About Missy Johnston

With more than 30 years of experience in crewed yacht charter as both a yacht charter broker and yacht charter crew as Chef, Missy Johnston has a wealth of knowledge, most gained from personal experience on which she draws for every blog written. Missy has traveled and cruised extensively in many of the worldwide yacht charter destinations, providing excellent first-hand knowledge and the opportunity to take photos in many off the track locations to include in all her blogs and itineraries. And, of course, extensive cruising and time spent as yacht crew gives Missy terrific knowledge about what constitutes comfortable cruising and how to create the best charter experience and itinerary possible taking into consideration wind, weather, currents and tides. Having been a charter chef, Missy understands your onboard cuisine needs and can help guide you in completing your provisioning information for the best onboard charter cuisine.

Exploring Kythnos, Greece on a Private Yacht Cruise

2024-05-08T13:55:20-04:00

Written by Missy Johnston

 
Kithnos, Cycladic Island Greece

Kithnos at Sunset

There is much to discover on the Island of  Kythnos, one of the lovely Greek Cycladic Islands. Plentiful archaeological sites, monasteries, churches, museums, villages, festivals, and eateries await charterers visiting this island while on a Greece luxury private yacht cruise. And that’s before considering all of the beaches, outdoor activities, and scenic overlooks to experience when docked in Kythnos on a Greek Cycladic yacht charter itinerary

Below are a few highlights of this stunning island in the Cyclades. This is just a sample of all the wonders waiting to be explored on Kythnos!

Archaeological Sites

Kithnos,, Greece, luxury yacht charter

Kithnos, Greece

The archaeological site of Maroulas is perhaps the most well-known excavation on the island. It contains several graves, houses, and stone tools that tell the stories of the ancient Mesolithic settlement that once called Kythnos home. A skeleton found at this site is thought to be one of the oldest ever discovered in the Cyclades area. 

The castles of Oria and Vriokastro, along with the archaeological site at Vriokastro, are also excellent places for history buffs. Learn about the underwater harbor in the ancient capital city of Vriokastro and drop the sea kayaks in the water to kayak over the underwater ancient harbor for a closer look., See the castle and a handful of residential remnants in the ancient city itself, or travel to the medieval capital of Oria for a comparatively more recent glimpse into history.

The Cave of Katafyki

Kithnos Greece

Kithnos, Greece

For postcard-worthy natural beauty, the Cave of Katafyki is a top contender. Featuring stunning stalactites and stalagmites, this cave is one of the largest in all of Greece. It once served as a mine and a shelter for the people who lived on the island during the tumultuous years of World War II. 

Kolona Beach

Most people have to hike or rent a four-wheel drive jeep to access the beach of Kolona, but yacht charterers can simply sail to the northwest edge of Kythnos and enjoy the shore in peace. 

The Thermal Springs of Loutra

These thermal springs have been known for their healing capabilities since ancient times. People travel to these soothing hot springs to seek relief from ailments such as arthritis and rheumatism. Even the first royal couple that ruled over modern Greece frequented the springs. Today, their basins are still available to tour in Kythnos’s hydrotherapy center. 

Hora

Kithnos Cyclades Greece

Kithnos Cyclades, Greece

Round out the trip to Kythnos by visiting the capital city of Hora, also called the Settlement of Messaria. This stunning city features white houses with sparkling blue glass windows, quaint windmills of stone, winding alleyways, courtyards covered in flowers, and everything else one might hope for from a modern Greek city. Seek high points to enjoy the view over the sloping mountains and sprawling countryside, or stop in a local eatery for fresh Kythnos produce and authentic cuisine. 

Exploring Kythnos, Greece on a Private Yacht Cruise2024-05-08T13:55:20-04:00

What to Do On a Luxury Yacht Charter Through the Balearic Islands From Mallorca to Ibiza

2024-03-26T22:15:18-04:00

Written by Missy Johnston

 

Menorca, Balearic Islands, Spain

What could be better—or more luxurious—than a private luxury yacht charter through the Balearic Islands of Spain?

With high-end destinations such as Mallorca and Ibiza, plus a generous helping of natural beauty to match, sprinkled with quaint fishing villages, a Balearic Islands yacht cruise is the ultimate vacation for anyone who thrives on being part of an exclusive high society, with a side of quaint living..

Here’s what to expect from the journey.

A Brief History of Palma

Royal palace of Almudaina, Palma-Mallorca--Spain

Royal palace of Almudaina, Palma de Mallorca, Spain

On the southern coast of the island of Mallorca lies the capital city of Palma.

Founded in 123 BC by the Romans, Palma was the last settlement to come under Roman control once the empire conquered the island of Mallorca. Due to its strategic location, the Romans used Palma as a convenient port for traveling back and forth from African destinations.

There are few documents left today that describe exactly what happened between the time the Romans ruled in Mallorca and the time of eventual Muslim rule, which happened after the fall of the Roman Empire in the West. However, Byzantine relics, including mosaics in the city’s largest cathedral, indicate occupation during the medieval period.

Historians know that Palma was under Islamic control for roughly 300 years between 902 and 1229. During this time, piracy was commonplace in the region, which only worsened when Palma found itself situated between Islamic and Christian territories. Pirates would attack ships from either direction and use the profits to support their continued existence on the island. The area was also a hotspot for Viking piracy in addition to that perpetrated by the local community. Eventually, to help combat the rampant piracy, Mallorca was incorporated under the Emirate of Cordoba, with Palma as its capital city.

After 300 years of Islamic rule, Palma was conquered by King James I of Aragon and ultimately returned to Christian rule. After this, were built the city’s most iconic buildings. Several examples of Gothic architecture exist in the city today, including the famous Cathedral of Mallorca and Bellver Castle.

What To See and Do In Palma de Mallorca

Puerto de Andratx, Mallorca, Spain

Puerto de Andratx, Mallorca, Spain

It’s impossible to walk through downtown Palma without immersing oneself in the city’s vibrant culture. Architectural enthusiasts will note several baroque and modernist contributions contrasting against the city’s earlier Gothic buildings.

One of the best places to visit is the Cathedral of Mallorca, also known as the Cathedral of Light or La Seu. Its amazing rose window, called the Gothic Eye, is a breathtaking work of Gothic stained glass art matched only by the equally impressive stained glass artwork adorning the rest of the cathedral. The cathedral’s expansive nave is 44 meters (nearly 145 feet) tall, and it’s the second-highest Gothic nave in the world.

In the cobblestone streets around the cathedral are several more treasures ready to be explored. The Arab Baths are worth a visit, as is the Bishop’s Garden. Art lovers will appreciate Can Veri, a small street with several art galleries, interior design stores, and furniture shops. The gallery Pelaires is reputed to be one of the best private art galleries the island has to offer. Es Baluard Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art houses fantastic examples of modern art by local Mallorcan artists.

Bellver Castle is another not-to-be-missed Palma attraction. This landmark has famously served as a prison as well as a royal fortress and summer home, so its aesthetic is an interesting blend of its past functions. The castle’s courtyard and the surrounding pine forests are both as impressive as the castle itself, especially if the courtyard is currently hosting one of its many open-air concerts.

For nightlife, the Calle Apuntadores beckons. This street appears peaceful during the day, but it comes alive at night with its exciting selection of restaurants and bars that stay open late. Of the restaurants, some of the best choices include the rooftop eateries that offer fine dining with a spectacular city view.

Shoppers will enjoy the “Golden Mile,” or the Paseo del Borne. Filled with designer options, including Louis Vuitton, Hugo Boss, and plenty of others, the Borne is the place for luxury purchases.

Depending on the time of year, one of the Palma’s several cultural festivals may occur. These festivals, sprinkled throughout the year, often involve live music, authentic cuisine, and community events great for families with children.

Cabrera Island Chain

Cabrera Island Balearic Islands Spain

Cabrera Island

The Cabrera Islands are an archipelago of 31 islands of all shapes and sizes. They have been beautifully preserved as part of a Maritime-Terrestrial National Park. Additionally, the surrounding waters are a protected part of the largest marine reserve in the Western Mediterranean and so is filled with underwater marine life. Because of these designations, the Cabrera Archipelago is a stunning place to include to cruise on a Balearic yacht charter, untouched by most modern development and interference.

One reason for the maritime protection is that this area is home to several threatened species of fish, including the bluefin tuna and species of live coral and mollusks, Balearic lizards, more than 20 species of crustaceans, and 150 species of birds that live and migrate through the area.

Though the coastal landscape is mostly bare and natural, some remains of early settlements are evident on hilltops and cliffsides throughout the archipelago. A 5th-century monastery still stands, as does a castle from 1400 whose inhabitants provided an early warning against incoming pirate attacks.

Puerto Portals

Palma de Mallorca Cathedral Seu sunset in Majorca Balearic islands of Spain

Palma de Mallorca Cathedral Seu sunset in Majorca Balearic islands of Spain

After exploring the several historical sites on Mallorca and the nearby Cabrera Archipelago, return to Puerto Portals for some glitz and glamor. A hotspot for rich visitors with top-of-the-line yachts up to 60 meters (almost 200 feet) long, Puerto Portals is a marina on par with marinas in Monte Carlo.

Despite the ritz, Puerto Portals is actually tiny; it takes only five minutes to walk from one side to the other. However, the shops in between are bursting with designer watches, swimwear, jewelry, and other items that a shopping party could easily spend hours browsing.

In addition to shopping and admiring other yachts, lounging on the beach is another popular activity in Puerto Portals. Oratori Beach—also known simply as Portals Beach—offers excellent swimming and paddle boarding opportunities. Further east is the beach of La Cala de Portals, which features a fun beach bar.

Ibiza

luxury yacht charter, luxury yacht, luxury charter

Ibiza Night Clubbing at Club Amnesia

Speaking of glitz and glamor…

Ibiza is one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences for most people, so it’s included as a destination on our Balearic Islands luxury yacht charter! It lives up to its reputation as a party capital with all the music, drinks, and nightlife one could hope for.

The party culture in Ibiza is arguably one of the strongest in Europe, yet it’s also been described as one of the most relaxed. Partygoers dance freely to the music without the frenzied atmosphere of some clubs in other parts of the world. Partying starts at sundown and continues for the hardy straight through to dawn.

More of Ibiza’s charms lay in the gorgeous beaches with the strong Spanish sun and the little fishing villages outside Ibiza Town. Whether the last night of the yacht charter is spent dancing till dawn or sipping cocktails quietly at sunset, it’s the perfect way to round out a Balearic Islands yacht charter.

What to Do On a Luxury Yacht Charter Through the Balearic Islands From Mallorca to Ibiza2024-03-26T22:15:18-04:00

More Than 30 Years in Luxury Yacht Charters: How an Expert Senior Charter Broker Delivers the Perfect Vacation

2023-12-04T11:55:20-05:00

Yacht Charter Lifestyle

Yacht Charter Lifestyle

Written by Missy Johnston

When it comes to booking the ideal luxury yacht charter vacation (i.e., to charter a luxury yacht), there’s a lot to consider and many choices to make. But what if you don’t know where to go or how to start the process? That’s when an expert charter specialist can help.

The best yacht charter specialist has first-hand experience and knowledge. In fact, this is the golden rule when choosing a yacht charter broker. It’s prudent to have extensive knowledge of yachts, the best charter cruising destinations, and what to see and do. The best, most successful charter specialists are in the know about culinary trends and how to fulfill special requests on board. On top of all this, they have a terrific rapport with the best yacht crews.

I’m Missy Johnston, Senior Charter Broker for CharterWorld with Missy Johnston. I have more than 30 years of experience in the luxury yacht charter business. I’d like to share some of my experiences. What I’ve learned may help you with yacht selection, determining the best itinerary, and seamlessly putting the best plans into action to create the perfect luxury yacht charter.

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More Than 30 Years in Luxury Yacht Charters: How an Expert Senior Charter Broker Delivers the Perfect Vacation2023-12-04T11:55:20-05:00
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