Star Clipper carries two sports teams of two staffers each, one team for sports activities aboard, ashore and atop the water, the other for the wonders found beneath it. Since Star Clipper has no gym, the open decks serve as venues for exercise and fitness activities. Despite all the open deck space there is no single open stretch forming an unbroken circle around the ship, so jogging is off the agenda as a workout option. There are daily morning gymnastics and aerobics classes conducted on deck and the once-a-day routine of raising the sails can provide a surprisingly decent workout as well. Also on a nearly daily basis, there is the experience of supervised mast-climbing -- up to the first yardarm -- from which perspective one is afforded a magnificent view of ship and sea and islands in reward for completing the scramble up the ratlines. Waterskiing, small sailboat sailing and banana boat rides are also offered, either around the ship's anchorage or from the beach at those times when the ship is anchored in more crowded harbors.
The dive operation is extensive, with daily guided dive and snorkel trips conducted by Zodiac inflatables right from the ship's gangway. The onboard divemasters also teach diving, offering one-day "Discover Scuba" courses which allow non-divers to try out the sport that Jacques built (Cousteau, that is), complete courses for those wishing to get full Open Water certifications (requires two one-week trips back to back), and advanced-level ratings for those who already have Open Water certifications. There are a few caveats for both experienced and neophyte divers considering diving in the Star Clipper program. First of all, the ship uses European steel tanks, much heavier than the aluminum tanks Americans are used to. These are difficult to lug around above water, and more so because the dive gear storage area is on the very top deck, requiring carrying one's gear a sizeable distance, over steep ladders. Additionally, air pressure gauges read in "Bar" (the European standard), rather than our more commonplace "PSI." This will take getting used to for capable American divers, and those Americans who get certified aboard Star Clipper will have an adjustment process to go through once they return to the United States. Finally, unlike other cruise lines which have onboard dive operations -- Windstar, for one -- where, at change of dive staff contract, the outgoing dive team overlaps the incoming team by a week or two to introduce them to the itinerary and dive sites, Star Clipper did not do so, and, on our cruise, the staff struggled with unfamiliarity with the region.
There are two small onboard pools and plenty of lounge chairs. One nice attribute is that there are portholes in the bottoms of both pools, which make a nice design accent for the ship's areas beneath them, providing views of either the water's soft aquamarine hues, or flailing legs therein.
As there is no space for a fitness facility, neither is there room for a spa. But Star Clipper does include a masseuse in its crew complement, although the only space for her to ply her trade is on the very top deck under a small, stretched canopy, but basically in a space open to the public, which does present a problem for those with privacy issues.