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Autumn: time for our annual yacht maintenance

By | Core Info

Due to the unpredictable weather in September, a real change from the favourable conditions last year, our sailing season drew to an earlier end with our boats being lifted out of the water for annual yacht maintenance at the end of October.

Queen Anne’s Battery is hosting our boats for this year’s annual yacht maintenance. The overhauls will include rig checks, sail repairs, replacing anodes, engine servicing, gas checks, antifouling and polishing, as well as our usual interior deep cleaning and lifejacket and liferaft servicing. Brand new Almanacs for the new season will also be placed onboard.

Our yachts will be in tip-top condition and available to you for skippered and bareboat charters from April 2020. We are starting to receive enquiries already, so do get in touch to secure your preferred date with a 20% deposit.

News – Autumn 2019

By | Core Info

As our busy 2019 sailing season draws to an end (a little earlier than last year due to the weather), we thought we would update you with our plans for the 2020 sailing season. Below you will find information about our 2020 sailing schedule, gift vouchers (ideal for Christmas!), our efforts to reduce single-use plastics, RYA courses and 10% discount for bareboat charter returning customers

Our 2020 Sailing Experience Schedule 
Dates for 2020 day sails and weekend sails are now listed on our sailing schedule page. Our longer group sailing experiences are scheduled on demand – please request a date and book your place early to avoid disappointment; they were very popular during 2019. You may book your sailing experience directly from our website. As always, we will add more and more dates throughout the season. If you can’t see a suitable date just get in touch and we will do our very best to help you.

Sailing vouchers make great gifts for Christmas
Looking for a special gift for the person who has everything they need? We recommend a Devon Sailing Experiences gift voucher. When your friend, colleague or loved one receives their voucher, they can go to our website and book a day sail or weekend sail at their convenience. An ideal gift that will create long-lasting memories.

Got a sailing voucher? Don’t let it expire!
If you have a voucher for a sailing experience, we recommend that you book your place as soon as possible, as we get very busy during the summer months. You can follow this link to the sailing schedule. Your sailing experience must be booked within 12 months of the purchase date. This date is stated on the covering letter that accompanied the voucher. It is important to bear in mind that as we approach the end of the season (September/October) fewer dates will be available due to weather and sailing conditions, so please give yourself plenty of time to book. 
As always, if you cannot see a suitable date, just get in touch to request one – we will always do our very best to help.

Skippers for 2020
We are sorry to say goodbye to Emmanuel Farrington who will be leaving our team at the end of the season. She will have completed her BSc Marine Biology and Oceanography at Plymouth University and will be off travelling the world. We wish her all the very best and will miss her energy, enthusiasm and expert skippering skills.
Mick Chantler, Trevor Kirkin and Tim Sunderland will continue to skipper our day and weekend sailing experiences. We will also be joined by some new faces next year – details to follow. 

Plastic-free Plymouth
Inspired by PlasticFreePlymouthSound and  SavingTheEarthOneTipAtATime, Devon Sailing Experiences are pledging an attempt to reduce our single-use plastics. As with all habit changes, we are taking it one step at a time. Our first focus is on water bottles. Read about our plan in our blog post, and don’t forget to follow the link to our Facebook page to leave your opinion on our approach (or share your ideas).

RYA Sailing Courses
Devon Sailing Experiences continue to run RYA Start YachtingRYA Competent Crew and RYA Day Skipper (practical) courses. RYA courses are scheduled on demand. You are very welcome to request a date to be added to our schedule, however, we are only able to run a course with a minimum of 3 students. All courses are subject to yacht and instructor availability. 

Bareboat Charter
Our Bavaria 38 will be available for bareboat charter from Mayflower Marina from April 2020. Don’t forget – we offer a 10% discount for all returning customers. A 20% deposit is required to secure a date for you, with the remaining payment being due 4 weeks before you sail. If you would like to request a date, do get in touch.

Terms and Conditions
By booking with Devon Sailing Experiences, you are accepting our Terms and Conditions. Please ensure you have read these before booking. We politely draw your attention to the paragraph regarding cancellation and rescheduling. If you are unsure about any aspect, please feel free to ask.

Follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram
Keep up to date with last-minute availability and stories from our skippers and guests by following us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram. Don’t forget to tag us in any of your own posts; we love to hear about your sailing adventures so if you have any photos you would like to share (or stories to tell) do get in touch.

We look forward to welcoming you to Devon soon.

How we are trying to Reduce our Single-Use Plastics

By | Core Info

Inspired by PlasticFreePlymouthSound, SavingTheEarthOneTipAtATime and GretaThunburg, at Devon Sailing Experiences, we are pledging an attempt to reduce our use of single-use plastics (SUPs).

Habits, no matter how damaging they are, can be hard to break so we are going to take it just one step at a time – after all, one small step is better than no step at all. Our first area of focus is our use of single-use water bottles.

Current use of single-use water bottles

Devon Sailing Experiences provide water (as well as tea, coffee, hot chocolate, juice and squash) to our guests during their time aboard our yachts for a skippered charter or during RYA training courses. We always have a full tank of clean running water aboard our yachts, yet until now, we have still chosen to provide bottled water for our guests. 

Lots of it, too….

For every day-sail (with a maximum of 5 guests plus a skipper) we ensure that there are at least 18 bottles onboard. For every weekend sail (with a maximum of 4 guests plus a skipper) we ensure there are 30 bottles onboard. 

Let us assume that every weekend between April and the end of September, our yacht is carrying out a weekend sailing experience. 26 weekends with 30 SUP bottles a time – that means we give our guests a total of 780 SUP bottles throughout the sailing season. In addition to the bottles, each set is wrapped in – you guessed it – more SUP packaging.

I can’t even begin to visualise what 780 plastic bottles look like – can you? And our small, family-run business is responsible for that huge amount of plastic alone.

Our plan to reduce single-use plastic during 2020

We are not for one minute saying that we will stop using all SUP from now on, but we are going to do our very best to reduce it, starting with our water bottle usage. We spent a long time researching and considering alternatives and asked for advice from a number of online communities. Ideas included water-in-a-box, reusable glass (and plastic) drinks dispensers, as well as the suggestion that guests should just bring their own. In the end, we have decided to ask our guests for their help with one simple step – but first, we would like your opinion.

Would you be happy to bring your own refillable bottles?
We will be asking this question on our Devon Sailing Experiences Facebook page on 30th September and would love to know your views. Do follow the link after this date and let us know your opinion on the matter.

Of course, our water tank will continue to be regularly refreshed – this happens naturally during the busy summer season due to the regular yacht useage. We will continue to ensure that we keep cups and for guests who have forgotten their reusable drinks bottles. We also have to legally provide spare bottles of water on board for emergency use.

Summary

By taking this step:

– Are we encouraging reusing rather than throwing away? Yes.
– Are we cutting down on single-use plastic? Yes.
– Will we continue to review our business and make other small changes to help reduce waste? Yes.

We would like to thank PlasticFreePlymouthSound for raising awareness, SavingTheEarthOneTipAtATime for the fantastic ideas they share in their online community and inspiring us to make one small change for the planet, and of course GretaThunburg who is showing the world great things can be achieved by thinking differently.

We will keep you updated with how it goes and our next steps.

 

Yacht Bewitched to the rescue…

By | Core Info

It was “all hands on deck” for our skipper and crew during a recent 2-day sailing experience. Bewitched, skippered by our experienced instructor Mick Chantler, was involved in the rescue of a stricken craft last week.

At approximately 1230 on Saturday 22nd June, a small 20-22’ day sailing boat was spotted very close to Renny Rocks with its mainsail half hoisted and one of its crew waving both arms frantically to attract attention. Upon closer inspection, it became clear that the vessel was in danger.

Falmouth Coastguard was alerted. Plymouth Inshore Lifeboat was tasked to assist in the rescue.

In the meantime, Mick and his crew were on hand to assist.

The cruising area around Renney Rocks needed to be approached with caution; there was just 4 – 6 meters of water to work with. Upon discovering that the boat was stuck with no propulsion, Mick and his crew managed to stay head-to-wind and float a towline to the vessel on a fender. After some time, the crew of the stricken boat had a line attached.

However, after beginning to carefully tow in the shallow waters, it became apparent that neither vessel was moving. It was clear that the stricken boat had a fouled propeller and was secured to the sea floor, suspected to be a crab pot line. Because of this, they were instructed to cut the tow line.

By this point, the Plymouth Inshore Life Boat had arrived on the scene. This enabled Mick and his crew to recover the towline and get into the safer, deeper water whilst the experts took over.

Our thanks go out to Mick and his crew, all guests of Devon Sailing Experiences, for their professional assistance during the rescue. And as always, thanks to the RNLI, Plymouth Inshore Lifeboat and Falmouth Coastguard.

West country sailing regattas 2019

By | Core Info
Sailing in the west country

Have you ever experienced a west country sailing regatta? If not, you will have missed out on visiting one of our local quaint and historic towns. You will have missed the high-quality street performers and bands scattered throughout the location. You will have missed the fantastic firework display closing the celebrations. And, of course, you will have missed the enjoyment of the sailing.

But don’t worry. For your convenience, we have listed the west country sailing regatta dates below. If you are planning a visit to Devon or Cornwall during the summer of 2019, we really would definitely recommend a visit.

12th – 14th July – Plymouth Regatta
3rd – 10th August – Salcombe Town Regatta
10th – 17th August – Falmouth Sailing Week
18th – 24th August – Fowey Regatta and Carnival
23rd – 31st August – Torbay Royal Regatta
29th – 31st August – Dartmouth Royal Regatta

Hope to see you there!

Devon Sailing Experiences – Newsletter

By | Core Info

Welcome to our Spring 2019 newsletter.

As our sailing season gets underway, we thought that now would be a good time to update you with our plans for 2019.

Our 2019 Sailing Experience Schedule

Dates for 2019 day sails and weekend sails continue to be listed on our sailing schedule page. You can book your sailing experience directly from our website. More dates will be added throughout the season, but as always, if you can’t see a suitable date just get in touch and we will do our very best to help you.

2019 Group Sailing Experiences

Our longer 5-day and 7-day group sailing experiences are added to our sailing schedule on demand. These types of sailing experiences are ideal for those wishing to develop their skills, build miles or enjoy an active holiday.

Our 5-day group sailing experience from 29th July – 2nd August is now FULLY BOOKED. If you would like to request an alternative date, do get in touch. We will do our best to schedule a date for you (subject to availability).

Sailing Experience Gift Vouchers

If you are in possession of a sailing experience gift voucher, you can visit our website to choose and book your sailing date. Your sailing experience must be booked within 12 months of the purchase date. This date is stated on the covering letter that accompanied the voucher. It is important to bear in mind that as we approach the end of the season (September/October) fewer dates will be available due to weather and sailing conditions, so please give yourself plenty of time to book.

As always, if you cannot see a suitable date, just get in touch to request one – we will always do our very best to help.

RYA Sailing Courses

Devon Sailing Experiences continue to run RYA Competent Crew and RYA Day Skipper (practical) courses. RYA courses are scheduled on demand. You are very welcome to request a date to be added to our schedule, however, we are only able to run a course with a minimum of 3 students. All courses are subject to yacht and instructor availability.

Bareboat Charter

We currently have some availability for a bareboat charter aboard our Bavaria 38 in May and July 2019. Our bookings calendar is constantly evolving. Due to the volume of enquiries we receive on a daily basis, we are unable to secure a date without a 20% deposit. If you would like to request a date, do get in touch.

Refurbishment at King Point Marina

The shower block at King Point Marina is currently undergoing refurbishment. As a result, secure temporary shower and toilet facilities have been set up in the car park area. Although this makes the normally high-quality marina look a little unsightly, they offer a good alternative whilst building works are being carried out. Guests are very welcome to use these temporary facilities. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience this may cause in the short term. We will keep you updated on the progress of the work.

Changes in our Terms and Conditions

Our Terms and Conditions have been updated for 2019. These small changes reflect our new business address as well as making information clearer for our guests with regards to cancellation, rescheduling and use of vouchers. By booking with Devon Sailing Experiences, you are accepting our Terms and Conditions. If you are unsure about any aspect, please feel free to ask.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

Throughout the summer months, our sailing schedule is constantly being updated. Every time we add additional dates and sailing opportunities, we send notifications via our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. Make sure you follow us to receive immediate updates including information about last minute availability.

We also love to receive emails and messages about your sailing adventures with Devon Sailing Experiences. If you have any photos you have taken (or stories to tell) from your time aboard one of our yachts, we would like to share them on our social media pages and in our blog posts. We never mention names or dates in our posts, but your photos are great to use alongside our narrative. Please keep in touch and email anything you are happy for us to use.

We look forward to welcoming you to Devon soon.

Devon Sailing Experiences – Newsletter

By | Core Info

The Devon Sailing Experiences team is looking forward to welcoming you aboard for an opportunity to explore the stunning southwest coast in 2019. If you haven’t already booked your adventure for this season, check out our sailing schedule for the latest opportunities or call/email us to check availability for your bareboat charter. As always, we will do our very best to offer you the flexibility you need for a wonderful time out on the water.

In the meantime, here is a reminder about what we have to offer.

Did you receive a sailing gift voucher for Christmas?

If you were lucky enough to receive one of our sailing gift vouchers for Christmas, we hope you were pleased with it.

Dates for our 2019 day sails and weekend sails are now listed on our sailing schedule page. You can now book your sailing experience direct from our website. More dates will be added throughout the season, but as always, if you can’t see a suitable date just get in touch and we will do our very best to help you.

Sailing experiences must be booked within 12 months from the date of purchase. Please bear in mind that as we approach the end of the season (September/October) fewer dates will be available due to weather and sailing conditions.

New Season – New Destinations

If you have previously enjoyed sailing to the popular destinations of Salcombe and Fowey, you may be interested in a longer passage from Plymouth to the Helford River.

The Helford River is a beautiful estuary situated between Falmouth and the Lizard Peninsula  Upon mooring on the Helford River, you are rewarded with a selection of high-quality local pubs including the 300-year-old family run Ferryboat Inn and perfectly positioned Shipwrights Arms.  With easy access to stunning walks along the southwest coast path, you may choose to stay here for a couple of nights to take in the scenery.

As always, your final sailing destination depends on sailing conditions and wind direction, Although your skipper will do his or her best to get you to your preferred destination, their decision based on safety and comfort of your yacht and crew is final.

Meet our new skipper – Emmanuelle Farrington

We are pleased to announce that Emmanuelle Farrington (Em) is joining our team for 2019. Some of you may have already met her. Originally from Vermont in the USA, Em is currently undertaking BSc Marine Biology and Oceanography at Plymouth University and will skipper for Devon Sailing Experiences whilst she continues her studies. With her RYA Yachtmaster Commercial Endorsement and wide-ranging skippering experience, she is a valuable addition to our growing team.

West-country Regattas 2019

3rd – 10th August – Salcombe Town Regatta
10th – 17th August – Falmouth Sailing Week
18th – 24th August – Fowey Regatta and Carnival
23rd – 31st August – Torbay Royal Regatta
29th – 31st August – Dartmouth Royal Regatta

RYA Sailing Courses

We currently have 2 places available on RYA Competent Crew and/or RYA Day Skipper (practical) running Monday 24th – Friday 28th June 2019.

RYA courses are scheduled on demand. You are very welcome to request a date to be added to our schedule, but please bear in mind that we are only able to run a course with a minimum of 3 students. All course dates are subject to yacht and instructor availability. Contact us for more information.

Bareboat Charter

We are currently taking a number of enquiries and bookings for 2019 so if you are thinking about bareboat chartering with us, do get in touch now to check availability. A 20% deposit will secure a date for you. Please note that we cannot hold a date without receiving a deposit. 

Price Changes for 2019

Devon Sailing Experiences has not raised its prices on products since 2014.
We are pleased to announce that there will be no price changes to our Day Sailing Experiences  However, to enable us to keep the price competitive, we are unable to run this experience unless more than 3 guests are booked aboard. Lunch will no longer be provided. If you purchased your experience/voucher before 5th November 2018, your booking confirmation or voucher letter will state that lunch is included. We will honour this commitment and confirm this with your final booking arrangements. Tea, coffee and cold drinks will still be available throughout the day.

There is no change to the price of our Weekend Sailing Experiences  Breakfast and a light lunch will continue to be provided. However, to keep the price competitive, we can only run this experience with 3 or more guests booked to sail.

Up to date information about prices for Exclusive Day Sails (single day booking),Exclusive Day Sails (multi-day booking)5-day Group Sails and 7-day Group Sails can be found by following the links to our website. Please take a look at our comprehensive list detailing what is included under the Additional Information tab on each product page. If in any doubt, just get in touch and ask.

Even though 2019 will be the first year we have needed to increase the prices of our bareboat charters  we are also increasing our returning customer discount from 5% to 10%. This is for bareboat charter only. The new prices are now reflected on our website.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

Our sailing schedule is constantly evolving. Every time we add additional dates and sailing opportunities, we send notifications via our FacebookTwitter and Instagram accounts. Make sure you follow us to receive immediate updates including information about last-minute availability.

Don’t forget that we love to receive emails and messages about your sailing adventures with Devon Sailing Experiences. If you have any photos you have taken (or stories to tell) from your time aboard one of our yachts, we would like to share them on our social media pages and in our blog posts. We never mention names or dates in our posts, but your photos are great to use alongside our narrative. Please keep in touch and email anything you are happy for us to use.

We look forward to welcoming you to Devon in 2019.

Reasons to give the gift of sailing for Christmas 2018

By | Core Info

Looking for the ultimate gift for Christmas 2018? We’ve got it covered. Here are the reasons you should be giving the gift of sailing with a Devon Sailing Experience gift voucher.

Something to look forward to in the new year

It is always lovely to receive a thoughtful gift, but once you’ve opened it – well, that is it. With a sailing gift voucher, you still get the excitement of opening the gift but the added bonus of checking out our website for a date that works for you and booking a date for Spring/Summer of 2019.

Flexibility

Gift vouchers are available for a range of experiences including Day Sails, Weekend Sails and Exclusive Charters. They are valid for 12 months from the date of purchase, so need to be booked within the timeframe before they become out of date. Our sailing schedule offers a huge choice of dates between April and October, and the schedule is continuously updated throughout the year. (Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to ensure you receive up-to-date notifications.)

Relax and be active at the same time

Research has shown that both nature and exercise are good for our physical and mental health. (You can read NHS and BBC reports by following the links). Onboard a yacht, you may feel yourself relaxing as you breathe deeper with fresh air filling your lungs. Later that evening, you may feel tired from the sea air or a slight ache in your body where your core muscles have been working out without you even realising. (Personally, I find the lack of phone signal the biggest benefit! KR)

Try something new or rediscover the love of a forgotten hobby

Whether the recipient of your gift voucher is new to sailing or they are experienced but haven’t sailed for a long time, we have something to suit everyone. Our highly experienced commercially endorsed skippers will ensure everyone has as many (or as few!) hands-on opportunities as they choose.

Spend time, not money

“Time spent is priceless”. It’s not my quote, but I read it somewhere. Sharing a day or weekend out with a loved one aboard one of our yachts will create some wonderful memories. We are not suggesting that you do the same thing, but you can read about the wonderful memories made with a marriage proposal aboard our yacht in 2018. Alternatively, the recipient of the voucher may wish to spend extended time at sea by upgrading to a group sailing experience. You can read an account of our June 2018 group sailing adventure adventure here.

A high-quality and reputable company

Don’t just take our word for it – take a look at our Tripadvisor reviews.

Easy to buy

Purchase online by following the links below. If you would like to discuss options, just call Devon Sailing Experiences on 01752 424 514.

Day Sail Voucher

Weekend Sail Voucher

Newsletter – Autumn 2018

By | Core Info

Welcome to our Autumn 2018 newsletter.

Our extended sailing season has just come to an end – and what a busy year we have enjoyed. With temperatures hitting 29 degrees in the south-west, so many of you could see the advantage of being out on the water. As always, the Devon Sailing Experiences team worked extremely hard to offer the flexibility required to meet the demand.

Looking ahead to 2019, we have listed opportunities for next season below.

Our 2019 Sailing Experience Schedule

Dates for 2019 day sails and weekend sails are now listed on our sailing schedule page. You can now book your sailing experience directly from our website. More dates will be added throughout the season, but as always, if you can’t see a suitable date just get in touch and we will do our very best to help you.

Our longer 5-day and 7-day group sailing experiences will be added to our sailing schedule on demand. This sailing experience is ideal for those wishing to develop their skills, build miles or enjoy an active holiday. Follow the links to our website for further information about this sailing opportunity.

Discounts available for cabin-sharing when booking 2 or more places on our group sailing experiences.

Sailing Experience Gift Vouchers

Whether you are searching for the perfect Christmas gift or dropping hints about your own upcoming birthday, our sailing experience gift vouchers are a great choice for active and adventurous people. With vouchers for day sailing and weekend sailing experiences available, they provide a memorable day out on the water surrounded by the natural beauty of Devon.

Order your day sail voucher or weekend sail voucher directly from our website.

Sailing experiences must be booked within 12 months from the date of purchase. Please bear in mind that as we approach the end of the season (September/October) fewer dates will be available due to weather and sailing conditions.

RYA Sailing Courses

2018 saw the first of our successful RYA Day Skipper and RYA Competent Crew courses.

With a 3:1 student to instructor ratio, our students were given plenty of hands-on experience and opportunities to develop and master their skills. Our highly experienced Chief Instructor ensured safety as well as enjoyment throughout the training – and we also hear he is a wonderful chef! What more could you ask for?

RYA courses are scheduled on demand. You are very welcome to request a date to be added to our schedule, but please bear in mind that we are only able to run a course with a minimum of 3 students. All courses are subject to yacht and instructor availability. Contact us directly to request a date.

Bareboat Charter

2019 will be the first year we have needed to increase the prices of our bareboat charters. However, we can also increase our returning customer discount on bareboat charters from 5% to 10%. We are starting to receive bookings for 2019 already, so if you are thinking about bareboat chartering with us again, it may be worth getting in touch with us now to avoid disappointment. The new prices are now reflected on our website.

Check us out on Tripadvisor

Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to review Devon Sailing Experiences on Tripadvisor. Your feedback not only helps us improve, but also provides future guests with vital information about what to expect, helping them to decide if what we offer is right for them. If you haven’t already reviewed your sailing experience for 2018, it is not too late.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

Our sailing schedule is constantly evolving. Every time we add additional dates and sailing opportunities, we send notifications via our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. Make sure you follow us to receive immediate updates including information about last minute availability.

We also love to receive emails and messages about your sailing adventures with Devon Sailing Experiences. If you have any photos you have taken (or stories to tell) from your time aboard one of our yachts, we would like to share them on our social media pages and in our blog posts. We never mention names or dates in our posts, but your photos are great to use alongside our narrative. Please keep in touch and email anything you are happy for us to use.

All the very best for the rest of 2018.

We look forward to welcoming you to Devon in 2019.

Exclusive Day Sail Marriage Proposal

By | Core Info

Congratulations were in order this week when a guest got down on one knee and proposed to his partner during their exclusive day sail.

A sunny October day in the shelter of Cawsand Bay provided the ultimate venue for a marriage proposal. With our skipper discretely out of the way, the bride-to-be was pleasantly surprised with a beautiful engagement ring. Champagne followed. Along with a light lunch freshly prepared by the skipper.

This exclusive day sail was secretly booked in advance. October can be a difficult month for sailing due to the normally deteriorating conditions. However, on this occasion, we are pleased to say that the weather co-operated fully.