Meet the Ship
Eye of the Wind is a much loved and incredibly photogenic Brig, operating a full Atlantic Circuit each year, as well as spending summers exploring the Baltic. Those who take a sailing holiday aboard Eye enjoy a fantastic crew to guest ratio and hospitality that’s second to none. All that alongside some great sailing, learning the ropes aboard this striking tall ship.
Built in 1911 in Germany, Eye of the Wind is a well seasoned ocean traveller, having sailed around the world to legendary locations like Pitcairn Island, New Zealand and Cape Horn, been the star of films like ‘White Squall’ and has spent decades as an adventure charter vessel and expedition ship.
What’s so Special About Eye of the Wind? A Brief History
This beautiful ship has, like many traditional sailing vessels, had numerous different roles in her 112 years, and her history is fascinating.
Originally a topsail schooner, Eye of the Wind went through as many different names as she did owners in the first two decades of her life. She finally settled into a groove, spending the next 30 years criss-crossing the Baltic and North Sea carrying cargo under the name ‘Merry’. The port of Flensburg celebrates the trading history of the Baltic with its infamous Rum Regatta, an event which the Eye attends annually. Sailing in to maritime events and festivals by tall ship is an experience everyone should have at least once!
In 1955 ‘Merry’ ran aground in heavy weather on the coast of Sweden. Renamed once more as ‘Rose Marie’ the salvaged and repaired wreck began a new life drift-net fishing in the seas around Iceland.
In 1970, disaster struck once more as a fire destroyed the stern and engine room, and the ship was nearly scrapped completely, before narrowly avoiding being turned into a static pub. There was light at the end of the tunnel for Eye of the Wind, however, as she was taken on in 1973 by a group of enthusiastic ship lovers lead by Anthony ‘Tiger’ Timbs.
Restoration and conversion to her current rig took four years, with a huge amount of creative thinking and hard work. Saloon benches were salvaged from a church. Joinery timber for the accommodation came from a demolished bank. The new masts had previously been used to line oil wells. The beautiful teak deck had previously been a dance floor.
Relaunched in 1976, the newly christened ‘Eye of the Wind’ sailed around the world, stopping in Australia, the Pacific Islands and Cape Horn. After barely a breath following the ship’s return from this voyage, she was off again! Under the Patronage of the then Prince Charles, Eye became the flagship for ‘Operation Drake’, another 2-year voyage with over 400 crew members from 27 different countries taking part.
Since then, Eye of the Wind has starred in numerous blockbuster films, including ‘Blue Lagoon’, ‘Tai-Pan’ and ‘White Squall’, and Oscar winners Tommy Lee Jones and Jeff Bridges have both had their turn on the helm. During the filming of ‘Tai-Pan’, the Eye starred as both ‘Morning Cloud’ with white sails and the ‘White Witch’ with tan sails, and she uses this more traditional-looking set to this day.
Over the years, Eye of the Wind has collected a huge following, and various books have been written about her. A fantastic resource for seeing her in the glory days of the silver screen and Operation Drake are the video archives collated by the fan club.
In 2011 the ship celebrated her 100th birthday under new ownership, and she remains one of the friendliest and most eye-catching vessels out there.
Who are the Crew?
Eye of the Wind has a great pool of talented, experienced and hospitable crew. Exactly who will be on board for your trip is impossible to say, but whoever’s looking after you you’ll have a wonderful time! Here’s a brief introduction from the Eye’s three primary Skippers:
I first saw the Eye of the Wind in 2013, when she was cruising off the Caribbean island of Saint-Barthélemy under full sails, and I instantly fell in love with the ship. One year later, I joined her crew as a deckhand, today I work as her captain. As a Master, I am allowed to operate vessels up to a size of 3000 GT (Gross Tons). I would love to sail around Cape Horn with the Eye of the Wind one day. Until then, I love to share my experience with our fellow sailors. I hope that I can make you feel as passionate for sailing as I do!
Sailing is a beloved and lived passion for me. The special thing about this ship is: I am the captain on board, but I can not sail alone from A to B – here everyone works together. Our sailors will get to know me as an adventurous and enthusiastic seafarer, I am especially looking forward to the long trips to distant places. My dream destination with the Eye of the Wind? – The island world of the South Pacific!
I love to feel the nature at close range – be it climbing, hiking, or sailing. I am glad to work on this really beautiful ship in a well-rehearsed team, and I would be very happy to welcome you to an adventure on board!
What do Guests Say?
An awesome adventure with awesome peopleFC
It was something we have always wanted to do and couldn’t have asked for a better captain, crew, and companions. If you have even wondered about doing something like this- YOU NEED TO! or you will forever regret it.Michael
Now that was a voyage! The Eye crew embody two words: COMPETENT and KIND. And such a beautiful ship. Thank you beyond measure.Susan
I loved and enjoyed every minute.Andrea
When and Where can I Sail Aboard?
Eye of the Wind undertakes a Summer season in the Baltic, hopping between the coasts and islands of Germany and Scandinavia, before sailing South to the Canary Islands and across to the Caribbean for the winter, arriving in time for Christmas.
The ship offers a fantastic range of trip lengths, from short tasters to epic ocean passages, so there’s something for everyone!