Set sail and explore: Introducing the top travel destinations, 2019
Ready to update your bucket list? We’ve browsed the coolest yachting spots out there to bring you next year’s top travel destinations. 2019 means taking your pick from whaling in New Zealand, glacier searching in Greenland or island hopping in Croatia; yacht rental – Mediterranean or further afield – never seemed so exciting.
Kaikoura, New Zealand
Head to the east coast of the South Island and you will find Kaikoura: a gem that glistens between the rugged Kaikoura Ranges and the wild Pacific Ocean. The region was heavily damaged by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake in 2016, but is now back in business and ready to be appreciated once again.
A historic whaling town, Kaikoura is one of our top travel destinations, 2019, for spotting wildlife. You will be able to see the fur seals, dusky dolphins, sperm whales and albatross that live permanently in the coastal waters. Whale watching trips leave the town several times a day — but, by yacht, you can experience the wonder of these marine mammals from the privacy of your ‘on-the-water’ home.
Kaikoura is also a top destination to eat crayfish (‘Kai’ means food and ‘koura’ means crayfish in Maori), which can be enjoyed in the town’s many cafes and beach-front restaurants.
Top time to travel?
October—March. New Zealand’s summer is ideal for viewing pods of Orca as they pass by.
June—August. During these months, the humpback, pilot, blue and southern right whales migrate north for the winter, stopping in Kaikoura to rest before continuing on their long journey.
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This vast arctic paradise is far from your everyday experience. Adventurous yacht charters are increasingly enticed north in search of unique natural phenomena, including glaciers, icebergs and the aurora borealis.
Greenland’s terrain doesn’t have a set road system, so exploring by yacht is the best way to make the most of the spectacular landscape. Spot polar bears, reindeers and walrus in their natural habitat; meet the locals and discover a different way of life; cruise fjords and icebergs; and relax in the many natural hot springs. Depending on the time of year you visit, you can either sleep below a canopy of thousands of stars, or venture north of the Arctic Circle and bathe in the warm, midnight sun.
Expect reindeer, muskox and salmon on most menus; Greenlandic cuisine is closely linked to its identity, making it one of our top travel destinations, 2019, for trying new and exciting foods!
Top time to travel?
May—July if you’d prefer the temperature to be a bit more comfortable. The long days of the arctic summer are when the birds, flowers and animals come to life.
September—April is best for viewing the polar lights.
Known as the Pearl of the Adriatic, Dubrovnik and its neighbouring islands are ideal for coastal cruising. Sail between the islands and the shore, taking in all the beautiful beaches, historic towns and brilliant blue waters along the way.
The medieval town of Dubrovnik is a UNESCO world heritage site, and recently featured in the series ‘Game of Thrones’. Dubrovnik was a real-life kingdom of its time and still has city walls, stunning palaces and gleaming limestone streets.
Drop anchor off the islands of Lopud and Mlini to relax in the secluded, sandy bays, or check out the diving schools in Mljet and on the island of Korcula. The Pelješac Peninsula is Croatia’s premier wine region, and you’ll find many of the wines paired perfectly with local specialties that include fresh oysters, stewed mussels and black risotto.
Top time to travel?
From May to September, although it can get very hot in July and August. May and September are better if you prefer less heat and a more relaxing experience.