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7 incredible boat adventures

Dhahab by Six Senses Zighy Bay

For a truly restorative experience, take to the high seas and enjoy the freedom of these nautical adventures. By DELILAH KHOMO and CATHERINE FAIRWEATHER

Lifestyle

DHAHAB BY SIX SENSES ZIGHY BAY Oman

The vast jagged mountain backdrop of the Musandam Peninsula dwarfs the schooner, Dhahab, as its glides between Oman’s desert fjords, called khors, that fan out along the Strait of Hormuz. Its double decks and roomy, light-filled cabins are immediately relaxing with their bleached wood and linen ‘barefoot’ aesthetic; a low-key, organic design that is very much in the Six Senses mold. The celebrated 10-year-old beach resort in Zighy Bay, from where you lift anchor at the start of the trip, manages the ship and provides a support crew that includes massage therapists who are ferried deck-side at your whim. Book through scottdunn.com

WATER WAY
Dhahab hosts up to six guests in three well-appointed cabins
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CHRISTINA O, Greece

Hark back to that glamorous Niarchos-Onassis age of sailing and charter Aristotle Onassis’ legendary yacht. Christina O was once a floating Xanadu upon which Hollywood stars, politicians and European royalty swept down the onyx-silver staircase and swam in the marble pool that, at the touch of a button, rose to become a dance floor. Now, the iconic charter sleeps 34 and is available through Cecil Wright, who will create a Cycladic itinerary taking in Athens, Poros, Hydra, Syros and Mykonos. Book through cecilwright.com

FLOATING CITY
The 325ft Christina O is one of the most iconic superyachts in the world

M/Y PIKAIA I Galapagos

Guests alternate between sea-bound and land-based experiences at Pikaia Lodge in the natural wonderland that is the Galapagos. After a day lounging around the stunning carbon-neutral hotel, go on an adventure on the 105-foot luxury motor yacht M/Y Pikaia I, for more intimate interactions with the wildlife across the many island landscapes. Book through pikaialodgegalapagos.com

LIFE AQUATIC
See manta rays, turtles and whale sharks on one of Tiger Blue’s diving expeditions

TIGER BLUE Indonesia

Described as the ultimate sea safari, Tiger Blue is a boat like no other – a traditional Indonesian wooden phinisi updated to exceptional standards with two members of staff to every guest. You’ll see some of the most colorful reefs in the world, and experience fantastic fishing in the oceans of the Raja Ampat, a labyrinth of over 1,500 tiny limestone islands of which only approximately 35 are inhabited. Book through tigerblue.info

TUPAIU Brazil

The best way to experience the Amazons and one of the mightiest rivers of the world is, obviously, by boat. But you don’t have to forego comfort and luxury for journeys up the Tapajos – a major tributary of the Amazon River – as you’ll be on your own private paddle steamer accompanied by a chef, skipper and guide. The small 8-15 person boat can navigate some of the hardest areas to access on the Amazon, meaning there are incredible trekking and foraging trips on offer – look out for jaguar sightings along the way. Book through cazloyd.com

TROPIC ESCAPE
The Tapajos River is often called the ‘Caribbean of the Amazon’ thanks to its blue water and white-sand beaches

TUSITIRI Mozambique

From the owners of the exquisite Enasoit Camp in Laikipia, Tusitiri offers ocean-bound journeys exploring the islands of Northern Mozambique’s archipelagos. Don’t expect modern amenities on this fragrant wood and coir-rope traditional dhow, which once carried spices along the Indian Ocean trade routes. It’s all about the simple pleasures here: sleeping on deck, kayaking through mangroves and eating sashimi, fresh from the day’s catch. Book through redsavannah.com

OPEN AIR
Guests have the chance to sleep below the stars on Tusitiri’s deck

THE LOTUS Kerala

The world passes by as though in slow motion when you are aboard the Lotus, a bamboo-clad houseboat adapted from one of the traditional rice barges that still ply the backwaters of the Malabar Coast in Kerala. In the languid northernmost corner of the region, you can observe egrets, fishermen hauling in their catch and the compelling rituals of village life in the waterside settlements, as you glide sedately by. Book through greavesindia.co.uk