Browsing: Destinations

Destinations
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Good News: The Bitter End Is Back

The Bitter End Yacht Club, one of the premiere cruising and charter destinations in the world, is open again. The club, on 65 acres on Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands, was wiped out by Hurricane Irma in 2017. The rebuilding has been difficult. All new building supplies had to be ferried in from other areas of the BVI and the U.S. Virgins that also were hit by the hurricane. And then the worldwide Covid pandemic shut down the islands for a while. But now the BEYC is back. Founded in 1969 at “the end of the line” in…

Cruising Life
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NOAA: Long Island Sound Estuary Now Protected

NOAA just named a Long Island Sound estuary as a protected place, establishing a 52,160-acre National Estuarine Research Reserve. The area includes part of Long Island Sound, part of Fisher’s Island Sound, and portions of the Thames River and the Connecticut River. See NOAA’s announcement, dated January 14, here: Today, NOAA and the State of Connecticut designated a new national estuarine research reserve in Long Island Sound. Research reserves are designated to protect a section of an estuary and provide a living laboratory to explore and understand important areas where rivers meet the sea, thus promoting understanding and informed management…

Destinations
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Top 10 Pictures of the British Virgin Islands

The new year certainly has gotten off to a rocky start, with snow and ice from the Northeast to Seattle, hundreds of cars stranded for more than a day on I-95 in Virginia, airlines cancelling flights left and right, and schools opened/closed/hybrid in cities and towns across the U.S. It’s time to think of happier (and warmer) days ahead. In a shameless promotion, the British Virgin Islands Tourist Information Center will help us with that, since they just posted their top ten photos from 2021. The BVI, of course, have some of the best cruising and chartering grounds in the…

Destinations
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Largest Yachts in World Gather in St. Barts

The rich and famous, along with some of the largest and most stunning yachts in the world, are gathering in St. Barts for the holidays, ending with the island’s blowout fireworks on New Year’s Eve. St. Barts, of course, has been a cruising destination for the rest of us for years and years. It’s an island paradise, one of the most alluring in the Caribbean, filled with a combination of French and Swedish history plus a Caribbean-style cosmopolitan charm. The island occupies just eight-square miles in the West Indies, but it has 14 spectacular beaches, and the harbor in the…

Cruising Life
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A Blowout Winterfest Parade in Fort Lauderdale

Everybody loves a parade, and it seems that boating people particularly love a boating parade. There are boat parades across the U.S. this holiday season, where owners deck out their vessels with lights, Santas, reindeer and lot of other things to get in the holiday spirit. It’s not surprising that holiday parades are big in Florida; indeed, boat parades started there in the 1920s when owners decorated their boats with candles and cruised the waterways singing Christmas carols. Things have changed a bit since then; the candlepower, and horsepower, have grown. The wattage was most on display last Saturday night…

Destinations
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Great Barrier Reef Explodes with Color

Australia’s Great Barrier Reef exploded in color recently during a massive spawn, a major sign of life in one of the world’s natural wonders. The spawn, when corals fertilize billions of offspring by casting sperm and eggs into the Pacific, took place along the length of the 1,429-mile-long reef, an area protected by UNESCO. Marine scientists dove under water to the reef off the coast of Cairns, Queensland, to study the annual spawn. They said the colors this year were proof that the coral can regenerate itself despite earlier, life-threatening, ecological threats. The Great Barrier Reef, a network of 2,500…

Charter
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Phuket Opens Again for Cruising, Charters

Phuket, the largest island in Thailand and one of the world’s most exotic cruising and charter destinations, is open again. And the Moorings charter base there also is open, with sail and power charters available. With a heavy reliance on tourism, Thailand’s economy took a big hit during the worst of the pandemic, and the country was off-limits to a lot of foreign travelers. There are still protocols (see the Thai embassy link below), but the Thai government adopted a separate plan called the Phuket Sandbox that has allowed vaccinated international travelers to visit the island. It’s easy to get…

Cruising Life
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Charleston: A Charming Cruisers’ Destination

Charleston, South Carolina, is one of the most historic and, to my mind, at least, most enjoyable cities to visit in the United States – particularly if you arrive by boat. The last time I was there, just a few years ago, I was on an Eastbay 50, coming down from Connecticut, and we arrived at the sea buoy on a mid-September morning. Coming in the long, well-marked channel took a while, and we could see the skyline and then the Battery district, at the juncture of the Ashley and Cooper Rivers that mark the edges of the town, bathed…

Destinations
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Palm Beach Public Marina Reopens on Nov. 1

The Town of Palm Beach Marina, home to power and sail boats since the 1940s, is scheduled to reopen on November 1 after a major $40 million renovation. The marina, just across the Lake Worth Lagoon from the mainland, is not far from Palm Beach’s considerably upscale attractions, including the Worth Avenue boutiques, art galleries and restaurants. One of the most significant attractions, however, is the weather, which provides a 12-month boating season. Another is the location, along the ICW with easy access to the Atlantic for cruising and fishing and a relatively short ride over to the Bahamas. For…

Cruising Life
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New Cruising Guide for the Virgin Islands

If you’re heading for the Virgin Islands any time soon, or even if you’re just thinking about cruising or chartering there, take a look at the new Cruising Guide to the Virgin Islands by Simon Scott. It’s an updated version of the guide that’s been helping cruisers in both the British and U.S. Virgins for 40 years. The new 2022 version of the guide has everything you need to enjoy your cruise there: detailed charts with aerial photography of anchorages, plus piloting, anchoring and shoreside information. It has key GPS coordinates, customs and immigration regulations, and information about marinas, chandleries,…

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