Top Travel & Adventure Books

[caption id="attachment_16884" align="aligncenter" width="550"] What's your favorite travel book?

Sailing is a great adventure, but so is reading! In between Star Clippers outings enjoy a fabulous tale of travel to take you away. In honor of World Book Day here's a list (in no particular order) of some favorite travel and adventure books to spark your wanderlust!

Travels with Charley, by John Steinbeck

The Great Railway Bazaar, by Paul Theroux

On the Road, by Jack Kerouac

A Ship of War, by Seth Hunter (submitted by guest Jamie Hartshorn)

Wild, by Cheryl Strayed

The Motorcycle Diaries, by Ernesto Che Guevara

Beautiful Ruins, by Jess Walker

Eat Pray Love, by Elizabeth Gilbert

The Master and Commander Series (submitted by guest Anita Brew)

Shadow of the Silk Road, by Colin Thubron

Do you have a favorite you'd like to add to the list? Let us know in the comments!

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Wellness Travel is on the Rise

[caption id="attachment_16865" align="aligncenter" width="550"] As travelers lead healthier, more active lifestyles, wellness activities like yoga are becoming part of their vacations.

Studies show that a yearly vacation is invaluable for health with benefits varying from lower stress levels to cardiovascular improvements. Adding to these benefits, many travelers are now combining traditional vacations with wellness-geared getaways.

A panel of experts at the annual International Travel Mart in Cannes, France, predicted that by 2040 90 percent of luxury tourism would include some aspect of health and wellness.

The global market size of the wellness tourism industry is growing rapidly — faster than travel in general — and is predicted to account for $678.5 billion by 2017, compared with $438.6 billion in 2012, according to Statistica Inc.

Much of this growth can be attributed to the maturation of the baby boomer generation, which is more health-conscious than preceding generations. These travelers look for a vacation that integrates their daily healthful routine with traditional aspects of travel. But it’s not just baby boomers who are looking to travel in good health — the active family travel market is burgeoning and is expected to continue to grow as well.

So what is wellness travel? The trend covers all aspects of health, including nutritious menu options, spa offerings and fitness activities. Across the globe tourism professionals are responding to growing demands by introducing whole food, vegetarian and vegan menus, spa packages and active excursions. Hiking, cycling, paddle boarding and kayaking continue to gain popularity.

Star Clippers offers a complete wellness experience. Shoreside the features include complimentary water sports and adventurous shore excursions such as mountain biking and kayaking in some of the most beautiful destinations in the Mediterranean and Caribbean.

Guests are invited to participate in yoga on deck under billowing sails on select yoga-themed sailings, and most cruises afford the opportunity to climb the mast for an exhilarating workout. Massages are available on each ship and flagship Royal Clipper features a full-service spa. Healthy gourmet meal options are available on all three ships in the fleet for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Do you like to stay active when you cruise? Let us know how in the comments below!

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Words of Wisdom

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Cruise Critic Names Star Clippers Among the Best Small Ship Cruise Lines

In an article for Cruise Critic travel writer Elissa Garay named Star Clippers among the best small ship cruise lines in the business! Read on for an excerpt or click here to read the whole story.

If you long for the open ocean but bristle at the thought of all-night discos, thousand-seat dining rooms or congested Caribbean ports-turned-duty-free-shopping-malls, know this: not all cruise ships are vast, floating resorts. A burgeoning industry niche revolves around small vessels -- a wide-ranging group that includes yachts, rugged expedition ships, riverboats and classic sailing schooners -- where passenger counts top out at closer to 300, rather than 3,000.

For the tall-ship enthusiast, there's nothing quite like sailing under a starry or sunny sky, powered by the bluster of ocean winds. If you want to float along with the wind while exploring less-traveled ports in the Caribbean and Mediterranean, Star Clippers is tough to beat. The fleet's three vessels -- flagship 227-passenger Royal Clipper and 170-passenger twins Star Clipper and Star Flyer -- are some of the fastest clipper ships ever built. Feel the sails catch the breeze, help with the raising and trimming or morph into a spider and climb high in the rigging.

Onboard, passengers don't adhere to rigid timetables as they might on more conventional cruise ships, and the evening dress code is always elegantly casual (with the exception of themed evenings, like Pirate Night). Water sports are also a major component of each tall ship sailing cruise, with complimentary snorkeling, kayaking, sailing and other sea-based activities offered directly from the ship.

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'50 Shades of Blue' Postcard from Aruba

Instagrammer @goddessonahighway recently shared this photo of Royal Clipper in the Caribbean with the caption "50 shades of blue."

It's remarkable to see the size of Royal Clipper, Star Clippers' five-masted flagship, in comparison to the sailboat riding alongside.

Do you have a "postcard" that you'd like to share? Send your favorite photos and stories to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!

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Sailing the Secret Caribbean

Thanks to Michele Peterson for this fabulous story in The Montrealer about sailing the "secret" Caribbean with Star Clippers.

I realize something as soon as our ship sets sail. It’s not about the posh cabins, the exotic ports of call or even the 5-course gourmet dinners, the magic of the Royal Clipper, the world’s largest sailing vessel, is all about the wind. A warm gust catches the sails lifting our schooner high on the water and waves splash the bow as we glide away from port of Bridgetown, Barbados. Its 10 pm, the moon is high in the indigo sky and the captain’s white uniform bright against the teak bridge. A crescendo of symphonic music from 1492: The Conquest of Paradise fills the air. An audible sigh at the sheer beauty of it all, rises from the passengers on deck.

“This is unlike any cruise I’ve ever been on,” says the woman next to me, as she raises a glass of white wine.

I have to agree. The romance of great sailing vessels certainly captures the imagination. From the earliest Egyptian mariners to the great explorers of the British Empire, mankind has long relied on the power of the wind to take him to unknown territories. In my case, I’ve chosen the Royal Clipper, modeled on the Preussen a 1902 merchant ship, because unlike larger cruise ships, at just 439 feet she is able to access hidden ports and less-visited islands of the Caribbean. Our itinerary is the Windward Islands of Barbados, St. Lucia, Dominica, Antigua, St Kitts, Îles des Saintes and Martinique.

Although the ship is inspired by the past, it offers all the modern conveniences. My room Category 2 gets me an outside cabin with a double bed and marble bath with shower and a porthole window, TV, writing desk and closet. Located on the Clipper Deck, one level below the main deck, it’s compact but comfortable.

St. Lucia and Dominica
The next morning, the ship drops anchor at Rodney Bay, St Lucia and we awaken to the sight of the pitons, dramatic rainforest-clad volcanic mountains. While there are plenty of shore excursions available – from a rugged 4 x 4 jeep tour to a Segway experience. I decide to play castaway and go for a solo hike.

The tenders, small boats with gangplanks for easy disembarkation, drop us off on a white sand beach and within minutes I’m at Pigeon Island, a 40-acre (16 hectare) islet connected by a causeway to St. Lucia’s northwest coast. There, I discover the remains of an 18th century British fort and Fort Rodney, reminders of the days when the Caribbean was a naval battleground. For a post-hike cool-down, I find a secluded cove where my only company is a pair of dappled grey horses grazing on sea grass. I float on my back daydreaming of pirate ships until it’s time to return to the Royal Clipper.

[caption id="attachment_16812" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Walkway to Champagne Reef on Dominica. (Photo by Michele Peterson)

More seclusion awaits at Dominica our next port stop. Although sighted by Christopher Columbus in 1493, it’s still relatively undeveloped and is so lush it’s known as the ‘nature island.’ I opt for an easy 15-minute hike to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Trafalgar Falls in Morne Trois Pitons National Park where we’re surrounded by hummingbirds, giant ferns and graceful orchids. At the end of the misty trail, twin waterfalls (one as high as a 10-story building) cascade into reflecting pools and I feel as though I’ve stumbled into an undiscovered corner of the Caribbean.

To cool off after the steaming rainforest, we journey to Champagne Reef, a snorkelling site with a unique geo-thermal spring. Warm bubbles caress our bodies as we float across a colourful reef just a few steps from shore. “It’s like swimming in a glass of sparkling champagne,” says Clem Johnson, the owner of Champagne Reef Dive and Snorkel as he points out parrot fish, sea sponge and hawksbill sea turtles.

Back on the Royal Clipper, with my appetite whetted by all the exercise, it’s soon time to head to the dining room. Set in a soaring three-storey atrium with curving staircase, the Edwardian décor of polished brass and mahogany woodwork is formal but the dress code casually elegant – no evening gowns required. The open seating plan encourages mingling. The ship’s 227 passengers are an eclectic mix of nationalities; many of them repeat cruisers on the Star Clippers sailing fleet. My tablemates are a group of well-travelled couples from Florida and we enjoy a five-course meal, featuring Chateaubriand with truffle sauce and fresh-caught grouper in delicate meunière sauce, and chat about our island experiences.

“Join me for dolphin and sea turtle watching in the morning,” encourages Clara, the staff biologist as she stops by our table. “The best time to see them is in the early morning.”

Antigua and St. Kitts
Although looking for dolphins is tempting, I begin the next day with a 30 minute class of gentle aerobics held on the open-air deck beside the Tropical Bar and Library. Energized, I’m ready for the island of Antigua.

Naval history looms large here so it’s fitting to sail into Falmouth Harbour. With its pretty Easter egg hued buildings with Caribbean fretwork, it’s hard to imagine Antigua was once Britain’s most strategic colony due to its protected bays and location on important trade routes. I immerse myself in history at Nelson’s Dockyard, named for Admiral Horatio Nelson, the famous commander in the Napoleonic wars and then walk to secluded Pigeon Beach to enjoy a group barbecue under the palms, dance to live music by local steel drum band and swim in tranquil waters.

More tranquility awaits on the next shore excursion, the St. Kitts Scenic Railway, on the island of St. Kitts. Built between 1912 and 1926 to transport sugar cane from the island’s plantations to processing factories, the restored double-decker “Sugar Train” makes a 2-3 hour loop around the island on a narrow-gauge railway while we sip rum punch and take in the 360 views.

Taking the sun topside
Taking the sun with only the sounds of the sea and the wind in the rigging

Ship Life

With so many islands to explore it would be easy to overlook the pleasures of ship life. That would be a mistake. With more outdoor space per passenger than conventional sailing ships, it’s easy to find solitude with a paperback, socialize at one of the three swimming pools or indulge in a Thai massage at the Captain Nemo spa.

Other diversions include chatting with Captain Sergey Tunikov, Chief Officer Dominique Rollin and the crew on the bridge who are happy to explain the difference between a mizzen-mast and a jigger-mast. While some passengers climb the rigging, help raise the sails or scramble up to the crow’s nest under their supervision, I enjoy steering the ship and feeling the power of the 42 sails.

[caption id="attachment_16813" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Large cruise ships can’t dock at tiny islands
such as Îles des Saintes
(Photo by Michele Peterson)

Îles des Saintes and Martinique
Sailing into the island archipelago of Iles des Saintes is so picturesque, the bay has been designated a member of Les Plus Belles Baies du Monde (The World’s Most Beautiful Bays), an association established in Berlin in 1997. On shore, we soak up some French flair by sipping café au lait in local cafes, shopping for lacy French lingerie and exploring the tiny island by scooter. Îlet à Cabrit offers pristine swimming, easy snorkelling and the rustic studio of French artist Ulrich, who offers hands-on pottery lessons.

Few things are as vital to the French lifestyle as cuisine and our final stop in the city of Fort de France, Martinique doesn’t disappoint. It offers an inventive blend of French haute cuisine and Creole culinary traditions drawn from a mix of African, Indian and Caribbean influences. There’s no better place to dive in than at the colourful market brimming with spices, madras tablecloths, vanilla and fine aged rum.

Cuisine, beaches, history—as intriguing as each Caribbean island is, the highlight of each day is when we join Captain Sergey and his crew as they raise the sails and we launch into the seas like the great explorers before us. While private yachts are certainly quicker and mega cruise ships larger, no other boat plying the waters of the Caribbean sparks the imagination more than the sight of the Royal Clipper under full sail.

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Sail of the Century

The Australian recently published this piece by Maggy Oehlbeck in a roundup of sailing opportunities entitled "Sail away to adventure of your dreams." Read on for an excerpt or check out the whole story here.

[caption id="attachment_16800" align="aligncenter" width="550"] A yoga class on deck for all ages and skill levels.

We cluster on Royal Clipper’s deck, casting lingering looks over Venice’s profile as we glide along the Giudecca then cross the lagoon, Adriatic bound.

Astride the helm, the captain signals and 42 sails unfurl . Given fair winds, our odyssey will take us to Croatia, Corfu, Sicily, Capri, Ponza then Rome. Royal Clipper, the brainchild of Star Clipper founder Mikael Krafft, is the first five-masted, fully rigged sailing ship built since Germany’s Preussen in 1902.

It is poetry to watch the sailors nimbly shimmying up 60m masts to perform the masterful skills of tall-ship sailing. Below decks, cruise-ship features include 114 cabins, a two-tiered dining room, piano lounge and library. Polished wood, brass and nautical paintings create a clubby ambience. Facilities include three swimming pools and a marina platform. It’s best suited for 35 to 65-year-olds who adore the thrill of sea and sail on a fantastic tall ship.

Have you had the adventure of your dreams with Star Clippers? Tell us about it in the comments!

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Happy First Day of Spring!

Today is the first day of spring and we've got flowers in mind!

Star Clippers will return to the Med shortly and we're looking forward to the bright hues of the Amalfi Coast! Will you visit?

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Guests Look Forward to the Next Star Clippers Cruise

[caption id="attachment_16733" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Star Clippers guests and crew are always looking forward to the next destination! Photo by Richard A. Auchter.

Michael Palin, the British comedian and writer best known for Monty Python once wrote, "Once the travel bug bites there is no known antidote, and I know that I shall be happily infected until the end of my life."

It seems the same goes for Star Clippers cruises. A great majority of Star Clippers guests are return passengers, whether returning to their ship of choice or cruising all three tall ships in the fleet. The environment is congenial and a cruise under sail is a unique vacation. We asked fans on Facebook to let us know how many Star Clippers cruises they've been on. Responses ranged, with some guests saying they've been on one and are gearing up for the next, to some truly dedicated sailors -- up to 30 sailings!

Twice is Nice!

In the informal poll 26 percent of guests said they had sailed on Star Clippers twice, with many saying that they couldn't wait to board again. Diane Siegrist, Barabara Pinter, and Melissa Zamora were among guests who said they've been twice and have more trips planned already!

Barbara Pinter: Two times, first Amalfi, second crossing, third will be in September - Venice.

Third Time's a Charm

18 percent of guests had three knots in their rope. Susanne Dixon Bywater said she's sailed once on each ship! Deborah Castillo just completed her third sailing, and Sally Raphael sailed three times and vowed to return soon!

[caption id="attachment_16732" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Star Clipper in the Caribbean. Photo by Birgit Sieliger.

[caption id="attachment_16734" align="alignright" width="225"] Love for Star Clippers is permanent! André M. Piquet shared this photo of his Star Clippers tattoo!

Four is more -- Five's Arrive

Of guests polled 24 percent have sailed with Star Clippers four or five times. That's commitment!

Kathy Mock: 4 times, and loved every minute of them. Can't wait for the next one.

Janet Blair: 5 times. 3 on the Caribbean aboard the Royal and twice on the Star sailing the Eastern Mediterranean. Looking forward to next February when we sail again on the Royal. I think we are addicted!!!!

Super Sailors

Some guests sail once and can't get enough! Alice Renier has sailed Star Clippers 12 times, and Christine Koeppe Wickliff has sailed 22 times, covering all three ships! Andre M. Piquet adds another knot to the perimeter of his Star Clippers tattoo each time he sails -- no that's dedication. Anita Brew has been on 15 sailings, but said that April and May bring Star Clippers cruises 16 and 17!

AnnMarie Godwin: April will be my 30th time sailing on the clippers. I started in 2001.

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Port Spotlight: Basseterre, St. Kitts

[caption id="attachment_16769" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Photo shared on Instagram by @cpt_ross.

Originally called the “fertile isle” by the Carib Indians, St. Kitts (officially named St. Christopher) still fits the description. A mountainous island of volcanic origin its slopes rise up to almost 4000 feet, providing an ideal climate for abundant vegetation and one of the Caribbean’s largest rain forests. St. Kitts also has the distinction of being one of the only islands the French and British ever shared. This lasted only long enough to ward off the Caribs and the Spanish before they turned on each other. Possession of the island changed several times between the two before the British took final sovereignty with the Treaty of Versailles.

[caption id="attachment_16770" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The Atlantic Ocean meets the Caribbean Sea. Shared on Instagram by @cpt_ross.

The British also used St. Kitts as a mother colony of sorts, sending parties out to other nearby islands to begin colonization. In many ways, St. Kitts has changed little since those days. It has never developed into a tourist mecca as some of its neighbours have, and sugar is still its primary source of income just as it was in the 17th century. St. Kitts gained independence in 1967 with its sister island of Nevis, just 2 miles off the southern coast; and has since been striving for controlled development in an effort to maintain its original attributes. Today the island still remains quiet in comparison to other Caribbean nations, but St. Kitts and Nevis are beginning to gain recognition for exactly that reason. They are very much alive with their own unique characteristics, serene atmosphere, beautiful unspoiled scenery and palm-lined beaches.

[caption id="attachment_16771" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Views from St. Kitts. Shared on Instagram by @cpt_ross.

Star Clippers' "Essential St. Kitts Tour" could very well be the Caribbean’s most memorable island tour. It includes Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park, Romney Gardens, Caribelle Batik Studio and an interesting drive through Basseterre. Brimstone Hill Fortress is perched on a 40 acre hilltop, 780 ft above sea level. For three hundred years it has borne witness to innumerable sea battles between the British and the French, more than at any other place in the two nation’s naval history. The first cannons were mounted on Brimstone Hill in 1690 as the English and French fought for control of the island. The next 200 years saw the intermittent construction of an amazing work of architectural and engineering genius.

This magnificent structure is the second largest of its type in the entire western hemisphere and one of the best preserved. Its spectacular panoramic views include coastline, country side and five neighbouring islands. The Brimstone Hill Fortress, also known as The Gibraltar of the West Indies, is of world heritage value and is a recommended must-see for all visitors to St. Kitts. No visit to St. Kitts is complete without a visit to Romney Gardens and Caribelle Batik Studios. This 10-acre garden setting is quite simply stunning. It is at this glorious location that local artists produce the fabric and apparel for which Caribelle Batik has become widely acclaimed. The garden setting and picturesque experience is a photographer’s dream and will be remembered by visitors for years to come. You will also get to drive through beautiful Basseterre. This historic Capital City is a perfect example of an original Caribbean town. Observe the traditional French architecture and Victorian structures. Old churches, West Indian cottages and a former slave market are also included in this interesting driving tour of Basseterre.

Visit St. Kitts on Royal Clipper's Windward Islands and Star Clipper's Treasure Islands itineraries!

Have you sailed to St. Kitts? Let us know what you think in the comments.

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Sunsets Through the Lines

[caption id="attachment_16764" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The bowsprit net is an amazing place to watch the sun set.

Mediterranean and Caribbean landscapes might be different, but one there is one constant between the two destinations: Star Clippers and gorgeous sunsets go hand in hand. There's something so magical about watching the sun sink into the horizon through the frame of the line or crosshatch of the bowsprit net. It's no wonder guests are constantly sharing their favorite Star Clippers sunset photos. Here's a roundup of some recent "greats."

[caption id="attachment_16762" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Sunset in the Med. Photo by Kathi King.

[caption id="attachment_16753" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Sunset photo shared on Instagram by @burlesque1989.

[caption id="attachment_16761" align="aligncenter" width="550"] A gorgeous scene through the lines. Photo by Kathi King.

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Postcards from the Caribbean: Shared by Sailors

[caption id="attachment_16751" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The Pitons of St. Lucia. Shared on Instagram by @burlesque1989.

As Star Clippers sail throughout the Mediterranean and Caribbean guests and crew alike share photos of their experience on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. It's hard to say which are more photogenic -- the ships or destinations! We'll call it a tie. Here's a roundup of some fabulous recent social media posts from the Caribbean.

[caption id="attachment_16746" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Looking out on Star Clipper from Royal Clipper. Shared on Instagram by @burlesque1989.

[caption id="attachment_16754" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Regal Royal Clipper. Shared on Instagram by @natnhouston.

[caption id="attachment_16752" align="aligncenter" width="550"] A view of the beautiful blue waters as Royal Clipper sails into Antigua. Shared on Instagram by @burlesque1989.

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Guest Post: Dream Vacation on Royal Clipper

Thanks to Barbara Molmod for submitting this account of her Grenadine Islands cruise on Royal Clipper.

[caption id="attachment_16727" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Guests reflect on a Star Clippers cruise.

Several friends from the USA had cruised the Treasure Islands aboard the Star Clipper in 2014 and enjoyed it so much we were determined to sail upon the Royal Clipper in 2015. We have just returned from our cruise leaving from Barbados touring the Grenadine Islands, Grenada, Martinique and St. Lucia.

The majestic Royal Clipper was everything we were expecting. It is a magnificent sailing vessel. We did not want to leave.

One of our couples had an anniversary aboard ship and renewed their vows at sea. What an amazing experience this was. The crew made this evening so very special.It will be remembered forever by all of us. As we stepped on land the only thing we could think of was where will we go next!

Thank you for making our dreams come true.

Barbara Molmod

Peoria, Arizona

[caption id="attachment_16728" align="aligncenter" width="550"] One guest carried a bouquet of seashells as she and her husband renewed vows onboard.

[caption id="attachment_16725" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The happy couple before a dinner celebration.

[caption id="attachment_16726" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Regal Royal Clipper.

Do you have a Star Clippers experience that you'd like to share? Email info@starclippersblog!

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A Guide to Dining on Star Clippers

[caption id="attachment_16693" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Royal Clipper's dining room by Holger Leue.

Guests new to Star Clippers might not be exactly sure of what to expect as far as dining goes on a tall ship cruise. Unlike many mega cruise ships, Star Clippers ships have one dining room but that's not to say they're short on options! Star Clippers guests are treated to a variety of choices onboard, from a fresh and casual breakfast to lobster entrees prepared by culinary experts.

Breakfast is served from 6 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., with an early bird option in the Piano Bar, made-to-order omelets in the Main Dining Room and buffets full of fresh fruits and pastries. At noon the lunch buffet rolls out in the main dining room with a different thematic option each day. For instance, if you're traveling near Italy the theme might be Italian, with different prosciutto options, cheeses, and pastas and perhaps a caprese salad. There are always fruit and vegetable options available.

[caption id="attachment_16694" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Italian buffet lunch in Atrium dining room aboard sailing cruise ship Royal Clipper. Mediterranean, near Italy. © Holger Leue /

A highlight of Star Clippers' food and beverage program for many guests is cocktail hour at The Tropical Bar. With a wide open-air portion of the deck and views of the sea all around, The Tropical Bar is the social hub of Star Clippers. Guests congregate there to share a cocktail and wind down after a day of exploration or mast climbing. Cheerful servers and live music add to the ambience, and many could say that The Tropical Bar is the reason guests of Star Clippers get to know one another so well.

[caption id="attachment_16697" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The Tropical Bar is the social hub of Star Clippers thanks to congenial guests and cheerful servers like Manolito (pictured in a photo by Holger Leue /

Dinner begins at 7:30 with open seating available until 10 p.m. Menus are available in English, French and German. Dinner is sit-down, and the tables are formally set, however the dress code is casually elegant. Ladies typically wear sundresses or blouses, gentlemen lean towards golf shirts and pants. A selection of appetizers and entrees and wines are available.

[caption id="attachment_16701" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The Star Clippers dining experience is elegant and casual.

When you sit down to dinner don't forget to save room for dessert! Popular options include creme brûlée, warm bread pudding and flan. Sometimes the servers even put on a song and dance!

If you've got a late night appetite don't worry! After dinner Star Clippers serves a midnight snack in the Piano Bar from 11:45 until 1 a.m., and guests often enjoy treats, cocktails and tunes.

[caption id="attachment_16703" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Have you got a sweet tooth? Don't forget to save room for dessert on Star Clippers!

In addition to Star Clippers regular food and beverage programming, from time to time guest chefs and sommeliers join a cruise to prepare special menus, and (weather permitting) guests are treated to beach barbecues or beach-themed barbecues at The Tropical Bar. Follow Star Clippers on Facebook and Twitter to stay current on guest chef information.

Are you preparing for a Star Clippers sailing? Let us know if you have any questions about dining below!

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Star Clippers Destinations Named Among the Best Sailing Spots in the World

Travel Blog G Adventures named the top 10 sailing destinations in the world -- see what Star Clippers spots made the list in the following excerpt by Atita Patel!

[caption id="attachment_16681" align="aligncenter" width="550"] See what sailing destinations were named among the best in the world!

The Greek Islands are home to some of the greatest sunsets on Earth. With an estimated 1200-6000 islands in Greece, there are so many islands—each with their own unique character—that every port stop feels different and fresh.

The French Riviera
Is there any more romantic place to sail in the world? Probably not. The Mediterranean coastline of the southeast corner of France offers more contrasts than probably anywhere else in the world: unspoilt islands, rugged, rocky inlets and fine beaches sit shoulder to shoulder with the large cosmopolitan resorts of Cannes, Nice and Monte Carlo.

Sailing in Croatia is quickly becoming very popular because it’s shielded from inland eyes by the sweeping Dinaric Alps. The rolling coastline is speckled with pristine beaches, green slopes and some of the most charming towns and cities Europe has to offer (which is really saying something).

The Grenadines
The island chain of 32 gorgeous Caribbean islands sprinkled across 60 miles of the southern Caribbean is one of the world’s great sailing waters. White sand beaches and tropical waters make this area a haven for sailing enthusiasts.

Explore Montenegro by sailing dramatic coastlines that are more steep and rugged than in Croatia, but equally attractive. Montenegro is one of the most popular sailing destinations in the world, so expect it to be busy.

Do you agree with G Adventures? Let us know in the comments!

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Port Spotlight: Grenada

[caption id="attachment_16678" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Royal Clipper at Grenada by Jean-Marc Papineau.

Grenada, “the spice island”, has more spice per square mile than any other place in the world. The island is fragrant with cocoa, nutmeg, cloves, ginger and vanilla, to name but a few. Despite the abundance of such crops, Grenada is very diverse in its general make-up. The island is volcanic in origin and boasts lush mountains, rain forests, volcanic crater lakes, mangroves, beautiful beaches and delicate coral reefs.

Grenada’s history is similar to its neighbors. Columbus discovered it in 1498 and named it Conception. However, its lush green hills were so evocative of Andalusia that Spanish sailors, no doubt yearning for their homeland, changed the name to Granada. The French called it La Grenade, but it was the British who gave the island the name used to this day, “Grenada”.

The French and British battled for the island for almost 100 years before it was eventually ceded to the British in 1783. Grenada achieved independence in 1974. Several years later an attempt was made to establish a Communist state, which ended in the famed invasion of 1983. Although Grenada does cater heavily to tourism, there is a strong push to maintain the natural environment with one-sixth of the island’s land devoted to parks and nature sanctuaries.

On a call at Grenada enjoy a hike at Seven Sisters Waterfall, take a sailing excursion or hit the beach!

Have you sailed to Grenada? Let us know what you think in the comments!

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Med Season is Just Around the Corner

[caption id="attachment_16675" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Tired of the cold? Just picture a long summer day at Dubrovnik!

This time of year anyone who lives in the northern hemisphere is likely tired of the frigid winter temps. Worry not chilly friends! Star Clippers' Mediterranean season is just around the corner! Days are getting longer and before you know it spring will be here.

Come April Royal Clipper and Star Clipper will be sailing the western Med while Star Clipper heads east to the Aegean Sea.

Spring not coming soon enough? It's not too late to head to the Caribbean!

Are you ready for the Med? Let us know in the comments!

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Top 10 Sailing Superstitions in Honor of Friday the 13th

[caption id="attachment_16648" align="aligncenter" width="550"] "Red sky at night, sailor's delight, red sky in the morning, sailor's warning!"

Star Clippers evokes the golden age of sailing, a time hundreds of years ago when the seas teemed with tall ships and clippers traveled the seven seas carrying cargo along trade routes. Sailors developed some pretty interesting superstitions in that time, with some even dating back to the ancient days of sailing. In honor of Friday the 13th -- and in no particular order -- here are some of the top 13 sailing superstitions of yesteryear!

1. Red sky at night, sailor's delight ...

The old adage goes, "Red sky at night, sailor's delight; red sky in the morning, sailor's warning!" In the old days weather deeply affected ships. There is some scientific backing to this saying regarding the presence of clouds and weather patterns, but that depends on the direction of the ship, of course! While not a hard-and-fast rule, many still take to the sea with this saying in mind.

2. Good Luck Ladies!

While conservative ladies were once considered bad luck as they distracted sailors from their duties, a topless woman was welcomed. Sailors believed a nude woman calmed the sea. This is why ships typically had a figure of a topless woman at the bow. Her breasts calm the sea and her open eyes guide the sailors safely. That tradition continues today!

[caption id="attachment_16644" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Royal Clipper's figurehead guides sailors safely with open eyes.

3. Bananas are bad luck!

Back when trade routes between Spain and the Caribbean were well-traveled, bananas almost always seemed to be onboard when disaster struck! It could be that sailors made hasty decisions trying to transport the bananas before they spoiled, or that deadly insects and spiders traveled along with the bananas. Whatever the case, some boaters still avoid bananas at sea!

4. Don't throw stones!

They say people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones -- the same goes for sailors! Sailors don't throw stones into the water, as it's seen as disrespectful to the sea and can stir up the waves.

5. Dolphins are a good omen ...

Have you ever sat in the bowsprit net and watched dolphins frolic along in the sea? There's no doubt that they bring joy to those who see them. Ancient sailors also took them as a sign of good luck, which probably had something to do with the fact that they were the first clear sign that land was near.

[caption id="attachment_16646" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Dolphins, like these seen swimming along with Star Clipper, are known as a good omen.

6. As are albatross!

The albatross is known as good luck, as a symbol of hope and -- like dolphins -- that land is near. Some sailors even believed that the albatross carried the well-wishing souls of sailors that had passed on. Conversely, however, a dead albatross is very bad luck. Samuel Taylor Coleridge chronicled the good and bad luck brought by the albatross in his epic poem The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

At length did cross an Albatross,

Thorough the fog it came;

As if it had been a Christian soul,

We hailed it in God’s name.

It ate the food it ne’er had eat,

And round and round it flew.

The ice did split with a thunder-fit;

The helmsman steered us through!

‘God save thee, ancient Mariner!

From the fiends, that plague thee thus!--

Why look’st thou so?’--With my cross-bow

I shot the ALBATROSS.

And I had done an hellish thing,

And it would work ’em woe:

For all averred, I had killed the bird

That made the breeze to blow."

- Excerpt from The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Samuel Taylor Coleridge

7. Keep that tune to yourself!

No matter what kind song you have in your head, don't dare to whistle if you're around a superstitious sailor! Whistling or singing into the wind is thought to "whistle up the wind," causing adverse weather conditions. If you do decide to whistle a bar, beware, clapping along was thought to incite thunder and really toss up the sea!

8. Don't look back!

Some say looking back as you set sail could bring on a shaky ride. Who wants to look back anyway as you're sailing into the horizon?

[caption id="attachment_16657" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Look forward to the next horizon -- not back -- as you depart!

9. Don't change the name of the ship.

It was thought to be very bad luck to change the name of a ship. Initially this was thought to anger the gods. As commerce became a big money business, a name change indicated change of ownership, and thieves would keep an eye out for these changes, as they could potentially mean the ship was full of booty.

10. Don't depart on a Friday.

Long-standing superstition says do not begin a voyage on a Friday! Friday the 13th is a particularly dicey day to the superstitious! Fearful guests need not worry, though, as Star Clippers typically begins voyages on Saturdays!

So, are these superstitions credible or kooky? You be the judge! Let us know what you think in the comments!

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The Star Clippers Experience in Five Words

Fine dining, friends, fabulous destinations! That's what we think of when we think of Star Clippers. We asked guests to describe their own Star Clippers experiences in five words. Here are the top ten answers!

Chris von Volborth: Nothing like cruising under sail!

Janet Rusin: Too many stars to count!

Jeanne C Latshaw: Best week of our lives!

André M. Piquet: Sail Drink Eat Play Repeat

Lynnie Hampson: Microcosm of all that's fun!

Susan McIntyre Bates: Can hardly wait for July!

Anita Brew: Utterly addicting. Made amazing friends.

Mimi Mary Skinner Auchter: Most amazing cruise experience ever!

Barbara Pinter: The dream of my life

Janet Covington: Best vacation of my life.


Klaus Franz: A few words can not explain the Star Clippers experience !!!!!!!!!! Sorry!

How would you describe the Star Clippers experience? Let us know in the comments!

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Words of Wisdom

Royal Clipper at Hvar, Croatia, by Holger Leue.

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