Croatia, Europe

The Yacht Week Experience in Croatia

Croatia Europe

Whenever I have the opportunity to advertise the fact that I went on/survived Yacht Week Croatia, I’m met by one of two responses:

  1. “No way! I’m dying to go on that, how was it?!”
  2. “Wait, what the hell is Yacht Week? Like, Leonardo DiCaprio yacht?”

Although I love both reactions, it’s fun to get to explain Yacht Week however I see fit. Whenever someone doesn’t have any prior knowledge about this glorious experience, I just do my best to give it the praise it deserves.

A brave soul who made it up a mast to pop bottles. My boat is on the bottom right, with the German flag I brought to represent my second homeland.

Let’s start with how I ended up on Yacht Week. I was living in Germany at the time, and was on a date with a 15 ft fall gorgeous German man, as one does when living in Germany, when he mentioned Yacht Week. I was of the latter responses, the, “Wait, what’s that?” He of course lit up as he described an indescribable week aboard a sail boat with like-minded, young people from all over the world. He said he loved it so much in fact that he was doing boating trainings in Denmark to get his skipper license to return as a skipper the following summer. Good for him, really. But I have to say being a guest was plenty of fun in and of itself.

So, truly and with no exaggeration, I say that that evening when I got home, I googled “Yacht Week” and found out to my pleasant surprise that you could join a boat that a small group has already booked and just pay your portion. Although this was the only way my single self was able to go, it turns out that this is NOT customary. Most people get an entire boat with a group of friends but at the time I had a lot of on the fence friends who didn’t want to commit to the vacation time, experience of a lifetime or whatever their excuses were. So, I was alone and picked the cheapest boat on a week that was conveniently right after I’d be quitting my job in about 6 months. I quickly Skyped with the guy who was leading the boat’s group; we got along and he welcomed me aboard (pun intended). It was a boat full of Floridians, myself and one Australian.

The crew on day one. Usually the first time you meet people you aren’t also about to start a 7 day sail journey with them.

Fast forward 6 months, I’ve quit my job, popped around the sunny, beachy bits of Europe for a few weeks and I’m rested, as tan as I can hope to get, and ready to start Yacht Week Croatia. We all meet up in Split to have some pre-party on dry land, and then we set off. About 30 boats, some sailboats some catamarans, and about 8 people on each boat so that’s…. a lot of travelers ready to have a really really good time.

The day I fell in love with being on 2 wheels. The road we rode down to the water here is such a beautiful drive that billionaires fly their fancy cars here just to drive down it. Unfortunately, I did not find a husband here.

The island hopping went on for 7 days straight. We raced mopeds around gorgeous and scenic islands, cliff jumped and stuffed ourselves with amazing Croatian cuisine. Now, you can say a lot of things about Yacht Week, but no one will ever be correct if they dare to say Yacht Week doesn’t know how to party. Our first night was met with an amazing (yet affordable) dinner on a small island and a private party for Yacht Weekers, on top of a mountain, in a castle, that had been turned into an outdoor club. (Pause for reaction) And this night wasn’t even the peak of the week. Each day and night were filled with boat races, parties on and off shore, and some amazing down time to relax and reflect on the glory that all of our lives were, considering where we were all fortunate enough to be at that moment.

The talent it took 30 sleep deprived skippers from all over the world to tie massive boats together in this perfect circle still impresses me.

There are a million stories that come to mind when I reflect on Yacht Week, but my main message is “oh my god sweet baby Jesus just do it.” Impulsively book it alone or plot it out with your best mates, but do it. Yacht Week happens in 6 countries that I know of, but feel free to google it for yourself and check it out. When I think back on epic experiences, this is one for the books. I’m currently 42 countries deep so it’s saying something that this sticks out to me as the trip of a lifetime.

What’s special about this is that while every country I’ve visited has given me unique and amazing times, I can’t get you to meet the same guy I did in Iceland who drove me around the Golden Circle for FREE or the people in Cambodia who brought a deserted island to life. But I can guarantee on Yacht Week you’ll have an epic journey. And to top it off, as I’m finishing writing this, a song just came on the radio that puts me right back in the middle of the circle jerk (as seen above) doing flips off the boats and playing with my Yacht Week family.

Oh, and nothing beats watching the sun set on the water with changing locations for a week straight.  Book the damn trip. Add some travel time on either end to explore dry land a bit. The world has so much to offer and we’re lucky if we see even a fraction of it.

Night one. No filter, no idea how I’d been dealt such a wonderful hand in life.