As mega yacht charter vessels get larger and larger, the yachts, themselves, have become the “destination” for charter guests. Onboard amenities from home theaters, spas, and helicopters, to personal submarines, coupled with a “boat-load” of watertoys means guests rarely feel the need to leave the safe, comfy, pampered confines of their floating resort.
COMPANY PRESIDENT COMMENTS
According to Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters, that is not necessarily a good thing.
“Sometimes we have to remind our clients and ourselves why we first fell in love with yachting,” says Sheeder. “Initially, you rent a private yacht to escape in comfort and privacy, then you want to explore a remote area or an island and immerse yourself in its culture.”
Sheeder laments some modern travelers are missing the wonders of exploration by spending too much time onboard their yachts. “So much beauty awaits ashore, in terms of people, nature, and culture.”
TOP 3 ISLANDS
In the spirit of recapturing that sense of wonder and adventure, our intrepid team in our charter department has picked their top three island destinations. Certainly, there are bigger, more famous islands, but for white sand beaches, salty breezes, freshly caught seafood, and no crowds, head to one of these 3 “World’s Best” secret islands:
SKOPELOS, First, Greece – Yes, the islands of Mycanos and Santorini are a “must.” They are beautiful, but where did Hollywood scouts shooting the movie, Mamma Mia? It was Skopelos! This secret little island is close to tourist-crazed Skiathos. Anchor in a hidden cove and arrive by tender on Kastani beach. You will be wowed by the view of the shimmering Aegean Sea. Also, the island’s tile-roofed tavernas and the noticeable absence of tourists are a bonus. After dinner, stroll to the open-air Mercurius Bar & Café. Go up to the hillside Ouzeri Anatoli, for live rebetika music. This is Greece and Greek yachting at its best. Opa!
CAYE CAULKER, Second, Belize. Head to Caye Caulker in Belize for a caribbean change of pace. Shallow waters are great for crewed catamaran charters. Anchor in Shark Ray Alley and snorkel among nurse sharks and stingrays. Go scuba diving at the underwater caves of Blue Hole. Back onshore, curried lobster at the Jolly Roger’s Grill is “to die for.” Visit during the annual Lobster Festival, when the main road turns into a street party.
SAMPSON CAY and the EXUMA CAYS, Third, Bahamas. Sailors like yacht owner Johnny Depp know all memorable Bahamas yacht charters should pass though the Exumas and Sampson Cay. Sailors access thriving patch reefs, isolated islets, and miles of secluded white sand. The snorkeling is amazing. Specifically, in the country’s only underwater national park. A fabulous way to get a suntan.
WHERE IS YOUR FAVORITE ISLAND GETAWAY?
Finally, where is YOUR favorite island getaway? Tell us your best island yachting story. We will post it in our blog and share it with the world! Send us photos!