boats

The Lonely Island performing “I’m On A Boat” got us thinking (and not in a Carrie Bradshaw way, don’t worry). Why aren’t we on a boat? How can we acquire said boat? And when are we going to become the type of boat-owning, or at the very least, boat-renting, adults we’d very much like to be?

Solidifying our thoughts, this comprehensive rundown of boat rentals from Helston to Hvar is sure to get you either: a) on a boat and/or b) in a maritime mood. (Admittedly we’re not quite sure what the latter is, or feels like, but we imagine those with a proclivity for boats are struck by this a lot.)

Navigate a Dinghy on the Cornish Coast

Whether its a fishing trip, a family outing or a gathering of friends, St Anthony Sailaway offers a wide range of boats to hire regardless of you seafaring level. Sail around Helford River and Falmouth Bay, an unspoilt area around the Cornish Coast, and an idyllic setting to guide your dinghy along. The duration of boat hire can span from hours to weeks, none of which will break the bank. There is also no pressure to be a fully qualified sailor before taking one out for a spin. Gather some friends, some food and drink, and bob along for as much, or as little, time as you like on the beautiful British coast.

Go Blue Cruise Yachting in Turkey

Navigate down the whole southwestern Turkish coastline on a traditional wooden yacht. Heavenly, right? Add to the mix a full crew who will sail you, guide you and cook for you throughout the entire journey – this is starting to sound like the best week on record. With water-sports, day trips and touristic excursions available upon request, you can choose just how active (or otherwise) you want to be. In any case, unforgettable moments will be made as the crew sail you to hidden bays, historic sites and under-the-radar beaches. Each boat can hold up to 12 guests in separate cabins with double beds and sufficient facilities including plentiful outdoor lounging area, a shaded dining space, with aircon and Wi-Fi onboard the more extravagant vessels. We prefer the ones without the Wi-Fi, so for once “out of office” actually means it. Yacht hire is based on a daily rental basis regardless of the number of guests, so make the most of your money and gather a full house.

Prices ranging from £1665 per day in high season to £4790 per day depending on the yacht

Sail a Catamaran in Croatia

A Croatian vacation with a catamaran is sheer bliss, not to mention bouji as heck. With Charter Catamaran Croatia, holidaymakers can choose to cruise in one of the many sailing boats, power boats or luxury boats they have on offer. Opt for a “bareboat” experience, or if the whole group are nautical newbies, a skipper will navigate you through your trip. Building on that, the luxury catamarans come with an entire crew, leaving you free to enjoy Croatia’s still undisturbed coastal regions, freed from the trapses of a navigational uh-oh. Whether you’re in the know or not, the company provides all the necessary information to make sure you choose the right vessel for your catamaran exploits.

Prices ranging from £1,300 per week to £32000 per week

Charter the Ultimate Luxury Motor Yacht in Greece

Onboard jacuzzis, personal chefs, king-sized beds, plasma televisions, surround-sound music systems, a gym, library, jet skis… the notional list is never-ending. Valef Yachts, Greece’s pioneer luxury-yacht company, makes all these a reality there are truly no limits to the extravagance of these mega-crafts. The list of boats to choose between can host from as little as six to as many as 49 guests, depending on the intimacy of your excursion or the breadth of your friend group. On most voyages, there’s also a crew – complete with chef and bartender to cater to your every whim. The catch? Unsurprisingly, the price tag is likely to burn a perennial hole in most of our pockets, but you can seek solace in the knowledge that every aspect of a Valef Yacht experience will be delivered with unrivalled professionalism, precision and grandiosity.

Daily rates ranging from £70 to £230,000

Rent a Canal Boat in Amsterdam

For a truly memorable day trip in Amsterdam, rent a canal boat – cute, kitsch and oh-so-Dutch. With 45 boats to choose from – big, small, open-aired, sheltered – there’s no want for choice. The best time to enjoy a canal boat in the Dutch capital is on King’s Day in April, a national holiday celebrating the monarch’s birthday. Boats fill up every nook and cranny of the canals of Amsterdam for a day of non-stop music, dancing and drinking. But if a tranquil cruise is a little more up your stream, best to book an open-aired canal boat from Rent A Boar for a weekday excursion – just be sure to check the weather first.

Prices range from £140-£750 per hour

Go Speed Boating on Lago D'Iseo

Discover the unprecedented charm of Lago D’Iseo, a northern Italian lake dotted with little fishing villages. Our top choice; Bellini Nautica’s chauffeured Riva Aquarama charter service – a speedboat so sleek that even Bond would go coy over it. Renting starts from a minimum of two hours and is bookable for up to seven people. Start your day early with a zippy trip to one of the nearby villages – stopping portside for quick cappuccino and cornetto in a café overlooking the lake. Hop on again, hop off again, and at the end of this undoubtedly exceptional adventure, you can drop your boat wherever is most convenient for you. Slick, port-to-port service.

£540+iva per hour

Go Fishing in Scotland

The family-run TFC boats, based in the mystical surroundings of Loch Etive on the Western coast of Scotland, is one of the more “earthy” and laid-back services on our list. The boats come fully equipped with maps, fuel, safety equipment and outboard engines, while fishing tools are also available at a small extra cost. With over 40 species of fish (mainly cod, pollock, mackerel, thornback rays and dogfish) inhabiting these waters, visions of hiring a TFC fishing boat and spending the day catching our supper are in our sights. Even if fishing isn’t for you, Loch Etive is a wonderful place to spend a relaxing day rollicking along the bracing Scottish waters.

Prices range from £80-£100 per day. All boats hold up to 4 people max

View the Northern Lights by the Sea

Seeing the Northern Lights is up there on most people’s lists but sailing to your viewing point is probably not – until now. Yacht Charter Norway arranges private voyages for up to eight guests to see the Aurora Borealis. Making for a – and we don’t use this world lightly – ”unique” experience, the boat anchors in remote areas, untouched by light pollution, noise and large crowds, meaning visibility is greatly improved. The company offers weekend or week-long journeys in their state-of-the-art yachts, so seeing the Northern Lights can be combined with a whole array of other adventures and list-ticking excursions.

Prices begin at £3,500

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