Where we sail
If there is any pattern to our wide selection of sailing grounds – it is the destinations with the best unspoilt coastal scenery, wildlife opportunities and sailing winds. We are excited by mountain backdrops and natural anchorages, self sufficient local communities, historic ports and islands rather than tourist hotspots.
The list is not exhaustive and it varies from year to year, but here are some of our popular haunts:
Celtic Fringes of Europe:- Cornwall, the Isles of Scilly, West Coast of Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Brittany, Northern Spain and Portugal. The Atlantic edge of Europe has some of the most biologically rich seas in the world - which is good news for spotting dolphins, whales, basking sharks and seabirds without going far. A seafaring culture prevails in the historic ports, and the local communities respect fellow sailors. Cornwall is our home sailing ground and Classic Sailing is developing a small fleet of traditional sailing vessels who base themselves in the Highlands and Outer Hebrides each summer.
Winter Sun in the Northern Hemisphere:- many of our vessels work all year around. The European based vessels tend to migrate South to winter bases like Madeira, Canaries, Cape Verde and the Mediterranean.
Antarctica & Arctic Sailing Expeditions:- Tall ships and traditional boats keep you warm pulling on ropes. Working as ships crew you spend more time outdoors and see more wildlife. Explore Antarctica and follow in the wake of Shackleton to South Georgia. Closer to Europe and deep within the Arctic Circle is the Svalbard Archipelago / Spitsbergen. Our Icelandic sailing partners offer week long expeditions in East Greenland each summer. Trek amongst spectacular mountains and glaciers. Look for polar bears and walrus and learn about global warming.
Iceland, Scandinavia and the Baltic:-We have two Icelandic schooners Hildur and Haukur offering mountain ski-ing in Iceland in Spring and Edge of the Arctic short breaks from Skaljfandi Bay - one of the most reliable whale watching locations in Europe. There are often tall ships races in North Europe. In 2014 and 2015 there are tall ships races in Norway.
Ocean Ambitions and Around the World: We have some fantastic 'rites of passage' voyages from 2-7 weeks that occur every year: Cross the South Atlantic on a tall ship; Sail downwind in the Southern Ocean; cross the equator or follow a classic trade wind route to the Caribbean. Events like tall ships races create other ocean opportunities from time to time like sailing around Cape Horn, or round the world voyages to Australia or New Zealand, but you need to be quick to catch them so sign up for our e -newsletter. See our latest ocean voyages and sail between continents the eco friendly way as part of your GAP year or world travels.
Caribbean for ocean passages & island hopping: Opportunities to actually pull ropes on a traditional boat or tall ship as crew in the Caribbean are rare. If you want an all action blue water adventure exploring some of the more out the way islands in the Caribbean and Central America, then take a look at Tall Ship Lord Nelson. This three masted square rigger if sailing Trans Atlantic to the Caribbean in winter 2014-15 and has a series of month long expeditions and shorter voyages in the Caribbean, including Cuba and through the Panama Canal to Costa Rica on the Pacific side.
Sailing Lugger Grayhound has just come back from an Atlantic Circuit with charter guests including the Caribbean. She will be returning again but not in winter 2014-15. Ring us for early bookings for the next year 2015-16.
Island and Archipelagos:- Isles of Scilly, Outer Hebrides, St Kilda, Channel Islands, Biscay coastal islands like Belle Isle, South Atlantic outposts like Tristan Da Cuhna, St Helena; Trade wind route stops like Canaries, Madeira, Azores or Cape Verde. Wildlife rich destinations like the Falklands or one off voyages to South Orkney Islands in the Weddell Sea where only British Antarctic Survey staff ever get to visit.
Skippers with Local Knowledge
New destinations are always exciting but to have things pointed out to you by people with local knowledge really brings them alive. Our vessels do roam far and wide but each have special locations they have become expert in.
Our skippers usually know where to barter for fresh crab off fishing boats, and can tell you about the wildlife you see, local history and landscapes. Ashore they can guide you to the best place to watch the sunset, spy on seals or help you to choose between splendid solitude or a pub with local character!
Love Trekking? Try a floating base as your 'Bothy'
If you enjoy trekking holidays then one of our sailing and walking voyages might be the next thing to try. If you have never sailed then don't worry as full training is given so you can participate in the sailing. If you are not sure if you will enjoy the combination then maybe try a 3 day sailing and walking voyage in Cornwall or perhaps a Scotland short break.
Some of the day walks we enjoy in Cape Verde, Madiera, Greenland or South Georgia in Antarctica are as spectacular and exceptional as anything you would find in a worldwide trekking brochure. If you don't believe us then just look at the photos. The majority of our big walks are led by a member of the crew or a specialist wildlife guide.
If you can’t find one of these destinations on our current sailing schedules then give us a ring and we can tell what is in the pipeline. It also helps us to know where our customers want to go next.
Not sure what is suitable for you?
Call a Skipper 01872 58 00 22 or send us a question on the enquiry form below