There is magic in it, Herman Melville wrote of the sea, in 1851, and as the following pages affirm, that is still emphatically the case. This years swimsuit extravaganza cruises the Caribbean Sea and the Indian Ocean, with frequent stops ashore to sample the lush life that goes with benevolent sun, sparkling waters and alluring attire.
First comes a jaunt on Club Med 1 as it sails the Lesser Antilles of the Caribbean. The five-masted ship caters to the sports-minded and offers its passengers a variety of activities ranging from scuba diving to water-skiing to skeet-shooting. For more on Club Med 1, read the lively log of one sunshine sailor (page 134).
For a different kind of voyage, in a different part of the world, we packed our swimsuits, booked passage on the catamaran M/V Spice Islander and cruised to ports of call among the 13,677 islands of Indonesia.
There were stops at the picturesque isles of Lombok, Komodo, Sawu and, of course, the legendary Bali, where a culturally curious writer found unexpected adventure (page 142).
If you really want to get away from it all and do it on your own terms, charter a boat, as we did, and chart a course through the Caicos Islands, first discovered by Columbus in 1492 and still barely discovered by developers. Float free and dive deep in the crystalline waters, which lie but an hour and a half from Miami.
Even unregenerate landlubbers, of course, can enjoy the scenery afloat. To paraphrase a somewhat more contemporary artist than Melville, namely Frankie Ford, "Won't you let us take you on a sea cruise? Oooh-wee. Oooh-wee baby, oooh-wee."
Ahoy, and enjoy.
It is immediately clear that the Club Med 1 is no ordinary cruise snip. For one thing, it has sails. Seven of them. And when they are unfurled—by computer, natch—one can feel the powerful tug of the wind. At 617 feet, Club Med 1 is the largest sailing ship of its kind. It carries 386 passengers—usually a wide array of international types—and provides plenty of space for each one. And with its island-a-day itinerary (the selected ports vary with the season), Club Med 1 offers a bounty of beautiful settings for picture taking—not the least of which, as we discovered, was the ship herself.
ELLE MACPHERSON CASTS HER CARES TO THE WIND, IN A BIKINI BY LISA LOMAS FOR THE EXPRESS ($40) AND A ROBE BY MONIKA TILLEY ($120)