Wine, a warm melody and good company float in the ocean air. Star Clippers repeaters enjoy a cocktail party and mingle with the officers on deck. It's our way of saying "thank you" for your loyalty.
Are you a repeat guest looking forward to your next vacation with Star Clippers? Let us know in the comments below!
"Thank you, magical Star Clipper. We miss you."
Journalist Steve MacNaull spent the last week of July,2014, sailing on Star Clipper in the Mediterranean and shared these fabulous photos of his experience.
[caption id="attachment_15789" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Stephen MacNauill climbs the fore mast of the Star Clipper while sailing from Mykonos to Kos, Greece. Photo by Scott Lechner.
[caption id="attachment_15794" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Rigger Jose Calando from Goa, India coils ropes after hoisting sails upon departure from Kusadasi, Turkey. Photo by Steve MacNaull.
[caption id="attachment_15778" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Rigger Marvin Aluarado from Honduras puts away the spanker sail after the wind dies down south of the Greek island of Kos. Photo by Steve MacNaull.
[caption id="attachment_15795" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The forward deck pool is one of two tucked beneath masts and sails on the Star Clipper. Photo by Steve MacNaull.
[caption id="attachment_15797" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Cabin 326 on the Star Clipper is compact, but comfortable. Photo by Steve MacNaull.
[caption id="attachment_15796" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The island of Mykonos is one of the quintessential Greek stops on the Aegean itinerary. Photo by Steve MacNaull.
[caption id="attachment_15783" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Photo of Star Clipper anchored at the Bay of Kotor by Rod Marten.
Sometimes there's beauty in the gloom. Rod Marten snapped this shot of Star Clipper anchored in the bay of Kotor and the tender coming to rescue the folks at shore from the spritz.
Rain or shine there's no doubt that Kotor, Montenegro, is a beautiful place! The mist rising from the mountains adds to the ambience and guests were happy to get cozy and dry once they reached the ship.
The following i san excerpt from Cruise Critic's profile of Kotor:
"You will be rewarded if you set your alarm for an early start at Kotor, Montenegro, because part of the fun is entering the Bay of Kotor and gliding for an hour through the mountains on a 17-mile waterway that some people call Europe's southernmost fjord.
It's not actually a fjord, as fjords are caused by glacial activity, and the Bay of Kotor is the result of an old river running from the interior to the Adriatic Sea. Still, the views are fjord-like, with mountains rising on both sides of a long, thin bay that leads to the old walled town of Kotor."
Have you sailed to Kotor on Star Clippers? Let us know what you thought in the comments below!
[caption id="attachment_15804" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Kavi & Tejas helping to raise the sails. Photo by Heidi Sarna.
Travel writer Heidi Sarna recently enjoyed a family sailing on Star Clipper. Heidi, her husband and their two kids, Kavi and Tejas, sailed through the Med calling at beautiful ports in Greece and Turkey. Highlights of the cruise included hiking at Monemvassia and climbing the mast for a gorgeous view of the crystal blue Mediterranean Sea.
Kavi and Tejas weighed in on their Star Clippers experience, saying:
"It's different than all the other ships, it's better. You feel free, there aren't so many guidelines and rules." -Kavi
"I liked that we could climb the masts, crawl down into the bowsprit net and experience what a ship was like from a long time ago. Plus I liked the Greek ports and the food was really good on board, especially the pastas and tea time snacks." -Tejas
[caption id="attachment_15807" align="aligncenter" width="550"] One for the history books: the call at Ephesus. Photo by Heidi Sarna.
[caption id="attachment_15803" align="aligncenter" width="550"] "How else could we have gotten to gorgeous Amorgos?" Asks journalist Heidi Sarna.
[caption id="attachment_15806" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Foodie pics! Kavi loving the belgian waffles and delicious lobster. Photos by Heidi Sarna.
[caption id="attachment_15809" align="aligncenter" width="550"] "Climbing the mast is an event!" said Heidi.
[caption id="attachment_15811" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Approaching lovely Monemvassia and Tejas, 11, climbed the mast with his dad! Photos by Heidi Sarna.
[caption id="attachment_15812" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The family hiked up the mountain at Monemvassia - what a view! Photo by Heidi Sarna.
[caption id="attachment_15810" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Beautiful Mykonos. Photo by Heidi Sarna.
Thanks to journalist Steve MacNaull for sending in these fabulous shots from his Mediterranean cruise on Star Clipper.
[caption id="attachment_15776" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Crew waves from the bowsprit of the Star Clipper just off the coast of the Greek island of Patmos. Photo by Steve MacNaull.
Star Clippers ships are so beautiful, but it's hard to get a great perspective shot while onboard. That's why guests are offered the opportunity to hop in a zodiac or tender boat, cameras in tow, and take their best shot from the sea!
The crew hams it up on the bowsprit net and guests snap away. No matter what souvenirs you pick up along the way, a few photos can be the best keepsake of all to remember your Star Clippers journey.
It looks like Steve had some luck with the weather in the Med -- have you ever seen skies so blue? Look our for more of Steve's photos in coming posts.
[caption id="attachment_15777" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The 360-foot, 16-sail Star Clipper looks regal sailing the Aegean Sea just off the coast of the Greek island of Patmos. Photo by Steve MacNaull.
The Travel Channel has named a cruise on Royal Clipper the best in the Caribbean!
[caption id="attachment_15760" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Royal Clipper sailing by the pitons of St. Lucia.
The Travel Channel just published their list of Travel's Best Cruises 2014 and Star Clippers took the cake for Best Caribbean Cruise!
The article cited Star Clippers sophisticated travelers, fine wine, fabulous destinations and laid back beach barbecues among the reasons that a cruise on Royal Clipper topped all others:
Best Caribbean Cruise, Star Clippers, Royal Clipper
You'll find a very different tropical seagoing experience aboard Star Clippers' 227-passenger Royal Clipper, the world's largest and only 5-mast, full-rigged sailing ship.
The elegant tall ship frequents small exclusive ports like Bequia, Tobago Cays and Iles des Saintes. “Attracting sophisticated travelers (roughly half are European), Royal Clipper offers open-seating, dining on sumptuous fare and fine wine. After dinner, guests gather around the grand piano or on deck to watch the enormous sails unfurl in the wind,” adds Anne Campbell. Don’t miss the beach-side barbecue on a deserted beach.
[caption id="attachment_15763" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Royal Clipper's Windward Islands itinerary.
Royal Clipper -- along with 4-masted sister ships Star Clipper and Star Flyer -- will return to the Caribbean Nov. 2014 where the ship will resume the popular Windward Islands and Grenadine Islands itineraries. The Windward Islands itinerary departs Bridgetown, Barbados and calls include Rodney Bay, St. Lucia; Cabrits & Roseau, Dominica; Falmouth Harbour, Antigua; Basseterre, St. Kitts; Terre de Haut, Iles des Saintes; Fort de France, Martinique;
[caption id="attachment_15764" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Royal Clipper's Grenadine Islands itinerary.
The Grenadine Islands itinerary also departs Bridgetown, Barbados, but follows an alternate route first calling at the Captain's choice, Grenadines, followed by calls at St. George's, Granada; Tobago Cay, Grenadines; St. Vincent, St. Vincent and Bequia; Fort de France, Martinique; and Marigot Bay, St. Lucia.
Both itineraries are fabulous and life at sea on a tall ship brings the beauty of sails to these already stunning destinations. To learn more about departure dates as well as Star Clipper's Caribbean itineraries and Star Flyer's Panama Canal Crossing visit the website.
Have you sailed on one of these Royal Clipper itinearies before? Let us know about your experience in the comments below!
Star Clippers guests Albert and Helen Heinel have returned to sail on Star Clippers again and again. In this installment of their video series they managed to capture some fabulous aerials of Star Flyer.
If you enjoyed this video check out some of the Heinel's past videos including a recent Mediterranean trip and a cruise through the Leeward Islands.
[caption id="attachment_15735" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Photo shared by @unforgettrips via Twitter.
It takes courage to climb the mast! Star Clippers recently asked on social media if veteran guests had any tips for those looking to climb the mast for the first time. "Don't look down" was the phrase that echoed most others had funny, earnest and reflective things to say.
Read on for the top tips from experienced climbers!
James Graham Chapman: III Don't miss a step...
Roger McGowan: Keep your backside out a bit from the shrouds , relax, 3 points of contact at all times. Enjoy it, the best view in the world.
Gina Dagnone Restivo Garver: Make sure your sd card is in your camera lol!
(It sounds like she knows from experience!)
Jeff Lee: Relish the moment. It's so invigorating.
Paula Galland: Wear firm soled tennis shoes.
[caption id="attachment_15738" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Photos shared by courageous guests Richard A. Auchter, Howard Winn and Ga Bi.
Trudie Grant-Jones: Got to do it..just to say you can! Wear flat shoes and a pirate scarf to kèep your hair out of your eyes and go! My legs were like jelly but well worth it. It is actually harder than it looks!
George Sivell: Listen to what the sports team or deck hands tell you before you set off.
Judy Donina Wolfe: Have someone take stills and video of you. Sign-up as early as it is announced.
Howard Winn: Health & Safety rules, everyone wears a harness and is belayed from the deck!!
Annise Mock: Don't give up. It's worth the climb. One of my most unforgettable experiences.
Have you climbed the mast? Share your tips and experience in the comments below!
From whitewashed Greek islands to narrow Venetian canals, this video by Helen and Albert Heinel captures the magic of a Star Clippers cruise. Take a look!
Mr.and Mrs. Heinel have taken many Star Clippers cruises and have been kind enough to share their wonderful videos. If you liked this one check out their other videos including Star Flyer Sails Southern France and Italy and Star Clipper Sailing the Leeward Islands!
In another edition of photos by Jim Bottoms, Jim climbs the mast on Royal Clipper and shares the view from the top!
Do your feet tickle at the thought of a climb that high or are you excited by the adrenaline rush that comes with climbing the mast? Let us know in the comments below!
Jim Bottoms is a travel consultant based out of Annapolis, Maryland, who recently sailed on Royal Clipper's Windward Islands itinerary. Along the way he took some fabulous photos. In this edition of Jim's photo journal we take a look at the Iles des Saintes.
Everybody loves a pirate party! Patches and parrots and planks, oh my! These photos from travel agent Jim Bottoms show the Royal Clipper crew dressed to impress for a night of festive fun at the Tropical Bar.
As part of its ongoing program to keep the tall ships of Star Clippers looking fresh, Star Flyer and Star Clipper recently underwent refurbishments that revitalized the décor and furnishings in all cabins.
All bed linens have been replaced, and new bed covers and throw pillows introduce deep tones of gold and navy to the cabins. The rich, yachtlike woodwork has been brightly polished throughout cabins and en-suite bathrooms.
[caption id="attachment_15705" align="aligncenter" width="550"] New flat-screen tvs and linens keep the ships looking fresh.
New LED bedside reading lights designed to not disturb a sleeping cabin mate, and Category One cabins also received new side lamps have been installed for guests to read in bed without disturbing their cabin-mates. New flat-screen TVs in all cabins except Category Six provide a more vivid viewing experience.
In addition to the cabin décor enhancements, during the transatlantic crossing at the start of the Mediterranean season Star Clipper had a complete facelift, with all cabins and public areas receiving a fresh coat of paint and varnish, as well as new upholstery in the dining room.
[caption id="attachment_15704" align="aligncenter" width="550"] New upholstery and carpeting in Star Clipper's dining room.
The revitalizations are part of Star Clippers' rolling refurbishment program -- Royal Clipper received the same treatment and more in 2013, with new carpeting throughout and all bathrooms rejuvenated, while the public areas on Star Flyer were refurbished in 2012.
The shipboard décor has a nautical theme throughout, with polished wood, brass, wall-mounted prints and original paintings of the world's most famous classic sailing vessels.
What do you think of Star Clipper's facelift? Let us know in the comments below!
Jim Bottoms is a travel consultant based out of Annapolis, Maryland, who recently sailed on Royal Clipper's Windward Islands itinerary. Along the way he took some fabulous photos. In this edition of Jim's photo journal we take a quick look at the colors and culture of Martinique,, Fort de France.
Have you visited Martinique with Star Clippers? Let us know about your experience in the comments below!