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If you have a need for speed, then owning a go-fast, high-performance boat might be for you. Also sometimes referred to as "Cigarette Boats", high-performance or racing vessels are often very sleek with extremely powerful engines. High-performance boats can be powered with high-horsepower inboards, multiple outboard configurations, or stern drive engines that can reach speeds in the hundreds of miles per hour. One attribute often seen on high-performance boats is a deep-v hull that helps it cut through waves easily and maintain its high speed. The bow is often very narrow and closed so that it can maintain its performance. Any guests on board generally sit in the cockpit and near the helm.

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There are many used high-performance boats on the market today from builders like Cigarette, Fountain, Formula, Nor-tech and others that vary in size, capability, condition, and of course, price. If you are considering purchasing a used racing boat or used high-performance boat, it makes sense to employ the services of an experienced, professional yacht broker. The team at United has years of experience helping customers find the perfect boat and it costs you nothing. Let our team of brokers negotiate on your behalf when it comes to the purchase of your high-performance boat for sale.

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EUR 124,950,000† (EU VAT paid)

  • Length: 90.1m (295.5ft)
  • 14 guests in 7 cabins
  • Built: 2010 (refitted 2024), Lurssen-Werft, Germany

high speed motor yacht for sale

O'PTASIA

EUR 89,999,000

  • Length: 85m (278.8ft)
  • 23 guests in 10 cabins
  • Built: 2018, Golden Yachts, Greece

high speed motor yacht for sale

EUR 79,750,000† (EU VAT paid)

  • Length: 80m (262.5ft)
  • 18 guests in 9 cabins
  • Built: 2007, Oceanco, The Netherlands

high speed motor yacht for sale

PROJECT 825

Price on application

  • Length: 75.8m (248.6ft)
  • 12 guests in 6 cabins
  • Built: 2025, Feadship, Royal Van Lent, The Netherlands

high speed motor yacht for sale

EUR 55,000,000† (EU VAT paid)

  • Length: 70.6m (231.6ft)
  • 14 guests in 6 cabins
  • Built: 2011, Proteksan Turquoise, Turkey

high speed motor yacht for sale

EUR 24,800,000 (EU VAT paid)

  • Length: 70.6m (231.4ft)
  • Built: 2002 (refitted 2022), Royal Denship, Denmark

high speed motor yacht for sale

EUR 49,500,000†

  • Length: 65m (213.3ft)
  • Built: 2011 (refurbished 2021), Benetti, Italy

high speed motor yacht for sale

EUR 59,750,000

  • Length: 63m (206.7ft)
  • 16 guests in 7 cabins
  • Built: 2019 (refitted 2022), Benetti, Italy

high speed motor yacht for sale

EUR 39,500,000†

  • Length: 62.3m (204.4ft)
  • 18 guests in 7 cabins
  • Built: 2000 (refitted 2022), Feadship, Royal Van Lent, The Netherlands

high speed motor yacht for sale

EUR 77,500,000

  • Length: 60.1m (197.1ft)
  • Built: 2021, Amels, The Netherlands

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high speed motor yacht for sale

Burgess has the world's largest and most prestigious fleet of luxury motor superyachts for sale. From high performance yachts to comfortable displacement cruisers, luxurious expedition yachts and more. New to yachting? Discover a holiday like no other with our eminent collection of superyachts for charter.

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High-speed motor yacht

91 yachts match you search criteria.

Pershing 90

  • 2006 - 2009
  • Length 27.42 m
  • Beam 6.23 m
  • Draft 1.65 m

Overmarine Mangusta 72

  • Length 22.23 m
  • Beam 5.60 m
  • Draft 1.15 m

Pershing 62

  • Length 18.94 m
  • Beam 4.80 m
  • Draft 1.43 m

Formula 430 Super Sport Crossover

  • Length 13.10 m
  • Beam 3.70 m
  • Draft 1.10 m

Pershing 9X

  • Length 28.09 m

Pershing 72

  • 2010 - 2014
  • Length 22.26 m
  • Beam 5.50 m
  • Draft 1.45 m

AB Yachts 116

  • Length 36.20 m
  • Beam 7.50 m
  • Draft 1.20 m

Palmer Johnson 150 SportYacht

  • Length 45.70 m
  • Beam 8.40 m
  • Draft 1.77 m

Pershing 5X

  • Length 16.51 m
  • Beam 4.38 m
  • Draft 1.35 m

Sunseeker Mustique 42

  • Length 25.00 m
  • Beam 6.03 m

Pershing 64

  • 2008 - 2015
  • Length 20.04 m
  • Beam 5.00 m
  • Draft 1.32 m

AB Yachts 68

  • Length 20.65 m
  • Beam 4.95 m

AB Yachts 100

  • Length 30.50 m
  • Beam 6.80 m
  • Draft 1.30 m

Dalla Pietà 58 HT

  • Length 16.67 m
  • Draft 1.18 m

Dalla Pietà 72 HT

  • Length 23.02 m
  • Beam 5.81 m
  • Draft 1.89 m

Dalla Pietà 80 HT

  • Length 26.43 m
  • Beam 6.37 m
  • Draft 2.00 m

Evo Yachts Deauville 76

  • Length 23.03 m
  • Beam 5.52 m
  • Draft 1.82 m

OTAM Millennium 45

  • Length 15.25 m
  • Beam 4.12 m
  • Draft 1.07 m

Overmarine Mangusta 80

  • Length 25.07 m
  • Beam 5.90 m

Paritetboat Looker 440 GB

  • Draft 1.00 m

Pershing 82

  • Length 24.98 m
  • Draft 1.40 m

Pershing 80

  • Length 24.50 m

Hunton XRS 55

  • Length 16.76 m
  • Beam 4.07 m

AB Yachts 58

  • Length 17.70 m
  • Beam 4.55 m
  • Draft 0.90 m

Pershing 7X

  • Length 21.11 m
  • Beam 5.35 m
  • Draft 1.52 m

Sunreef 40 Open Power

  • Length 12.75 m
  • Beam 5.20 m
  • Draft 0.70 m

AB Yachts 78

  • Length 23.75 m
  • Beam 5.45 m

Art of Kinetik Antagonist

  • Length 11.40 m
  • Beam 3.60 m

Art of Kinetik Hedonist Open

  • Length 19.00 m
  • Beam 5.30 m
  • Draft 0.95 m

Art of Kinetik Hedonist Convertible

  • Length 20.00 m
  • Beam 6.00 m

Art of Kinetik Hedonist

  • 2007 - 2017
  • Beam 5.28 m

Baia One Hundred

  • Length 31.00 m
  • Beam 7.34 m

Canados Gladiator 428

  • Length 13.40 m
  • Beam 4.19 m
  • Draft 1.05 m

Cigarette 49' Grandsport

  • 2016 - 2017
  • Length 14.94 m
  • Beam 3.05 m

Dalla Pietà 62 Fly

  • Length 18.51 m
  • Beam 4.94 m
  • Draft 1.41 m

Filippetti S75

  • Length 23.85 m
  • Beam 5.32 m
  • Draft 1.19 m

Filippetti 70 Daemon

  • 2013 - 2017
  • Length 22.00 m
  • Beam 5.43 m

Filippetti 80 Daemon

  • Length 25.90 m
  • Beam 5.75 m

Magnum 70

  • Length 21.33 m
  • Beam 5.18 m
  • Draft 1.22 m
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Fast yachts for sale: speed demons and dashing dayboats

Powerful, showy and thrilling, these boats are all about getting places – at speed. Perfect for short day cruises, weekends away or just opening the throttles at sea for the sheer joy of it. The era of austerity and rocketing fuel prices may have dampened the ardour of some for these speed demons, but with their sleek, sporty looks and unabashed power they still hold immense appeal. Moreover, these kind of yachts are often ground-breakers, whether it be hull design, build technology, new materials or fuel efficiency, so the fuel bill may not be as high as you fear.

And while top speeds can be impressive, they are more likely to be reserved for special occasions. More important for normal operation is performance at cruising power and range, so they really come into their own as dayboats and weekenders. Take your pick from this powerful pack, and start planning your Friday getaway…

Mistral 55 | 52 knots/47 knots

When a yacht takes the name of a strong wind, you can guess that her performance is going to be promising and this Pershing 115 does not disappoint, delivering a blistering 52 knots thanks to 12,500hp from twin Codag MTU engines and triple waterjets. She cruises at a no less impressive 47 knots, and comes with oodles of Italian style courtesy of Fulvio de Simoni , who was responsible for her naval architecture, styling and interior.

Mirage | 50 knots/45 knots

One of the fastest luxury yachts in the world, the 30 metre Mirage tops out at 50 knots thanks to her three 2,430 hp MTU engines coupled with Arneson drives. She is fleet of looks too with an immense glass windshield that flows back to the open deck space, a sleek black hull and low-riding superstructure, with a flybridge that melds into the yacht’s lines. Launched in 2010, she is the second Baia 100 to be built and accommodates up to 10 guests in suitably slick style.

Shooting Star | 48 knots-plus/40 knots

This 38 metre carbon flyer packs a punch with her 48 knot speed, but that’s only from the standard configuration of twin 16 cylinder MTU engines. With space for 20 cylinder engines, her innovative hull has been tank-tested all the way up to 65 knots. Combined with an ultra-light, pared-back Scandinavian style, acres of glass and tip-top technology, Shooting Star is one fast lady.

Daloli | 54 knots-plus/37 knots

Built by Heesen for the Sultan of Brunei in 1995, Daloli (ex- AA Absolute ) has some superlatives to her name. Her 16 cylinder MTU engines are boosted by triple waterjets and can push her to a no-holds-barred 54 knots, while at a cracking cruising speed of 37 knots she has a range of 1,000 nautical miles. Performance is matched by an ultra-modern interior, of course.

AB 116 | 50 knots/44 knots

Speed is obviously a priority when a yacht such built using the light, strong materials and technology developed for the aerospace industry, but it is not the sole raison d’etre of the AB 116 , for these innovations also eliminate vibrations, making the ride smooth even at 50 knots. Power comes from triple 2,400hp MTUs linked to water-jet drives.

Moon Goddess | 53 knots/44 knots

Styled by Espen Øino and built by Danish Yachts in 2006 for the owner of Princess Mariana , Moon Goddess  - now listed for sale with Burgess - was in many respects the predecessor of Shooting Star. The carbon fibre open sports yacht is light and manoeuvrable, with 16 cylinder MTU diesels driving twin water jets for speeds of up to 53 knots.

Ermis² | 55 knots/45 knots

The need for speed prescribed this unique New Zealand-built 37 metre superyacht’s power systems, design and construction – a whole new class of ultra-light technology. She was built specifically for getting to weekend destinations fast, and that means faster than a Force 10 wind at her 55 knot top speed. She also copes with any seas and with her extended ocean range of 2,300 nautical miles at 30 knots, the world could be your oyster almost every weekend. Ermis2 is now listed for sale with Ocean Independence.

One More Toy | 42 knots/35 knots

One of a kind, One More Toy is the only Pershing Pininfarina Limited Edition in the world, and with those Italian car designer credentials her styling is appropriately reminiscent of fast cars, right down to the Ferrari red leather interiors and Ferrari Grigio Silverstone paint job. With throttles open she tops 42 knots and cruises at a cracking 35.

And if you are looking for speed without fuel consumption, here’s a super sailer that would leave the average superyacht in its wake.

Swift | 30 knots under sail

The world’s fastest sailing catamaran – formerly known as Orange and more recently Gitana 13 – has been converted into a fast cruiser that is still capable of 30 knots under sail. She has set quite a precedent for gobbling up nautical miles – taking 43 days to sail New York to San Francisco, 11 days from San Francisco to Yokohama and 41 days from Hong Kong to London. Maybe a bit more than a weekender, but still an exhilarating ride without regard for the price of fuel.

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We create sophisticated, private settings for you to savor life moments with your family and friends.  Rich in space and light, our yachts provide the perfect atmosphere for spending quality time on board.

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By combining fine materials, air, space, and light, we create yachts that embody a dignified expression of luxury.

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Since 1989, PRESTIGE has perfected and reinvented its savoir-faire in the industrial construction of motor yachts. With multiple decades of experience, PRESTIGE yachts are the jewel of French and Italian design and industrial production, combining  multiple talents with a single ambition: to achieve excellence.

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At PRESTIGE, the Art de Vivre is much more than a promise.  It is a passion shared by the entire team and by owners throughout the world.  Exclusivity and personalization are at the heart of our construction process to offer you a unique escape from the everyday. 

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PRESTIGE offers dedicated, personalized service to customers throughout the life of their yachts, enabling them to truly savor the PRESTIGE Art de Vivre .

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A look at the splashiest yachts at the palm beach international boat show.

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Exterior of boat fans at the show.

Spectacular multi-million dollar yachts — check! Balmy, waterfront location — check! Family-friendly exhibitions and fun — check!

Then it must be the 42nd annual Palm Beach International Boat Show, which cruised into West Palm Beach this week. The city’s waterfront Downtown was transformed into a yachters’ haven, filled with ultra-luxurious yachts and cruisers and a seemingly endless range of yachting-inspired activities.

This year some 800 boats and yachts participated in the show, which is expected to lure over 55,000 total visitors along with 600 brands. In total, the four-day show is anticipated to pump over $1 billion into the economy of the Palm Beach area, which has seen both its population and popularity surge since the pandemic.

Exterior of a hot tub on a boat.

“Beyond its economic significance and standing in the industry, the Palm Beach International Boat Show holds a special place in the hearts of local residents, revered as one of the region’s must-attend events,” said Alyssa Freeman, executive director of the Marine Industries Association of Palm Beach County (MIAPBC).

The show supports a series of satellite events such as the Winward VIP Club, with an open bar, gourmet dining and special pop-up activations. The Super Yacht Show Palm Beach at Palm Harbor was where the show’s most glamorous — and truly gargantuan — superyachts are on display. At the AquaZone, which is presented by Nautical Ventures, guests can enjoy a “show within a show” via an interactive experience featuring a wide range of water sports and cutting-edge, marine-related products.

“The Palm Beach International Boat Show holds a special place in the hearts of local residents.”

As always, the Show delivers an exceptional array of culinary experiences, including world-class cocktails provided by sponsors such as Goslings Rum. The Show also includes a series of education seminars that appeal to visitors of all ages, including the Hook the Future’s Kids Fishing Clinics with Captain Don Dingman, who demonstrates various fishing techniques while showcasing a wide variety of fish species. Participants get a free Hook the Future x Carolina Skiff rod and reel combo.

But it’s really all about the boats. Here are five of the most unique, intriguing and eye-popping vessels on display.

The lucky charm

Interior of a room on the Talisman C.

Few yachts at this year’s show are as jaw-dropping as Talisman C. Designed by London-based interiors aces H2 and manufactured by Turkish master yacht-builders Proteksan Turquoise, it’s currently listed for sale by British yachting firm Burgess for a cool $59.7 55 million. Spanning just over 231 feet long, it features six full-sized cabins that can sleep up to 14 guests, including a sprawling owner’s suite with its king-size bed and crystal chandelier, massive walk-in closet and grand library (which can easily be converted into an additional cabin).

Upstairs, the yacht’s sundeck features a large glass-encased Jacuzzi, sun beds and dining area under the sun or stars. A chic swim platform allows for easy access to the azure seas while the nearby aft deck area includes a fully equipped bar with club seating as well as a full-size dining area capped by a glass-threaded chandelier.

The vessel is powered by a pair of 2,447hp Caterpillar diesel engines, which provide a top speed of 18 knots, a cruising speed of 15 knots and a transatlantic range of 7,000 nautical miles.

The emperor

Exterior shot of Nero.

Reaching just under 300 feet in length, the Nero is, without doubt, one of the most eye-catching vessels at the entire Palm Beach show. Although completely contemporarily designed and manufactured, the Nero embodies the look and aesthetic of classic boats from yachting’s golden age during the 1930s. Fully overhauled in 2021, the Nero — which is currently on the market for just under $500,000 per week via Burgess — was designed in the spirit of Corsair, a yacht launched in the 1930s that belonged to legendary Wall Street financier J.P. Morgan.

Inside, it could not be more luxurious. On the top deck is a world-class gym fitted out with equipment by Technogym, while a few steps beyond is a beauty salon, which comes with an in-house beautician and masseuse.

There are six cabins with room for 12 guests — along with an on-board Jacuzzi, pool and waterslide. Throughout, veteran yacht designer Laura Pomponi has updated and upgraded the Nero’s look, introducing a range of new handmade carpets, along with hardwood floors, new sofas and elegant art-works. Pomponi has also lent her hand to Nero’s distinctive 30-foot Corsair custom-built tender that has been refitted so guests can arrive in impeccable style.

The secret agent

Exterior of deck aboard Casino Royale.

As its name suggests, the 236-foot Casino Royale brings a large dose of Bond-like elegance and intrigue to West Palm Beach. Constructed by Italian master shipbuilder Tankoa in 2018 and given a top-to-bottom retrofit in 2022, Casino Royale includes six cabins for 12 passengers and has been awarded a slew of industry accolades for its innovative and forward-thinking technology and aesthetic. Nearly two dozen crewmembers tend to those lucky voyagers, which luxuriate in an on-board circular swimming pool and access the ship via a helicopter port.

The yacht’s primary suite is nothing if not grand, featuring 180-degree views from its king-size bed along with its own study and al fresco terrace with private sunbed and Jacuzzi. There are five additional guest suites — all with their own private baths. Just beyond is an open-air living layout complete with a range of bespoke contemporary furnishings across the boat’s nearly half-dozen passenger decks.

Outside the amenities are just as abundant and include an onboard beach club with a lounge, bar, sauna, terrace and hammam/shower. All are ideal locations to rest and recharge after a workout in the yacht’s wellness center. On the main deck, there’s a nearly 20-foot-long infinity pool, while that helipad can easily convert into a dance floor.

The love boat

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Completely futuristic and totally cool, the 180-foot-long Come Together is the ultimate example of stealth wealth on the high seas. Completed just two years ago by the Dutch firm Amels and currently on the market for a cool $65 million, Come Together features an unmistakable architecturally styled exterior reminiscent of a city-center skyscraper.

The boat can house up to 14 guests and 13 crew members within its unmissable steel hull and an aluminum-clad super structure — all cruising at a top speed of 15.5 knots.

The boat’s expansive master suite is set within its main deck and features sprawling storage space, a dressing room as well as his and hers bathrooms. There are an additional VIP cabin, two double cabins and two further cabins that can operate as twins or doubles. Up top, there’s a fully equipped gym and Jacuzzi — while a set of Jet Skis, water skis and hover-like Seabob watercraft keep the fun going just off deck. Come Together’s unique underwater lighting system also delivers a strong dose of excitement come nighttime and is the perfect way to enjoy an after-hours swim.

Want more? Then don’t forget about the on-board wakeboards, paddleboards and snorkeling equipment. And, when the moment strikes to head from the boat to land, travel could not be easier thanks to an easy-access 30-foot Limo Tender.

The cordial cruiser

Exterior of Hospitality.

The aptly named Hospitality ticks off the right boxes when it comes to superyacht bells and whistles. This twin-engine beauty can house up to 16 passengers along with 11 crew at a maximum cruising speed of 24 knots. Built back in 2011 by Westport Yachts here in the US, Hospitality — which is currently on the market for just under $30 million — underwent a comprehensive retrofit in 2021.

Along with all of the requisite yachting toys — Jet Skis, Seabobs and paddleboards — Hospitality includes a grand private owner’s suite with its own private relaxation balcony, seven cabins along with a relaxation room that can be used as a gym or spa and meticulously designed public spaces across is handful of decks. There’s also a handy tender for quick — or, not so quick — jaunts to the shore for dining and shopping.

Hospitality mostly cruises the Caribbean to New England, making the most of Northern Hemisphere winters.

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Is Serifos the Perfect Greek Island?

A writer’s checklist included ferry service, great beaches and good local restaurants. Add rich history, a welcoming population and proximity to other islands. The mythical cave of the Cyclops was gravy.

A small white church sits atop a rocky promontory. A man is walking up a set of stairs to reach its blue door. Beyond it you can see houses in a town below, the ocean and another island in the distance.

By Danielle Pergament

“I have analysis paralysis,” said my friend Maite, an Argentine who lives in Madrid. Maite is a world traveler but has always been stymied when it comes to Greece. “There are too many islands. How do you decide?”

There are more than 6,000 Greek islands, so it was a fair question — and one that many potential visitors probably ask themselves. Since I had plans to go to Greece, it was also one I wanted an answer to myself.

I started with a process of elimination: Rule out anything with an airport (too crowded) or uninhabited (too empty). Then add ferry access (I don’t have a yacht), lots of beaches, good local restaurants and nice hotels. Plus, a rich history, a welcoming local population, and proximity to other islands (for day trips). Throw in the mythical cave of the Cyclops, and we have a winner. Six thousand became one: Serifos.

Serifos is in the western Cyclades. If you’re looking at a map of the Greek islands, it’s pretty much dead center, lying between Syros, Paros and Milos — but it doesn’t have the name recognition of its neighbors. It’s not enormous, only about 29 square miles — but it has 70 beaches. It was settled in the 7th century B.C., which makes it one of the younger spots in the archipelago. And I’d been told by a Greek friend that it is the perfect, just-discovered-enough place to spend a week. The Platonic ideal of a Greek island.

That’s how I found myself (with my husband and our two children) at the counter of a car rental company in Livadi Port in Serifos, a few steps from where the ferry spat us out.

The gentleman behind the counter handed me a map of the island, which I expected. What I didn’t expect was that as I turned to leave, he stopped me and with a thick black marker, began crossing out roads on the southern and western parts of the island.

“You cannot drive here. It would be a big problem,” he said, wagging a finger at the map.

A big problem because the roads are impassable or a big problem because the roads were perilously close to the mythical throne of the Cyclops, he didn’t specify. So we left the port and, heeding his warning, drove north, into the hills and the island’s main town, Chora.

Calling Chora the capital of Serifos, though true, is misleading. It’s more like a cluster of square, whitewashed houses clinging to the top of a small mountain overlooking the sea. The town is made up of sun-dappled cafes, local bakeries, a few churches, zero streets that can accommodate a car, a ton of views and more steps than you could count in a lifetime. My husband decided he wanted to hike to St. Constantine Church, the lookout above town. My daughter found three boutiques she wanted to explore before dinner. And my son ran off to read the menu at a blue-and-white charmer of a restaurant called Stratos Café . From the moment we stepped foot inside its blindingly white embrace, Chora won us over.

We stayed in a small apartment we had rented on Airbnb, and the next day, we got going right away. There were miles of beaches to explore, we just had to figure out which ones we wanted to go to — and how get to them. I’d asked around and there was one thing everyone mentioned.

“You have to pay attention to the wind,” said Stefanie Kasselakis Kyles, a Greek American whose family is from the island and who has been going there for 40 years. “It’s formative. Everything in Serifos is shaped by the wind — the hills, the trees, the people.”

You want to make sure you’re at the beach that isn’t being battered by gusts. So we followed the advice ofthe locals: If the wind is coming from the north, head south, etc. With a strong breeze coming from the west, we drove to Psili Ammos, a sandy crescent on the east side of the island.

Serifos is hilly and rocky and inhospitable. It is land that has been worn down by millenniums and shaped by the will of the mistral winds. Serifos is wild, a place that seems more connected to its mythology than other, glossier islands. Even 30 years ago, there were no hotels here. To exist in Serifos took grit. But just when you think the land is barren and empty, Serifos rewards you.

Hidden in its mountains are countless pockets of beauty. When we got to Psilli Ammos, the water was clear, shallow and warm, the beach was virtually empty, and the whole area was lined with shady pine trees. After a few hours, we still hadn’t heard a word of English. It was perfect. And when perfection got hot, we made our way to the far end of the beach, to an open-air tavern with a stone floor, where people sat in their swimsuits and ate Greek salads and French fries. This was Manolis Tavern, and as far as I was concerned, I would be delighted to spend the next four days sitting under its straw roof.

But winds change.

The next day, with a slight breeze coming from the north, the gods pushed us toward Koutoulas Beach in the south. Here we did exactly the same thing as the day before. This beach was made more of small stones and had fewer people, but there were still the same pine trees with the inviting shade, the same water the color of a morning sky and temperature of a bathtub, and a different tavern beckoning at the far end. Serifos is Groundhog Day if groundhogs go on vacation.

Honestly, that was fine with me. There’s a certain appeal to doing the same thing every day, at the same place, with the same perfectly grilled sea bream and stein of cold Mythos beer. But I had a job to do, so we decided to see the island from a different perspective: from the water.

Since our family is yacht-less, the only option was to hire one. The next day, we threw caution to the winds and headed to the port, to a 20-foot RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) and Skipper Giannis Gyllis.

“Our mission today is to give you the best day of your vacation,” said Mr. Gyllis, a big man with a white beard. A Greek Ernest Hemingway.

“It’s a really long vacation,” I said. “Don’t let your mouth make promises your boat can’t cash.”

“I see we will have to make this extra special,” he said. “Climb aboard.”

My kids and I did as we were told (my husband had a very ill-timed work meeting back on dry land). Mr. Gyllis helped us on board and offered us drinks. So far, my money was on him.

And we were off.

We zoomed over the water, and Mr. Gyllis’s exceptionally tan assistant Nikos Kottis, turned on the music. For the next hour, it was just us, Taylor Swift, and the wide-open Aegean. Our first stop was Polyaigos, a completely uninhabited island if you don’t count the goats who live there year-round. (“Polyaigos” translates to “many goats.”) Gianni steered us into a massive open cave, punctuated by a circular hole on top.

“It’s called Fanara,” he said.

I had never seen anything like it. My kids, sitting on the bow of the RIB, kept looking back at me as if asking if I could believe my eyes. I could not. It was the Pantheon designed by Poseidon.

Tempting as it was to dive in, the waves were too rough, and Gianni wanted to take us to Kimolos, a neighboring island, and a place called “Blue Water.” This entire sea could be characterized as “blue water.” How much bluer than blue water could Blue Water be? Then we saw it.

“It looks like it’s not real,” my daughter said.

It looked like a chemical spill, like water that had been dyed. Gianni explained that the minerals from the rocks had been falling into the water for years, turning the water a shocking shade of sapphire. I turned to explain it to the kids, but they had already jumped in to explore all that blue up close.

Half an hour later, feeling like the world’s most un-fun mom, I got them out of the water. It was time to go Kimolos and an unlikely gourmet beach tavern called Kyma . An hour — and the best grilled fish of my life — later, we were back in the boat, salty, happy and quiet, heading back to Serifos. Taylor serenaded us the whole way.

On our last evening on the island, my husband and I went to the Serifos Yacht Club , which has no yachts and is not a club. It’s just a really lively, local bar on the water. We were there to have a drink with George Kasselakis, Stefanie’s father and a Serifos expert, who has been living on the island for 40 years.

“When I came here in the 1980s, there was one restaurant,” he said. “The whole island had one house for rent. I was driving one day, and I saw a man with a sign that he was selling his house. So I bought it.”

I asked Mr. Kasselakis how he thought Serifos might change in the coming years.

“Serifos is not Mykonos. That place is a zoo. And Paros is even worse — you have to park 10 miles from where you want to be,” he said. “But Serifos will never lose its character. I don’t think the natives would allow it.”

Follow New York Times Travel on Instagram and sign up for our weekly Travel Dispatch newsletter to get expert tips on traveling smarter and inspiration for your next vacation. Dreaming up a future getaway or just armchair traveling? Check out our 52 Places to Go in 2024 .

Open Up Your World

Considering a trip, or just some armchair traveling here are some ideas..

52 Places:  Why do we travel? For food, culture, adventure, natural beauty? Our 2024 list has all those elements, and more .

The Alaska Highway:  On an epic road trip, a family plots a course from Alaska to the Lower 48, passing through some of Canada’s most spectacular scenery .

Minorca:  Spend 36 hours on this slow-paced Spanish island , which offers a quieter and wilder retreat than its more touristy neighbors.

Japan:  A new high-speed train stop unlocks Kaga, a destination for hot springs, nourishing food and traditional crafts , as an easy-to-reach getaway from Tokyo.

London:  The Victoria and Albert Museum is a treasure trove of art and design. Here’s one besotted visitor’s plan for taking it all in .

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