Okay, so, we're all familiar with the needle rock, right? The giant spire-like one near the center of the map with the big hole you can sail your ship through. Got it? Good.
We're also familiar with the weird orb featured in the cursed sails/forsaken shores trailer, yeah? Cool.
Now, Imagine your crew somehow comes into possession of one of those orbs, possibly featuring an ancient Amazonian looking temple or sunken city, something of that sort. As you approach the needle rock with the item on your ship, a portal manifests within the gap. You sail your ship through and you're transported to the "instanced dungeon" where you partake in a raid-like quest for "loot/cosmetics gear/rep/whatever." I feel like it only makes sense to instance it off as otherwise you'd have to leave your ship sitting alone for an extensive amount of time, and forcing someone to play lookout for an hour while the rest of you are exploring an awesome, ancient jungle temple seems lame.
For anyone concerned about "being instanced away to another area" being counterproductive to the pvp aspects of the game, there would still be an element of pvp/risk involved in that in order to pass through the portal, your ship must have the "key item/orb/thingie" onboard. Other ships could try to blockade the pass in an effort to steal it from you and go on the quest themselves. You'd have to be able to capably defend your ship as you pass through, or make a blockade runner style mad dash for the portal. Anyone passing through it without the item would suffer red-sea like damage.
I've always been a fan of the "portal theory" when it comes to sci-fi. Stargate is a prime example of how having a "magical" portal to "wherever" essentially gives a writer/developer carte blanche to do whatever they like when it comes to implementing new stories/content. It's a bit lazy, sure, but it can be implemented properly if it's not abused. Perhaps epic, grandiose voyages could be handled this way.
© Post "Just a crazy idea for implementation of future content." for game Sea of Thieves.
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