When one thinks of traveling this beautiful continent that is Europe, by renting a houseboat, the mind naturally drifts immediately to the Mediterranean with her crystal clear azure waters, calm and easy tides and 300 days of sunshine, and we could not agree with you more. We love the miles of shoreline that connects the South of France, Spain, Croatia and Greece and we will certainly touch on some our favorites, however first up are some slightly different ideas for traveling Europe on a boating holiday that we hope peak your interest…
Scotland’s west coast may not be the first place that springs to mind when considering a yacht charter, however we challenge you to find a more awe inspiring coastline to enjoy in your boating home. Not only is the scenery stunning, but it’s easy sailing as the water is flat due to the nature of the sheltered coastline.
The only thing to think about is what you need to pack as the days can be warm in the summer but the nights hold a chill. Get ready to taste the most divine oysters near the Mull of Kintyre and experience the wonder that is the Corryvreckan Whirlpool, Scotland’s very own maelstrom, with 6 feet waves that have been surfed by the World’s finest, and located approximately 945 kilometers from central London. What is not to love on a Scottish boating holiday!
If you want somewhere off the beaten track that you can literally only access by boat or foot, then you can’t get much more ideal than Girolata on Corsica’s west coast. Its pristine waters, teeming wildlife and tranquil setting make it the ideal get away for any sailing enthusiast. In the summer months the sleepy village comes alive to the sounds of music, laughter and fun, as the long nights stretch into the early mornings.
For those wanting something a little quieter when they rent house boats then the spring and autumn are the perfect time to experience the beauty that is the Scandola Nature Reserve and everything she offers for the perfect yacht charter.
Taking a foray back up north, we find ourselves in Norway. Home of the Norsemen and birthplace of some of the world’s largest superyachts, Norway is the current darling of the boat holiday scene. Not only is the fresh seafood to absolutely die for but the glacial fjords, with their aquamarine hue take one back to a simpler time gone by. Holiday boat rentals here will be a memory that is not quickly forgotten. Visit a genuine Viking village, gorge on prawns and crab claws slathered in butter, and sit back and relax in the luxury of your floating home from home.
When one thinks of Cassis in Provence it’s difficult not to let the imagination stray to the delicious rose wines that the region produces. When one thinks of a boating holiday to Cassis the same thing occurs, only with the romance of lying out on deck in this wonderful living space under the blanket of stars, while enjoying the said same rose. With its century old chateau dominating the landscape, it’s beautiful pastel colored houses in the harbor and its steep limestone cliffs, it’s not hard to find yourself in a past long gone.
There is something so magical about Cassis that you won’t want your boat holiday to ever end.
The home of bears and wolves and myth and legend, Montenegro is a place of fantasy and dreams and the new luxury marina is the perfect place to base your yachting vacation. Perhaps a few spins at one of Montenegro’s luxury casinos is the way to kickstart your boating holiday or a trip up into the rugged mountains to visit the local wildlife is more your thing. Montenegro is a boating destination of extremes, where nature meets achingly cool modernity; village life meets 7 star hotels. There is something for everyone on a boat holiday here.
One of the youngest yachting destinations on the list is Croatia, though it is quickly becoming the golden child of yacht charters and vacation boat rentals. The greenest of the islands just off the coast is Mljet. Its gentle waters and sloping sandy beaches make it the ideal destination for any lover of boats and sailing.
The marine life is teeming beneath the surface and no trip here would be complete without a spot of snorkeling or diving. Covered beneath a canopy of forest Mljet is the perfect island for hiking and exploring. If gastronomy is your passion, try the locally grown olives washed down with a glass of chilled white wine. Yachting peace and tranquillity has a name – Mljet.
Madeira, famed for its wine and cake of the same name is one of the two autonomous regions of Portugal, the other being the Azores. Just of the coast of Africa (okay, we’re cheating a little on this one) it is absolutely one of our favourite places to rent a boat and head out and enjoy the beautiful waters. Volcanic, with pebbly beaches and lush, verdant vegetation, Madeira makes the perfect backdrop for your picture postcard boat holiday. If you don’t know what to pack, we recommend a snorkel, some swimwear and a corkscrew.
French canals and waterways
Boating on the high seas may not be your thing, so instead why not go on a beautiful canal boat holiday and enjoy your floating home on one of the many waterways the wend their sleepy way through the beautiful French countryside. Pull over at any time and enjoy one of the beautiful villages that line this extensive network of canals and rivers. For foodies look no further…meats, snails (for the more adventurous), cheeses, wines and of course champagne, await to delight your taste buds and alight your senses on this most wonderful of houseboat vacation rentals.
Named after the demigod of the winds, Aeolus, these seven distinct islands all share a rich and volcanic heritage. Whether it’s riding a donkey, visiting a vineyard to sip on a glass of sweet Malvasia wine or tasting the famous Sicilian dessert Granita, the seven sister islands hold the perfect secrets for a long and relaxing boat holiday. Charter a yacht here and be prepared to be astounded by the light show put on by the volcanos. Lava literally flows into the sea as each island comes alive in their ever changing forms. A boat vacation rentals to these islands is nothing short of godly.
Okay, so we’re cheating again, but no mention of yachting holidays could go past without mentioning the Azores as a destination. The second of the two Portuguese autonomous communities, the Azores are simply spectacular. If you looked on a map you would blink and you’d miss them, being placed literally in the middle of nowhere in the mid-Atlantic. However, take one step towards them and they are simply unforgettable.
The vibrant blue of the hydrangeas in the hedgerows, the green rolling pastures and the quaint fishing villages all add up to make this a special destination for anyone who has an adventurous heart and a love of a sailing holiday.
No list of breathtaking beauty spots would be complete without a mention of the jewel of the Mediterranean – Ibiza. With her stunning calas, white washed capital city and uber cool clubbing scene, there is nothing that Ibiza doesn’t offer any family or group of friends on a yacht charter.
Take your twelve guests and dance the night away, or for those with a more spiritual outlook, feel the energy coming from the famous rock, Es Vedra, where the sunsets are some of the most dramatic in the world. Rub shoulders with the great and good of the A list celebrity community and be ready to lose yourself in the moment. A vacation boat rental in Ibiza really is the stuff that dreams are made of.
If spectacular is what you are looking for for your yacht charter then look no further than Iceland. The youngest of all of the world’s landmasses, only being created a mere 18 million years ago, it is truly one of the most stunning places on the planet.
Think of the majesty and mystery that is the aurora borealis and her mystical light show, to moss covered lava fields, barren highlands and history that is as much about blood and guts, as it is about writing and fine art. Rent a houseboat here in Iceland and it will not be a holiday you are going to forget in a hurry.
So whether it’s a boating holiday in Spain, while rubbing shoulders with the great and good in Ibiza, getting lost in the tranquillity of the azure waters of the Azores, or simply eating your way around the canals of France, Europe has some of the most diverse destinations that any self-respecting yacht charterer and up to 12 people could wish to explore, but you may be wondering what to pack for a boating holiday… well, we have you covered there too.
Below you will find a brief list of some basic boating holiday supplies, whether you are on a pontoon boat in North America at Voyageurs National Park, on a houseboat rental in the Florida Keys, or splurging on a luxury houseboat on Lake Powell, these things will get you started and have your boat well equipped. Now for the land dwellers, who enjoy camping and hiking in National Forests, these items will certainly have you on your way to feeling confident and having a successful boating vacation, and who knows…you may even find them useful to have on a kayak on the Pontcysyllte Aqueducts.
So, without further ado, here is our short list of supplies for a successful boating trip, no matter where or what type of boat you are on:
- Non-slip shoes
- Flashlights & batteries, or a hand crank flashlight
- Gloves for tugging ropes
- Towels, just in case
- Pack your clothes in duffle bags, not suitcases (easy to pack away on the boat)
- Mosquito Repellent
Check out our special boat hire offers and terms and conditions here.
Stay safe people!