With a huge diversity of destinations and an enormous selection of yachts at your disposal, Italy is the top choice for a yacht charter vacation in the Mediterranean this summer. Whether you want to explore the beauty of Portofino or cruise the Amalfi Coast in style, Italy offers so much to see and do. Islands like Sardinia are an oasis of white sand beaches, while cities such as Venice offer fascinating culture and ancient history. Ideal for every type of charter guest, Italy is set to be one of our most popular yachting destinations for summer 2020 and beyond.
Known for its romantic charm, beloved cuisine, and picture-perfect towns and cities, Italy is one of the Mediterranean’s shining jewels. The mainland forms part of the Italian Peninsula, which sits in the heart of the Mediterranean basin with the Tyrrhenian Sea to the west and the Adriatic Sea to the east. The smaller Ligurian Sea can also be found on the north-western coast.
From family-friendly fun to dazzling party hotspots, Italy provides it all. You can enjoy laid-back cruises or jam-packed island-hopping and finish your yacht charter with enough memories to last a lifetime.
- Unique variety of destinations
Italy has a vast number of different destinations which you can visit within a relatively short itinerary. Spend a day on the beach, followed by a day exploring the city!
- Plenty of marinas
The most popular cruising regions are well-catered to superyachts of all sizes.
- More coastline than anywhere else in western Europe
The country has over 7,200 kilometres of coast, with plenty of islands that create interesting and diverse itineraries.
- International access
Italy is well-connected to the rest of the world, with plenty of international airports which offer direct, intercontinental flights at all times of the year.
- An expansive charter fleet
Whatever type of yacht you’re looking for, you can be sure to find it in Italy. Most of the world’s largest superyachts spend their summers in Italy; but there are plenty of smaller yachts, sailing vessels and sports yachts also available to book.
There are so many destinations in Italy, it can be tricky to know where to start. Let us help to break it down for you.
The Italian Riviera (Liguria, Portofino, Rapallo)
Best for: Scuba-diving, upscale restaurants, cultural landmarks
The Amalfi Coast (Positano, Capri, Sorrento)
Best for: Pretty towns, UNESCO-listed scenery, celebrity-spotting, romantic venues
Sardinia (Sardegna, Porto Cervo, Costa Smeralda)
Best for: Sandy beaches, buzzy venues, luxury retail, swimming and snorkelling
Sicily (Palermo, Marsala)
Best for: Peace and quiet, fascinating history, interesting monuments, unspoilt beaches
East Coast Italy (Apulia, Puglia, Bari)
Best for: Wine tasting, hiking, authentic restaurants
Best for: Art galleries, theatres, ancient architecture
Italy’s west coast is the most popular region for yacht charters, and most of our clients will usually book a week or more in order to fully experience all that this slice of paradise has to offer. You can browse our selection of tailor-made itineraries to help you choose the type of vacation that’s right for you.
You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to superyachts for charter in Italy, with one of the largest and most diverse fleets in the world for you to choose from.
If you’re unsure about whether you want to book a motor yacht or sailing yacht for your Italian getaway, there are a few things you should consider first.
Motor yacht charter in Italy
There is a huge variety of motor yachts for charter in this part of the Mediterranean. You can choose between a small, fast and sporty yacht, or a larger yacht with all the latest features and amenities; or something in between the two.
Sports yachts are ideal for you if you want to zip between destinations quickly. They are sleek, sexy and ideal for speed demons. However, be aware that they consume more fuel and will be less stable at anchor.
Displacement and semi-displacement hulls are slower, but more spacious and far more stable at anchor. They offer ample volume and comfort, and the largest yachts in the international charter fleet are all displacement or semi-displacement.
Sailing yacht charter in Italy
There are plenty of sailing yachts for charter in Italy. Choose between a high-performance ketch, a classic sloop or a catamaran for increased on-board volume.
The country’s west coast is better for experienced sailors who aren’t afraid of wind and swell. The east side is more relaxed, and you can easily incorporate some island-hopping around Croatia into your vacation- just be sure your yacht has a Croatian charter license.
With so many options available, there’s something to suit every type of budget in Italy. The average prices for motor and sailing yacht charter in Italy are as follows;
Motor yacht charter
|Average Length||Average Low Season *||Average High Season *|
|< 82ft (< 25m)||$32,600||$35,667|
|83ft - 99ft (26m - 30m)||$52,366||$57,994|
|100ft - 134ft (31m - 40m)||$92,930||$104,407|
|135ft - 164ft (41m - 50m)||$179,361||$200,138|
|165ft - 199ft (51m - 60m)||$277,481||$306,424|
|200ft - 234ft (61m - 70m)||$464,345||$501,041|
|235ft - 264ft (71m - 80m)||$641,975||$696,736|
|265ft - 294ft (81m- 90m)||$921,383||$958,371|
|295ft + (91m +)||$1,150,114||$1,255,780|
* All prices are quoted per week plus expenses.
Sailing yacht charter
|Average Length||Average Low Season*||Average High Season*|
|< 65ft (< 20m)||$29,005||$34,921|
|66ft - 99ft (21m - 30m)||$28,561||$32,464|
|100ft - 134ft (31m - 40m)||$60,997||$67,770|
|135ft - 164ft (41m - 50m)||$98,538.55||$109,978|
|165ft - 199ft (51m - 60m)||$175,870||$193,187|
|200ft - 230ft (61m - 70m)||$193,187||$235,666|
|230ft + (71m +)||$503,261||$557,375|
* All prices are quoted per week plus expenses.
As with almost all countries in the European Union, Italy charges a percentage VAT on goods and services. This applies to yacht charters as well.
The standard VAT in Italy is 22% of the cost of the yacht charter. However, there are some instances where this can be reduced, dependant on the time spent in international waters during your charter. Speak to your preferred yacht charter broker for more information.
Your start destination depends on where you want to visit in Italy; however, there are some popular yachting hubs where you can usually expect to start or finish a charter. For itineraries on the west coast which include the Amalfi Coast, Capri and Sardinia, your yacht charter will typically begin in Naples.
For yacht charters on the Italian Riviera, most people begin in Genoa or in the South of France. It’s simple enough to begin your superyacht vacation in a neighboring country, and then pop across to Italy; ask your charter broker for more information.
If you’re looking to begin in Sardinia or Sicily, you can- but you may have to cover the cost of repositioning, as it's possible your desired yacht will have to leave its home port to meet you at one of the islands.
For the east coast of Italy, most people choose to begin in Venice or in Bari, which is located in the Puglia (or Apulia region).
Similarly to most Mediterranean destinations, Italy’s charter season runs between April and October. Peak season is in July and August, when the mercury’s at its peak and rainfall and wind levels are at their lowest.
Savvy charterers looking to save some money should consider chartering a yacht in Italy during shoulder season, which is generally between April and May, and September and October. While these months aren’t as lively as peak season, you can still enjoy warm weather, fewer tourists, and less competition for berths.
Climate in Italy
Italy enjoys a typically Mediterranean climate, with minimal rainfall and lots of sunshine during the summer months. The country is not particularly windy; however, the west coast experiences more winds than destinations which lie on the sheltered east coast.
It’s also worth noting that islands such as Sicily, Sardinia, Capri, and Ischia are more affected by wind.
It won’t be necessary to spend every night of your yacht charter in port. However, most of the time, charterers will enjoy spending an evening or two on shore and returning to their charter yacht in the marina afterwards.
Be aware that Italy has some of the highest berthing fees in the Mediterranean, and competition for berths is fierce during peak season.
While exploring Italy by yacht, you will find plenty of marinas that cater to a wide range of superyachts.
One of the most popular start and end points on a yacht charter is Naples. Here, there are two large marinas; Marina di Stabia is a luxury marina close to Naples, which caters to yachts up to 100m, and Marina Molo Luise is a second option which caters to yachts measuring up to 140m.
Further up the coast, Porto Lotti is located in the Italian Riviera and caters to yachts of up to 100m. Over on the east coast, yachts can dock at Darsena Fontanelle, which has a maximum capacity of 60m, and in Venice, yachts can make use of Venice Yacht Pier, which has the capacity to host yachts of up to 120m.
Anchoring in Italy
You will spend most nights at anchor during your yacht charter. It’s worth noting that the waters of the western coast of Italy are deep, and smaller yachts may find it more challenging to find suitable spots for anchoring.
Your yacht crew and your broker will know the most about the best bays and sheltered coves where you can find a peaceful anchorage.
Italy is well-connected to the rest of the world by air. For those starting a yacht charter, the most popular airport on the mainland is Naples International Airport, which operates direct flights to the USA, Russia and the Middle East during peak charter season.
Leonardo DaVinci International Airport is another major airport, which is situated close to Rome and offers more intercontinental flights.
On Sardinia, Cagliari Elmas Airport is an international airport on the southern tip of the island, which is best if you're flying in from abroad. For those making a domestic journey from Italy's mainland, Olbia Costa Smeralda Airport is the best airport to fly into, as you will be well-placed to popular yachting hotspots such as the Costa Smeralda and the Maddalena archipelago.
On Sicily, Palermo has its own international airport for those looking to charter around the island. Meanwhile on the eastern coast of Italy, charterers can fly into Venice Marco Polo Airport or Bari International Airport, both of which operate international routes with regular flights during peak season.
Italy is one of our most popular destinations in the summer months. Therefore, advanced booking is crucial if you want to secure your perfect yacht, in your ideal destination on your preferred dates.
If you leave it too late, the selection of yachts at your disposal will be minimized, and you might not be able to explore the destinations you have your heart set on. Plus, finding dates when everyone in your charter party is available can be tricky; the longer you leave it, the more challenging it will be.
Your broker will also need plenty of time to tailor an itinerary to suit you, and enough time to book ahead for the nights you wish to spend in marinas. We recommened booking up to 3 months in advance to give your broker the optimum time to organise everything down to the last detail.
Italy is an internationally popular travel destination that’s widely accepting of other cultures and customs. The country’s own culture has had an impact across the globe; from its famous artists, such as Leonardo DaVinci, to its iconic fashion houses like Gucci, Versace and Prada.
The country shares borders with France, Switzerland, Slovenia and Austria and is also home to two independent countries inside Italy; the Holy City of Vatican and San Marino, a tiny state in the hills on Italy’s east coast.
While Italy has a very distinct culture, it is very welcoming of all types of visitors. However, be aware that there are some specific laws you will need to adhere to while exploring the country; if you don't, you risk being fined. As well as obvious ones like not drinking in the streets and no swimming in the fountains, you also should be aware that you can't swim in the Blue Grotto, in Capri, and you should wear proper footwear while walking in Cinque Terre- no flip-flops allowed.
Also known as Liguria, the Italian Riviera is characterised by its centuries-old architecture, historic landmarks, and craggy cliffs. The crescent-shaped strip of land occupies the most north-easterly coast, and generally includes destinations such as the pretty, pine-coated island of Elba, and a selection of seaside towns and cities in Tuscany.
Highlights of the Italian Riviera include Cinque Terre, a string of former fishing towns carved into the hills overlooking the sea. Now a popular vacation spot, the towns’ colourful buildings have become an icon of the region. Nearby Portofino shares the same type of brightly-coloured buildings and is a magnet for superyacht charters.
The Amalfi Coast
Located in the Campania region, the Amalfi Coast is one of the most beloved yachting destinations in Italy. Also known as the Sorrentine Peninsula, the coast stretches from Naples to Salerno, covering towns such as Sorrento, Positano, Ravello and Amalfi. Islands including Capri and the Phlegrean archipelago (which covers Ischia, Procida and Vivara) are included in the Amalfi Coast.
The region has limited beaches, but plenty to see and do on shore- you won't ever be bored on the Amalfi Coast! You can walk the manicured gardens of Ravello and admire the breathtaking seascapes, then head over to Positano to browse the majolica shops and dine in pretty venues sitting high in the hills.
The island of Capri is steeped in culture, history and natural beauty. Explore the ancient villas, discover the wonders of the Blue Grotto, have a coffee in Piazza Umberto I and pick up a pair of sandals- they were a favorite of Jackie Kennedy's.
Further north, cruising around the islands of Ischia and Procida will allow you to experience the healing power of thermal spas created through ancient volcanic activity- soak in the natural springs and leave your footprints in the black sand beaches.
Located in the Tyrrhenian sea next to the French island of Corsica, Sardinia is hugely different to the Italian mainland. In contrast to the steep bluffs and deep sapphire sea of the Amalfi Coast and Italian Riviera, Sardinia is bordered by sugary sand beaches and crystal-clear bays.
The north-east coast of the island is the most popular for visiting yachts. For keen sailors, a voyage around La Maddalena archipelago can't be beaten- it's the same location where a number of prestigious regattas are held and it sits on the famous Costa Smeralda, which is well-known for its beaches and fantastic snorkeling opportunities.
Porto Cervo is a luxury-lovers dream, with its high-end shops and designer emporiums close to the main port. Meanwhile, Olbia is the quieter sister of Porto Cervo, where you can while away the day wandering around museums and admiring the architecture.
Sicily is a quieter alternative to the hustle and bustle of other Mediterranean destinations. The city of Palermo is a beguiling mix of old and new, with plenty of Gothic architecture, authentic little ristorantes and wine bars to be found along the palm-tree-lined streets.
The island is rich in historical sites and ancient myth and legend. You can visit the Statue of the Temples in Agrigento or the archaeological park of Neapolis for an insight into the culture, which has been heavily influenced by Greece.
East Coast Italy
Encompassing the region of Puglia (or Apulia), the East Coast of Italy is not the most common yachting destination- but those who visit this area won't be disappointed by the fascinating local heritage of this Adriatic enclave.
In Bari, you'll have the chance to walk the mazelike streets and admire the bleached buildings and the little boats in the charming central harbor. Further up the coast, the countryside rolls out for miles around, with fields of vineyards and olive groves- the region accounts for 40% of Italy's olive oil! The area is also famed for its gastronomy, and you'd be remiss not to sample the burrata and pasta along the East Coast.
A cultural gem of Italy, Venice is a city that is primed for of art and theatre fans. There are countless museums and art galleries for you to explore during your visit, and while you can't cruise your yacht through the city's inner waterways, you can indulge in a gondola ride- and that's far more intimate and romantic!
Nearby, the island of Murano is famed for its production of unique hand-blown glass art, and makes the perfect stop for a day wandering the boutiques and galleries.
Italy is well-positioned for visiting other destinations in the Mediterranean. In fact, many people will choose to incorporate the South of France into their itineraries, since it's close by and offers the chance to experience another side to the Mediterranean. The French Riviera is popular- yachting hotspots include Monaco, Cannes and St Tropez. Off the mainland, the French island of Corsica is perfect for those already chartering in Sardinia.
If you're booking a yacht charter on the East Coast of Italy or in Venice, Croatia is a great destination to add to your itinerary. The variety of islands and the laid-back culture are an alluring contrast to the buzz of Italy, and there are numerous sandy beaches and picturesque cities in this pocket of the East Mediterranean. Be aware that your yacht will need a Croatian charter license to cruise here.
You could even extend your yacht charter to include Greece. Corfu and Kefalonia are a short cruise across the Ionian Sea, and but be aware that your yacht will need to have a Greek charter license to visit this region.
If you are exploring Sicily, you might consider heading further south to the island chain of Malta. This historic archipelago is an exotic alternative to the cosmopolitan glamour of Italy.
Chryst of the Abyss, an 8-ft bronze statue that stands 17m below the surface of the sea in Portofino, creating a popular diving spot.
Fontelina, an iconic beach club set on the rocks in Capri.
Villa Rufolo, a villa with beautiful, manicured gardens overlooking the sea in Ravello.
Il San Pietro di Positano, a pretty hotel with an elegant terrace looking out over the ocean in the cliffs of Positano.
The Faraglioni, a rock formation off the coast of Capri.
Cala Goloritze, in Sardinia, a white-sand beach which is consistently voted one of the prettiest in Europe.
Hotel Splendido, a beautiful hotel in the hills looking out over the bay of Portofino.
The Sunken City of Baiae, a small city that sunk into the sea during Roman times close to Naples.
The Blue Grotto, or Grotto Azzura, a semi-submerged cave in Capri where the light refracts the sunlight from outside, creating a mesmerizing optical illusion.