The top 6 places to spend Christmas 2017 on your superyacht

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London, UK

Best for a traditional Christmas

The festive season is upon us and what could be better than fine dining, elegant spas and luxurious pastimes? Whether you're eyeing up the very best yachts to charter this Christmas or you're more focused on the perfect holiday destination, get some inspiration with our favourite destinations for the 2017 holidays.

1. London, UK

While in many ways it could be considered one of the more alternative destinations to visit by superyacht, the charming setting of London at Christmas is something not to be missed.

Shopping in London's finest department stores is an experience in itself — peruse the stunning window displays before enjoying some serious retail therapy at Harrods, Tiffany's and Harvey Nichols in Knightsbridge during the day. It may be cold outside, but join in with a British tradition and warm up in the Harrods Tea Room.

Celebrate with friends and family later on with an Afternoon Tea of scones and sandwiches at The Ritz in Mayfair, or enjoy a sumptuous dinner at The Ivy. This world-famous establishment has been a staple of the London dining scene for decades and offers a varied menu featuring predominantly European classics. Foodies mustn't miss the winter market on the South Bank, which runs throughout December and offers a myriad of warm tipples and treats.

If you need to unwind after a day's shopping and exploring, make a beeline for Espa Life at Corinthia to enjoy a spa and beauty treatment or two so you can be at your best for the Christmas festivities.

Those wanting to remain on land overnight should opt for The Wellesley Hotel, which becomes the ultimate holiday season spectacle in December. It's festive package option includes a gift hamper and Champagne from your complimentary 24-hour butler, breakfast in the Oval Restaurant and a Rolls-Royce to take you London's iconic shopping spots.

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock.com / RexRover

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Belize

Best for once-in-a-lifetime diving

Swap the eggnog for Caribbean rum cocktails this Christmas and head to Belize for a spot of laid back luxury.

With more than 40% of the country protected, visitors to Belize should make the most of the beautiful surroundings — save plenty of time to go diving in the Great Blue Hole (one for your diving bucket list), visit the Cockscomb Basin wildlife sanctuary and soak up the history at the Lamanai and Xunantunich Mayan ruins.

While on the mainland, start your party prep early with a Oriental Body Glow treatment at the Turtle Inn resort before enjoying a few glasses in the resort’s “wine aquarium”, which is well-stocked with a huge variety of wines to enjoy alongside a locally-sourced cheese platter in the intimate wine garden.

There are a number of culinary delights in Belize for yachties. Cut loose by heading to one of Placenia’s many beachside bars for a cocktail. For a more authentic Belizean atmosphere start the party at Barefoot Beach Bar, or else opt for a more intimate evening with incredible views of the Placencia Lagoon and Maya Mountains at Belize Ocean Club’s Shore House.

Keen kayakers can paddle to surrounding islets to explore quieter shores, but nature-lovers should tender to the 'eco-village' of Long Caye, where more than 600 acres of carefully conserved land plays host to a myriad of amazing flora and fauna. The surrounding coral reefs are perfect for diving, paddleboarding and snorkelling.

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock.com / Adam Stocker

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Cayman Islands

Best for Christmas traditions and events

If you want to experience the ultimate Caribbean Christmas, the Cayman Islands are the place to go.

They are packed with festive activities such as weekly Christmas movie screenings under the stars, a gingerbread house workshop on December 17, carol concerts, regular visits from Father Christmas and the Cayman 27’s Parade of Lights, where brightly lit boats sail into the harbour in Camana Bay.

A trip to George Town is a must when visiting the Cayman Islands — go for a stroll down Seven Mile Beach, one of the best beaches in the Caribbean, before settling down for a meal at either Blue by Eric Ripert or Agua Restaurant & Lounge, depending on which direction you're walking. Blue by Eric Ripert features an elegant spread of locally sourced seafood while Agua offers unrivalled ceviche.

For chic evening cocktails followed by partying into the early hours there are a myriad of options, such as Abacus in Camana Bay, Periwinkle on Seven Mile Beach and Tiki Beach.

After all the socialising in some of the best Caribbean party spots, be sure to book in the La Prairie Spa at The Ritz-Carton for a cellular swiss ice crystal facial to help recover.

While Grand Cayman offers more modern pleasures, yachties should save plenty of time to tender over to Cayman Brac for a spot of cave exploration and to Little Cayman to see the birds nesting in the Booby Pond Reserve and to dive the Bloody Bay Wall Marine Park, one of the best scuba diving spots in the world.

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock.com / Jo Ann Snover

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Tahiti

Best for a variety of water sports

Don't hesitate if you're looking to discover Tahiti and beyond with a luxury yacht charter. It's a great spot for water sports, specifically surfing, so those looking for a more active Christmas vacation will want to head to this beautiful island in French Polynesia.

Not to be missed is Papenoo Beach, which offers the bizarre and beautiful experience of sunbathing on black volcanic sand, as well as being a top spot for surfing. The area is packed with other natural splendours, such as the lagoonarium on sister island Moorea, where visitors can swim in a wild but protected environment with sharks and rays, and the dramatic Fautaua Waterfall — notably, the hike to the latter is as picturesque as the waterfall itself.

After you’ve worn the family out with plenty of hiking and swimming, return to the mainland for a cocktail or two at the laid-back Pink Coconut restaurant and bar next to the Marina Taina, which can berth vessels measuring up to 60 metres. For a picturesque dinner, head along the coastline to Le Lotus at the InterContinental Resort Spa for a unique overwater gourmet meal with exquisite views of Moorea.

Definitely make some time to tender to The Brando resort’s Varua Te Ora Polynesian Spa for a treatment during your time in Tahiti. With views over 2,000 square metres of tropical landscapes, a steam bath, waterfall and tea lounge, it’s the ultimate island sanctuary.

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock.com / sarayuth3390

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Thailand

Best for unbelievable natural scenery

With such an enormous number of islands to explore, there is a myriad of reasons try out a luxury yacht charter in Thailand for Christmas.

After enjoying incredible activities in Phuket, such as elephant rides and wild walks on Monkey Hill, sample the local cuisine at the nearby Blue Elephant, which is also home to a renowned cookery school. It's located in the luxurious Governor’s Mansion and specialises in ‘Royal Thai’ cuisine.

Sail north towards the Ao Phang-Nga National Park, but be sure to stop off for a signature Watsu treatment at the Naka Island Spa. A 60 minute combination of massage and aquatic therapy helps alleviate aches and pains in time for an indulgent Christmas meal and drinks back on board your yacht.

Keen 007 fans won’t want to miss Khoa Phing Kan, otherwise known as James Bond Island as it was used for The Man with the Golden Gun — one of the top movie locations to visit on a luxury yacht. Sitting within the park, it’s limestone cliffs and caves are extraordinary.

The Ao Pang-Nga National Park, famous for its towering cliffs and mysterious caves, its best views are found by kayak, accompanied by a guide. Expect to see white-handed gibbons, Bengal monitor lizards, banded sea snakes and crab-eating macaques.

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock.com / Banana Republic Images

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St Lucia

Best for keeping the family busy

The perfect combination of outdoor adventuring and high-end relaxation, go exploring St Lucia and its neighbouring islands on a luxury yacht for a colourful and Caribbean Christmas.

There are plenty of options for those who can’t bear the idea of doing nothing, even at Christmas. Scuba diving, jungle biking, bird watching, water sports and hiking are all available in St Lucia, and nature-lovers shouldn’t miss a hike up the world-famous Pitons, or the beautiful Diamond Falls and botanical garden.

To combine the great outdoors with a little indulgence, arrange a trip to the island’s sulphur springs or mud baths. For a more familiar spa experience head to the Auriga Spa at Capella Marigot Bay and moor in the naturally protected harbour which can accommodate yachts up to 80 metres. The spa uses a host of organic products and traditional St. Lucian techniques such as the Panse body exfoliation wrap and even has a set of signature treatments based on the phases of the moon. Afterwards dine at the hotel's signature Grill at 14⁰61⁰ restaurant or enjoy an authentic rum tasting experience in the Rum Cave.

Another foodie must-see is the Hotel Chocolat Boucan boutique resort — though its variety of menus are all superb, their café menu complete with treats and cocoa-inspired drinks is one the sweet-toothed yachtie won’t forget in a hurry.

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock.com / PlusONE

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