Written by Missy Johnston
Obviously, we are biased. We long ago decided there was no comparison between cruising on a cruise ship versus a private yacht charter. For starters, you will enjoy a customized itinerary, personalized menu, complete privacy, and in-depth exploration, all at your own pace. To show you a clearer picture of the benefits of a private yacht charter, we zoom in on one of our favorite destinations—Greece.
A Yacht Charter vs. Cruise Ship
A cruise ship needs to stick to a schedule—their schedule. When you charter a private yacht, your professional crew will cater to your preferred schedule. Head ashore whenever you want, avoid crowded ports, and enjoy 5-star dining on board, with your own personal chef creating whatever dishes you desire. Your private yacht becomes your very own floating resort, taking you to the most beautiful and secluded places in the world, pampering you and your family or friends throughout the entire vacation.
Other reasons why yacht vacations are better than cruise ship getaways include:
- Choose the type of yacht you want: motor or sailing.
- Go to any destination you want to see, on your schedule.
- Slow down your pace and relax; you won’t feel like one of the masses on a yacht charter.
- Take part in on-board water activities without waiting in line.
- Enjoy more time in each port or anchorage and truly immerse yourself in the culture.
- Indulge in a menu tailor-made to your specifications.
- Go on your own time from location to location.
- Explore extraordinary underwater life, as the urge strikes.
- Spend more time in special destinations, enjoying them more deeply.
The Luxury Yacht Charter Greece Experience
There are many cruise ship options in Greece that start in Athens and end in Istanbul, traveling over 500 nautical miles. It’s a great way to cover distance—if all you want to do is reach the destination. A yacht charter in Greece, on the other hand, is the perfect way to explore thousands of beaches, ancient civilizations, delicious cuisine, and quaint villages, and enjoy the warm Mediterranean climate on your own terms. It’s your yacht, and your itinerary.
There are over 6,000 Greek islands and islets in the Ionian and Aegean Sea, with inhabitants on at least 200 of them. Each inhabited Greek island has a unique history, with a distinct culture reflected in the island’s architecture. No two Greek islands are alike, and discovering what makes each island special is one of the most satisfying aspects of the private yacht charter experience.
Typically, cruise ships leave from Athens, spend a day each in Hydra, Mykonos, Santorini, Crete, Rhodes, and Patmos, and end in Istanbul. What if, during that
one day in Mykonos, you discover something that makes you want to stay for at least another day? What if you discover a charming taverna and you want to linger? The whole point of a vacation is to get off the treadmill and drift, savoring each experience and creating memories that remain with you, long after. Your yacht crew will simply adjust to your new desire. A cruise ship can’t.
Here is a closer look at just some of the more in-depth Greek islands you can explore on a private yacht charter excursion.
The Greek Cycladic Islands
Start a one-week charter out of Athens to visit the chic and well-publicized islands of Mykonos and Santorini on a fast-cruising motor yacht. Explore the sacred island of Delos, one of the most important mythological, historical, and archaeological sites in Greece. Greek mythology states that Apollo was born in Delos.
The Terrace of the Lions and The House of Dionysus with its striking mosaic are just two of the must-see attractions.
Visit the old Chora on Seros Island, hidden up in the mountains from the Barbary Pirates in the 1500s, where Greek Bouzouki music reigns supreme. Seros was an island where wealthy sea captains built fabulous homes in the 1800s. It’s also a unique island of two religions—the Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox, both of which show a strong presence, with islanders living amicably side by side.
Cruise into Milos, an island known for its delicious flower honey. It’s also the island of obsidian, a glass-like volcanic rock in high demand for weaponry in antiquity, making Milos a very wealthy island in ancient times. Enjoy stunning sunsets, unique cuisine, and secluded beaches. Milos is very rich in minerals, and is home to bentonite and kaolin, which are widely used in homemade beauty treatments.
Located in the heart of the Aegean Sea, Paros Island has one of the nicest traditional Cycladic villages named Naussos. Sit in a taverna in the main quay on the harbor and experience everyday Greek village life. Windsurf or kite surf on the beautiful beaches, and admire the amazing architecture, including whitewashed sugar cube houses.
Sifnos is an island where great reserves of gold and silver were mined in ancient times. Today, a special clay found only in Sifnos is used to make beautiful artistic pottery as well as chimney pots found on the roofs of many buildings. Indulge in wonderful food such as feta and dandelion pie, sizzling calamari, and kaparosalata, a caper and onion salad.
The Greek Dodecanese Islands and Northeast Aegean Islands
If you’re on a one-week charter through the Greek Dodecanese Islands, visit the 15th-century home of the Knights of the Order of St. John in Old Town, Rhodes.
The Cave of the Apocalypse found on the island of Patmos is purportedly where St. John wrote the Book of Revelation. While you’re visiting Patmos, be sure to walk on the paved paths in Chora, the island’s capital, and enjoy a breathtaking view of the Aegean Sea.
The charming, welcoming little island of Symi boasts a low-key vibe. There is a Venetian-style fishing village ringing the main harbor, along with hillsides filled with wild herbs. Sunbathe on one of Symi’s many beaches, including Marathounta and Lapathose.
Kalymnos Island was home to centuries of scuba and skin divers harvesting natural sponges—the main island export that is still harvested by island divers today. The lunar landscape of Nisyros Island is unlike that of any other Greek Island, with volcanic heated thermal springs that have popped up through the island’s surface for centuries.
Then, stop in Chios, an island with a rich history that is said to be the birthplace of Homer. Chios is famous for its mastic tree, the resin of which is used to make medicine and is thought to be the origin of chewing gum. A unique
decorative pattern for walkways, piazzas, and courtyards can be seen across the island, where small white and black round rocks are painstakingly laid on their sides to create decorative patterns in the paving.
A private yacht charter is the best way to experience the beauty of Greece and its magnificent islands. On a charter, you have more freedom and control. You can do what you want to do, when you want to do it. Your private yacht charter will show you breathtaking vistas, unspoiled beaches, and remote hideaways. Everything is up to you—the schedule, menu, and activities.
Northrop-Johnson Luxury Yacht Charters provides perfect yacht charter itineraries and the highest standard of service for your yacht vacation. Our private crewed luxury yacht charters are catered to meet your ideal and unique vacation experience. Let’s plan your dream getaway today.