shower, which really wasn't bad in the heat).
And it was no big deal. All night long, between mosquito bites, I lay in my v-berth, happy as a clam, being rocked to sleep by the sea.
I'm a boat person. And always will be. And I felt as though, at long last, I'd come home.
Tour the boat with me, in pictures:
One of the two bunk rooms... (NOT where I slept... thankfully!)
My own, private head. Yup. This little cupboard of convenience is both a toilet and shower...
My V-berth. Cozy!
My fellow adventurers
Skipper Robin Kersten (Fantastic Skipper. He runs his own charter company out of the Azores called Similie Sailing. Look him up!)
Ekavi - my home away from home while sailing the Greek Isles. (She's a Bavaria 50.)