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Tag Archives: snorkel

A One-Day Caribbean Yacht Charter Can Be Fun!

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While crewed sail boat charters and bareboat charter vacations normally last 5 to 7 nights, not everyone has the time for a multi-night term luxury yacht charter. In this economy, saving up for a special bareboat charter or luxury yacht charter holiday might mean postponing until 2010.

Now for the good news – sailboat charters can be as short as one day and are the perfect compliment to a land-based Caribbean island vacation.

Let’s take a look at a single-day luxury yacht charter escape in the British Virgin Islands (also known as the BVI or BVI’s):

There are four major inhabited islands in the BVI, as well as dozens of (nearly 60) smaller islands, cays, and rocks scattered throughout the archipelago. Of course, the fun way to see these sights is by boat on a luxury sailing charter.

You can rent a small Caribbean yacht charter sailboat or a fast powerboat for the day in Road Town, Nanny Cay, West End, or several other locations. Some experience driving a powerboat or basic chart-reading skills are important to ensure you have a pleasurable day.

A great trip could start from Road Town, Tortola and head south across the Sir Francis Drake Channel to Peter Island. You can tie up to the dock in Sprat Bay, or anchor off the beach in Deadman’s Bay and swim ashore (remember to wear your water socks). Visitors are welcome in the public areas, the boutique, and the beach grill.

girl swimming over a reef and camera showing fish underneath her and rock formation and sky above

From Peter Island, it’s a short boat ride to Norman Island. This is author Robert Louis Stevenson’s legendary Treasure Island, and the source of countless tales of pirates and buried chests of gold. Today, the island is uninhabited except for a small restaurant on the beach in the Bight. Anchored in the bay is the old ship, William Thornton, affectionately known by bareboat charter lovers and the locals as the “Willy T,” a trading vessel converted to a bar and restaurant. It’s a great stop for a little “pirate” ambiance. Be warned – on holiday weekends, the Willy T is not appropriate for kids as it takes on a bawdy “adults only” atmosphere.

Just outside the bay are the Caves. These are more like grottoes and are a true snorkeler’s delight. You can tie up your boat to one of the National Park moorings and swim in. Don’t be surprised if a school of tropical fish swim alongside you, looking for a handout. The locals ask that you resist the temptation to feed the little critters, however. Human food is not healthy for the fish and may do them great harm in the long run.

After snorkeling at the Caves, it is a short boat ride to The Indians. These rock outcroppings are the size of houses and full of nesting seabirds in the summer. The waters around the rocks are teeming with fish of every shape and color. One local describes a swim here as a magical experience: “Floating among the fish, corals and sea fans will make you feel like Peter Pan flying through an enchanted forest.”

If the sun is still high in the sky, and you still feel fresh for more adventure, zip over to Salt Island. You can tie up to the dock and walk around the abandoned houses to the salt pond where workers harvest and sell sea salt. If you still have any get-up-and-go in your tank, hop back on your boat and cruise around the corner to the wreck of the HMS Rhone, the BVI’s first underwater park. Snorkel over the wreck and try to imagine what it looked like before it sank in 1867!

By now, you realize you are on “island time.” There’s little reason to hurry back to Tortola, unless you have an early dinner reservation at your hotel or resort. Assuming you are in the island groove, we suggest a cruise east to Cooper Island. Accessible only by boat, this island has a few rental homes and a tiny resort that’s looks like a vacation postcard from the water – palm trees and long, white sand beach. By now, you must be hungry from a morning/afternoon of exploring. Drop in a local restaurant for a late lunch. With a full belly and a big smile, it’s just a short sail or cruise back to Tortola.

There are many other itineraries for a day trip by boat. Your hotel concierge can recommend the best local boat rental operators and give you some ideas as to where to go and what to see there. You can go fast on a powerboat or slower on a sailboat – the choice is yours. Either way, a day boat trip around the British Virgin Islands will be the highlight of your land-based island holiday!

For more information, call the yacht charter specialists at 305-720-7245 , email them at info@1800yachtcharters.com, or fill our online inquiry form at 1800yachtcharters.com/book-now/

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NO Passport Required – 3 Overlooked Luxury Yacht Charter Destinations For Americans

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US passport with a red NO symbol and slash through it

 

NO TICKY, NO LAUNDRY ?

So, you’re just itching to get back on the water and enjoy another private luxury yacht charter vacation.  Suddenly, you remember your wife mentioned it was time to renew your family’s passports…six months ago!

Now you’re in a pickle.  You go to the United States Department of State website, and your heart sinks…  According to the site, the total time it takes to process a routine passport application, and for you to receive the mailed passport, is 4 to 6 weeks.  Yikes!

Even with expedited (code for: “more expensive”) service, it will still take at least 2-3 weeks from the time of application, including mailing time.

Without valid passports, it looks like that last-minute charter yacht vacation is going to be put on hold.

Or is it?????????

 

NO SHOES, NO SHIRT, NO PASSPORT REQUIRED

Fortunately for you, there are several great Caribbean yacht charter destinations where a passport is not required to enjoy a luxury yacht charter holiday.  These destinations are often overlooked by Americans – bypassed for the traditional charter hotspots like the British Virgin Islands, St Barts, and the Bahamas.  Most are within a half-day’s travel time from much of the United States, and are all are well worth a visit by boat.

Here are three of our favorite destinations where bare feet and bathing suits are the dress code, and passports are not required…

 

THE NO PASSPORT REQUIRED LIST

Beach and blue ocean with mountains in background

 

  • US VIRGIN ISLANDS (St. Thomas, St. John, St. Croix, and Water Island) – Just a rock’s throw away from the more popular British Virgin Islands, the USVI is ideal for a short-term getaway, say 3-4 nights.  Yes, there are dozens of small islands to visit in the BVI, the USVI has some great protected anchorages, wonderful snorkeling, fantastic nature preserves, and a major international airport in St. Thomas that makes coming and going a snap.Yacht Charter tip:   consider starting your trip from Red Hook (St. Thomas), on the east end of the island, versus the downtown area of the capital, Charlotte Amalie.  This way, you can avoid the congestion and large crowds of tourists that swarm Charlotte Amalie when the numerous cruise ships arrive.

    Things to do:   There are just SO many wonderful activities to do in St. Thomas.  Here are just a few (thanks to the USVI Tourism Bureau):

  • Visit a tropical botanical garden
  • Zipline the Virgin Islands
  • Take a helicopter tour around the island
  • Skydive in St. Thomas
  • Go duty-free shopping
  • Volunteer at the local animal shelter
  • Go on a birdwatching tour

 

  • SPANISH VIRGIN ISLANDS (Vieques, Culebra, and a multitude of smaller islands and cays) – Did you know the Spanish Virgins are only 6 miles off the eastern coastline of Puerto Rico?  The United States military used these islands for bombing practice until 2003, so there has been little exploitation in term of commercial development – a round-about way to say the islands are pristine and unspoiled.  The water is crystal clear, and the reefs are teeming with marine life.Yacht charter tip:  Try to plan your luxury yacht charter during the week, and not on the weekend – local boaters from the mainland invade on the weekends!

    Things to do: For fantastic vistas, hike up to the small lighthouse on the highest hill on Culebrita island, or snorkel or SCUBA dive the reefs along the 12-mile chain of little islands known as La Cordillera

Girl in white bathingsuit wearing mask and yellow snorkel and snorkeling in front of a caribbean fort

 

  • KEY WEST (and the nearby Florida Keys) – This is truly the easiest destination to reach for Americans, as you can get there by plane, car, or even by boat.   The southernmost city in the United States, Key West is an island paradise and unlike anywhere else in the country.  The locals are quirky but fun-loving folks, and there’s plenty of points of interest, and lots of protected anchorages in the adjacent lower Florida Keys chain of islands.Yacht charter tip:  many of the world’s largest yachts call South Florida home.  A large fleet of luxury yacht charter vessels are based in Miami and Fort Lauderdale.  Consider a one-way charter, starting in Miami or Ft. Lauderdale, then cruising south through the Florida Keys and concluding in eclectic Key West.  A one-way trip will give you more exposure to the unique charm of the Keys, and you can fly home from Key West International Airport.

    Things to do:  Cruise to Fort Jefferson off the coast of Key West, and snorkel in the clear waters; stroll the shops, art galleries, and casual bars along Duvall Street;  experience the Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory

 

FORGET YOUR PASSPORT AND START PACKING

Booking a luxury yacht charter in one of these passport–free destinations is as simple as contacting the charter professionals here at 1-800 Yacht Charters at https://www.1800yachtcharters.com/book-now-contact-us/ .  You don’t even need to tell us you forgot to renew your passport – we’ll probably guess, anyway!  Just tell us the destination you wish to visit, your desired dates, how many guests in your party, and your preferred budget.  We’ll take it from there!!!

Text “NO PASSPORT CHARTER” to 305-720-7245 for more information on your private luxury yacht charter getaway…

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