As he grew up, Mikael Krafft became an expert sailor, owning many different sailing boats. It was during an Atlantic crossing on board his yacht “Gloria” that he came up with the idea of building two tall ships inspired by the Clippers he dreamed of as a child. Thus, Star Flyer and Star Clipper were born, followed some years later by Royal Clipper. His dream was to recreate the legendary clippers that crossed the oceans in the 19th century and in doing so offer people the chance to experience the unique thrill of sailing aboard a Tall Ship.
Are the ships sail-powered all the time?
All three ships will sail wherever possible, although they can use engine power if there is not enough wind, allowing them to keep to their sailing schedules.
Do the passengers help sail the ship?
Passengers are welcome to help the crew raise the sails if they want to, but there is no obligation to join in.
Are the sails raised by computer?
There are no computerised sails on Star Clippers. The Captains and the crew are very experienced square-rigger sailors who are trained both on modern technology found on Star Clippers’ ships and the old-fashioned, traditional methods proven over the generations. Some winches are electric-powered but muscle-powered winches are widely used as well.
Is seasickness a problem on board?
There is no need to worry about seasickness on a Star Clippers vessel, no more than there is on any other ship! All three ships are stabilized and the heeling of each ship under sail is kept to a comfortable level.
How big are the cabins?
There are several cabin grades on each ship, most with a comfortable 12 to 14 square metres. Even the smallest cabins have a double bed (or two singles), TV, plenty of storage space, bathroom with shower and hairdryer. The most luxurious have whirlpool baths, direct access onto the deck and complimentary mini-bars.
Do guests dress up in the evenings?
Star Clippers maintains a smart casual dress code: Beach or resort-wear on deck during the day and casual during the evening. Deck shoes are the best footwear for daytime. There is one Captain’s dinner on each cruise where people dress up a little more, but there are no black-tie events or formal nights.
Will I be allocated a table and a sitting time at dinner?
Life on a Star Clippers ship is completely casual and guests can dine when they like and with whom they like.
What is there to do during the days at sea?
Every morning, the Captain or Cruise Director will talk about sailing-related topics at an informal gathering on deck, including the wind, tall ships, navigation, the stars. The crew offer knot-tying lessons, a chance to raise the sails and, weather permitting, mast-climbing to the first crow’s nest.
Each ship has a well-stocked library, beauty and massage treatments and plenty of deck space for sunbathing and watching the crew at work. Once on each cruise, weather permitting, there is a photo tender. All the sails are raised and guests can photograph the ship in all its glory from the tender boats.
Is there any watersports equipment?
Snorkel equipment is available to borrow and each ship has kayaks, sailing dinghies, water skiing and windsurfing equipment. Royal Clipper has its own water sports platform at the stern, which can be lowered when the ship is at anchor. All watersports are subject to weather conditions and local regulations.
What about nightlife?
There are no nightclubs or Broadway shows on Star Clippers, but evenings include fun activities organised by the entertainment team, such as scavenger hunts, talent night, fashion shows and dancing. The Tropical Bar stays open as late as guests want. On warm nights, guests can even sleep on deck, watching the stars overhead.
Can passengers visit the bridge?
Each ship has an open bridge policy and guests are free to come and talk to the officers and Captain, except when a complex manoeuvre is taking place.
Is there a shop on board?
Each ship has a Sloop Shop selling a wide range of Star Clippers’ branded casual wear, as well as essentials.
Are children permitted aboard Star Clippers’ ships?
Star Clippers cannot accommodate infants under six months of age. Children are accepted on board from 6 months old, however, there is no children's club or babysitting available on our ships.
Can I reserve shore excursions on board?
Star Clippers offers a rich and varied shore excursion program. Excursions are posted on the website and can only be booked and paid on board.
Do all ships have swimming pools?
All three ships have swimming pools and sunbathing areas.
What languages are spoken on board?
English, German and French. Daily programs, PA announcements and menus are available in all three languages. Some activities are offered exclusively in English.
Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!