Caribbean destinations to have on your radar this year
It’s never too early to start planning your winter getaway. With sparkling turquoise waters, white sandy beaches and coral reefs for snorkelling, the Caribbean islands need no introduction as one of the most magical yachting destinations on the planet.
Still, with more than seven thousand islands to choose from for your dream charter holiday, it’s time to start planning your escape to sunnier shores.
Offering year-round sunshine and thousands of uninhabited islands to explore, chartering a yacht in the Caribbean is never far from the top of ultimate wanderlust during the chilly winter months. Temperatures range from around 24°C (75°F) to 32°C (90°F), with the sea averaging a deliciously inviting 27°C (80°F) all year round. The warm and clear waters, less salty than the rest of the Atlantic, are a yachting paradise, with more islands than you can visit in a lifetime.
The largest islands are Cuba and Haiti, followed by Jamaica and Puerto Rico. Below Cuba you’ll find the cluster of Cayman islands, while above it are the Bahamas and Turks & Caicos. The rest of the Caribbean islands – the Lesser Antilles - are broadly separated into the Leeward and Windward islands, named after the prevailing trade winds. A Caribbean charter holiday to the Leeward islands opens the door to hopping around Antigua, Barbuda, Saint Martin and the Virgin Islands, among many others. In the Windward islands, Martinique, Grenada, Saint Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines make for unrivalled sailing, with steady winds and a lively boating atmosphere from December to April.
Edmiston have a fleet of unforgettable yacht charters across the Caribbean seas to suit all tastes and requirements: Arrow, Aquijo, Lady Britt, Mystic and Savannah are all available in the Leeward and Windward islands throughout the winter season (with Savannah also available in Central America), while 93m motor yacht Lady S and Halo both have availability in both the Bahamas and Leeward islands. For smaller groups and families, pedigree sailing yacht Shamanna is available throughout the season in the Caribbean for up to eight guests, and Lady Victory is available in the Bahamas.
From mid-December onwards, Phoenix 2 becomes available, along with Lady Jorgia in the Leeward islands from the 9th January, and Bleu de Nimes from 10th January across the Caribbean. 47.60m Silver Fox has rare availability from early December in the Caribbean and over Christmas (until 27th Dec), and from 10th January. In the Bahamas meanwhile, Lady Victory is available for charter all season, while Grace is available from mid-January. Finally, those who want to get a trip booked in for later in the season should snap up rare Caribbean availability on 56m sailing yacht Asahi, which is available from 18 February to 23 March.
As autumn and winter approach in the western hemisphere and the nights draw in, the Caribbean comes into its own: rainy season usually runs from May to October, meaning the best weather arrives in time for Christmas and New Year holidays. Each of the Caribbean islands has a distinct personality and rich culture, a blend of local traditions and colonial past. These are some of the best corners of the Caribbean to escape to when you just need a long, powerful dose of winter sunshine.
With direct flights from London and many major cities around the world, the vibrant island of Barbados has it all, while still feeling a world away from daily life. Ride horses through the jungle, visit a spice plantation or Mount Gay rum distillery, stroll through bustling towns, and sail to secluded lagoons so picturesque you’ll never want to leave. Be sure to try a flying fish sandwich, a local favourite and the national dish of Barbados.
With a hint of French sophistication, St Barths is an exclusive destination for your next yacht charter. The island is known as much for its ultra-chic nightlife, high-end restaurants and designer shopping as it is for its 14 stunning beaches. The season culminates with St Barths Bucket Regatta each March, an epic gathering of superyachts from around the world for several days of racing.
The Bahamas alone have over 700 islands and countless tiny cays, of which many are little more than idyllic sandy stretches. The islands boast excellent marinas for yachts of all sizes, and crystal blue seas made for lazy afternoons snorkelling and swimming. While energetic Nassau is where most charter voyages start and end, the crystal clear waters around Exuma is the place for untouched cays and beaches all to yourselves. Don’t miss the swimming pigs on Major Cay, who swim out to meet boats when they arrive.
Antigua Yacht Club is one of the best known marinas in the world, a perennial favourite among yacht charterers, and Antigua Sailing Week is a highlight on many itineraries. Don’t leave the island without enjoying one of the infamous parties at Shirley Heights. To get away from it all, head to one of the 365 beaches – one for every day of the year.
Split into the British, Spanish and United States Virgin islands, this volcanic archipelago of over 60 islands has world-class diving, pristine beaches and endless islands to cruise between. The variety is endless: hike through the rainforest up Sage Mountain on Tortola, snorkel in the protected national park waters off St John, or feast on lobster at one of the excellent dining establishments on the tiny island of Jost Van Dyke before letting loose with a few rum punches at Foxy’s Tamarind Beach Bar.
St Vincent and the Grenadines
Cruise from the bustle of St Vincent to Bequia for wild charm and barefoot beach parties, or head to the exclusive private island for Mustique. Grenada has an international airport and bags of old-fashioned charm. Here, explore the lush cocoa plantations and the vibrant spice markets before cooling off on one of the low-key beaches.
Trinidad and Tobago
As the filming location for much of Pirates of the Caribbean, the Tobago Quays are a dream for snorkelling, island-hopping and long, laid back lunches under straw umbrellas. Inland on the two small islands of Trinidad and Tobago, you’ll find verdant rainforests, mangroves and unique wildlife.
Contact us and start planning your Caribbean winter charter today. Our brokers are available to guide you and ensure your experience is the best one yet.
1st September 2022 |