At Leisure

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Lux­ury on The High Seas Ex­pe­ri­ence a pri­vate yacht and travel plans so exclusive, you share it with just your close ones.

Sailing the sav­age seas is an ex­cit­ing ad­ven­ture, a per­pet­ual un­fold­ing of dreams come true when you char­ter a pri­vate yacht, leav­ing the helm to a sea­soned cap­tain and crew. You won’t over­look any pleasures as the ocean cra­dles you in her arms on unique tours all over the world. The sounds of the sea and the dis­cov­ery of her bounty com­bine with the spray in your hair to whis­per a kind of free­dom you won’t find on land. So get out on her waves and en­joy all the ad­ven­ture th­ese yachts have to of­fer from stun­ning sun­sets to the en­chant­ing jet ski and div­ing ex­pe­ri­ences. By Eana Maniebo & Laura El­liott

MALUKU IS­LANDS

Start off with your won­der­ful In­done­sian Maluku Is­lands dream sail at the cone­shaped is­land of Ter­nate on­board Ras­cal, a 31-me­tre phin­isi cruiser char­tered from Simp­son Ma­rine. Launched at the close of 2016, made of iron­wood and teak, Ras­cal blends mod­ern yacht­ing and In­done­sia’s rich nau­ti­cal tra­di­tions to perfection.

With two spa­cious dou­ble cabins on the up­per-aft deck and two dou­ble cabins and a dou­ble with a sin­gle bunk bed on the main deck this yacht is per­fect for fam­i­lies. All in­clude en­suite baths, and flat screen TVS with 1000 com­pli­men­tary movies but you’ll be too busy tak­ing in the stun­ning ocean views by day and stars by night. Nine crew, in­clud­ing a pri­vate chef and a dive guide are on deck to take your or­ders.

The nearby is­land of Halma­hera show­cases its rich vol­canic cones, hot springs, and lava flows. An­chor at the Loloda Is­lands and spend hours out in Ras­cal’s fiber­glass ten­der in search for a myth­i­cal water­fall famed for its “re­ju­ve­nat­ing” wa­ters, or just snorkel the pris­tine reef-rich sur­round­ings.

More mys­tery awaits at Dodola Is­land, home to ex­ten­sive white beaches and turquoise wa­ters. Sur­rounded by big trees, you will find Air Kaca, an un­der­ground river also known as Glass Wa­ter be­cause of its clear, re­flec­tive wa­ters. Gen­eral Dou­glas Macarthur and his troops are said to have vis­ited this river dur­ing World War II.

Short stops along the way in­clude To­belo and Tugutil, where you can hike in hopes of com­ing across the na­tive and ex­tremely rare Golden Cat. Islets at Wayag Is­lands are breath­tak­ing. Schools of por­poises swim through the wa­ters of Raja Am­pat Is­lands where you can also reach Lat­i­tude Zero. A view­ing sta­tion in the is­land of Gam will al­low you a pic­turesque view of its islets and coral reefs in the shal­lows, be­fore bid­ding your yacht good­bye at Sorong. simp­son­ma­rine.com

CINQUE TERRE

The ex­cite­ment be­gins at the ma­rina of Viareg­gio in Lucca, an old city in Tus­cany. IYC, of­fers in­ter­na­tional yacht­ing among the world’s most sto­ried yacht­ing har­bors around the world. From yacht man­age­ment to char­ter man­age­ment, crew to new build con­sul­ta­tions they sail you smoothly through what­ever lux­ury yacht ex­pe­ri­ence you choose whether that is the most el­e­gant sail or pow­er­ful cruise.

Be­fore set­ting sail for Cinque Terre, ded­i­cate a day to walk­ing the cob­bled streets of Lucca and snap a photo or two of its prom­e­nades and pi­az­zas. This mel­lowed coun­ter­part of Italy’s big­ger cities is the per­fect be­gin­ning to a jovial jour­ney as you be­gin to cruise along the Ser­chio River and moor­ing at the Porto Lotti Ma­rina in the town of La Spezia, en­ter­ing Cinque Terre from the east.

If by chance you visit in the month of March, you will be greeted by the fes­tive air of St. Joseph’s Day, the city’s pa­tron saint. Even from afar, the pas­tel-coloured houses of the Cinque Terre stands out. Cinque Terre con­sist of five fishing vil­lages along the coast of the Lig­urian Riviera. Its es­tab­lish­ment dates back to the early me­dieval pe­riod and was de­clared a UNESCO World Her­itage Site.

Many houses and rus­tic res­tau­rants atop cliff­side and har­bours were built to pro­tect the vil­lages from pi­rates. Ex­plore its nar­row and wind­ing streets by foot or go from vil­lage to vil­lage by your ten­ders or a train as cars have been banned here for more than a decade. There are also steep, un­even ter­rains to hike. Al­though th­ese ham­lets are a pop­u­lar tourist des­ti­na­tion, its cen­turies old ar­chi­tec­ture is sur­pris­ingly well-pre­served. The day af­ter tak­ing in the beauty of Cinque Terre, finds you chart­ing a course for a his­toric port of call, the is­land of Elba, where Napoleon was ex­iled in 1814 and his of­fi­cial res­i­dence still stands. Af­ter an­chor­ing at Isola del Giglio to hike up the watch­tower built by the Medi­cis in the hill­top cas­tle

and at Porto Er­cole for some wa­ter sports, you head up the coast to Rome, be­cause as the say­ing goes, all roads lead to Rome, er, make that winds. iyc.com

CYCLADES

Fraser Yachts spe­cial­izes in the free­dom only lux­ury yacht­ing of­fers and en­joys shar­ing this passion on char­tered ex­cur­sions whether that in­cludes yacht own­er­ship or sim­ply the cruise of a life­time, they have the skills to make your ad­ven­ture on the high seas ef­fort­less and ex­cit­ing.

Set sail from Athens along the Cape of Sounion and ar­rive at the is­land of Kea, an­chor­ing at Port Koris­sia. Kea Is­land is the pre­ferred des­ti­na­tion of some of the wealth­i­est in the world due to its laid-back at­mos­phere and the seren­ity. Its res­tau­rants are famed for seafood spe­cial­ties.

Sail away to Ti­nos, the lo­ca­tion of the church of Pana­gia Evan­ge­lis­tria (Our Lady of Ti­nos), the home of the al­legedly mirac­u­lous Vir­gin Mary statue dis­cov­ered in 1822 in the ex­act place where the church now stands. It is a usual stop for devo­tees. Ti­nos is also known for its stun­ning mar­ble sculp­tures, so you pick out a cou­ple of pieces to dec­o­rate your home.

The next is­lands to tick off on the list are De­los and Paros, the birth­place of twin gods Apollo and Artemis re­spec­tively, ac­cord­ing to Greek mythol­ogy. The set­tle­ments on th­ese two is­lands still shadow the Aegean world sev­eral mil­len­nia ago, as well as its Greco-ro­man ar­chi­tec­ture. The party is­land of Ios and San­torini, the In­sta­gram-fa­mous is­land, are of course stops along the way, with the for­mer be­ing the re­ported burial land of au­thor Homer.

In the is­land of Ser­i­fos, white rec­tan­gu­lar houses seem to rise out of the earth it­self. Ru­ins of mar­ble watch­tow­ers and walls of me­dieval cas­tles stand on the hill­side. Its main vil­lage Chora turns to a vi­brant nightlife scene, al­beit tamer com­pared to oth­ers. Cap off your Greek getaway by loung­ing in the white sands of Kyth­nos, en­gag­ing in wa­ter sports, or go­ing to the main vil­lage to try their nat­u­ral hot springs. frasery­achts.com

CUBA

With yachts like In­dian Em­press, Nir­vana and Utopia you know you’ve hit the big time, with some go­ing for a mil­lion dol­lars a week. Be­cause you need a yacht that will land a he­li­copter, Ed­mis­ton takes the busi­ness meet­ing to a whole new level. The most rec­og­nized brand in yacht­ing with a global pres­ence, they will sail you to the most in­ti­mate cor­ners of the world.

Kick off your yacht ex­cur­sion with a sun­set cruise along the Florida Straits as you leave South Beach Mi­ami on an overnight sail to Old Ha­vana, a UNESCO World Her­itage Site. It is an over­reach to, in one day, visit all the dif­fer­ent grand cathe­drals, plazas, and derelict cas­tles, and go see the Museo de la Revolu­cion, Cuba’s for­mer seat of power that was re­fur­bished by Tiffany’s in­spired by Ver­sailles. End the night with a Trop­i­cana cabaret din­ner the­atre on­board.

A tour of the other dis­tricts of Ha­vana – the mod­ern ar­eas or those out­side the walls – will take a day or two with nu­mer­ous must-see places. The Can­non Blast Cer­e­mony at La Ca­bana Fortress starts at 9pm where a vol­ley of can­non shots rem­i­nis­cent of the colo­nial days when can­nons would sig­nify the clos­ing of the city gates.

Your next port of call finds you at Maria La Gorda, one of the best dive spots in Cuba. Your Ed­mis­ton dive mas­ter stands ready to guide you on the best dive of your life. Con­tinue sailing into the heart of the Caribbean and visit one­half of Trinidad and Tobago. Trinidad’s colo­nial houses, mu­se­ums, and churches re­veal ex­tra­or­di­nary de­tails about the two is­lands’ his­tory. The ex­pe­di­tion re­turns to south­ern Cuba and ends in Cien­fue­gos, home to the Jagua Cas­tle that was erected to guard the is­land from pi­rates and in­vaders. ed­mis­ton.com

Col­or­ful houses along the coast­line of Cinque Terre area

Ras­cal Phin­isi

Din­ing at Io­nian Princess

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