Top Christmas Charter Destinations for Winter Sun

By Jenna Mehdi

2020 has been a trying year for all, and as travel restrictions are eased and the world begins to open up again, many yachting enthusiasts will look to reclaim the lost charter season with a festive getaway. Proving winter escapes don’t need to be spent layered up in the cold, we give you our pick of the top five Christmas charter destinations in the sun this season.

Antigua & Barbuda
This island paradise is an easy pick for a Christmas charter. Don’t be fooled by the Caribbean islands’ abundant array of pearly white beaches and balmy weather; Antiguans and Barbudans certainly know how to celebrate the festive season in style. A popular choice this time of year due to the inaugural Antigua Charter Yacht Show, the island comes alive in December with yachting enthusiasts flooding to enjoy the quaint UNESCO World Heritage listed Nelson’s Dockyard or the scenic views from Shirley Heights with rum punch in hand. Antigua & Barbuda is also home to a splendid choice of 5-star luxury hotels and resorts to wash away the winter blues, including the sumptuous Carlisle Bay with its very own private beach.  

Abu Dhabi
If you are looking to compensate for lost time with grandiosity and glamour this Christmas, look no further than the underrated yachting hotspot of Abu Dhabi. Blending beach bliss with urban splendour, the yachting elite flock to Abu Dhabi’s glittering skyline this time of year to enjoy the F1 weekend and dine in some of the world’s most renowned restaurants. Dock in one of Yas Marina’s circuit-side berth or drop anchor before a literal palace over at Emirates Palace Marina; no matter where you stay, Abu Dhabi’s penchant for extravagance is sure to make this Christmas a holiday to remember. 

Dominican Republic
Offering island idyll on a larger scale than Antigua, the Dominican Republic is the perfect choice for a Caribbean getaway with a buzz. Off the beaten track of many charter routes, the Dominican Republic is an oft-overlooked charter destination with an array of superyacht marinas ready to welcome luxury yachts. From whale-watching to soaking in the island’s vibrant nightlife, there will be no shortage of activities to while away your stay in the Dominican Republic. But it is the local hospitality and choice of luxury resorts such as the sprawling Casa de Campo which make this island a standout pick for a festive charter this year, offering the very best in relaxation and welcoming as a difficult year comes to an end.   

A popular choice for a winter cruising holiday, the vast expanse of Australia is a true superyacht haven with some unforgettable experiences on offer. From world-class marinas to remote diving spots, Australia is a region in itself and December is the best time to discover it. Winter blues will seem a thing of the past as you spend an untraditional Christmas day on Bondai Beach, Sydney, or shake off the Christmas hangover with some incredible Great Barrier Reef diving. With Australia’s ever-expanding superyacht facilities, sublime cruising and inexhaustible sources of adventure, the only problem will be when it comes to returning home. 

This sprawling chain of over 300 jaw-dropping islands is an absolute must visit on any sun-seeking festive charter. With a balmy tropical climate, the verdant archipelago in the glittering South Pacific is a treasure trove of adventure and beauty. Volcanic formations and mysterious temples make up the islands’ unique appeal, while world-class facilities await your superyacht at Port Denarau Marina. Burn off the Christmas calories with any choice of exciting water sports, including turtle diving, surfing, kayaking and unparalleled hikes.

By Jenna Mehdi
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