Star Clippers’ fleet of tall clipper ships stand out in any port for their impressive silhouettes and classic-meet-modern design. The line’s largest ship, the 228-guest Royal Clipper, turns heads where ever she sails and evokes the question: “is that a pirate ship?” She is not, in fact, a pirate ship, but in 2001, Royal Clipper was officially recognized by the Guinness World Records as the largest square-rigged sailing ship in service, and she has held onto that honor for more than 20 years.
Inspired by the legendary tall ship Preussen, the 439-foot Royal Clipper offers the adventure and tradition of sailing with the service and amenities of a private yacht. Featuring 9,000 square feet of open deck, 42 sails totaling 54,000 square feet, three swimming pools, a marina platform for ocean access to watersports activities, tri-level dining room and a fully-equipped spa and health club, Royal Clipper sails year round, offering three- to 28-night itineraries in the Eastern and Western Mediterranean and the Caribbean.
Following are the top five reasons to book a sailing onboard the majestic Royal Clipper:
Experience the Grand Prix in Style
Visiting Monaco during the Grand Prix races is a must-do for racing fans, and Royal Clipper offers a sailing in 2023 and 2024 designed to put guests at the center of the action. The itinerary, an eight-day sailing between Cannes and Rome, calls on Monaco in time for the Grand Prix Finals—without having the worry of finding a hotel during the busiest time of year.
Sail Through the Famed Panama Canal
Royal Clipper offers the opportunity for a true bucket list experience: a sailing through the great Panama Canal. Built more than100 years ago connecting the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, the canal offers interesting vantages of the flora and fauna of Panama as the ship makes its way through the locks. This 14-night sailing also offer the opportunity to visit favorite ports such as Willemstad, Curacao, Cartagena, Columbia and Balboa, Panama.
Cross the Atlantic by Sailboat
Many cruise lines offer ocean crossings, but none do it like Star Clippers, relying primarily on the power of the wind. Each spring, Royal Clipper makes the 16-night Eastbound crossing between Bridgetown, Barbados and Lisbon—or for those who want more, a 28-day option sails all the way to Rome. In fall, she does the reverse, returning to the Caribbean for the winter season. These transatlatlantic sailings offer guests the opportunity to commune with the ocean, seek out a quiet sanctuary on deck to take in the endless horizon and enjoy the authentic experience of crossing the Atlantic onboard a true sailing ship.
Claim Bragging Rights
Sailing on Royal Clipper is an experience worth bragging about. In addition to holding the Guiness World Record as the largest square-rigged sailing ship, Royal Clipper has received several other accolades of late. Earler this year, USA Today 10 Best Awards named Royal Clipper the Best Small Ship in 2022. And just last month, Star Clippers placed in the top 10 in the Small Ship category in the 2022 Conde Nast Readers Choice Awards.
Live Like a Sailor
Royal Clipper offers guests unique opportunities that can only be had on an authentic sailing vessel. A guest favorite is climbing the mast to the crow’s nest—at 75 feet above water level, the crow’s nest offers an incredible view of the ship’s top deck as well as the scenery beyond. Another favorite spot on Royal Clipper is the bowsprit netting, where guests can lay out with the ocean beneath them and watch the world go by. The lengthy bowsprit, stretching 30-feet forward of the bow, is open to passengers during the day, and the hammock-like netting suspended over the ocean affords probably the most unique, and delightful, setting on any cruise ship afloat.
For more than 25 years, Star Clippers has been introducing travelers to the thrill of modern tall ship sailing to remote ports in the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Indonesia, Thailand and Singapore. The company operates three of the world’s largest and tallest sailing vessels: Star Clipper and Star Flyer are traditional clipper ships with modern amenities carrying 170 guests, while the 227-guest Royal Clipper holds the Guinness World Record for being the largest and only five-masted, full-rigged sailing ship in service today. All three ships have expansive teak decks, swimming pools, informal dining, convivial tropical bars on deck and piano lounges.