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Romantic sailing getaways, celebrity style

By Susannah Palk for CNN
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Mainsail explores some of the world's most romantic sailing spots, popular with celebs
  • For glitz and glamour head to the Med, like Kate Moss
  • For lovers looking for isolation follow Prince William's lead and head to the Seychelles
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(CNN) -- Supermodel Kate Moss is no stranger to luxury -- so when the newly married Moss recently departed on her honeymoon, it was only fitting she did it in style: superyacht style.

Sailing aboard the 206-foot superyacht "Lionheart," Moss and new husband Jamie Hince have spent the last two weeks exploring the Mediterranean, dropping anchor in some of the most glitzy port towns, including Portofino, and Cannes.

But Moss and Hince are just the latest in a long line of celebrity lovers who have set sail in order to discover exotic and romantic locations.

Below, we check out some of the most romantic and celebrity-laden sailing hotspots from around the world.

Western Mediterranean

Glamour, glitz and sun-drenched charm -- the Western Mediterranean has it all.

Dotted with some of the world's most exclusive port towns, including St. Tropez, Cannes, Monaco, Portofino and San Remo -- this is where Europe's wealthy come to play.

A sailor's haven, glittering port towns give way to sheltered beaches, soaring cliffs and chic fishing villages. The Cote d'Azur oozes French sophistication, while the dramatic beauty of the Italian Riviera has no rival.

This is not a holiday for shy romantics seeking seclusion -- but for those wanting red-carpet romance, the Med is the only place to head.

The Seychelles

An archipelago of 115 pristine islands dotting the Indian Ocean, the Seychelles is paradise personified. Boasting ribbons of exquisite white sands leading into crystal-clear waters, the island chain is a beach junkie's dream.

Famous for its chilled and tranquil atmosphere, the Seychelles gained extra bling status this year when royal newlyweds Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, spent their honeymoon here.

Lying 1,600 km off the east coast of Africa, the Seychelles are best discovered by sea. Lying outside the cyclone belt, the islands' calm blue waters are perfect for sailing year round.

The island of Mahe, located in the northeastern part of the chain, is home to the main port, and the coral atoll of Aldabra -- the largest raised coral atoll on Earth and a UNESCO World Heritage Site -- is alone worth the trip.

French Polynesia

Mother Nature was in a generous mood when she created the islands of French Polynesia.

Playground of the rich and famous, Sweden's Princess Victoria and husband Daniel Westling have honeymooned here, as well as Hollywood A-lister Nicole Kidman and husband Keith Urban.

Consisting of 118 islands and atolls spread across an area the size of Western Europe, its dramatic landscape -- the exotic remnants of an ancient chain of volcanoes -- is almost impossible to believe.

Home to reef-lined islands, tranquil azure lagoons, warm emerald waters and white coral-sand beaches, who wouldn't want a slice of the South Pacific dream?

The most famous and largest island in the chain, Tahiti, known as "the Queen of the Pacific," is the perfect starting point, with the islands of Bora Bora and Moorea a must for those wanting a taste of celebrity chic.

The Bahamas

Almost as famous for its celebrity patronage as its breathtaking beauty, the Bahamas consist of 700 stunning islands.

It was here that hot-blooded Spanish actors and Oscar-winning power couple Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem tied the knot last year.

One of the best sailing destinations for novices and experts alike, the Bahamas have enticed sailors for centuries, including Christopher Columbus, who sailed ashore in 1492, his first foothold in the "New World."

Not only do the islands boast picture-postcard beaches, coral-fringed islands, translucent waters and endless sunshine, the "tax-light" islands have a distinctly ritzy feel.

Be sure to pack the platinum cards and wads of cash if you plan to drop anchor at Paradise Island or Nassau -- the nightlife, casinos and duty-free shopping are sure to burn a hole through even the most well-lined pocket.

The Maldives

Set in the middle of the Indian Ocean and crossing the equator in two neat rows lie the idyllic atolls of the Maldives.

More than 1,100 coral islands formed around 26 circular atolls make for a breathtaking sight and the remote locale is perfect for publicity-shy celebs wanting to avoid prying paparazzi.

Not only have Beyonce and Jay-Z been spotted sailing around the islands on a private yacht but actors Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes also spent their honeymoon here in 2006 ... and it's easy to see why.

Famous for its cobalt blue waters and exquisite reef lagoons, this string of islands is a secluded and jaw-droppingly beautiful setting for any romantic couple.

The vibrant-colored reefs are not only home to an amazing array of sea-life, but protect the islands from the wind and waves of the vast ocean.