WORLD OF CHARTERING This four-masted, 360-foot ship really felt more like a private luxury yacht than a cruise ship with her teak decks and sumptuous staterooms. She carries 25,000 square feet of sail to help assist her engines. Sailing at night gives guests all day to explore each island. Those of us who enjoy night passages were happy to sacrifice some sleep in order to make the most of the inter -island transits. The first morning I assigned myself the 0300 watch and roamed the eerily quiet decks, enjoying the solitude, while reminiscing about sailing under the Southern Cross. I wasn't surprised to see Fin and Deborah enter the open bridge at 0430. I joined them in chatting up the watch captain and sharing a few laughs. Then we all gathered at the rail to watch the eastern horizon come to life. Our first port of call was Cook's Bay, Moorea. From the upper deck we spotted Patsy Verhoeven's Talion, a boat we
the cockpit and snapped a photo of her boat in one of the most beautiful natural settings on earth. After Moorea, Wind Spirit's itinerary took us to Tahiti's Leeward Islands: Tahaa, Raiatea, Bora Bora and Huahine. It was an ambitious yet doable schedule, filled with snorkeling, scuba, kayaking, hiking and island exploration. This ship draws an active crowd, and the week we sailed aboard her it was filled to capacity: 115 passengers. For sailors, a cruise aboard this ship holds many unexpected pleasures, and for us, it was a great way to get a taste of the French Polynesia and explore the possibilities for future bareboat adventures. For more information, visit www. windstarcruises.com. — lynn ringseis
Above: Surrounded by lush volcanic mountains, Cook's Bay 'Moorea' is like someplace out of a dream — a very happy dream. Inset: SoCal sailors Deborah and Fin.
know well from various Ha-Ha rallies. What an amazing small-world experience to find this familiar Gulfstar 50 anchored behind us! We coerced the watersports director to buzz us over in the ship's tender so we could say hi. Sadly, Patsy wasn't aboard, so we left a note in
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The June 2016 issue of the West's premier sailing and marine magazine.