California Cruise Ideas

When in California, consider a cruise. There are several options to choose when planning a cruise vacation, for both Californians and non. The weather makes a year round destination a real time scenario. Some ports such as Long Beach, San Diego, and Los Angeles make these cruises special. These are just to name a few.

For example, a great location is San Diego. Yacht Charters and Bay Cruises are very popular and not too expensive. Take in a breathtaking view of downtown San Diego and the surrounding harbor and peek out at the beautiful Pacific Ocean, while soaking up the beautiful San Diego day! Weddings, corporate events, parties, and business meetings are also part of the packages, plus dinner cruises. Some even offer overnight accommodations.

Another cruise option is a Northern California Cruise. Dolphin Charters cruise to Napa and the Petaluma River. Independently owned and operated since the 1970’s, this company focuses on the guests and details of California’s natural beauty. Passengers on the Delphinius Riverboat cruise the Petaluma River enjoying the wildlife and marshlands in the area.

The Napa Cruise, which departs from Vallejo, will take passengers past old navy ships at Mare Island to the marinas, salt ponds, and backwater homes of beautiful Napa, California. This is a one day trip cruise option with additional options that can be added such as lunch and or tours of Victorian Old Town.

Since we are discussing Northern California cruises, why not mention another great city to visit, which is the great “City by the Bay”; glorious San Francisco? Cruise under The Golden Gate Bridge. Visit Fisherman’s Wharf, ride the historic cable cars, or walk the hilly streets while you are there. This city is briming with history and tourist attractions.

A cruise that travels to Catalina Island offers a longer itinerary that can include destinations to Mexico and Canada as well. Carnival offers a terrific cruise that first takes you to the sunny playground of Catalina. Located just 22 miles from the mainland, Catalina makes a great get away that is fun and affordable. In today’s economy, everyone is looking for a good deal and a way to take a vacation without spending tons of money.

Once you arrive in Catalina, there are many great opportunities to enjoy the island. Window shop in Avalon. Go snorkeling at Casino Point in Marine Park. Hike the mountain and canyon trails where bison still roam freely. Drive into the interior of the island for beautiful views of the Pacific ocean. Visit the Botanical Gardens or go on a kayaking trip. Catalina also offers Glass Bottom Boat Tours, as well as a Semi-Submersed Vessel Tour. Whale Watching Tours are available between the months of January through March. Witness the glorious gray whales as they migrate to Mexico off the Catalina Coast.

Carnival also offers a four day trip to Baja, Mexico. This trip begins and ends in Los Angeles. Ports of call include Catalina and Ensenada, Mexico. Spend time enjoying the many amenities mentioned in Catalina in addition to Mexico’s Bajamar Golf Course, shopping in the port of Ensenada, and the famous La Bufadora, which is a natural water spout. The ship has a family-oriented atmosphere featuring adult and youth activities.

Swim in the large swimming pool or slide down the twisty water slide. Play miniature golf or just relax in the spa. A sauna, gym, and exercise room help keep those extra pounds at bay from all the delicious foods available 24 hours a day while on board the ship.

So as you can see, vacationers looking for a California Cruise have several options to choose from, with many amenities, services, styles, and land excursions to enjoy.

Caribbean Caribbean Honeymoon Cruises – Find Out What The Buzz Is All About

Anyone looking for romance on their honeymoon should consider a Caribbean Honeymoon Cruise. There are many possibilities to choose from, but we will discuss just two possibilities. Once you get aboard the larger cruise ships you will be amazed at how much there is to do to keep you busy on your Caribbean honeymoon cruise.

Some larger liners offer passengers a rock wall to climb about on, fitness trainers to work out with, pools to swim in, or masseuses to rub away the tensions that you and your significant other accumulated during the months prior the wedding ceremony. Dancing and small casino style rooms are often available to cruise passengers as well, with supervised activities for children available for those that are taking their second honeymoon.

Many luxurious cruise lines even offer LED movie screens. You can watch movies under the starts in a theatre style setting. Other great attractions on board are golf simulators and ice skating rinks! Almost all ships will stop to give you time for snorkeling and don’t forget a favorite activity during any Caribbean honeymoon cruise: swimming with dolphins!

The ocean, ship deck and cabins won’t be the only places you’ll see on your Caribbean honeymoon cruise either. Most ships will drop anchor more than once along the course of the cruise, giving you opportunities to snorkel with tropical fish in the warm azure waters, go mountain biking along trails in Costa Rica’s rain forests, or horseback riding along the sparkling white sandy beaches.

With shows, catered meals, dancing and pool-side fun and games available at almost any hour a Caribbean honeymoon cruise aboard a large liner could leave you wanting little more than extra time out at sea. Some ships even boast multiple clubs and lounges so you’ll be sure to find at least one playing your kind of music where you and your sweetheart can chill out with a tropical drink during one of at least two different cruise tours.

Eastern Caribbean honeymoon cruise tours can sail by Puerto Rico, St. Maarten, and St. Thomas, while Western Caribbean honeymoon cruise tours can include trips by Cozumel Island, Grand Cayman, and Jamaica to name just a few ports of call. Truly it would take more than seven days on any given cruise just to take in all the opportunities for excitement and relaxation.

Small Chartered Cruises

For the newlyweds, or second honeymooners, looking for a Caribbean honeymoon cruise with a more personal touch there are smaller boats available for charter where you and your sweetheart will be the only passengers aboard. Imagine cruising the caribbean on a private yacht? Can you imagine a more romantic honeymoon vacation? This just might be the perfect ticket for an unforgettable caribbean honeymoon cruise.

Since the Grenadines are split between two different countries you can usually expect your ship to be flying one of two flags at any given time. At Bequia, Canouan, Mayereau, Mustique, Petit St Vincent and Union you can expect the St. Vincent flag to be flying overhead, while the Grenada flag is required at Carriacou and Petite Martinique. There should be little need for you to worry about such technicalities, however, as the crew will be taking care of the details while you enjoy the calm blue waters and distant sands during your Caribbean honeymoon cruise.

Experience Bali, Through Bali Yacht Charters

Bali is a fantastic place to see if your in need of a holiday. As there are many exciting ways to explore the country, including the various Yacht charters they currently have.

There are many different choices in hiring yachts that you may want to chose. They range from sailing boats to the traditional schooners. While on board, this Yacht, you will have the experience and expert team members, with the help of a tour guide to make your event a safe and relaxing one. These charter cruises depart from Bali all the way through to Lesser Sunda Island.

You may also chose Bali fishing boats that range from the fast 25 knots with state of the art Blackwatch vessel. This Yacht has experienced crew members and captain. You can have heavy or light fishing tackle. The yacht has electronics, navigation, a high quality fish finder and safety equipment.

If you want to see wild life, then the Pinsi Sea Safari may be your choice. This Buginese schooner known as the Sea Safari, was custom made for the Western travelers and built in the late 90s, by a traditional craftsmen in the Kalimantan. The schooner has a 12 double/twin cabins, with its own air conditioner, shower and toilet, with 15 crew members on board to take care of all the passengers needs.

You are able to book 7 or 8 day cruises on this Sea Safari, and during any time of the year, there is a selection of choices in where you want to go. They include visits to the Lesser Sunda Island east of Bali. While on this Island you are able to swim, or snorkel in their unspoiled beaches, or if you wish you may also explore the villages where the women weave their customary Ikat cloth.

On your Safari travels, you are able to see the Island of Komodo, which is famous to the community for its dragons who survived the Jurassic age. This charter can take up to 26 people, and the price range is up to $3,900.

You may also want to go on the Waka Motor Yacht, this takes you to the waters that are off the Bali shore. This is an experience, for the keen fishermen to take a chance and catch a great fish with Captain Aaron.

There are no guarantee’s to catch a fish, but take the boat on the days when you are more likely to catch a fish. In doing so, you will be able to get the photo, that you desire. These charters will have resources, and it will also provide you with something to eat and drink. If you wish, you may book a driver to take you to the yacht and back to the hotel. You can take your own cameras, hat, sunscreen and alcohol. While the yacht brings you experience fishermen such as, the Captain and crew.

When traveling to Bali, it is also best to plan ahead, as there can be many enjoyable experience to chose. Therefore, you can enjoy the full benefit of the Bali experience especially with the different choices in Bali Yacht Charters.

Cruises – Taking Time Off on Water

Travel nowadays has become common pastime and tourism is a booming business. There was a time when taking a cruise was something like a lifetime accomplishment and those who had the travel bug and did not have the money skimped and saved and took a cruise. Travel cruises can be taken in two different ways. Conducted Cruises or Charter Cruises and in these there are Ocean Cruises and River Cruises

Conducted Cruises
In conducted cruises you have to mingle with a lot of strangers and follow the itinerary that the tour operator has already scheduled for you and your co-passengers. Timings are rigid and you have to adhere to them. The places you get to see are also decided ahead by the tour operator and it is usual for the tour operator to hurry you through a few places of interest and them pack you off home. You do not have the freedom to roam the backstreets on your own.

Charter Cruises
At times it may turn out that a few of your friends or relatives might get together and decide to go on a cruise, a travel cruise where you want to have a flexible travel plan, decide on the type, duration and the accommodation that you and your company wishes, that is, enjoy your holiday the way you want to. For such a kind of holiday it is better that you hire a yacht or a small cruiser and go on a Charter Cruise. You can, of course, charter a boat for the express purpose of conducting a very private wedding with just your family (and close acquaintances) present.

Ocean Cruises
With comfortable accommodation to relax in, from majestic suites to shared accommodation, you will never feel that you are on travel unless you go out to the deck to get a sun tan or to take pleasure in the panorama as it glides past. Alternatively if your group of either friends or relatives just want to spend quality time just among yourself for a long time with nothing to distract you and are content to visit just a few places then a charter ocean cruise would be ideal.

Charter cruises, per see, do not come with much discounts and free offers from the operator who is hiring out the cruiser or the yacht. The charter rates are normally fixed for certain periods of time such as daily, weekends or throughout the week and also on the basis of off season and during season cruising. Almost always there is no scope for getting bargains. The best offers you can get are when you do overnight stays on shore in hotels where you are most likely to get free on-the-house breakfast, discount on lunch and dinner coupons to name a few.

River Cruises
Ocean cruises traverses the oceans to any particular destination or destinations depending on the kind that you have taken, whereas river or canal cruises necessarily take you on a travel to a number of destinations dotted along the rivers/canal course. River cruising offers you a relaxed and comfortable holiday through some of the world’s most charming rivers and canals.

If it has been your dream to go on extended a holiday, embark on a cruise ship and see the world’s most beautiful cities, glide gently along the river through the countryside enjoying the scenery and the fresh air, visit local art galleries, castles, restaurants, theatres, markets etc, – in comfort, then a river cruise is just the right one for you. With comfortable accommodation to relax in you will never feel that you are on travel unless you go out to the sun deck to take pleasure in the panorama as it moves past.

Cruises are available to suit all tastes and budgets. Excellent choices are available for an individual or for a family. Special deals and discounts are given for groups and typically at times for well advanced bookings. Couples who have just celebrated their weddings come in for special treatment. Wedding suites are largely available on most river cruises.

River cruises operate from a large variety of popular tourist destinations and in many countries such as Australia, China, Europe, England and USA, to name a few.

Tour operators present a variety of packages that come bundled with discounts and sometimes with free offers that are inclusive of accommodation in worthwhile hotel deals. Free offers come in the form of on-the-house breakfast, welcome drink etc. Lunch and dinner coupons are, at times, available on discount offers. Most of the free and discount offers depends on the season. Free accommodation is almost always given for children below the age of 12 years.

Finding the right type of cruise is fairly easy as the Internet is always there to help you. Some websites offer a wide variety of choices for online booking. So if the travel bug has bitten you and you have a yearning to be surrounded with water most of the time, get yourself a cruise, ocean or river; or get a group of friends or relatives, charter a cruise and thoroughly enjoy yourself.

Bodrum Gulet Cruises – An Affordable Adventure In Paradise

Bodrum gulet cruises are nothing short of a one-of-a-kind experience when it comes to sailing. The coastline of the Aegean Sea is absolutely beautiful, and you really ought to plan on seeing it if you’re planning to visit the Bodrum Peninsula. And there are some good reasons why Bodrum gulet cruises are a very popular choice for vacationers who want to experience the Mediterranean on board a ship.

Gulets are a time-honored part of the Turkish tourism industry, and they are crafted on the Bodrum Peninsula. Bodrum gulet cruises are the vacation choice for many thousands who visit Turkey each year. These wooden yachts are made by hand, are 19-25 meters in length, and can carry 12-16 guests in its 6-8 cabins.

As they are simple yachts, and not large ships, the water activities you can enjoy on gulet cruises are usually fishing, snorkeling, sunbathing and swimming. In general, these cruises are geared toward energetic people who enjoy water sports, rather than simply a sightseeing voyage. And the choices that are available in Bodrum charter cruises mean that you can easily find one that has an itinerary that will suit you.

Nowadays, gulets frequently offer modern amenities which rival the luxury of a first class hotel. Air conditioning is not available on all Bodrum gulet cruises, they do have comfortable staterooms with private baths and showers. Bodrum yacht cruises come with equipment that includes a VHF radio, a GSM telephone, a stereo and a dinghy equipped with an outboard. Gear for water sports including windsurfing, snorkeling, canoeing, and fishing is provided.

Bodrum gulet cruises are better than a hotel stay for so many different reasons. For starters, each day you will visit picturesque locations, drop anchor in unspoiled coves and have the chance to swim and snorkel in sparkling clear water. Bodrum charter cruises in the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas provide you with the chance to visit the many ancient sites rich with history, which are easily accessed from the coast throughout your cruise.

And Bodrum yacht cruises can also easily be combined with a visit to the Greek Islands. Very near the Turkish coast lie several Greek islands. Bodrum gulet cruises that have both Turkey and Greece as ports of call are essential for history and archeology buffs.

Bodrum gulet cruises have plentiful and varied travel itineraries. The pricing for them is wide-ranging and will depend on your length of time at sea and the places you wish to visit. Any one of these special cruises will most likely stand out as the best part of your vacation in this unique part of the world.

Bodrum Mini Cruises – The Best Deal On The Mediterranean Coast

Bodrum mini cruises are a very popular way to see Turkey’s lovely Aegean coastline. Bodrum is one of the most visited towns in the Mediterranean area, due to its temperate weather and wonderful beaches. Local boat charter companies in the area offer a wide range of itineraries on Bodrum mini cruises, to give you the opportunity to explore and enjoy the area’s cultural flavor in a way that suits you best.

Normally mini cruises are three days in length, but you can also take longer cruises as well. Because all of the Bodrum charter cruises offer different itineraries, you’ll want to investigate them in order to decide the things you want to see and do aboard your cruise. Regardless of which cruise you select, you’ll be able to experience the perfect getaway and spend your vacation sunning yourself, swimming and relaxing.

The company you select will determine the sort of ship you sail on when you take Bodrum mini cruises. While some cruise companies make excursions on lavish yachts, some offer Bodrum gulet cruises which are extremely popular. The gulet is a handmade wooden boat whose traditional design has been used in Turkey for a very long time. Gulets are smaller than yachts and allow you to visit the small, private coves that yachts can’t reach.

Due to their size, some of the Bodrum charter cruises offer basic amenities although some come equipped more modern facilities. You will find small yet cozy staterooms that have private showers with hot and cold running water. As compared to yachts, gulets are less likely to offer air conditioning. Bear in mind that Bodrum mini cruises are for people who love nature and sailing, and are not suited for travelers expecting lavish accommodations.

When taking Bodrum mini cruises you typically spend several hours a day at sea while the rest of day is spent sightseeing or taking part in the many water activities. If you take one of the Bodrum gulet cruises, you will come ashore at charming historic towns and be able to see some of the archaeological sites in the area. The Aegean seaboard is incredible and dotted with quiet little fishing marinas, trendy holiday villages plus the relics of ancient empires.

Passengers either dine family-style on deck or in the dining area of the main salon. The delicious food is prepared by your cook, usually in the Greek and Turkish styles. Crews on Bodrum mini cruises are made up of the captain, the cook, and perhaps one or two seamen.

To get a cabin on one of the Bodrum mini cruises, you can check on the Web or see what’s available when you arrive in Bodrum. The phrases ‘blue cruise’ and ‘blue voyage’ refer to cruising through the Aegean Sea and the Mediterranean off the coast of Turkey. Regardless of which company you pick, your carefree cruise will allow you to make friends with the other travelers on board Bodrum mini cruises.

How to Prepare for a Whitsundays Yacht Charter Trip

If it is your first time to go to a Whitsundays yacht charter trip, there are things that you have to bear in mind to make your trip an unforgettable experience. Sailing Whitsunday is definitely not any typical cruise because it offers something that is much more exciting and unique. It is the perfect choice if you prefer an intimate trip instead of sailing through a big cruise line.

There are two common types of yacht charter, crewed or skippered and bareboat charter. A crewed yacht allows you to go sailing with a crew. This includes a skipper or captain, chef, stewardesses, deckhands, engineers, professional scuba divers and others. On the other hand, a bareboat charter lets you rent a boat and skipper or drive it on your own. You could also gather up a group and rent the yacht all together. Some bareboat companies offer basic seamanship courses to prepare their clients before sailing on board.

Your Whitsundays yacht charter cruise could easily become the best trip ever especially when you properly prepare for it. Here are some of the things that you need to remember when you are going sailing.

Determine the duration of your yacht cruise. This will help you decide how much food and picnic supplies you will need to bring. Bring extra snacks and pack up some lunch if you will be out all day. But if you are renting the yacht charter for a couple of days, load your kitchen with adequate food supplies.

Bring a first aid-kit complete with bandages, alcohol, and other fast relief medicines. If one of the passengers is on some kind of medication, make sure that he has everything he needs.

There are some places that have restrooms while others don’t. If you don’t have your own bathroom in your boat, might as well bring a portable potty and other bathroom supplies that you may need.

Don’t forget your sunscreen lotion and lip protection balm. Apply a liberal amount of sunscreen unto your skin before you leave and reapply throughout the trip whenever needed.

Pack insect repellent lotions and hand sanitizer. You may encounter some bug problems especially when you are planning to go fishing or traveling around on small islands. Don’t forget to sanitize your hands before you eat any food.

Fill your cooler with a lot of water and other beverage. Do not attempt to navigate a boat if you are under the influence of liquor.

Bring extra clothing. Wear your bathing suits, sunglasses, skid proof shoes and hats while on the boat.

Charmed by a Sunset Cruise

The sunset never fails to bring out the poet, philosopher, or the hopeless romantic in us. Wherever we are in the world, the sight of the setting sun always evokes a feeling of nostalgia that is astonishing and heartwarming.

This is true especially when we experience this glorious sight on board a quiet and soothing yacht cruise. As the yacht gracefully glides out to the sea, you can feel yourself gently being prepared for a one-of-a-kind experience that only the sunset in the distant horizon can bring.

A special yacht charter in Dubai can take you on a relaxing sunset cruise. You can get away from the hustle and bustle of the frantic city life. You can savor the soothing sound of the waves and the cool wind rustling through your hair. With your friends, family, or your special someone, you can delight in this intimate moment with the sunset together.

Starting at around dusk from the picturesque Dubai Marina, a sunset cruise takes you out to witness the day’s buzz transform into the vibrant Dubai nightlife. The Cayan Tower, in its swirling-shaped glory, and all the other stunning skyscrapers start lighting up as your yacht glides past them.

From the marina, you will then ride out to the coast of Dubai where you can see a stretch of pristine white sand beach glittering in the waning light of the sun. From this view, the iconic Burj Al Arab looks even more majestic and awe-inspiring amidst the skies that are slowly turning into warm hues of deep orange and purple.

As the yacht takes a cruise around the Palm Jumeirah, you can freshen up with some light drinks on board and wait until the golden sun bids its goodbye for the day. This riveting moment creates the perfect backdrop for a heartfelt wedding proposal or even a passionate wedding kiss.

As your yacht charter cruises by Atlantis The Palm, you can feel the enchantment in the air. Gaze at this landmark resort that is boldly facing the Arabian gulf. Feel it oozing with the mythical aura of its namesake, the Lost City of Atlantis, and the elegance of its Arabian character. Add the charming sunset into that image and you’re in for a magical visual feast.

Obviously, you can’t let the moment pass you by. Capture its beauty and preserve it for all time. Sunset photography famously yields the most breathtaking pictures. This one is no exception whether you have a top-of-the-line DSLR camera or a handy smartphone.

As the day fully turns into night, your yacht cruises back home to the marina and you find yourself sitting there awestruck at the unique pleasure that you have just experienced. As the sun makes way for a charming Arabian night, you can’t help but feel blessed to have witnessed such a wonder that only Dubai can offer.

Crewed Yacht Charter in the Society Islands, South Pacific

The Society Islands, in the South Pacific, are a dream destination for cruising. Charter in this area and you will feel like you have arrived at the center of Polynesian culture; for it is true: everyone does wear a flower behind their ear, dugout canoes with outriggers are often seen, a long wrap of stenciled fabric is acceptable wear for both men and women, and singing and playing the ukulele is a daily pastime. Top that with the fresh fish salad made with coconut milk called Poisson Cru, and you will feel you have arrived in the heart of heaven.

Bora Bora, Raiatea, Tahaa, and Huahine are part of the Windward Society Islands. To reach this area, fly into Papeete, Tahiti. From Papeete, there are constant domestic air flights throughout the area, to begin your idyllic crewed yacht charter. Cruising is between lovely atolls, with peaked volcanic land masses piercing through the clouds, surrounded by crystal clear water in lagoons filled with coral and marine life.

Bora Bora

Mystical, mythical Bora Bora is renowned for its spectacular scenery, romance and a brilliant blue lagoon and reef that James Michener hailed the most beautiful in the world. The island is an extinct volcano that formed two towering black peaks of land. Many visitors are drawn to the central lagoon, famed as a great dive site with a variety of sharks, rays, and tropical fish. Those seeking expansive beaches will be thrilled as while there are relatively few beaches on the main island; there are miles of sandy cays along the reef line, with secluded beach areas, home only to sand crabs and palm trees that are ideal for a picnic and shelling in complete privacy. However, it is the stunning lagoon, a treasured feature that draws visitors to swim, snorkel, dive, and windsurf. Surrounding the island with shallow waters, that warm easily in the sun, this lagoon area is filled with coral and marine life.

Other activities include a visit to Tiki Village, where tourists can see traditional life in an authentically recreated village. Visitors will see the making of the crowns of flowers called lei as well as tattooing, carving and paraeo painting. The village also showcases a spectacular Polynesian dance and an island feast. For a once in a lifetime thrill, view shark feeding close up on the outer reef. Using a snorkel and flippers visitors enter the water while Tahitian divers hand feed black-tip sharks. Helicopter sightseeing tours are available to view the multi hued lagoon and lushly forested interior, and this is a wonderful opportunity to closely look at Mount Otemanu.

Visit the Bora Bora Lagoonarium where you will be given a mask and fins to swim in shallow waters alongside a wide variety of tropical fish, rays and sand sharks. Trained guides are there to help with any questions and bread is available to feed the hungry underwater life that will swim right to your side for a meal.

On shore are various resorts offering cocktails or meals and numerous spas for a relaxing treatment using local herbs and spices. In fact Bora Bora probably has more resorts, all in a wide price range, than any other island. Many have an area of shops, which are also found along the roadside, a large number of which feature Black Pearls.

The famous restaurant Bloody Mary’s is located along the shore road, to dine sitting on coconut stumps set on a sand floor. Bloody Mary’s always features the local fresh caught “fish of the day”, and of course, their signature drink, The Bloody Mary.

Raiatea

Raiatea is known throughout the Society Islands as the “Sacred Island” and cultural heart of this group. Uturoa is the largest city on Raiatea and home of the daily market, which is very colorful and well worth visiting. This bustling market place along the harbor starts at sunrise with the fresh fish of the day, homemade foods, fruits, pastries and local arts and crafts. Wednesday and Fridays are the busiest as this is when vendors from the nearby island of Tahaa come to the market to sell their wares. This is a good location for purchasing products locally made featuring vanilla, coconut, and the Tiare flower.

Many believe Raiatea to have been the cultural and religious center of the ancient Polynesian civilization. Known then as Havai’i, this island is thought to be from where Polynesians left to settle Hawaii, given the same name as ancient Raiatea. There are many archaeological remains suggesting that this island was the most important in ancient times, which include one of largest and most well preserved ruins, the Taputapuetea Marea, an ancient religious center. Wander the area yourself, or have a guided tour for full explanation of culture and history.

Every October Raiatea is part of a 3 day canoeing event called the Hawaiki Nui Va, with over 100 outrigger canoe teams racing between Huahine, Raiatea, Tahaa and Bora Bora. As you travel through the islands, you may see locals out practicing for the new found sport of outrigger canoe racing that has been resurrected from ancient times.

Tahaa

The authentic flavor of Polynesia is truly found in the reef enclosed Tahaa. With no airport, this round island with fjord-like inlets is accessible only by boat. It is often called the Vanilla Island as it produces 80 percent of all vanilla in French Polynesia and its sweet scent perfumes the island breezes. The 42-mile coastal road weaves through small villages and into the hills, providing sweeping views of the indented bays. Visitors enjoy the beautiful beaches, coral gardens and small, sandy deserted motus.

Try to make time for a tour of a Vanilla Plantation, to see how this rich spice grows and is harvested. Vanilla is derived from the bean pod grown from the vanilla orchid. To grow the bean pod, each orchid must be pollinated by hand; a laborious but very interesting process to create what is often called the “Black Gold” of the islands. Many local products are made with the vanilla pod, so you can bring home your own bit of Black Gold.

Tahaa has the only navigable river in French Polynesia, the Faaroa River, which cuts up through a gorge in the island. River tours are available via motorized canoes to see the natural wildlife, flora and fauna, alongside this river and in the interior of the island.

Open since 2002, Le Tahaa Resort and Spa strives to be the best resort in French Polynesia. Stop by for a cocktail, meal or even a spa treatment. Or begin or end or charter there with your private yacht charter.

A sea turtle reserve is located in the Tahaa Lagoon, where many species of sea turtles can be seen in their natural habitat. And as always, look for the Black Pearl Farms that always welcome visitors.

Huahine

Picturesque Huahine has many titles: “the secret island”, “the rebel island” and “the garden island” and each tell visitors what they’ll encounter when they set foot on this wild, interesting gem known for its past, fierce warriors, and its current resistance to change and relaxing ambiance. Huahine is off the tourist track and still reflective of traditional Polynesian life.

Essentially, Huahine is an old volcano whose sunken center was filled by the sea. Like Tahiti, the island consists of two mountainous masses: the large Huahine Nui and the small Huahini Iti. The bays of Maroe and Bourayne separate the two lands. The geographically diverse terrain includes long white sand beaches, fruit and vegetable groves, indented bays and lush tropical foliage creating a jungle-like ambiance. Huahine also boasts the Maeva marae, a well preserved archaeological site at the foot of Mount Mouatapu and along the shores of Lake Fauna Nui. In the narrow areas of the Lake you can see “V” shaped stone fishing traps believed to have been made centuries ago, however still in use by the locals today for fresh fish for dinner.

Huahine does have one main town, named Fare, with a grocery store, main quay, several shops and restaurants. In the evening, outdoor mobile restaurants magically appear on the quay with little cooking kitchens and folding tables and chairs, each serving local foods. If you happen to be near Fare on days when the local supply vessel arrives, the harbor area will be filled with bustling colorful activity.

A road circumnavigates both Huahine Nui and Huahine Iti. While sometimes paved, sometimes dirt, it is worth a drive around to see the island. Huahine is a very fertile island, perhaps because the name Huahine means “pregnant woman”, which refers to the shape of the island as seen from afar. However most likely the fertility of the soil is due to the volcanic origins of the island. Huahine is home to plantations of taro, coffee, vanilla and melons. In fact many of the cays along the surrounding barrier reef have fields of watermelon and cantaloupe.

While passing alongside the river, stop to see the Sacred Blue Eels, part of Polynesian mythology. The eels, found only on Tahiti and Huahine, are from 3 – 6 feet long and have eyes of a cold blue translucent color. Swimming in a shallow area of the river, these eels are accustomed to visitors and swim near for any tasty food tidbits.

And as always, Huahine is home to a Black Pearl Farm, where visitors and shoppers are welcomed with tours and information on the Black Pearl Farming process, and cases with loose Black Pearls and Black Pearl jewelry are for sale.

After boarding in Bora Bora and cruising through Raiatea and Tahaa, and visiting Huahine, disembark in Huahine for a return flight to Papeete. There are frequent return domestic air flights available from Huahine, to Papeete, Tahiti, for an international air flight home.

Explore Tortola Attractions With a Lagoon 38 Charter Yacht Tour

The British Virgin Islands provide some of the most gorgeous, relaxing and inviting inland and offshore experiences for tourists and local residents. Main islands that make up the territory include the Virgin Gorda, Jost Van Dyke, Anegada and Tortola islands. Travels to and around breathtaking islands, like Tortola, are generally done by standard boat or yacht, similar to the same way native residents like the Arawak and Carib Indians traveled between the islands years ago.

Tortola Island Charter Yacht Tours

Many companies offer charter yacht tours Tortola Island visitors can take advantage of, giving themselves the opportunity to explore the island, including its deep waterways, up close. As part of the cruises, bareboat as well as chartered tours led by an experienced captain regularly set sail from one of the island’s port. Boats available for travelers and sightseers to choose from vary in size, features and accommodations. Each of the boats or yachts can comfortably seat several people. Included amongst the boats and yachts are vessels like the Island Spirit 37, the Lagoon 410, the Norseman 430 Lorimar, the Norseman 430 Whiskers, the Leopard 43, the Catana 47 and the spacious Lagoon 38.

Designed with covered and open spaces, yachts like the Lagoon 38 are generally equipped with a central dining area roomy enough for four people to sit down and enjoy a meal. Two other smaller dining areas, equipped with table and chairs, are also generally aboard the yachts. A shower, sleeping area with beds suited for two and a kitchen area with stove and sink and storage cabinets also come with yachts like the Lagoon 38. Although guests can cook their own meals they have the option to reserve a professional culinary artist to prepare their meals aboard an area boat while they spend a day and/or night at sea.

Tortola Yachts Visiting Area Attractions

By renting or leasing yachts like the Lagoon 38, travelers can enjoy exploring and learning more about area attractions, some of which may include Mount Healthy National Park, Smuggler’s Cove, Boiling House, Sage Mountain National Park and Sky World. Additionally, a highly visited spot on Tortola that Barecat yachts typically stop at include the Manual Reef Marina, location of the island’s Riteway Food Markets and several restaurants. If travelers want they can also design customized tours they want to go on while they lease a yacht for a few days or a week or longer.

Upon request, other services that come with rented cruises are escorted van trips to local land attractions like shopping centers and eateries such as the “Bomba Shack.” Boat cell phones and scuba gear are also available upon request. Seasonal prices for renting a yacht may range from $3,000 to $5,000, with higher prices generally being offered during winter months. Charter cruises aboard area yachts may run for as long as 8 to 14 days.

As with other Tortola cruise companies, Barecat is a family owned and operated business. The husband and wife team who own Barecat have more than 30 years of tourism experience. They have worked in the yacht tourism industry since 1993. By booking tours early, visitors to Tortola may be able to schedule longer stays on the island, perhaps even combining cruises with overnight hotel stays. Guests are advised to compare prices on items like airport transportation, which is offered by some charter firms, and tickets to national parks.