By W.A. Muller
Few things compare to cruising the open ocean on your very own boat. The freedom, the speed, and the serenity: they all combine to provide an experience loved by millions across the world. But, for a lot of us, the reality of owning a boat is just too much to manage, leaving little to choose from when it comes to enjoying some time at sea.
Sure, there might be some generous friends with boats, or a massive cruise liner you can stuff yourself into, but both leave much to be desired when it comes to a private, personalized experience on the water.
For many, yacht chartering is the ultimate choice. Chartering allows you to enjoy the freedom of yacht ownership without the hassle of constant upkeep and additional maintenance costs. Best of all, they're available in numerous destinations worldwide, giving you a delightfully unique way to vacation at sea. Whether you're looking to bask in the beauty of the British Virgin Islands, escape to the timeless Mediterranean or cruise the wondrous coast of Thailand, your choices abound when it comes to an unforgettable charter experience.
And, that's just the start. A yacht charter gives you the chance to experience your destination with a sense of freedom few get to enjoy. Just think; you could greet the day with fresh-brewed coffee from the galley and kick back on the deck while you and your crew plan out the day. Snorkeling? Sure thing. You voyage to a nearby harbor and dive in to discover a vibrant world that comes to life below the surface. After that, you've worked up quite the appetite, so you sail over and dock at a restaurant only accessible by boat. You laugh with the locals as you feast on fresh-caught lobster and wash it down with a frosty beer or two. The neighboring beach looks breathtaking, so you take the dinghy over and enjoy it all to yourself as you lay back beneath the rays. What does the rest of the day bring? It's up to you – one of the greatest benefits of a vacation on your very own yacht charter.
Charter boats are generally divided into three different categories. There are bareboats, which resemble a traditional sailboat with a 30 to 50 foot hull, two large sails, and a below-deck interior that houses the saloon, galley and cabins.
Sail catamarans are typically larger and easily recognized by their two parallel hulls, which can contain anywhere from three to five interior cabins. These hulls are connected by an interior space that houses the saloon and galley, as well as outdoor cockpit areas and elevated fly bridges on certain boats.
Power catamarans are almost identical to their sail counterparts, but instead of utilizing sails for power, they're powered by dual engines off the stern. Bareboats and sail catamarans have engines as well, which can be used in a pinch when conditions aren't ideal.
"But I've never steered a boat in my life."
You're in good company. Many charterers haven't. Instead, they hire a skipper who tends to all the navigational duties. Good skippers are expertly trained and exceptionally courteous, allowing you to soak in your surroundings free from the stress of navigating unfamiliar waters.
Some take it a step further and opt for the premium charter experience on an all-inclusive crewed yacht. Just imagine waking to the scent of a gourmet breakfast prepared by a personal chef. Or, saying "lets go scuba diving" and having your private captain taking you to the perfect, secluded diving spot. How about relaxing to a scenic sunset with your favorite cocktail in hand? When it comes to a crewed yacht, you are the only priority and your crew will take every measure to ensure your utmost satisfaction.
As you can see, private yacht charters are an ideal choice for anyone seeking a personalized vacation on the water. "Free from the restrictions of ownership and the limited itineraries of large cruise lines, it's an experience you can try again and again in destinations all across the world".
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