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Speedboat on Sydney Harbour and a glass of Champagne
Photograph: Sander Dalhuisen

This cruise may be the most luxe way to experience the greatest harbour in the world

Celebrate an intimate moment in incredible style with a private Sydney Luxury Cruise

By Time Out in association with Sydney Luxury Cruise

Maybe it’s the boat. The MV Bel is a 28-foot masterpiece, hand built in Sydney to resemble a Venetian-style motor cruiser – on board, you can very easily imagine that you’re navigating the Lido during the 1950s, like the talented Mr Ripley. Or maybe it’s the skipper, who’s both a sure hand at the tiller and a welcoming and knowledgeable guide. Then of course there’s the location: arguably the most stunning harbour in the world. 

For all these reasons and more, a Sydney Harbour cruise with Sydney Luxury Cruise is an experience quite unlike any other trip you can take on this storied stretch of water. And it’s the perfect way for couples or small groups to celebrate a special occasion. Is it your significant other’s milestone birthday? Or do you need a great context in which to pop the question? It’s hard to imagine a better way to do it than onboard the MV Bel. 

The Sydney Luxury Cruise crew are offering a range of bespoke, carbon-neutral cruises, outlined below. With a passenger limit of just four, this is the ideal cruise for an era of social distancing. And with past celebrity passengers including Michael Bublé and Tommy Hilfiger, you know you’re in for the five-star treatment. 

Cruise in impeccable style

Duration: 2 hours
Price: $125-$249pp

See the colours of sunset filtered through the Harbour Bridge, Opera House and the city skyline while enjoying a bottle of sparkling white. Enjoy on-board Wi-Fi as well as your captain’s informed commentary. You can depart from Circular Quay, Darling Harbour, Lavender Bay or Woolwich (other pickup locations available on request), and you’re permitted to bring additional drinks and food. Your captain is happy to stop at vantage points on the way for photos. 

Duration: 3.5 hours
Price: $245-$399pp

This experience includes a one-hour harbour cruise followed by a two-and-a-half-hour picnic, curated by picnic specialists Graze and Gaze. Join the MV Bel at one of a number of pickup points, where one bottle of sparkling wine per couple will be waiting. The on-board iPad plays your choice of music on Spotify as you enjoy the sights. Following the cruise you’ll be dropped at Lavender Bay Jetty or Royal Botanic Gardens and the host of the picnic will be waiting for you at the wharf to take you to the picnic setup. Find a grazing board and picnic table complete with flowers, cushions and a soft rug. Graze and Gaze will deliver, set up, style and pack down the picnic.


Duration: 3.5 hours
Price: $249-$349pp

This experience combines a one-and-a-half-hour cruise of Sydney Harbour and a two-hour lunch or dinner at China Doll restaurant. Join the vessel at the location of your choice and crack open a complimentary bottle of sparkling wine. Take in the unforgettable sights of Sydney Harbour to the soundtrack of your choice, then arrive at the historic Finger Wharf in Woolloomooloo and settle in at China Doll, an award-winning restaurant with a constantly evolving menu fusing Chinese, Japanese and South East Asian cuisines. Your two-hour dinner or lunch includes a cocktail on arrival, banquet, and your choice of wine by the glass.

Duration: 1.5 hours
Price: $99-$199 for up to four people

This one is a must-do whether you’re a local or it’s your first time in Emerald City. Take in spectacular sights on a 90-minute luxury cruise traversing world-renowned landmarks including the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge. You can marvel at the waterfront real estate and picturesque bays while learning about the history of each location – the skipper will stop for photographs at vantage points along the way, and there’s a complimentary bottle of sparkling wine on board for each couple. If you’re bringing your own food and BYO beverages then plates, glasses and cutlery are supplied at no extra charge, along with Spotify on the iPad.

Feeling inspired?

Sydney Harbour Cruise offers an unforgettable cruising experience for that special occasion. You can book any of the above experiences, or create a custom cruise to suit your needs. Contact them directly with your bespoke inquiry

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