Advertisement

Bareboat Charters: The Cure for Cabin Fever

A bareboat charter in the tropics makes winter a lot more manageable.

November 13, 2009

ytgnov13enewsds1525.jpg

It’s only November and maybe, like my colleague, you’re the hardy type. Short gray days, early nights, the crisp chill in the air, the rustle of falling leaves-it does his soul good, he says. And, yes, it can be kind of cozy, I suppose, if you settle into a favorite armchair in front of a crackling fire, nurse a single malt, and kid yourself you don’t have months of hibernation ahead of you.

But for my money, the better approach involves hot sun, cool breezes, warm water, and fresh fruit. I’ve found that the best way to make it through a long, northern winter is to escape it-regularly. And it goes without saying that the best escape is always made by boat.

Where do you want to go? Pick a tropical place and chances are, there’s a boat just waiting for you. The Moorings is the world’s best-known charter operation, with 29 destinations around the world. Sail the Mediterranean, Caribbean, Sea of Cortez, Pacific Northwest, South Pacific, or Indian Ocean. Their fleet includes monohulls, catamarans, and powerboats. Fill out the online boating resume which details your experience level, and the Moorings will get back to you about which boats in their fleet you qualify to skipper. Maybe you’d rather come aboard and leave the helm to someone else? No problem, because the Moorings offers crewed charters, as well.

Advertisement

Planning a bareboat charter gives you a virtual jump on the fun. Go to www.moorings.com to get started. Their website includes detailed information on fleet models and options in each location. You’ll also find guides to each destination, with notes on the sailing conditions, suggested itineraries, and plenty of photos and videos. A two cabin, 35-foot monohull in the Caribbean in late January was $2,053 for a seven-day bareboat charter. A 4 cabin, 4 head Moorings 4300 Club Catamaran-ideal for 8 but roomy enough for 12-is $6784 for a seven day, early December cruise in Baja, Mexico.

Or how about a bareboat charter in the Ballearics? Voyage Charters offers bareboats in Spain, as well as Annapolis, the Leeward Islands, Bahamas, the BVIs, and Miami. Visit their website at www.voyagecharters.com, and you can view detailed information that’s similar to the skipper orientation you’ll receive in person.

Bareboat chartering is a terrific way to gain experience in new cruising grounds, under different conditions. You’ll have a chance to develop sailing skills you might not in your home waters. But more than that, it’s an ideal way to get away from the cold, soak in some sunshine, and make lasting memories with family and friends. The only real danger is that you may throw out your skis and spend all your vacations this way!

Advertisement
Advertisement

More Cruising and Chartering

Advertisement
Advertisement