Maybe a History

Maybe has a famous history, built in 1929 and owned by Jan Jacob Van Rietschoten, father of the flying Dutchman, Cornelis ‘Conny’ Van Rietschoten, the only skipper to win the Whitbread Round the World Race twice. The Rietschoten family spent many years sailing Maybe around the world.
A major milestone in Maybe’s history is that she took part in the first ever International Tall Ships Race in 1956 that started in Torbay Devon.. Maybe can now claim she was one of the few boats that took part in that first race to still be competing in the International Tall Ship Races today. 1962
In 1962, TS Maybe was bought by the Swiss family Hans Fehr, who were experienced sailors and enjoyed sailing in warmer climates. She sailed mainly around the Mediterranean and in the 1970s regularly crossed the Atlantic between the West Indies and the Mediterranean. IN the 1980s she also sailed through the Panama Canal and up the East coast of the USA to Canada.

Tall ship Maybe was sold to her present owners in 1989 and underwent another complete restoration returning to sailing in 2007. She returned to the International Tall Ship Races in the Baltics in 2009. In 2011, TS Maybe was restored to her original gaff rig.

The Old Ways
In the old days it was thought that sail training ships for young people could just switch from youth to adult voyages without altering what they did or how they looked after people on board.

The New Ways
For adults, Maybe still offers all the adventure and excitement they give to young people, lots of hands on sailing and as much sailing as possible.
Understanding that adults on holiday are looking for better value for money Maybe has raised the standards of catering and accommodation to a very high level.

The Best
On Maybe you get the best of both worlds, excitement and high quality food with dedicated chefs, though we call them cooks at sea.

Skipper and Mates
Maybe’s skipper and mates are not afraid to shape a great team from total novices or mixed experience crews. They will encourage you to get involved in every aspect of ship board life.

View Voyages

Ship Stats

Length Overall


Length On Deck


Year Built


Vessel Type / Rig

Gaff Ketch

Guest Berths


Crew Berths


What this vessel does best

Full Participation and mixed age crews

Gaff ketch ‘Maybe’ works predominantly around the UK on youth development voyages, but she also offers adult adventure trips too. Her style of sailing is very ‘hands on’ but with a lot of patient instruction as the professional crew are used to working with crew from 12 to 80. Her winter base is the Algarve in Portugal so she has some ocean style and delivery trips for experienced sailors at the start and finish of the season too.

action on the foredeck on gaff ketch maybe
action on the foredeck on gaff ketch maybe

Tall Ships Races

International Tall Ships races have been happening for many summers. They defy cynicism, bring together young crews from nations that are hardly on speaking terms in the adult world, and give those participating the best thrill you can have in your school holidays.  Generally sail handling on a tall ship or sail training yacht is done slowly with lots of instruction and plenty of sea room from other vessels. In a tall ships race it is much more close quarters so things have to happen a lot faster and the vessels are sailed with dash rather than conservatism. You might get the odd bruise or blister but the sense of teamwork and pride in your ship seems to just happen during the thrill of the chase.  The parties in port are your well earned reward.

Maybe and Tecla in Tall Ship Parade of Sail
Maybe and Tecla in Tall Ship Parade of Sail

A Chance to Become Volunteer Crew

Maybe has a small professional crew and deliberately relies on volunteers as watch leaders or delivery crew. A Maybe voyage would be a good choice if you are thinking about a sailing career and you are really keen to progress your sailing skills. The skipper will be looking to recommend helpful hard working crew as possible volunteers who have good people skills and a sense of humour. There is usually a contribution towards meals if you sail as volunteer or delivery crew. You might even progress to a paid postion (Skipper, !st Mate, Engineer and Cook)

Her sister ship, belonging to the same NE sail training charity, is the three masted schooner Blue Clipper. This bigger vessel has month long crew placements to some really exciting destinations like the Arctic and the Caribbean so it is a great organisation to sail with to get your foot on the sailing career ladder.

companionship at the end of watch on a sailing holiday
Making friends on Maybe’s bigger sister ship Blue Clipper

What to expect

Sailing Style

Life On Board

Life on board really is about getting stuck in and involved in all aspects of sailing the ship. Beginners are welcome and the experienced crew will help to explain the different roles onboard which will quickly see you turn into a knowledgable traditional ship sailor! Please also note there is a non-smoking policy on board Maybe. 

Wild swimming in Scotland on Maybe
Wild swimming in Scotland on Maybe


Below Decks

Tall Ship Maybe has the capacity for up to 18 crew members on each sailing voyage, which includes 2-4 permanent crew and 14 places for trainee crew members or 12 passengers. 

She has extensive comfortable accommodation below deck including five newly refurbished cabin, a large saloon/galley area fitted with all modern conveniences including TV, DVD Player, fully fitted kitchen with microwave, fridge, freezer, cooker, induction hob and slow cooker.  For the comfort of the crew, central heating has been installed to make even winter sailing a pleasure.

Maybe Accommodation Layout

Sailing vessel Maybe - Accommodation Layout
Sailing vessel Maybe – Accommodation Layout

Ship specification

Sunset astern of Gaff Ketch Maybe
Sunset astern of Gaff Ketch Maybe

Gaff Ketch Maybe – Ship Specification

Year built1929 
Sailing Riggaff ketch 
length (overall ?)78ft24m
length on deck72ft22m
beam19ft 6”6m
draft10ft 6”3.2m
guest crew14 
professional crew4 
Maybe being launched after winter 2017-18 refit
Maybe being launched after winter 2017-18 refit

Voyages on Maybe


Discover Cornwall over 3 days MA210622


Tue 21-06-2022

Falmouth, Cornwall


Thu 23-06-2022


Sunrise St Mawes Castle Sailing on Maybe with Classic Sailing




Explore Cornwall over 6 days MA210522


Sat 21-05-2022

Falmouth, Cornwall


Fri 27-05-2022

Falmouth, Cornwall

sail on Maybe with Classic Sailing




Discover Cornwall over 4 days MA160922


Fri 16-09-2022

Falmouth, Cornwall


Mon 19-09-2022

Falmouth, Cornwall

Sunrise St Mawes Castle Sailing on Maybe with Classic Sailing