Yachting is one of the most exclusive and luxurious travel options: Elegant accommodations, VIP service, and your own personal chef are just the beginning of what these spectacular getaways have to offer. Add in the ability to visit deserted islands, play with jet skis whenever you like, and enjoy your own private luau on a secluded beach.
Discover here the hottest yachting destinations by season:
EXPLORE THE MEDITERRANEAN FROM APRIL TO OCTOBER
The yachting set generally head to the Mediterranean and Northern Europe for the spring and summer seasons, to enjoy balmy summer nights, classical history, delicious cuisine and quaint towns with beautiful beaches.
The Mediterranean is still very much a yachting hub for the jet-set elite, and is at the centre of all yacht charter trips in the region. The Western Mediterranean and the Eastern Mediterranean are both culturally unique, welcoming yachts of all shapes and sizes.
Must-see destinations in the Western Mediterranean include:
The French Riviera, commonly known as “the playground of the rich and famous”, it’s the domain of mega and superyachts along with much of the Italian coastline.
Stretching from St. Tropez in the West, to the Italian border in the East, there is 100-miles of prime waterfront that includes the ports of Monaco, Cap-d’Ail, Villefranche-sur-Mer, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, Nice, Antibes and Cannes.
The Italian Coast boasts several must-visit islands and mainland destinations including Capri and the Amalfi Coast, Ischia, Elba and Ponza, Portofinoand Sardinia.
Capri is beautiful – seriously beautiful. There’s barely a grubby building or untended garden to blemish the splendour. Steep cliffs rise majestically from an impossibly blue sea; elegant villas drip with wisteria and bougainvillea. Even the trees seem to be carefully manicured.
The Balearic Islands of Spain are a well-known playground for private and charter yachts with their constant sunshine, blue waters and rugged landscapes. History and Spanish culture are plentiful throughout the islands, harmoniously presented alongside lively nightlife and delicious cuisine.
Ibiza‘s modest population is swallowed whole by the seven-million-odd tourists that arrive en masse each year, and nowhere does sunset chilling or boho-glam style quite like the White Isle.
Malta packs glorious variety into its small archipelago. You’ll find prehistoric temples, fossil-studded cliffs, hidden coves, thrilling scuba diving and a history of remarkable intensity. Its landscape contrasts rocky stretches of coast that end in dizzying limestone cliffs with sheltered bays that hide gin-clear water and red-gold beaches.
Moving to the Eastern Mediterranean, Greece, Turkey and Croatia are enchanting charter destinations, again namely for their history, culture and charm, bursting with natural beauty and stunning aqua waters.
The Greek Cyclades offer 23 large islands and 200 smaller islands, with the most famous among them Mykonos and Santorini with white washed houses, windmills and blue roofs.
Rugged, sun-drenched outcrops of rock, anchored in azure seas and liberally peppered with snow-white villages and blue-domed churches, this is Greece straight from central casting, with stellar archaeological sites and dozens of postcard-worthy beaches. Throw in a blossoming food scene, some renowned party destinations and a good dose of sophistication, and you really do have the best of Greece’s ample charms.
Ideal for a Gulet charter, Turkey is full of beautiful charter destinations, including Goeck, which is unspoiled by mass-tourism. West of Goeck, Ekincik is the ideal place to leave your yacht while you visit ancient Caunos with its Roman scenery. Fethiye, Kalkan, Kas, Bodrum and Marmaris are all also worth a visit.
Croatia is a sailor’s paradise with more than 1,000 islands. Visit the ancient Greek port of Trgoir, Dubrovnik or the beautiful city of Split. The Dalmatian Coast offers up the isolated Kornati archipelago and other islands with centuries of history, including Korcula, Hvar or Brac with its Golden Horn beach – considered to be the most beautiful in the country.
Just along the Adriatic coastline, Montenegro is also worth a visit as it offers abundant natural beauty and great diversity, with bars and beach clubs noot far from the country’s mountains and ski resorts.
FROM NOVEMBER TO MARCH: CARIBBEAN
Popular winter charter destinations include any and all islands of the Caribbean, with sailing grounds stretching down throughout the island chain from Cuba and Jamaica in the west, down through the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, The Virgin Islands, The Leeward Islands and The WindwardIslands, before finishing up with Trinidad and Tobago in the south.
The Caribbean is a joyous mosaic of islands beckoning paradise-hunters, an explosion of color, fringed by beaches and soaked in rum.
Azure seas, white beaches, green forests so vivid they actually hurt the eyes – there is nothing subtle about the landscapes of the Caribbean.
There are certain destinations that can be enjoyed all year around due to their climate, including Florida, Brazil and the Bahamas, and destinations within the Asia Pacific and Indian Ocean regions, including Thailand, Indonesia, Tahiti and Bora Bora, Fiji, the Seychelles and the Maldives, which are all renowned for their idyllic beauty and abundant wildlife. Singapore makes for a great year-round charter destination if only to appreciate its skyline.
Beyond these destinations lie Australia, New Zealand, the Galapagos and the South Pacific islands, which are also great for charter with short rainy seasons and an average of over eight hours of sunshine a day.