With over 7000 islands in the beautiful waters of the Caribbean, travelling by yacht is often the best way to access some of the region’s most secret and desirable spots. From deserted beaches to idyllic dive spots and unforgettable restaurants, IYC’s top 10 secret spots of the Caribbean are just a small taster of all the delights that await superyacht charter guests. Our top pick is the Grenadines - visit the turtle sanctuary in Bequia and Mustique, a very exclusive island with beautiful homes and the private hotel, Cotton House. Tobago Marine Park is a must-see for nature enthusiasts - snorkel through stunning coral gardens, then visit the Baradal Turtle Sanctuary to see free foraging turtles. Finish the day with a private picnic on the isolated Petite Tabac beach – take your binoculars to spot tropical birds. As soon as you set foot on the enchanting white sands of the luxury resort of Petit St. Vincent, surrounded by lush rolling hills, your stresses will melt away. This remote beauty spot ensures you can truly immerse yourself in the luxurious surroundings, relax, and enjoy the creations conjured up by the resident gourmet chefs.
With a veritable treasure trove of undiscovered beaches in the Bahamas, unique geological features and wildlife encounters to enjoy far from the crowds, IYC recommends the best secret spots in this beautiful island group.There aren’t many spots on earth where you can enjoy views of two different oceans, but the most southern tip of Eleuthera is one of them. The hike up the cliffs to the old lighthouse isn’t for the faint hearted, but it is certainly worthwhile; when you reach the top you are rewarded with spectacular vistas, with one side of the beach met by the Caribbean waters of Exuma Sound, and the other the Atlantic Ocean. Tucked behind dunes and limestone cliffs, the beach itself is difficult to access by land, leaving you to explore its hidden caves and snorkeling sites undisturbed. Great Inagua island is the most southerly island in the Bahamas and is home to not one, not two but three national parks. This is a birdwatcher’s paradise, with over 80,000 west Indian flamingos found on the island, along over 140 species of native and migratory birds, including the Bahama parrot, ducks, pelicans and hummingbirds. With a huge focus on ecotourism, both here and on her sister island of Little Inagua island (which is an endangered sea turtle habitat), visitors are treated to some truly memorable wildlife encounters.
The endless coastline of Greece offers pristine pockets of solitude and safety to cruising superyachts. Don’t be fooled by the barren appearance of the island of Polyaigos, as it is the island’s outstanding beaches that make it an unforgettable destination. The coastline consists of sweeping sandy beaches and epic sea caves that offer hours of relaxation and exploration in equal measure. Avoiding crowds is easy, as the only residents of the stunning Polyaigos are a herd of goats. Although Navagio Beach is on the Greek island of Zakynthos, you’ll find the area has a distinctly Italian feel. Also known as Shipwreck Beach, due to the stunning wreck that sits upon the white sands, this bay has been suggested to be the most spectacular in the world. Surrounded by white limestone cliffs that plunge into sparkling turquoise water, the bay is only accessible by boat making it a perfect stop on your charter cruise. The tiny island of Antipaxi is famous for its beaches, in particular the heavenly Voutoúmi, considered by many to be the most beautiful cove in the world. Enjoy its exotic turquoise waters, pebble beach and surrounding limestone cliffs, topped with lush vegetation. Inland, the island is crisscrossed with vineyards, which produce a range of high quality Greek varietals, including the respected “mavrodáfni”. With only two of its 150 houses inhabited over winter, visitors can enjoy Antipaxi’s delicious wine and beautiful beaches undisturbed.
4. French Polynesia
French Polynesia is a true paradise made up of beautiful lush Islands. Embark your yacht and cruise to Moorea, one of the most beautiful and serene islands in this island chain. If you have seen the movie Moana, you will notice the mountain range looks exactly like the sleeping woman in the movie! This island lent itself to the making of the Disney movie, complete with roosters running around that are referred to as ‘hei-hei’, or another word for ‘crazy-crazy’! This is considered one of the older islands, with very mature landscape, and exquisite reefs that are full of vibrant sealife due to the fresh waters coming from the Pacific Ocean. If you’re interested in swimming with the humpback whales, this is the place for you! We have local contacts who can arrange for this exciting excursion. Moving north through the island chain, there are wonderful opportunities to farm your own oyster for your own local pearl, and visit the vanilla bean farms to see how these are grown with love, and a whole lot of patience. A truly amazing experience to see these quiet and serene islands, where patience and care contribute to the gentle culture.
Set in one of Croatia’s national parks, the green landscape of Mljet is a seductive contrast to the rocky Croatian coastline. Legend has it that the beauty of Mljet captivated Odysseus for seven years, and if the beauty doesn’t capture you then the local red wine and fresh goats cheese are sure to. Hire a bike and visit the Benedictine Monastery, or explore the trails to watch the sunset over the lakes of the island. a morning of scuba diving before cruising towards the 89 islands, islets and reefs of Kornati National Park. Here there is an abundance of flora and fauna, with the site often referred to as a nautical paradise. Try and spot some ‘sakaturs’, ancient walls built from the sea inwards as a way to herd the sheep that used to graze these small islands.
6. Ibiza, Spain
A great natural landscape in Ibiza is the es Vedra und es Vedranell and the rocky islands of Poniente Nature Reserve. The reserve is located between Ibiza and Formentera, and one of the largest and most attractive nature reserves on Ibiza, surrounded by unspoiled beaches, cliffs and a horizon of rocky islands. The other face of Ibiza offers incredible sunrises and sunsets, forests and mountains, ideal for hikers who want to explore and discover this natural reserve of Ibiza, only accessible by boat.
7. Sardinia, Italy
Like many of the beaches in the area, Cala Luna is accessible only by boat in Sardinia, leaving it a quiet haven away from the tourists. The clear waters make for excellent snorkelling or diving, and after a day of exploring the ocean return to your boat to feast on local wine and cheese, or enjoy a snack from the beach bar in a shady spot.
8. Maine, US
Enjoy freshly caught lobster or a bowl of aromatic clam chowder as you motor around the inlets of Maine, choosing between busy, bustling marinas and more secluded inlets as the mood takes you. IYC’s Maine itineraries feature a Lobster Bake on Butter Island, where there are lovely beaches to explore, abundant berries, and a 186-foot peak to climb; Monhegan Island to watch migrating whales; explore the Bagaduce River by jet ski; round Pemaquid Lighthouse en route for the picturesque town of Camden. Known for their fleet of coastal schooners and windjammers, Camden is one of Maine’s busiest and most interesting tourist stops which lies at the foot of Mount Battie; and use all of the toys that Zoom has to offer, including the slide in Somes Sound.
Immerse yourself in nature and the freshest seafood caught daily or sourced locally and prepared by our Master Chef onboard with IYC’s Alaska itinerary, which includes stops in Juneau with a scenic helicopter flight up to the Mendenhall Glacier; Tracy Arm and North and South Glaciers, where you can do Ice calving; Admirality Island and Cannery Cove, to visit sea lions and brown bears; The Tongass National Forest; Baranof Warm Springs and Red Bluff Bay, where nature has combined mountains, lakes, rivers, streams, waterfalls and glistening ice fields to produce one of the most scenic of all landscapes along South East Alaska’s Inside Passage.
10. Raja Ampat, Indonesia
In a remote corner of Indonesia where few tourists travel you’ll find the mystical Raja Ampat islands. Peaks of limestone covered in dense jungle seem to burst out of the sea, rimmed with beaches of white sand. Underwater the islands are known for their supreme marine life – it’s considered one of the most biodiverse marine environments in the world and has received acclaim as the best destination to dive in the world.