The festive season is a wonderful time of the year, but somehow it can also instil a desire to escape, get out of the reach of mobile phone signal and far, far away from the in-laws / children / siblings / parents / neighbours (delete as appropriate).
No shame in that, we all need a bit of R&R sometimes, and there is no better way to achieve a hard reset on your mental state than some time on the water.
We have gathered together our Top 10 Voyages for Running Away to Sea, ranked according to the severity of your escape needs. Perhaps a couple of days would suffice, but if you have a serious case of the ‘get-me-out-of-heres’, you might have to prescribe yourself a month or two…
10. Two Days’ of Cross-Channel Smuggling Aboard Grayhound
Escape for a mini high seas adventure, delivering cargo the old fashioned way: under sail! A hands-on holiday with purpose aboard one of the most striking ships in the fleet, and in the company of Grayhound’s multi-talented, hospitable and entertaining crew.
No experience necessary, just a positive attitude and a wish for adventure. Just like the luggers of 250 years ago, Grayhound will be carrying quality goods across international borders, the only difference is that the Grayhound of today has a licence to do so!
9. Go Where the Wind Takes You: 5 Nights on Mascotte
Set sail from Falmouth and allow the endless oppotunities for adventure to open up before you. Depending on conditions, the Skipper may set a course up the coast to Devon, over to the Isles of Scilly, or even across the Channel to cruise along the coast of Brittany.
Expect fantastic sailing, shoreside jaunts, sea swims, wildlife, secluded beaches, tasty food and great company.
8. Over the Sea to Skye: 6 Days of Hebridean Seclusion with Provident
Round trip from Mallaig, which is perfectly situated to explore the coasts of Skye, Loch Nevis and the Knoydart Peninsula, one of Scotland’s great wilderness areas.
Enjoy stunning scenery, the most remote pub in Britain, and the chance to picnic round the bonfire on a private island in Loch Kishorn. This trip is a must for those who love hard-to-reach and little-known places.
7. Paradise by Tall Ship: a Week aboard Eye of the Wind
A taste of ocean sailing in the Caribbean combined with island hopping around the British Virgin Islands. Get as involved as you like with the hands-on sailing. Enjoy excursions ashore, on some of the BVIs stunning beaches, and snorkelling in crystal clear waters. Eat fantastic food on board, and feel revived.
Tropical sunshine, cooling trade winds and a bright blue ocean.
6. An East Coast Adventure: 8 Nights on Trinovante
Sail from remote and beautiful Orkney to Whitby in Yorkshire, exploring the Farne Islands and the East Coast of Scotland en route. There will be night-time sailing with stars like you’ve never seen before, and a fantastic mix of island hopping, open water sailing and coastal wandering. Every day will be different.
As part of the watch system you will get fully into the rhythm of life on board, an experience which is both immersive and invigorating.
5. 10 Days to Explore the Azores from Santa Maria Manuela
Relaxed exploration of the Azores archipelago, voted ‘The Most Beautiful Place in the World’ by National Geographic Traveler a few years ago.
Start on the lush island of Flores and finish in the chain’s oldest town: Angra do Heroismo on Terceira. Lazy sailing, hiking, swimming in waterfall fed pools and off secluded beaches, whale watching, great food and company and stunning landscapes.
4. Sail the Western Isles: 11 Nights Aboard Tenacious
This is a big West Coast adventure, sailing from Greenock, through the Hebrides to Orkney and finishing in Lerwick, Shetland. Ever changing rugged coastlines, including Cape Wrath and John o’ Groats, some serious deep sea passages and fantastic wildlife spotting opportunities.
In Lerwick, you’ll also be able to see a host of other tall ships gathering ahead of the start of the 2023 Tall Ships Races, and the atmosphere will be electric.
3. Oosterschelde’s Month-Long Spring Ocean Adventure
Sail an ocean going schooner from tropical Cape Verde off the West Coast of Africa, via the stunning Azores, to Europe and her home of the Netherlands. Starting with hot sun and trade winds and ending with European Springtime. Fantastic opportunities to see whales, dolphins, flying fish and sea birds.
This voyage will likely include the full range of ocean weather, as well as long passage sailing and night watches, so you’re guaranteed some of the best sunrises and sunsets you’ve ever seen.
2. Epic Antarctica: 35 Days Aboard Tecla
A truly diverse voyage, and a once in a lifetime adventure. As well as great sailing and spectacular wilderness, the wildlife spotting opportunities are second-to-none, with humpback and fin whales, orca, fur and leopard seals, penguins, albatross and more.
Not only do you get to experience the wonders of Antarctica, but you also see the drama of the Chilean Fjords and sail deep into Tierra del Fuego, finishing up at Puerto Natales, gateway to the Patagonian ‘Torres del Paine’ National Park.
1. THE BIG ONE: Four Month Atlantic Circuit on Morgenster
Join the crew of Morgenster for the entirety of their 2023 to 2024 New World Grand Tour. Starting and finishing in Rotterdam, this epic voyage takes in Portugal, the Canary Islands, Cape Verde, French Guiana, Suriname, Grenada, Martinique, Guadeloupe, St Martin, Bermuda and the Azores, to name but a few.
While you can also book for individual legs of this North Atlantic circuit, committing to the full tour allows you the adventure of a lifetime with next to no carbon emissions, no flights and, best of all, no need to organise! You will explore rugged coasts, beautiful islands, charming towns, bustling cities, volcanoes, cloud forests, sandy beaches of all colours and the vast expanse of the ocean.