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  • Writer's pictureAlexandros Vrailas

Ferries and High Speed Craft in Poros on 9 September 2021

Located on the Saronic Gulf, next to the Methana Peninsula and facing the regional unit of Troizinia (which is part of the Argolid Peninsula in the Eastern Peloponnese), the island of Poros has been a well-known destination for tourists and Greek locals. Its proximity to both Athens and the Peloponnese has enabled it to attract more visitors, who are able to enjoy its beautiful beaches and beautiful green areas. It also has a very nice port town and it is a notable destination for pleasure craft and sailing ships that make excursions around the Saronic Gulf. The narrow Troizinia Strait which separates Poros from the Argolid Peninsula is a very popular sea lane, which is also used by ships of the Greek coastal service. The island also features an important base for the Hellenic Navy, and, just like many other Greek islands, has a very rich maritime history. All these factors have helped establish a very effective connection of Poros with mainland Greece and the other islands of the Saronic Gulf. Indeed, the island is served directly from Piraeus by both high speed craft (either directly from Piraeus or via the islands of Aegina and Agistri) and conventional ferries (which mainly serve the Piraeus-Aegina-Methana-Poros line). The high speed craft also connect Poros with the islands of Hydra and Spetses, as well as the coastal Peloponnesian towns of Ermioni and Porto Cheli. Moreover, the island has a very frequent ferry connection with Galatas Troizinias, which is the town facing the port of Poros on the Troizinia Strait. In 2021, four landing craft and one double-ended ferry performed this service, which is one of shortest crossings in Greece. Finally, Poros is also served by several passenger ships performing one-day cruises on the Saronic Gulf, including those of Hydraïki Cruises, Evermore Cruises and Antoniou Cruises.


While spending my last week in Greece for the 2021 summer season, I had the opportunity to discover new prominent important places where Greek ferries operate, including the port of Lavrion and the Rion Strait (on which I performed two trips, namely with the ORION III of Farmakoris-Villiotis NE and with the AGIOS ELEFTHERIOS IV of Feidias NE). A day after visiting the latter, I planned to make my next visit to another well-known Greek coastal service destination, and to that end I chose to go to Poros on 9 September 2021, and I planned to stay there for most of the day. This day would mark the second time that I went to Poros, with the first time having been, coincidentally, exactly four years prior. Indeed, I went there on 9 September 2017, back when I performed the Saronic Gulf One-Day Cruise from Floisbos to Hydra, Poros and Aegina onboard the PLATYTERA TON OURANON of Hydraïki Cruises. I had also briefly seen the island in 2019, while traveling to Spetses, but I did not visit it back then. While my visit to Poros in 2017 saw me spending only 45 minutes in the island as part of the cruise, the visit that I did four years later lasted for about seven hours. This enabled me to see several ships and take various pictures of them, all of which will be shown below.

I arrived in Poros at about 11:30 with the high speed catamaran FLYINGCAT 6 of Hellenic Seaways. The latter was spending her second season on the Piraeus-Aegina-Agistri-Poros-Hydra-Ermioni-Spetses-Porto Cheli line, as she was one of six high speed craft of Hellenic Seaways to serve the Saronic Gulf in 2021. Due to heading to an island that I do not visit frequently, I would have normally covered my trip towards that island with a Tribute Post, however I traveled from Piraeus to Poros with the FLYINGCAT 6, for which I had already written such a post when I used the ship to head from Spetses back to Piraeus on 28 July 2019. The trip that I did on 9 September 2021 from Piraeus to Poros was therefore the second one that I did onboard that specific vessel.

A view of the FLYINGCAT 6 as she departs the port of Poros, in order to head towards Hydra.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen leaving the port of Poros only moments after having docked there. She was now heading towards Hydra, and would then continue her trip to Ermioni, Spetses and Porto Cheli.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen as she now sails along the Troizinia Strait in order to head from Poros to Hydra.

A few moments after the FLYINGCAT 6 left Poros, I spotted the landing craft FANEROMENI POROU IV of VR Ferries heading towards the port, after having sailed from Galatas Troizinias.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen making her way towards the port of Poros. She was built in 2015 in Greece, having been ordered by her company in order to serve the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen heading towards Poros. As it is suggested, she is the fourth ship of her company to bear that name. The first ship to have that name was the FANEROMENI POROU, a landing craft that operated for VR Ferries from 1996 to 2006, and is currently the PANAGIA KOIMISIS II of Antiparos Shipping serving the Paros-Antiparos line on the Cyclades since 2008. The second ship, the landing craft FANEROMENI POROU II, operated on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line for VR Ferries from 2000 to 2010, after which she was sold to the Cameroonian company BIR, for whom she operated as the MUNDEMBA before sadly sinking near the Bakassi Peninsula in 2017, due to extremely harsh weather conditions. The third landing craft, the FANEROMENI POROU III, was built in 2010 in order to replace the FANEROMENI POROU II. She eventually joined her in Cameroon four years later, after having also been acquired by BIR, for whom she continues to operate today as the GREEN TREE. As such, the FANEROMENI POROU IV was ordered in 2014, right after the sale of the FANEROMENI POROU III.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen as she sails towards Poros, during her seventh season on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line. Despite being launched in 2014, she was only completed a year later, after which she began her operations on the Troizinia Strait.

From the port of Poros, I was able to see that of Galatas Troizinias, where I spotted the double-ended ferry KYRIAKI of Troiziniaki NE. Built in 2000 in Greece, she has also spent her entire career so far on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line.

Another view of the FANEROMENI POROU IV as she heads to the port of Poros.

The KYRIAKI seen docked in Galatas Troizinias. She became the first-ever double-ended ferry to serve the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line, and she remains the only ship of that kind to have ever operated there. Indeed, all the other ships providing that service are landing craft.

The KYRIAKI seen docked in the port of Galatas Troizinias. In addition to being the only double-ended ferry serving the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line, she is also the ship that currently has been operating there for the longest period of time, as she was spending her twenty-third consecutive summer on the Troizinia Strait.

While heading towards the ferry docking area of the port of Poros, I got to see another landing craft, namely the NIKOLAKIS D of Troiziniaki NE. Just like her fleetmate, the KYRIAKI, she also operates on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen docked in the port of Poros. Built in 1994 in Greece, she has been owned by Troiziniaki NE since 2016. She was bought by the latter following the sale of the landing craft ELEFTHERIA D (built in 2010) to the British Virgin Islands-based company Solaris Shiptrade Company. As her first summer on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line was in 2017, this therefore marked her fifth season in her current service.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen docked in the port of Poros.

Just as I was taking more pictures of the NIKOLAKIS D, I saw the conventional ferry APOLLON HELLAS of 2way Ferries arriving in in Poros, having left Piraeus and stopping by Aegina and Methana.

The APOLLON HELLAS seen arriving in the port of Poros. She was built in 1990 in Greece, and has spent the bulk of her career on the Saronic Gulf. Her current stint there is the third one of her career, as she has been serving the Piraeus-Aegina-Methana-Poros line since the 2017, after having spent three seasons on the Sporades. She operates under the Saronic Ferries joint venture, which is composed of her company and Nova Ferries.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen docked in Poros, during her fifth summer under Troiziniaki NE and on the Galatas Troizinias NE. Before joining her current owners, she had spent 12 years on the Paros-Antiparos line, as the AGIOS SPYRIDON of Agia Marina I NE. Coincidentally, the ship that replaced her on the Paros-Antiparos line in 2017, the lamding craft AGIOS NIKOLAOS, also went on to join the very same company that bought the ship that the NIKOLAKIS D herself replaced in Poros, namely the ex-ELEFTHERIA D. Indeed, the AGIOS NIKOLAOS was sold after just one year to Solaris Shiptrade Company, for whom she operates today as the AEGEAN SEAL. Agia Marina I NE has went on to deploy two newly-built landing craft, the new AGIOS NIKOLAOS and the AGIOI ANARGYROI, on the Paros-Antiparos line during the 2018 season.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen resting in Poros. In addition to her career on the Paros-Antiparos line and on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line, she had also spent the first 10 years of her career on the Pounta-Elafonisos line on the Lakonian Gulf, as the AGIOS SPYRIDON of Simos Star. With the arrival of the then-newly-built landing craft PANAGITSA (which left Greece for Saudi Arabia as the ROBIAN 1000 in 2015) in 2003, the AGIOS SPYRIDON was sold to Agia Marina I NE. After 12 years with the latter, she joined Troiziniaki NE and was renamed NIKOLAKIS D.

The APOLLON HELLAS seen arriving in the port of Poros. She is one of the three ships of the Saronic Ferries joint venture that serve the island, together with the PHIVOS of Nova Ferries and the POSIDON HELLAS of 2way Ferries.

In the meantime, the FANEROMENI POROU IV had arrived in Poros and was unloading all passengers and vehicles that had traveled onboard her from Galatas Troizinias.

The APOLLON HELLAS seen undergoing her maneuvering procedure in the port of Poros.

Another view of the APOLLON HELLAS as she is seen maneuvering in Poros. The ferry dock of the port is in a rather good condition, and this allows the larger conventional ferries to dock safely and to even spend the full night in Poros.

I also went on to spot the second ship of VR Ferries, namely the landing craft IOANNIS II. Just like the FANEROMENI POROU IV, she also operates on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line.

The stern of the APOLLON HELLAS seen while she undergoes her maneuvering procedure in Poros.

The APOLLON HELLAS seen having completed her maneuvering procedure, and now ready to dock in Poros.

The APOLLON HELLAS seen once more, as she is about to dock in Poros.

Another view of the FANEROMENI POROU IV, as she is now seen resting in Poros. In addition to serving the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line, she also occasionally transports trucks containing fuels and combustibles from Poros to Aegina.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen docked in the port of Poros.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV, which is one of the four landing craft to serve the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line, seen docked in Poros.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV now seen departing the port of Poros.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen maneuvering as she leaves the port of Poros.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen undergoing her maneuvering procedure while departing the port of Poros.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV having completed her maneuvering procedure and now heading towards Galatas Troizinias.

The APOLLON HELALS seen docked in Poros. She has been owned by 2way Ferries since 2016, after having previously operated under Hellenic Seaways. She first began her career on the Saronic Gulf, on the Piraeus-Aegina-Agistri-Methana-Poros-Hydra-Ermioni-Spetses line, as the GEORGIOS of Akouriki Shipping Company. She was sold in 1995 to the South Korean Wing Ferry Company, for whom she operated as the SUN BEACH on the Nokdong-Jeju line until 1997. After being laid-up for two years, she was sold in 1999 to Poseidon Consortium Shipping and was repatriated in Greece as the APOLLON HELLAS. She was deployed back on the Saronic Gulf, on the Piraeus-Aegina-Methana-Poros-Hydra-Spetses line, even as her company was taken over by Minoan Flying Dolphins in late 1999. The ship operated under the Saronikos Ferries division from 1999 to 2005, when her owners (which had been renamed Hellas Flying Dolphins in 2002) were rebranded as Hellenic Seaways. Her service was restricted to the Piraeus-Aegina-Methana-Poros line from 2005 to 2013, and in 2014 she moved to the Sporades, being deployed on the Volos-Skiathos-Skopelos-Alonissos line. In 2015 her service on the Sporades was slightly modified as she was inserted on the Agios Konstantinos-Skiathos-Skopelos-Alonissos line. The following year, she was sold to 2way Ferries, and remained on the Agios Konstantinos-Skiathos-Skopelos-Alonissos line until the end of the 2016 season. Since 2017, she has been back on the Piraeus-Aegina-Methana-Poros line.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen once again in the port of Poros.

After having had a look of the port, I proceeded to visit the town of Poros, which notably features a hill that watches over the Kalavreia area and the Troizinia Strait. Here is a view of the APOLLON HELLAS from the Poros Clock Tower which is at the top of the hill located above the town.

The APOLLON HELLAS seen docked in Poros. Since joining 2way Ferries, I have traveled with her several times, with the first time having been on 7 August 2017, while heading from Piraeus to Aegina. She then notably underwent an extensive refit in 2020, during which her indoor areas were completely renovated and upgraded beyond recognition. As a result, they made the ship look more appealing, and passengers praised these changes. I got to see them in depth when I traveled with the ship on 13 August 2020, while heading from Aegina to Piraeus.

An aerial view of the port of Galatas Troizinias, where I spotted the FANEROMENI POROU IV and the KYRIAKI.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV and the KYRIAKI seen docked together in the port of Galatas Troizinias, as seen from the Poros Clock Tower.

The KYRIAKI seen from the hill above the town of Poros. She is docked in Galatas Troizinias, from which the FANEROMENI POROU IV had left in order to return to Poros.

A nice view of the FANEROMENI POROU IV leaving the port of Poros in order to head to Galatas Troizinias, while the APOLLON HELLAS remains docked.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen as she sails from Poros to Galatas Troizinias.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen leaving the port of Poros as she sails towards Galatas Troizinias. Her company's name comes from the initials of the two families that own the ship, namely the Vassiliou and Raditsas families.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen as she sails to Galatas Troizinias.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen once again, while sailing from Poros to Galatas Troizinias.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen over the Troizinia Strait, while heading to Galatas Troizinias.

Another aerial view of the FANEROMENI POROU IV, while making her way from Poros to Galatas Troizinias.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen once more, while sailing along the Troizinia Strait and heading towards Galatas Troizinias.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen yet again from the Poros Clock Power.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen making her way to Galatas Troizinias.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen arriving in Galatas Troizinias in order to dock next to the KYRIAKI.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV having docked right next to the KYRIAKI in Galatas Troizinias.

Just moments after the FANEROMENI POROU IV docked in Galatas Troizinias, the hydrofoil FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX of Hellenic Seaways was seen arriving in Poros.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX seen arriving in the port of Poros. She was built in 1993, and she has spent her entire career on the Piraeus-Aegina-Agistri-Poros-Hydra-Ermioni-Spetses-Porto Cheli line on the Saronic Gulf.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX see about to dock in the port of Poros. She is one of the three hydrofoils owned by Hellenic Seaways, together with the FLYING DOLPHIN XVII and the FLYING DOLPHIN XIX.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX seen about to dock in Poros. She began her career under the famous Greek company Ceres Flying Dolphins, being the last hydrofoil to join the latter (excluding the 'Mega Dolphins', which were three larger hydrofoils featuring two passenger decks instead of one). She stayed with them until 1999, when they were taken over by the new company Minoan Flying Dolphins, which was renamed Hellas Flying Dolphins in 2002 and was then rebranded as Hellenic Seaways in 2005.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX having almost docked in Poros.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX having docked in Poros, after having arrived there from Hydra.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX seen docked in the port of Poros.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX seen docked in Poros. She is one of the most experienced ships on the Saronic Gulf, as she has been operating there for almost three decades.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX seen leaving the port of Poros moments after having docked there.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX seen leaving her docking spot in Poros.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX seen as she departs the port of Poros. She is notably the youngest active hydrofoil of the Greek coastal service.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX now seen sailing at full-speed as she leaves the port of Poros.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX seen leaving the port of Poros.

Another view of the FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX as she leaves the port of Poros. It will be interesting to see what the future holds for her and her two sister ships, as Hellenic Seaways plans to deploy three newly-built passenger catamarans on the Saronic Gulf during the 2022 season. These new ships have been announced as the successors of the hydrofoils of the company, which means that they will most likely be taken out of the active fleet of Hellenic Seaways. While the FLYING DOLPHIN XVII and the FLYING DOLPHIN XIX (despite having been fully refurbished in 2020) are deemed old as they near four decades of service, the much younger FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX could still operate for a few more years, perhaps for another Greek company.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX seen leaving Poros, during what could have been her final full season on the Saronic Gulf, in anticipation of the arrival of the three new catamarans of Hellenic Seaways.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX seen once more, as she has departed the island of Poros.

A final view of the FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX from the Poros Clock Tower, now sailing at full-speed on the Saronic Gulf.

Another view of the APOLLON HELLAS, which is a former fleetmate of the FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX, back when both of them operated under Minoan Flying Dolphins, Hellas Flying Dolphins and Hellenic Seaways.

The APOLLON HELLAS seen docked in the port of Poros, during her sixth season under 2way Ferries, and her fifth consecutive summer on the Saronic Gulf.

After having stayed at the top of the hill watching over the town of Poros, I proceeded back down to the island's port. Here is another view of the IOANNIS II, which happens to be the youngest ferry operating on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line.

Next to the IOANNIS II was the landing craft NISSOS POROS of Poros Ferries. She also operates on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line, and that specific day she was not sailing as she was the ship that was off-duty as part of the rotational scheme involving the ferries serving the line.

The IOANNIS II seen docked in Poros, next to the APOLLON HELLAS. She was built in 2017, after the company ordered her following the sale of their previous ferry, the IOANNIS VR (built in 2011), to the Greek company Kefalonia Ferries in late 2016 (for whom she continues to operate today as the VIKENTIOS D on the Ionian Sea, linking the two ports of Argostoli and Lixouri in Kefalonia). As such, the IOANNIS II was completed for service during the 2017 season, and she has remained on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line since then.

The best picture I could take of the NISSOS POROS from the side, with a blue container unfortunately blocking the view. The NISSOS POROS was built in 1986 in Greece, and began her career on the Ionian Sea as the MEGANISI of Coastal Lines Ionios Corporation, serving the Kefalonia-Ithaca-Meganisi-Lefkada line. After 21 years there, her company bought the younger landing craft MEGANISI II in 2007, and the MEGANISI operated on the Lefkada-Meganisi line until she was sold to Poros Ferries in 2010, for whom she has since been operating on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line as the NISSOS POROS. She is the oldest ferry currently serving the line.

The IOANNIS II seen resting in the port of Poros. Just like the FANEROMENI POROU IV, she also makes trips transporting trucks carrying fuel and combustibles from Poros to Aegina, while having also started heading to Agistri since 2020.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen arriving in Poros once again, after having sailed from Galatas Troizinias.

As the FANEROMENI POROU IV had arrived in Poros, the APOLLON HELLAS was seen departing the port in order to head to Methana.

The APOLLON HELLAS seen as she departs the port of Poros.

The APOLLON HELLAS seen as she leaves her docking spot in Poros.

Another view of the APOLLON HELLAS, which is leaving the port of Poros in order to head to Methana. She would then dock to Aegina before making her way back to Piraeus.

The APOLLON HELLAS having departed Poros. A noteworthy fact regarding the ship's history is that her current owners, 2way Ferries, also used to operate her during her comeback season in Greece back in 1999. Indeed, Poseidon Consortium Shipping was under the management of the Papaïoannidis family, which went on to form 2way Ferries in 2001, after having sold its ships to Minoan Flying Dolphins in late 1999. The same case applied for the POSIDON HELLAS, which operated under Poseidon Consortium Shipping from 1998 to 1999, and was then sold to 2way Ferries in 2015 after having operated for Hellenic Seaways for ten years (in addition to the six years that she spent under Minoan Flying Dolphins/Hellas Flying Dolphins from 1999 to 2005).

The APOLLON HELLAS was not the only ship to depart Poros, as the FANEROMENI POROU IV also left the port moments after having docked there.

Another view of the APOLLON HELLAS as she is seen making her way from Poros to Methana.

The APOLLON HELLAS seen again, as she has left Poros and is now heading towards the port of Methana.

About an hour after the departure of the APOLLON HELLAS, the FANEROMENI POROU IV was once again seen leaving the port of Galatas Troizinias in order to head back to Poros.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV having completed her maneuvering procedure in order to head from Galatas Troizinias to Poros.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen sailing from Galatas Troizinias to Poros.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV making her way towards Poros, while the KYRIAKI remains docked in Galatas Troizinias.

The FANEROMENI POROU IV seen heading towards the port of Poros, after having left Galatas Troizinias.

Another view of the FANEROMENI POROU IV, as she is heading towards her docking spot in Poros.

A short while later, I started walking along the road that links the town of Poros with the rest of the island. The latter is located along the coast that separates Poros from Galatas Troizinias. From there, one can see the Troizinia Strait, which is also used by ships heading towards the Southern part of the Saronic Gulf. From there, I saw the high speed catamaran FLYINGCAT 4 of Hellenic Seaways, which had departed Poros and was heading towards Hydra.

The FLYINGCAT 4 seen after having left Poros in order to head to Hydra. Built in 1999 in the United Kingdom, she has spent her entire career in Greece. Although the majority of her spell there has been associated with the Cyclades, she has been operating on the Saronic Gulf since 2019, having been deployed on the Piraeus-Poros-Hydra-Ermioni-Spetses-Porto Cheli line.

The FLYINGCAT 4 seen as she passes through the Troizinia Strait in order to head towards Hydra, during her third consecutive season on the Saronic Gulf.

The FLYINGCAT 4 seen as she heads towards Hydra via the Troizinia Strait. Since her deployment there in 2019, she has been the fastest ship operating on the Saronic Gulf. For the 2021 season, she was one of the 'Flyingcats' that were employed by her company on the Saronic Gulf, together with the FLYINGCAT 5 and the FLYINGCAT 6.

The impressive FLYINGCAT 4 seen heading from Poros to Hydra. She was originally ordered by the Greek company Agapitos Lines, as the SEA SPEED 1, in order to begin service on the Cyclades. She therefore became the first high speed craft of the company. However, due to technical and bureaucratic problems, the ship never operated under that name, and eventually Agapitos Lines was taken over by Minoan Flying Dolphins just a few months later. The ship was renamed FLYINGCAT 4, and made her debut under her new owners on the Piraeus-Kythnos-Andros-Syros-Tinos-Mykonos-Paros-Naxos-Ios-Santorini line.

The FLYINGCAT 4 seen as she sails along the Troizinia Strait after having left the port of Poros. In addition to having served the Cyclades and the Saronic Gulf, she has also operated on the Sporades. Indeed, from 2001 to 2003, and then during the summers of 2016 and of 2017, the high speed craft served the Agios Konstantinos-Skiathos-Skopelos-Alonissos-Thessaloniki line (although in 2017 she only served the Thessaloniki-Skiathos-Skopelos-Alonissos line).

Another view of the FLYINGCAT 4 as she is seen making her way towards Hydra after having left Poros.

The FLYINGCAT 4 seen en route to Hydra. While she has been very successful on the Saronic Gulf so far, she continues to be fondly remembered for her career on the Cyclades. In particular, her nine consecutive seasons on the Heraklion-Santorini-Ios-Naxos-Paros-Mykonos line (between 2004 and 2012) helped cement her company's presence on the popular Heraklion-Cyclades service. Eventually, her success was so considerable that the rival company Sea Jets was forced to enhance its services between Crete and the Cyclades. This eventually led in Hellenic Seaways later deploying the larger and faster HIGHSPEED 5 (which became the HIGHSPEED 7 in 2016, and which operates as the SANTORINI PALACE of Minoan Lines since 2018) during the 2013 season. The latter would go on to further elevate the company's standards on the line, and therefore the work of the FLYINGCAT 4 was overtaken by a worthy vessel.

The FLYINGCAT 4 seen as she heads from Poros to Hydra. After she ended her spell on the Heraklion-Cyclades service in 2013, she continued to operate on the Cyclades from Rafina, being deployed on the Rafina-Tinos-Mykonos-Paros-Naxos-Koufonisi-Amorgos line. The service was very successful, and Koufonisi and Amorgos in particular benefitted from her itineraries. As such, they were incorporated into the services of the HIGHSPEED 4, which began operating on the Piraeus-Paros-Naxos Koufonisi-Amorgos line from 2014, where she has since remained and has provided a service that has met acclaim. During the 2014 season, the FLYINGCAT 4 was again operating from Rafina, although this time was she was inserted on the Rafina-Tinos-Mykonos-Paros-Naxos-Irakleia-Schoinousa line, while in 2015 she was on the Rafina-Tinos-Mykonos-Paros-Naxos-Ios-Santorini line. After her two seasons on the Sporades, she had a comeback on the Rafina-Cyclades service during the 2018 season, as she operated on the Rafina-Tinos-Mykonos-Naxos-Ios-Sikinos-Folegandros line. She then headed to the Saronic Gulf in 2019, and she has been remaining there ever since.

Another view of the FLYINGCAT 4 as she passes through the Troizinia Strait following her departure from Poros. While most of the 2021 season saw her on the Saronic Gulf, she also spent most of July back on the Cyclades. Indeed, she operated on the Rafina-Tinos-Mykonos-Naxos line a few times as her fleetmate that was operating there, the FLYINGCAT 3, had a major engine failure and then grounded off on Mykonos just a few days after her return to service. During both such occasions requiring the FLYINGCAT 3 to undergo repairs, the FLYINGCAT 4 stepped in for her fleetmate. I eventually had the chance to see her Tinos when I was in the island between 26 July and 30 July.

The FLYINGCAT 4 seen once again, as she passes by me in order to head towards Hydra.

Another view of the FLYINGCAT 4 as she sails from Poros to Hydra.

The FLYINGCAT 4 seen on the Troizinia Strait, while heading from Poros to Hydra. This was her second season under the new livery that was introduced for all the high speed craft of Hellenic Seaways. Indeed, after seven years, the advertising partnership between the company and Cosmote came to an end, which resulted in all the high speed craft being repainted in the colours of Hellenic Seaways.

A view of the FLYINGCAT 4, which is by far the largest of the four 'Flyingcats' currently owned by Hellenic Seaways.

The FLYINGCAT 4 having passed by me and continuing her course towards Hydra.

The FLYINGCAT 4 seen making her way towards the port of Hydra, after which she would then head towards Ermioni, Spetses and Porto Cheli.

Another view of the FLYINGCAT 4 as she heads to Hydra via the Troizinia Strait.

The FLYINGCAT 4 seen once more, as she heads towards Hydra. While she has been operating on the standard Piraeus-Poros-Hydra-Ermioni-Spetses-Porto Cheli line served by the 'Flyingcats', the FLYINGCAT 5 and the FLYINGCAT 6 have also started stopping by Aegina and Agistri since the 2020 season, hence operating on the Piraeus-Aegina-Agistri-Poros-Hydra-Ermioni-Spetses-Porto Cheli line which is also served by the three hydrofoils of Hellenic Seaways.

One last view of the FLYINGCAT 4 as she heads towards the island of Hydra.

After another 40 minutes of walking around Poros, I started heading back towards the town through the coast of the Troizinia Strait. There, I saw the FLYINGCAT 6 as she was heading towards the port of Poros, after having completed her trip up to Porto Cheli and performing the return leg back to Piraeus.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen heading towards the port of Poros, only a few hours after I had been onboard her in order to head from Piraeus to Poros.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen making her way towards the port of Poros. As stated in the beginning of the post, my trip with her on 9 September 2021 was my second one with the ship, as the first one had been on 28 July, when I traveled with her from Spetses to Piraeus.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen as she heads towards Poros. This was her fourth consecutive season on the Saronic Gulf, and her second consecutive season on the Piraeus-Aegina-Agistri-Poros-Hydra-Ermioni-Spetses-Porto Cheli line. In 2018 and in 2019, she solely operated on the Piraeus-Poros-Hydra-Ermioni-Spetses-Porto Cheli line, where she also operated in 2013, in 2015 and in 2016.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen making her way through the Troizinia Strait in order to head towards Poros. She was built in 1997 in Norway, and she first arrived in Greece in 2004, after having been acquired by Hellas Flying Dolphins alongside the FLYINGCAT 5. While both ships were being prepared for service on the Sporades, the company was rebranded as Hellenic Seaways in 2005. They were then deployed on the Volos-Skiathos-Skopelos-Alonissos line and on the Agios Konstantinos-Skiathos-Skopelos-Alonissos line, performing both services on a rotational basis. They stayed there until 2013, when the FLYINGCAT 6 moved to the Saronic Gulf. For the next six seasons that followed, the FLYINGCAT 5 and the FLYINGCAT 6 would switch their services each summer, with one staying on the Sporades while the other would operate on the Saronic Gulf. As such, the FLYINGCAT 6 returned to the Sporades in 2014 and in 2017, while spending consecutive seasons on the Saronic Gulf in 2015 and in 2016, as well as in 2018 and in 2019. Since 2020, however, both ships have been operating on the Saronic Gulf, as Hellenic Seaways stopped operating high speed craft on the Sporades.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen making her way towards the port of Poros, after having sailed from Hydra.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen on the Saronic Gulf, about to enter the Troizinia Strait in order to dock in Poros. This was therefore her seventh season on the Saronic Gulf. When she first operated there in 2013, she was partnered with another sister ship, namely the FLYINGCAT 1, which had been operating on the Saronic Gulf since 1991 (when she began her career under Ceres Flying Dolphins before subsequently joining Minoan Flying Dolphins, Hellas Flying Dolphins and Hellenic Seaways). The latter stayed there until 2016, when she was sold to the Turkish company Bursa Deniz Otobüsleri, for whom she has been operating on the İstanbul-Mudanya line on the Marmara Sea as the İZNIK. In 2016 and in 2018, the FLYINGCAT 6 operated on the Saronic Gulf alongside the FLYINGCAT 3, with the FLYINGCAT 4 joining them in 2019. Since 2020, the FLYINGCAT 5 has replaced the FLYINGCAT 3, as the latter moved back to the Cyclades.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen as she heads towards the port of Poros. Currently, she is the slowest high speed craft of Hellenic Seaways, as she barely manages to sail above 30 knots. Overall, her speed has been declining for the past decade.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen as she heads towards Poros through the Troizinia Strait. Before beginning her operations in Greece, she had been operating in Northern Europe. Indeed, she started her career in Germany, as the BALTIC JET for the German company Weiße Flotte, spending one year on the Travemünde-Warnemünde line on the Baltic Sea before moving to the Cuxhaven-Heligoland line on the North Sea. She then spent a year on charter to Channel Hoppers between 1999 and 2000, being deployed on the Jersey-Guernsey-Alderney line on the Channel, and in 2000 she returned to Weiße Flotte and she was renamed HANSE JET II. She operated on the Hamburg-Heligoland line on the North Sea until 2003, when she was returned to the Cuxhaven-Heligoland line. In 2004 she was deployed on the Bremerhaven-Heligoland line. After the 2004 season was completed, she was sold, alongside her sister ship and fleetmate, the HANSE JET, to Hellas Flying Dolphins. The HANSE JET II became the FLYINGCAT 6, while the HANSE JET was renamed FLYINGCAT 5. Since 2005, when the company was rebranded as Hellenic Seaways, both ships have become key high speed craft on the Sporades and subsequently on the Saronic Gulf.

Another view of the FLYINGCAT 6, as she continues to head towards Poros.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen once more, as she heads towards Poros.

The FLYINGCAT 6 seen as she heads towards the port of Poros. For the 2022 season, she is planned to return to the Sporades for the first time since 2017, as she is due to operare on the Volos-Skiathos-Skopelos-Alonissos line.

The FLYINGCAT 6 having just entered the Troizinia Strait and heading towards Poros.

One last view of the FLYINGCAT 6, as she is seen sailing through the Troizinia Strait on her way back to Poros.

As I returned to the town of Poros, I saw the NIKOLAKIS D heading towards Galatas Troizinias.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen heading from Poros to Galatas Troizinias.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen as she heads towards Galatas Troizinias. She is named after the son of the owner of Troiziniaki NE, Eleftheria Darsinou (after whom the ELEFTHERIA D was named). Her son happens to be the captain of the KYRIAKI.

Another view of the NIKOLAKIS D as heads towards Galatas Trozinias. She is the second oldest ship operating on the Galatas Troizinias-Poros line, after the NISSOS POROS.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen once more, while heading from Poros to Galatas Troizinias.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen arriving in Galatas Troizinias, in order to head next to her fleetmate, the KYRIAKI.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen as she is about to dock in Galatas Troizinias.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen arriving in Galatas Troizinias in order to dock next to the KYRIAKI.

Only a few minutes after docking in Galatas Troizinias, the NIKOLAKIS D was already beginning to make her way back to Poros.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen as she heads back to the port of Poros.

I then got to see the FANEROMENI POROU IV once again, as she was resting in the port of Poros.

Another view of the FANEROMENI POROU IV as she is seen docked in Poros.

About an hour after seeing the arrival of the NIKOLAKIS D in Poros, I saw the hydrofoil FLYING DOLPHIN XIX of Hellenic Seaways departing the port.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XIX seen departing the port of Poros. Just like the FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX, she serves the Piraeus-Aegina-Agistri-Poros-Hydra-Ermioni-Spetses-Porto Cheli line on the Saronic Gulf. This was her second consecutive season there, as she had returned to service in 2020 after an 8-year absence as a result of the accident that she had in the islet of Metopi (located between Aegina and Agistri) back in 2012. Despite being deemed a constructive total loss and being removed from the active fleet of Hellenic Seaways, the ship was eventually repaired seven years later, in order to fill the void left by the FLYING DOLPHIN XVIII, which was destroyed by a fire in 2019 in Perama which resulted in her being scrapped at the end of that year. As such, the FLYING DOLPHIN XIX was fully refurbished and returned to service during the 2020 season.

As the FLYING DOLPHIN XIX was departing the port of Poros, the NIKOLAKIS D was once again seen heading back to the port after having left Galatas Troizinias.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen arriving in Poros, while the FLYING DOLPHIN XIX is departing the port in order to head to Hydra.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XIX seen beginning to make her way towards the Troizinia Strait. The NIKOLAKIS D can be seen right behind her.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XIX seen as she leaves Poros. She was built in 1983 in Georgia (which was at the time part of the Soviet Union), and she arrived in Greece in 1986, after having been bought by Ceres Flying Dolphins. She notably became the first second-hand vessel to be acquired by the company. She operated for them on the Sporades, and remained there after they were taken over by Minoan Flying Dolphins in 1999. In 2004, when her company was known as Hellas Flying Dolphins, the FLYING DOLPHIN XIX moved to the Saronic Gulf, after having spent 18 years on the Sporades.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XIX seen as she departs the port of Poros in order to head to Hydra.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XIX seen leaving the port of Poros.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XIX spotted as she leaves the port of Poros. Another major important historical fact about her is that she is the lead ship of the famed Kolkhida-class, which consisted of several hydrofoils that were far larger than those of the preceding Kometa-class. The Kolkhida-class hydrofoils were built during the 1980s and up until the mid 1990s. As of 2021, all hydrofoils operating on the Saronic Gulf come from the Kolkhida-class, including the FLYING DOLPHIN XVII, the FLYING DOLPHIN XIX, the FLYING DOLPHIN XXIX and the FLYING DOLPHIN ATHINA of Aegean Flying Dolphins. The latter also has another hydrofoil from that class, namely the FLYING DOLPHIN ERATO, which operates on the Sporades. In addition, that company has a Kometa-class hydrofoil, the FLYING DOLPHIN VENUS I, which is due to return to the Saronic Gulf in 2022, on the Piraeus-Aegina-Agistri line, after a 3-year absence.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XIX now about to head through the Troizinia Strait in order to reach the port of Hydra.

The FLYING DOLPHIN XIX seen leaving the port of Poros.

One last view of the FLYING DOLPHIN XIX, as she is seen leaving Poros in order to head to Hydra.

A few minutes after the departure of the FLYING DOLPHIN XIX, the NIKOLAKIS D was once again seen heading towards the port of Galatas Troizinias, in order to dock next to the KYRIAKI.

The KYRIAKI and the NIKOLAKIS D, the two ships of Troiziniaki NE, seen together in the port of Galatas Troizinias.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen leaving the port of Galatas Troizinias yet again.

The NIKOLAKIS D seen as she once again heads from Galatas Troizinias to Poros.

A final view of the NIKOLAKIS D, as she sails towards the port of Poros.

Another view of the KYRIAKI as she is docked in Galatas Troizinias. She is notably the smallest double-ended ferry in Greece, and she is also known as 'The Basket' in Poros, due to her small size and her basket-like appearance.

Towards the late afternoon, I witnessed yet another ship arriving in Poros, namely the high speed catamaran SPEED CAT I of Alpha Lines. She had entered the Troizinia Strait after having left from Hydra.

The SPEED CAT I seen arriving in Poros. Built in 2002 in France, she was bought by Alpha Lines in 2020. The latter was a new company established by Vassilis Agapitos, the son of Antonis Agapitos, who owned the historic company Agapitos Lines and was then the CEO of Hellenic Seaways for many years. Alpha Lines sought to begin services on the Saronic Gulf and to become a new competitor in the area. To that end, they bought the SPEED CAT I, which had previously been operating as the ADRIATIC JET for the Croatian company Adriatic Lines on the Venice-Umag-Poreč-Rovinj-Pula line since 2009. After a conversion in Salamina, the SPEED CAT I began operations on the Piraeus-Poros-Hydra-Spetses line in 2021. Her service was deemed extremely successful, as her company was eventually chosen as the 'Passenger Lines of the Year' in the 2021 Lloyd's List Greek Shipping Awards.


This therefore marks the end of this lengthy post, which covered that special day that I had in Poros. Indeed, that day was quite prolific in terms of pictures taken, as I had the chance to witness several passenger ships of different kinds arriving in the port of Poros and subsequently departing it in order to head to other ports of the Saronic Gulf. In particular, the ships passing through the Troizinia Strait were quite a joy to watch, as were the ones that I saw when I was next to the Poros Clock Tower that watches over the port. Overall, it was a great idea to go and visit the island, as I had the chance to explore it for a longer period of time compared to the first time that I had been there back in 2017. It was a nice day that I will hardly forget.


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