The top trending luxury yacht charter hot spots for 2018/19
Experiential holidays are a growing trend in the travel industry and as a direct result superyacht charters by sailing yacht and motor yacht are on the rise.
While some destinations have an enduring appeal, the most adventurous who want to stray away from the crowds also have some great choices to consider this year; and although remote, these destinations have expert tours and diverse activities to keep your group active and enchanted.
Martha Lukasik is a senior expert luxury yacht charter broker with more than 15 years' experience in the superyacht industry. She shares her expertise on what's in store for the upcoming summer charter season and destinations for winter, the New Year and beyond.
Cote d'Azur - Monaco
Monaco is perfectly placed right where the French and Italian Rivieras meet and this miniature country is known for its lavish entertainments: The Monaco Grand Prix is always well attended, as is the Monaco Yacht Show which gives a glimpse of the yachting world to come.
Prince Charles III and the establishing of the Société des Bains de Mer in 1863 propelled Monaco into the spotlight, and the casinos in Monte-Carlo in particular attract skilled gamblers and the inquisitive alike.
Monaco has the world's largest natural harbour and along with white sandy beaches there is an older part of town filled with history waiting to be discovered: Barbarians, kings and a movie star colour its past and stoic castles can be seen along the shore.
Gulf of Naples
Known throughout the world as the city that invented pizza, the Gulf of Naples is a striking superyacht charter destination where Mount Vesuvius is ever-present in the backdrop and the historic ruins of Pompeii are a short cruise away.
Spend your days sampling wine and authentic Italian cuisine, then head off to discover one of the myriad of beaches fringed by transparent blue-tinted waters along this stretch of coast.
The cliff-top city of Sorrento is an unmissable destination mixing modern galleries, museums and luxury shops with ancient buildings and carefully maintained marks.
Capri Island exudes laid-back charm and sophistication that appeals greatly to the luxury yacht lifestyle; cafes, high-end stores and a lively nightlife characterise this part of the Amalfi Coast. Experience local life and local recipes at a trattoria or a seaside pizzeria, then cruise along the coast to find a grotto or your own secluded beach.
Sicily - Aeolian Islands
The Aeolian Island of Sicily is nestled in the Tyrrhenian Sea, where active volcanoes entice the curious and wine connoisseurs enjoy the products of the fertile slopes. Two thirds of the island is a natural reserve and guests can take the time to explore the car-free tracks on land or Scuba dive or snorkel among the many incredible underwater sights, including a shipwreck.
As well as a 1,300 BC prehistoric village, there are fine restaurants and nightlife in Panarea as well as other nearby islands of Lipari and Salina. Experience the hot springs and volcanic mud baths at the remoter islands and savour the warm and tranquil terrain.
Sardinia - Porto Cervo
As one of the most famous marinas in the Mediterranean, Porto Cervo provides modern facilities and high quality waterfront shops, bars and cafes. Considered by some to be 'the heart of Costa Smeralda', Porto Cervo hosts numerous regatta during the summer months and your group can enjoy the exceptional nightlife as you make friends among other superyacht charterers, celebrities and VIP guests.
When your group wants to spend time alone on a soft sandy beach or play with the water toys, are beaches and secluded coves in abundance just round the corner from Porto Cervo marina.
Corsica - Bonaficio
Bonaficio is a magnificent destination crowned by a natural harbour filled with azure blue water. The striated cliff is a breath-taking sight as you come into port and the old town perches above it all. Taste some of the best flavours of the Mediterranean and fill your evenings with fun and laughter in the restaurants and bars.
Sant'Amanza, Rondinara and Petit Sperone beach are some of the most popular beaches in the area, although your captain will know of plenty of other great spots for snorkelling, Scuba diving and playing on the high-speed water toys.
Visitors can arrive at this incredible destination anytime in the year for wonderfully warm weather and sunshine, verdant forests and deserted beaches. It's a destination where wildlife lovers can't go wrong and the expedition style charters offer something very different to what's available in the Mediterranean and Caribbean.
Local guides will ensure that you see all the greatest sights among Darwin's Islands: Hike along lava tunnels, snorkel and Scuba dive with green turtles and Galápagos penguins, kayak with curious sea lions and spectate dancing blue-footed boobies.
North Seymour is one of the best places to view the blue-footed boobies and Espanola Island is the only nesting ground for waved albatross, and therefore the best place to observe them.
Hikers will appreciate the elevation of Bartholomew Island for a healthy workout and spectacular views from the spatter cone summit. Pinnacle Rock is one of the most photographed sights among the islands and visitors will also have views of nearby Santiago and the more distant islands peeking through the sea haze.
Croatia - Dubrovnik
This romantic city was once described by Lord Byron as 'the Pear of the Adriatic' and due to its surging popularity as a superyacht charter destination, many modern holiday makers would agree. The bright orange roofs and ivory walls that draw your eye from a distance are home to a rich cultural heritage where arts, science and philosophy has flourished under the city's guidance.
In modern times the city has been the film setting for Star Wars: Episode VIII and for the Game of Thrones Series, while artists and writers alike come to capture its lively beauty just as visitors have done in the past.
The surrounding countryside is often included in top 10 lists for wine connoisseurs and the addition to the itinerary complements the beauty of this UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Once you've seen the sights of the old town, sail off through the crystal blue water to find your own white sand beach among the captivating Dalmatian Islands.
Montenegro - Tivat
The south western coastal town of Tivat is an up and coming luxury yacht charter destination thanks to its new Porto Montenegro marina and atmospheric streets. Spend your hours wandering among the incredible architecture and find luxury boutiques, spa facilities and five star restaurants in which you can sample authentic local cuisine.
If you have the opportunity, go kayaking inland within Tara Canyon, second in depth only to the Grand Canyon. Here, wildflowers bloom and waterfalls and sandy beaches are just around the bend.
The 14 km long beach Velika Plaža has shallow water and soft sand beaches that are perfect both for young families and for adrenaline-seekers looking to make use of the wind and the wide open spaces.
Montenegro attracts international DJs during the summer months and visitors can dance the night away at the open-air clubs and bars along the shores of Tivat, Kotor and Budva. Take the after party back to your yacht and continue the entertainment on your sundeck under the stars.
Cyclades - Mykonos
The Greek Islands are a year-round superyacht charter destination because of their warm fine weather and scenic beaches, and Mykonos among the Cyclades is one destination not to be missed.
The island is one of the more built up within the Aegean Sea and its glittering beaches are matched by bars, clubs and restaurants catering to today's rich and famous. Yet behind its modern appearance, Mykonos has carefully preserved its history and the windmills are an iconic landmark to be included in your holiday snaps.
Be sure to sample some of the local dishes at the waterfront cafes and taste kopanisti, fennel croquettes, garlic pasta and spicy cheese pate.
Balearics - Ibiza
Despite the high Spanish VAT of 21%, luxury yacht charters to the Balearic Islands have grown monumentally, as has the selection of available superyachts from 10 to 75 metres (33 to 246 feet). The imposing cliffs, sandy beaches and scented pine forests of the Balearic Islands frame seaside settlements, and everything is within a short cruise of the bright lights and vibrant clubbing scene of Ibiza.
Spend your nights discovering Ibiza's trendiest bars, restaurants and clubs or engage in some boutique shopping for that perfect memento of your trip. During the daytime hours Dalt Vila in Ibiza is a great suburb to explore for the art and history of the old quarters.
Featured Top Spot - Antigua
The Caribbean superyacht charter destination of Antigua is ideally positioned close to other great locations of St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Barths, Guadeloupe and Montserrat.
Antigua is covered in scenic ports and historic sites, and the island is host to the annual MYBA superyacht charter show as well as the Race Week regattas. Infrastructure for superyacht charters is excellent and along with the myriad of powdery beaches, your group has the option of making new friends in town and escaping to a secluded spot for time alone in paradise.