After years of severe lockdowns and tough travel restrictions, the stunning cruising regions of Oceania have flung open their doors and are ready to welcome back the superyacht charter crowd. Comprising the countries of Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and French Polynesia, these South Pacific island nations offer some of the best sailing in the world – from the unparalleled diving opportunities of the Great Barrier Reef to the awe-inspiring volcanic geography of New Zealand. With some major sporting events now on the horizon for the region – including sailing, horseracing, golf and Formula 1 – there’s never been a better time to book an Australasia and Oceania yacht charter. Take a look at the best yachts currently cruising in the southern hemisphere now…
Stats: 34.5 metres, Ray Kemp, 1979, 10 guests, 6 crew
Classic cruiser Princess Iluka was first delivered in 1979 but lovingly restored in 2009, followed by a recent refit in 2022. Named after the aboriginal Yaygirr word for “by the sea”, Princess Iluka’s South Pacific heritage is woven into every fibre of this Aussie-built superyacht – her striking bull hull is crafted from 750-year-old huon pine timber from Tasmanian forests, while her interiors mix Australian timbers with an earthy colour palette and handcrafted, rustic furnishings. Views are best enjoyed from the forward Jacuzzi and the al fresco dining space aft, with lounge spaces set aside on the sundeck for topping up tans. Indoors, the skylounge offers a socialising space with a drinks bar and widescreen TV for movie nights, while the master suite boasts its own private spa and lounge. Her toybox carries a multitude of gear – including a golf range, Jet Skis and towables – for guests to make the most of their time cruising through the spotless waters of the Whitsunday Islands and Great Barrier Reef. For celebrating a special occasion on board, Princess Iluka can host up to 60 guests at quay.
Princess Iluka is managed by IYC with a weekly charter rate starting from AUD $110,00.
Stats: 87.6 metres, Schichau Unterweser, 1969, 12 guests, 28 crew
Her name may be inspired by the icy waters of the far north, but Arctic is just at home down under in the warm waters of Oceania. Currently cruising between the French Polynesian islands and the bays and fjords of Australasia, this classic explorer features ample deck spaces – including a dedicated observation deck – for taking in the stunning scenery and abundant wildlife of her far-flung cruising regions. Wake up to stunning views from the 90 square metre master suite before diving into her ample toybox, carrying the likes of scuba gear, Jet skis, surfboards, SeaBobs and windsurfing gear and a fleet of custom tenders designed for watery excursions. After a day enjoying the great outdoors, unwind with a dip in the hot tub followed by an al fresco meal before retreating to the private cinema for a relaxed movie night.
Arctic is managed by Y.CO with a weekly charter rate starting from €400,000.
Stats: 37.1 metres, Monte Fino, 2009, 12 guests, 7 crew
Nominated for a World Superyacht Award following her delivery in 2009, Masteka 2 is permanently based in the South Pacific for far-flung adventures across the countries of Oceania. The explorer-capable yacht was last refitted in 2017 and features a classic interior design. Highlights include the al fresco lounges and eight-seater hot tub, perfect for taking in views of the stunning cruising grounds. She also has a full beach barbecue set-up for parties on the golden beaches of French Polynesia, Australia and New Zealand, and for making the most of your time in the aquamarine waters, her toybox carries underwater scooters, a sub wing, a Jet Ski and a dive hookah.
Masteka 2 is managed by Fraser with a weekly charter rate starting from $105,000
Stats: 39.2 metres, Profab Engineering, 2019, 12 guests, 9 crew
This aptly named, hardy-looking explorer is easily spotted from afar with her camouflage catamaran hull – and her unique styling by LOMOcean Design helped her win a World Superyacht Award following her launch in 2019. Based in New Zealand, The Beast has a well-stocked toybox to ensure that guests can make the most of their time cruising around the stunning bays of the country’s north or south island – key components include a custom 13 metre sportfish vessel with a complement of fishing gear, as well as a nine-metre amphibious tender for easy beach landings plus a fully-equipped dive shop and fleet of kayaks and paddleboards. Back on board, The Beast boasts over 370 square metres of living spaces including a private office, chef’s table-style open galley and a dedicated media room for movie nights. Views are best enjoyed from the top deck, which features a Teppanyaki grill and cocktail bar for al fresco entertaining. With a cruising range of 7,000 nautical miles The Beast can also roam further throughout the rest of Oceania with French Polynesia, Australia and Fiji also options for a charter itinerary.
The Beast is managed by 37 South with a weekly charter rate starting from $185,00.
Stats: 25 metres, Moonen, 2004, 8 guests, 4 crew
Recently refit in 2021 by her new owners, Aurora is refreshed and ready to welcome smaller groups and families on an intimate charter cruise around Australia’s stunning coastlines. An expedition-style steel hull is paired with vibrantly decorated interiors that set the scene for picturesque charters around the Whitsunday Islands and the wider Great Barrier Reef as well as the idyllic waters of Pittwater Bay and the Hawkesbury River to the buzzing cityscape of Sydney. Al fresco entertaining is the order of the day across Aurora’s spacious decks, with outdoor dining spaces located on the aft deck and flybridge. Other highlights include an open-air cinema for movie nights under the stars and a swimming platform for direct access to the sea so that guests can enjoy splashing around with her toys including Jet Skis, paddleboards, kayaks and towable inflatables. There’s also gear for waterskiing, wakeboarding and fishing on board as well a gym equipment for a waterside workout or yoga session.
Aurora is managed by Yachtsmen International with overnight charter rates starting from $28,000 for two nights on board.Read More/Foreign-flagged vessels permitted to the cruise in the South Pacific under new regulations