sailing is a fascinating sport and you can learn it in different ways and exercise it in different ways. Some want to sail a dinghy in local waters and appreciate the conviviality in the sailing club, others want to sail a yacht on the open sea.
For a starting point you can visit a beginner’s sailing course. There you will learn all the basics, the most important manoeuvres and the sailor’s knots. If you realise that you are talented and you have fun with it you should increase your knowledge by practicing. You surely meet a crewmember in your course you can practice with, or you join a sailing club.
For sailing itself you often do not need a license, but for practicing you need a boat. To charter a boat or use the clubs’ boats a sailing certification is mostly required, as a proof of your skills. You think renting a boat is expensive? Then just bring a torn sail to the sailmaker or have a hole in the hull repaired and calculate how many times you could have chartered a boat for that money. Owning a boat is expensive, it needs nursing, it needs a berth, insurance, repairs, a place for wintertime and so on. The berth in a club is then almost as much as the annual fee on top, and for this you might actually already be using all the club’s boats and can leave them after the sailing, without having to worry about it.
My sailing trips have also been published as ebook and paperback. For more information click here!
Now the question is which sailing certification it should be? For this purpose you should consider in which area you want to sail. Should it be the sea, or inland waters? And: Is there a certification really necessary for your needs? Would you ever personally lead a ship, or is it enough for you being crew on board?
If you plan to sail on yachts I suggest you to do a sail trip before you invest money into obtaining a certification. Try and see if you like sailing on a big boat. It’s close, damp and unsanitary, you glue to the skin of your mates and you cannot go out of each other’s way. Maybe you will be seasick or simply you get scared when the boat heels to the side. If you still like it, you should sail as much as possible, gain a lot of experience with different skippers and then consider whether you really want to run a yacht and which license and instruction you need.
I was lucky that I have been invited by friends on trips around Mallorca and in the north of Sardinia. I was able to gain experience, but then I wanted to know more. And unfortunately I need a little pressure to learn. So I started with the German inland water certification, and because it was so much fun, I obtained the German certification that allows you to drive a powerboat 3 miles from shore and the coastal sailing certificate for the 12 miles zone. I had fun in the courses and met many nice people. I think you learn the basics of sailing best on a dinghy.
My first sailing course was in the autumn holidays and was the last of the season. The boats were put away after we finished. I had no opportunity to practice what we learned. So I had to start from the beginning next spring, even though I had already successfully passed the exam for the coastal certificate. It is the same picture for many. They first pass a certification, and then they learn to sail. Really, it is supposed to be the other way around.
But be that as it may. Somehow, you have come to sailing and now you are interested in how it can go further. What can I expect on a sailing trip and what are the conditions in the various areas like? How does everyday life on a boat work, how can I get a berth on a yacht and what should I look for when choosing the provider?
For this reason, I will describe some of my sailing trips to you in this book that I completed and my first charter experiences with a small keelboat. I have mostly left uncommented what happens, so you can draw your own conclusions as much as possible. I do not tell stories here but report. There is a lot of routine like: “We had breakfast, raised the anchor, set the sails, the wind dropped, the wind picked up, we docked, we had dinner.” But while sailing a lot happens that you cannot put into words. Each day, yes even every minute is different. Whether the sky is blue, or the clouds hang down to the water, the waves rage or the water is flat, always offering you a different picture that everyone also looks at differently. And you have just to enjoy this by yourself!
Yours Captain Sailnator
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My sailing trips have been published as ebook and paperback. For more information click here!
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