60 mile passages for Yachtmaster

60 mile Qualifying Passages for Yachtmaster Exam

Before you take a RYA Yachtmaster Offshore exam you will need a minimum of:

  • 5 passages over 60 nautical miles between ports including 2 overnight and 2 as skipper.
  • 50 days seatime
  • 5 days as skipper
  • 2500 miles
  • VHF licence and First aid certificate

60 mile Passage Opportunities with Classic Sailing

Perfect voyages for 60 mile plus qualifying passages for RYA Yachtmaster include Isles of Scilly from Falmouth on Eve, Leader  or Bessie Ellen, Voyages up and down the Irish Sea on Eda Frandsen, Cross Channel hops from Brixham on Leader, Eda Frandsen, Grayhound and Provident or round Ushant on  Bessie Ellen all offer passages over 60 miles and night hours.

Examples of popular passages for Classic Sailing vessels.

Falmouth to Isles of Scilly – approx 60 miles….and 60 miles back of course.

Newlyn to Milford Haven – approx 100 miles

St Mawes to L’Aberwrach – 95 miles

Milford Haven to Dublin 123 miles

Brixham to Guernsey – 70 miles

All of these have much more interesting pilotage in and out of port and tidal gates to catch en route than Brighton Marina to Cherbourg!

The search term to look for in our voyage search is ‘coastal journeys’. The include A to B voyages along the coast, and some with quite large offshore hops.


Coastal journeys for mile building & pilotage


Best Voyages to gain navigation and watch keeping experience

If you haven’t done a day skipper sailing course, then even if you feel you have more experience than the average day skipper, this is the best intensive training where you have to plan the pilotage and do the navigation for lots of short passages with an experienced instructor on board to sharpen up your skills in a non stressful environment. (see Moosk and Golden Vanity RYA courses).  A RYA Yachtmaster exam prep course is the next step up, but these focus on advanced boat handling and navigating under pressure, so make sure you have done some real pilotage into unfamiliar ports before you commit to a prep course and possible exam.

Any passage making voyage on our smaller boats would give you a chance to be involved in the navigation and have a go as a potential watch leader. Moosk, Golden Vanity, Eda Frandsen and Agnes only have a skipper on board as professional crew so they welcome guest crew who want more responsibility ‘in charge of the deck’ or having a go at pilotage with skipper as back up.  

Sailing Grounds with Advanced Navigation Opportunities

The Isles of Scilly, North Coast of Brittany, Gulf of St Malo, Channel Isles and South and North West Scotland all provide fast tides and plenty of rock plateaux.  On the plus side the cliffs and rocks are often distinctive with plenty of transits and landmarks to use in the daytime. The Scillies and remote areas of Scotland are not ideal playgrounds at night so you might have to resort to the pub ! No point learning to navigate if you can’t enjoy your destination.

Best Classic Sailing voyages to gain lots of miles

If you are in a hurry then a tall ship like Europa on Ocean passages can notch upto 200 miles a day and 4-8 night hours every 24 hours. Classic Sailing probably has the biggest choice of long distance ocean passages on sailing vessels on one website so just put  ocean passages into our search facility. We have Southern Ocean, Round the World, Cape Horn and other great rites of passage for your logbook and cv. 

Ready to Take your Yachtmaster Exam

After you have built up enough experience in terms of sailing grounds, many different weather conditions, night watch keeping and entering unknown ports, and you are confident enough in your boat handing. Then you might be ready a 5-6 day Yachtmaster Prep Course to polish up your skills and leadership….and then have a go at the Yachtmaster Exam at the end of the week.

An external RYA examiner will step onto the boat and your instructor will step off, and it is due to the 3-4 candidates to take over the boat and show the examiner their stuff. Even if you don’t pass the first time your will have gained real command experience during the course and exam.

Yachtmaster Prep Voyages with Exam


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