NORTHERN EUROPE

NORTHERN EUROPE

NORTHERN EUROPE

NORTHERN EUROPE

NORTHERN EUROPE

Norway’s fragmented west coast comprises a series of deep-hewn fissures and knife-edge landmasses, cut through with waterways that extend far into the country’s mountainous interior. The most striking section of this charter yacht hotspot encompasses Norway’s famous fjords – long, narrow sea inlets between steep glacial cliffs that provide an endless labyrinth of cruising opportunities. With clear, deep waters, vast reefs, imposing mountains, verdant hillsides, colourful settlements and fertile fishing grounds, West Norway is a unique yacht charter venue.

From Trondheim in the north to Stavanger in the south lies a region of West Norway where the famous fjords come into dramatic union with the open sea. And while Alesund provides excellent access to the magnificent Geirangerfjord, Bergen is an unbeatable base for a charter. In addition to its UNESCO-listed harbour and its innate vibrancy as Norway’s second largest city, its location at the apex of seven mountains puts it within reach of some of the country’s longest, deepest and most dramatic fjords. Expect cliffs a thousand metres high, majestic waterfalls, blissful anchorages and pristine wildernesses. It’s famed as one of the most extraordinary landscapes on earth and with a week-long yacht charter from Bergen, some its greatest treasures are yours to explore.

Perched in the bottleneck between the North Sea and the Baltic, sharing a border with Germany and close links with Sweden and Norway, Denmark is an astonishingly rich venue for a yacht charter holiday. Despite being the smallest of the Scandinavian nations, it combines pristine rural landscapes with urban modernity, artistic sophistication and culinary excellence. It’s wealthy but modest; indulgent but safe; creative but laid back; fashionable but inclusive. And at the heart of it all rests an authentic and deep-rooted maritime heritage.

Copenhagen is arguably the most thrilling yacht charter base in the whole of Scandinavia. Perched on the islands of Zealand and Amager, with Malmo just across the water, the gorgeous alfresco elegance of its 17th century Nyhavn waterfront is only part of the story. This medieval city is also famed for its world-beating cuisine, its sparkling music and festival scene and its feel-good approach to life. Aarhus and Odense, the second and third largest towns in Denmark are also within easy reach of a seven-day charter, as are the west of Sweden and the Baltic coasts of Germany and Poland. With perfect beaches, fantastic architecture, endless style and more than 7,000 miles of contrasting coastlines, Denmark is one of Europe’s most exciting yacht charter propositions.

With nearly 100,000 lakes and a long coastline broken into complex networks of coves and islands, Sweden is a powerfully nautical nation. Bookended by the North Sea on one side and the Baltic on the other, it’s also a place in love with outdoor pursuits. From fishing to yachting, walking, skiing and hunting, Sweden’s vast tracts of water and wild virgin forests are the perfect outdoor playground. The style, sophistication and vivacity of its seafaring cities add a stirring contrast to the yacht charter experience.

While there is some fine cruising in the west, not least in vibrant Gothenburg, Stockholm in eastern Sweden makes a supreme charter base. With the Baltic in one direction and the expansive island-strewn waters of Lake Malaren on the other, you could easily enjoy a month of yacht charter entertainment without straying more than 40 miles from your home port. If Sweden’s feel-good capital city is a memorable destination, so too is nearby Gotland. This famous island in the middle of the Baltic is the sunniest spot in Sweden and home to an old trading post on UNESCO’s World Heritage list. A ten-day yacht charter should also include a tour of Sweden’s southeast archipelago as well as a visit to the increasingly diverse destination of Malmo.

Russia is so vast that its borders encompass no fewer than 11 time zones – and yet its Baltic coastline is attractively compact. Running from Estonia in the south to Finland in the north, it occupies the easternmost reaches of the Baltic in the Gulf of Finland. There is a secondary Russian coastline, sandwiched between Poland and Lithuania, but while Kaliningrad has its attractions, those in search of a more arresting and three-dimensional Russian yacht charter experience should concentrate instead on the glorious city of St Petersburg.

Having spent centuries vying with Moscow for prominence as the imperial capital of Russia, the dramatic port city of St Petersburg is the natural choice for a Russian yacht charter. With 64 rivers, 48 canals and 92 nautical miles of coastline, it is plainly a place with yachting at its heart. However, it’s the opulence, the confidence and the cultural importance of St Petersburg that makes it such an iconic world destination. A short distance west, the Estonian capital, Tallinn, and the Finnish capital, Helsinki, are both within easy reach of a seven-day yacht charter, but for an extra dimension, you can also head further east, via the Neva River toward Russia’s Lake Ladoga, the largest freshwater lake in Europe.

TOP TEN NORTHERN EUROPE ATTRACTIONS

  1. Norwegian's fjords are home to some of the world’s largest reefs : with wrecks and sheltered waters, the diving here is world famous.
  2. Bergen’s colourful Bryggen Harbour, in Norway, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  3. Denmark capital city Copenhagen is a world hub for Michelin-starred restaurants.
  4. Nyhavn Harbour is one of Europe’s most attractive urban waterfronts, and "Cold Hawaii" is one of Scandinavia’s premier surfing beaches.
  5. Sweden comprises more than 24,000 islands and 95,000 lakes.
  6. The aurora borealis in Sweden can be viewed between September and March.
  7. Stockholm is widely known as the ‘Venice of the North’, a hot spot with a very cosmopolite nightlife to experience.
  8. Famously repulsive ‘delicacy’ surstromming was created in Sweden.
  9. St Petersburg is the world’s most northerly city with a million people, hosting 221 museums, 80 theaters and 100 festivals, it is a major cultural hub.
  10. The summer in St Petersburg brings long ‘white nights’ when the sun never sets, with important cultural festivals.

Imagine a piece of art supremely designed sailing on the seas at 16 knots cruising speed: this is the challenge 66.4 metre (217’10”)...

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