Sailing and Star Gazing on Star Clipper

As Star Clippers guest Hilary Casey prepares for an upcoming voyage she reflects with fondness on the people and ports that make the trip so special.

My husband and I have many friends who cruise very regularly, upwards of 3 or 4 per year and without exception they always told us 'we would simply adore cruising'!

We were determined that there must be something in the way of cruising for us as we love the sea and had dinghy sailed for many years.

Research indicated that Star Clippers might be for us and we duly booked our first trip to and from St. Maarten aboard Star Clipper and can honestly say that there was not a single thing that we would have changed.

The cabin, although small was very well furnished and extremely comfortable. The crew, from the Captain downwards were simply delightful and through my time laying on a lounger even on the middle of the night while under sail simply star watching I made many friends amongst the crew with whom I am still in touch.

[caption id="attachment_16035" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Star Clipper's dining room.

The food was excellent and although we don't eat lunch or the late night snacks, breakfast and dinner was first class with a wonderful choice on the menu and reasonably priced wines.

The ports of call on the Leeward Islands cruise were excellent. St Barts was probably our favourite but they were all superb.

We stayed at Grand Case Beach Club for a week before our cruise and for 5 days afterwards so just under 3 weeks in all and felt that was a good decision for us.

We decided very early on that we would do this again but wanted more actual sailing time and tried to book an Eastward bound transatlantic crossing last year only to be informed that the Star Clipper was going to undergo a refit whilst crossing so was not taking passengers much to our regret.

However we decided upon a trip again on Star Clipper this October from Athens on the 11th and after the cruise we are staying on in Athens for a few days so had our return flight delayed.

We have also already booked and paid the deposit for a a Westbound transatlantic crossing from Malaga to St Maarten at the end of October 2015.

I am sure Star Flyer is also as good as Star Clipper but we feel that we want to go back in the hope that many of the crew will be the same.

This year has been a busy one for us as we celebrated our Golden Wedding at the end of July with a long weekend of many events culminating in a large dinner and dance and as I am writing this we are still in France, returning to the UK on October 5th just a week before flying to Athens.

We would book more but have a beautiful home in South West France and also spend several months there a year.

Family and friends asked what we were going to do in our retirement?? For the foreseeable future having superb holidays aboard Star Clipper features large.
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Words of Wisdom

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Crossing the Ocean

[caption id="attachment_16020" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Photo by guest Jan Gronbech.

Have you ever dreamed of getting away and chasing the sunset on a Star Clipper ship?

Ocean Crossings are an incredible opportunity to hang back and relax for an extended period of time. Sailings range from 9 to 22 days.

There is still space available on Star Clipper and Star Flyer's 2014 ocean crossing sailings.

Star Flyer will depart Malaga, Spain, Oct. 18, 2014. From there the ship calls at Tangier, Morocco; Cadiz, Spain; Funchal, Portugal; Las Palmas, Canary Islands, Spain; Santa Cruz, Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain; and then head west, ultimately arriving at Bridgetown, Barbados, Nov. 9, 2014.

Star Clipper follows a similar route, departing Malaga, Spain, Nov. 1, 2014, with calls at Tangier, Casablanca and Safi, Morocco; and Arrecife and Las Palmas in the Canary Islands. From there Star Clipper sails west across the Atlantic until reaching Philipsburg, St. Maarten.

Have you joined Star Clippers on an ocean crossing cruise? Let us know what you thought in the comments!
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Magic Moment on Royal Clipper

These beautiful photos from the tender were submitted by Royal Clipper guest Jackie Reay.

"Captain Sergei, had the tenders out as the sun began to set 27 September 2014, the light was magical. The Tender Drivers and Crew did a magnificent job positioning the ship for great photo opportunities, and an amazing experience.

Thank you Royal Clipper and your wonderful Captain and Crew for another fabulous happy journey, Venice to Venice."

-- Jackie Reay

Have you got any great shots of a Star Clippers ship from the tender? Send your favorites to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and you could be featured on social media.
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Postcard from Dominica

[caption id="attachment_15927" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Carol & Richard Hintermeier pose in front of Royal Clipper.

Carol and Richard Hintermeier sent this fabulous shot from Dominica where they sailed on Royal Clipper in 2011.

A wonderful couple, Royal Clipper and beautiful blue waters -- what could be better?

Star Clippers will be returning to the Caribbean soon! Will you be joining us this winter season?

Do you have a favorite Star Clippers shot to share? Email us, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
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Flying High at Ibiza

Here's a great shot of Star Flyer at Ibiza by Helen Heinel-Szesch.

Ibiza is known as a beautiful beach town by day and party place by night. The island also has a rich history and beautiful architecture, including medieval walled city and its Gothic cathedral became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1999.

Check out Ibiza and the rest of the Balearic Islands on Star Flyer's 2015 itineraries!

Have you sailed to the Balearic Islands? Let us know what you thought about the destination below!

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Words of Wisdom Wednesday

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Video: Star Clipper at Sea

We recently shared Thomas Weiss' video taken from the highest point at Hydra, Greece -- if you have not seen it take a look! Thomas uses a DJI Phantom Vision+ camera, which is controlled remotely allowing him to achieve these spectacular birds-eye views.

Star Clipper - the tallest sailing ship worldwide from Thomas Weiss on Vimeo.

"I made the videos during a short trip with the wonderful ship - with her sister ship Star-Flyer, Star Clipper is the ship with the worlds highest mast height and the second largest sailing ship on earth. Only the 5 mast Royal Clipper is larger than her.

The production of the video has no connection to the ship-holding company - i only made it because it was a really beautiful trip. The flight scenes have been made with my phantom Vision+.

Music in the Film is, Vangelis: Conquest of Paradise."

-- Thomas Weiss

Do you have a video from a Star Clippers sailing that you'd like to share? Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to be featured on social media!
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Today is 'International Talk Like A Pirate Day'

Arrrr! It be "International Talk Like a Pirate Day" mateys!

What's a pirate's favorite cruise line?

Staaaarrrr Clippers!

Share your best pirate party photos here or send to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!
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Nina Sails the Leewards

Nina of Travel Boulevard sailed the Leeward Islands on Star Clipper and shares her fabulous experience. To read her story in its entirety click here.

[caption id="attachment_15931" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Photo by Nina,

Day 1: Philipsburg – Saint-Martin

Our first cruise day started in busy Philipsburg, where the Star Clipper was waiting for us to embark along the new pier, about a kilometre from the town center. We’ve already spent some time exploring Saint-Martin (read about it here) and Philipsburg was definitely the most touristic place on island. Looking at the large number of restaurants, pubs and duty-free shops it’s obvious this is a very much a place for sun-seeking tourists and bargain hunters. We didn’t mind all the hustle and bustle and enjoyed watching the crowds, but if you’re looking for a more relaxed atmosphere it may be a good idea to take a taxi to the beaches on the western side of the island.

Have you sailed the Caribbean with Star Clippers? Share your experience at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
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Words of Wisdom

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A Bird's-Eye View of Hydra, Greece

When Star Clipper called at Hydra, Greece, Thomas Weiss climbed to the top of the mount to capture this fabulous video of the island and the tall ship nestled in port. The amazing bird's-eye view was shot using a DJI Phantom Vision+.

Hydra/Greece by DJI Phantom+ from Thomas Weiss on Vimeo.

Here a short video of the lovely Hydra in greece - it´s a small island without an airport or even streets - but do you need such things?

Getting to the point where i filmed the video was not so easy - going up the small mountain during the heat of midday ... i think the output was worth it. -Thomas Weiss

If you want to see the beauty of Hydra for yourself check out Star Clipper's Southern Cyclades itinerary.
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Cruise Diary: Under the Volcano; Fun Erupts on Star Flyer Cruise to Nicaragua

Kevin Wierzbicki of shares his experience visiting Nicaragua on Star Flyer in today's cruise diary. To Kevin's original article click here.

[caption id="attachment_15953" align="aligncenter" width="560"] Clockwise from left: A Nicaraguan folk dancer performs aboard Star Flyer; The ship under full sail; and a welcoming band.

It's not very often that you get a chance to stand almost right on the edge of an active volcano as steam rising from deep inside the caldera swirls around you. Amazingly that's something you can safely enjoy when you take a cruise to Nicaragua on the Star Flyer, one of three wind-powered tall ships operated by Star Clippers Cruises. There's no denying that a sea cruise of any type is an exciting adventure, but Star Clippers specializes in unique opportunities, both on board and ashore.

Star Flyer is a small cruise ship (some call her a mega yacht) that navigates its course serenely and silently when her sails are up, which is most of the time; the ship rarely uses engines except for docking maneuvers. Part of the fun of being aboard a sailboat of this type is watching the crew manipulate the sails or actually helping with that chore, and for the truly adventurous there's a chance to climb up into the rigging to a "crow's nest" to get a view of the ship that most will never see. While these are things that make Star Flyer very different from most ships, some things are the same, like the availability of fine food and drink and a wide variety of on board activities. But because Star Flyer is so small compared to giant cruise ships she can sail into shallow-water ports where the big ships can't go. And that brings us to our volcano!

[caption id="attachment_15956" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Masaya Volcano

Star Clippers Cruises take place all over the world and one popular itinerary is Star Flyer's excursion along the Pacific coast of Costa Rica and Nicaragua. The port of call in Nicaragua is San Juan del Sur, and here upon disembarking passengers are serenaded by a band playing traditional Nicaraguan folk music before boarding a coach and heading for the Masaya Volcano, about 1 ½ hours away. The route is a largely rural one, passing through humble villages and skirting massive sugar cane fields and offering glimpses of Lake Nicaragua, at the northern end of which lies the volcano. The facility at the Masaya Volcano includes a nice visitor's center with a mini museum focusing on how the volcano has affected the area's indigenous peoples over the millennia; yes there was a time when virgins were sacrificed here! Then at the volcano itself you can walk right up to the rim of the crater where a safety wall, not high enough to block your view, keeps you from getting too close to the edge. Since the volcano is active there is steam rising constantly along with the distinct odor of sulfur. If the sulfur is really bad the park rangers will limit the amount of time you can spend here but generally that doesn't happen (neither do eruptions, but you'll be briefed on an emergency plan just in case.) So there's ample time to get photos and if you choose to hike the stairway up the adjacent hill you can get some magnificent shots.

[caption id="attachment_15958" align="aligncenter" width="560"] Clockwise from top left: Stone sculpture in Granada; a traditional Nicaraguan lunch; a refreshing brew and the craft mart.

After leaving the volcano the tour continues in the city of Masaya at the large Masaya Market where vendors offer everything from hand woven hammocks to Cuban cigars (smoke 'em before coming back to the States) to local delicacies like Nicaraguan honey. The vendors here are not aggressive and are open to bargaining, within reason. And there's not a lot of touristy-type stuff at Masaya Market; if you want a trinket you can find it here but Masaya is known as a village of artisans and all the handmade items on offer are of obvious quality and make for a good souvenir of your visit.

Next stop is in the scenic colonial city of Granada. Here tour participants get a real taste of Nicaragua with a plate lunch featuring beef, shredded chicken, beans and rice and plantains both baked and fried, all washed down with an ice cold Victoria beer if you choose. The meal is a warm up for something quite spectacular you'll see afterwards: a large gallery of ancient stone sculptures that came from an island in Lake Nicaragua.

There's a real mystery surrounding the sculptures; nobody knows who made them and to top it off, the type of stone they're made from doesn't occur naturally on the island on which they were found! While in Granada there's also a chance to visit some of the photogenic buildings that date back to colonial days (oh, and there's a volcano lurking in the distance!)

All in all the Masaya Volcano shore excursion lasts about eight hours. Back aboard Star Flyer, with the sun setting on San Juan del Sur, you might think it's time to say goodbye to Nicaragua. But not yet! As a special treat the ship presents a Nicaraguan folklorico show where young men and women in traditional clothing demonstrate a variety of folk dances. Shortly thereafter the sails go up and Star Flyer is off seeking the next adventure.

Star Flyer's itineraries vary from season to season. One thing is for certain, they are always exciting! Have you sailed an interesting itinerary on Star Clippers? Share your experience with us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and you might be featured on social media.
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Camels & Chocolate Cruise the Med

Kristin Luna of the blog "Camels & Chocolate" recently sailed the Mediterranean on Royal Clipper with family and friends. After a great deal of planning, a trying flight and lost luggage debacle, the group set sail on a long-awaited voyage on Royal Clipper.

[caption id="attachment_15903" align="aligncenter" width="550"] The author and her sister (left) jump for joy in front of Royal Clipper.

Eventually, we were on the road—24 hours awake at this point—and our driver dropped us right off at the port. This time, we would be on the Royal Clipper, the largest of the fleet of three tall ships, which also includes the Star Clipper and the Star Flyer.

Having been on the Star Clipper (170 passengers max) before, I didn’t think that size mattered (sorry, had to), but I will admit that I liked being on a marginally larger vessel like the Royal Clipper, which holds 227 plus crew, as there were more decks and nooks and crannies in which to hide out.

When we arrived, the ship wasn’t ready for boarding yet, so we had moseyed on into the port town for sustenance (pizza, duh…when in Italy).

Well-fed—and OK, well-boozed up—we returned to the ship and were finally able to settle into our cabins, as all our previous travel woes seemed to melt away.

To read more about Kristin's experience click here.

Have you got a Star Clippers travel story to share? Email your favorite anecdotes to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and you could be featured!
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Favorite Place

Helen Heinel-Szesch and Albert Heinel are loyal Star Clippers guests. You may have seen some of the videos they've produced from numerous Star Clippers journeys. Of all the beautiful beaches and landscapes they've explored, Helen says she's most contented on the open sea.

[caption id="attachment_15945" align="aligncenter" width="550"] "Here is a photo of me sitting at my favorite place in the world!" -- Helen Heinel

Helen and Albert have been sailing with Star Clippers for years -- even celebrating their honeymoon on Star Clipper in the Caribbean. They've shared some beautiful photos and videos through the years. If you have not seen them follow the links below!

[caption id="attachment_15946" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Helen relaxing with two other guests.

Video: Star Flyer in the Med

Video: From Athens to Venice

Video: Star Flyer Sails Southern France & Italy

Video: Scenes from a Star Clippers Sailing

Do you have a favorite photo or video from your Star Clippers vacation? Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and you could be featured on social media.
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Wisdom Wednesday

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Travel Boulevard: Cruising for Non-Cruise Lovers

Nina of sailed the Leeward Islands on Star Clipper in Feb. 2014, and is confident that Star Clippers is a cruise for non-cruise lovers and cruise lovers alike. Below is an excerpt from her feature. For the whole story click here.

[caption id="attachment_15936" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Photo by Nina,

Although I had been on a ‘typical’ cruise before there was nothing that could prepare me for the experience of cruising with the Star Clipper. Star Clippers is a smaller cruise liner operating with three tall ships: Royal Clipper, Star Clipper and Star Flyer. They are among the fastest and largest clipper ships ever built.

Cruising with these tall ships has nothing in common with classic cruises. During my days on the Star Clipper (cruising the Caribbean Leeward Island) my experience was that this was indeed a cruise that even non-cruiselovers would love.

[caption id="attachment_15935" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Photo by Nina,

I once had the change to talk to Michael Krafft, the owner of the ships, and he told me he wanted to give his passengers the feeling as if they were sailing their private yacht: to be one with the ocean, the ship, the sails and fellow travelers. “Sailing brings people together”, he stated.

When I finally was cruising with Star Clippers myself, I understood what he meant. Star Clipper carries only 170 guests. You’ll never get lost in the crowd, there’s a relaxed atmosphere on board and the other passengers soon become more like friends instead of just fellow-cruisers. You really feel like this is your own private sailing ship, without having to pay a fortune (Star Clipper cruises are very affordable).

[caption id="attachment_15934" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Photo by Nina,

Do you agree with Nina's assessment? Let us know in the comments below!

For more fabulous photos and commentary about Nina's experience click here.
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Facebook Fans Reflect: What Makes Star Clippers Special

If you've sailed with Star Clippers before chances are you quickly realized that this is a cruise line that's far from ordinary. Maybe that's the exact reason you found yourself booking a sailing with us. Whatever the case, fans recently shared the qualities that make a Star Clippers vacation truly unique.

[caption id="attachment_15913" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Maria Nygren: Sailing alongside a sister ship, I would say. Although Oscar Nygren, above, probably agrees that climbing the mast is an outstanding experience!

Gaby Hracek: Transatlantic Crossing: the endless ocean, the great cuisine, the stars at night, yoga on deck, lying in the bowsprit, the friendly staff.

Jackie Reay: The wonderful Crew!

Carol Denton Hintermeier: Lunch on the beach!

[caption id="attachment_15914" align="aligncenter" width="550"] David Daniels: The view from the Widow's net!

Pamela Lee: Playing Vangelis 1492 when the sails are raised.

Janet Rusin: Talent show night!

[caption id="attachment_15916" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Scott Schnabel: Star Clippers is the most unique sailing experience ever.

Linda Kirchner Griffin: Evenings enjoyed at the Bar....

Magdalene Leicester: The whole experience, roll on February!

James Treadway‎: Star Clipper, Treasure Islands, March 2014, a life changing experience for us. When we got home we booked passage on Royal Clipper for the Grenadines, followed by a transatlantic passage on Royal Clipper too.


These are just a few of the comments left by Star Clippers' past, present and future guests!

Let us know what you think makes Star Clippers special in the comments below or join the conversation on Facebook!
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From Corfu With Love

Spyros Mouzakitis shared these photos of Royal Clipper at Corfu, Greece.

"From Corfu with love!" - Spyros Mouzakitis

The 5-masted flagship is sailing the Mediterranean Sea this summer. Guests enjoyed a day at port before heading out around 10 p.m. under song and sail.

Do you have a favorite Star Clippers photo you'd like to share? Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and you could be featured on social media.
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Words of Wisdom

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