|Tue 13-07-2021, 12:00Penzance||Tue 20-07-2021, 08:00Penzance||Maybe||7 Nights||MA130721|
You can become the crew of a traditional tall ship, sailing from Penzance using as much as possible the power of the wind. Learn new skills, develop interpersonal skills, make new friends, hoist the sails, steer the ship and help navigate the ship to the fabled Scilly Isles. There are five inhabited islands and you should be able to visit three or more of them. St Marys is the main island and good for retail therapy and the Garrison, Bryher with the ships graveyard of Hell’s Bay, St Martin for the quietest of the islands and fewer visitors, Tresco for the tropical Abbey Gardens and my favourite St Agnes for the Turks Head Inn and Wingletang Beach.
Plenty of sailing to get you under way and then lots of islands to explore. Spotting marine wildlife as you can frequently see sun fish, seals, cetaceans and if your lucky Basking Sharks.
Contact Island Wildlife Tours for guided walks on the islands, local wildlife expert author, ornithologist, history of the islands, Will Wagstaff, on 01720 422212. Please check with your skipper to ensure it fits in with voyage plan.
Adventurous beginners and sailors who love the mix of a coastal passage that slips past Lands End and briefly into the Atlantic Ocean. In the Scillies your landing stage is usually a beach, so if you like wild anchorages without marine type facilities then these wildlife and nature voyages are for you. For those who have not been to the Isles of Scilly expect scenery not too different from the Seychelles, glistening blue sea water, stunning deserted beaches and 360 degree panoramas from anchorages where there is no light pollution. Bird watchers, wildlife photographers, Robinson Crusoe types and sunset watchers will love this place.
Contact Island Wildlife Tours for guided walks on the islands, local wildlife expert author, ornithologist, history of the islands, Will Wagstaff, on 01720 422212. Please check with your skipper to ensure it fits in with the voyage plan.
Maybe is a good choice for a voyage to the Scillies. She is big enough to be comfortable when sailing offshore. With a long waterline her cruising speed is better than smaller vessels which should give you a fast passage to the Scillies. Once at anchor in a beautiful setting, whether it is the Cornwall mainland on route or the Scillies, you have wide decks and plenty of places to sit and absorb the panoramic views. Ashore you can stride out around an island, clamber around the the granite tors, bird watch or beach comb. In Spring there are puffins and shearwaters and in the late summer the seas are having their pups.
On a sailing voyage nothing is guaranteed and the sailing itinerary may not be always adhered too. Skippers will always aim for the best sailing and shore landings for the forecast including all or some of the highlights described below, but you have to go with mother nature and not fight her. The description below is based on what Classic Sailing think might be possible based on past trips and experience. The Scillies does not have a single port or anchorage that is sheltered for all wind directions so if the forecast indicates bad weather or high swell then the skipper may have to seek our alternative sailing grounds. the crew will always endeavour to provide a holiday adventure as close in spirit to a ‘Scilles’ voyage as they can.
Penzance is the closest mainland port for the Scillies with a mainline rail station. It is a brilliant starting point for your Scillies voyage. Look out for dolphins and basking sharks where the tides run the fastest. Good spots are to the south of Lands End and as you approach the Scillies around the Eastern Isles and east of St Mary’s the main island.
The thrill of spotting the Isles of Scilly when this fascinating archipelago first appears over the horizon never goes away, however many times you visit. Choosing and making your destination in the Scillies is greatly cherished because not only do you arrive in style under sail but you have been part of the journey, your effort and team work has made it possible. Worth a pint in the Turks Head in fact.
By sailing west to the Isles of Scilly and anchoring in quiet bays, you will get to know this fabulous archipelago from a sailor’s point of view. You can sail among and round the rocks, from island to island, often using intricate pilotage.
Look out for Atlantic grey seals in the Western rocks or in among the kelp beds. Take the opportunity to snorkel or swim in the clear water of Scilly’s many wonderful bays, or ramble round on foot to experience the local flora and fauna.
The white glittering sands are reminiscent of the Seychelles, the turquoise waters are crystal clear, but the water temperature is refreshingly British! Exploring ashore is a key part of the holiday with tropical Tresco Abbey Gardens to visit, or you can wander lonely as a cloud over purple heathland or beach comb amongst the oystercatchers. The pilotage between the islands is complex and fascinating if you are interested in navigation.
There is NO light pollution on the Scillies so star gazing at night is exceptional and words can hardly prepare you for the sunrises and the sunsets enhancing the peace and tranquility that these beautiful islands will offer you whilst sailing on a beautiful traditional boat.
In the Scillies there are no marinas or places, so there is a lot of getting in and out of dinghies, and the anchorages are typically remote with limited or no facilities ashore.
This voyage involves remote anchorages and the possibility of a bit of a roll in any swell, even in calm weather. The ship would not go to the Scillies in bad weather or big seas but it can still be quite exciting on the passage out and back. This voyage would be similar to a cross channel voyage in terms of offshore sailing. Between the islands there is some sheltered water sailing but it depends a bit on wind direction. The climate is often more sunny than the mainland and sub tropical plants grow well here.
On a sailing voyage we never use the word itinerary, as skippers will always be aiming for the best sailing and shore landings for the forecast and most idyllic or sheltered anchors and ports. They are as keen as you to include some of the highlights described below, but you have to go with Mother Nature, not fight her. The description below is based on what we think might be possible, based on past trips, or experience, but nothing is guaranteed on a sailing voyage.
Whether you are an experienced sailor or a complete beginner, the professional crew will train you to be guest crew from the moment you arrive, with the intention that everybody works together to sail the ship. The common thread to all Classic Sailing holidays is ‘Hands on’ participation on ships that use ropes, blocks and tackles and ‘people power’ to set sail.
We cater for a wide range of ages and physical abilities and how much you are expected to do varies a bit between vessels. See the vessel tab above which explains all about the ‘sailing style’ and what to expect in terms of hands on participation. There is a lot of information about day to day life, the ships facilities and accommodation on the vessel pages.
Every customer sailing with us will need to fill in basic medical questions on their booking application. If you are not sure if your current level of fitness and agility are up to a voyage, then please ring the Classic Sailing Office on 01326 53 1234 and we can chat through your concerns and possibly find options that might suit you better.
Penzance harbour is the home port of the Car and Passenger Ferry to the Scillies. There is only one ferry called the Scillionian – a very distinctive white vessel that moors up on the seaward Pier to the Penzance Wet Dock. If the ferry is in port you can usually see it accross the harbour from the Penzance Railway Station car park.
The outer harbour is tidal and dries out to mud so the wet dock is the place that Classic Sailing vessels will use to start or end your voyage, so if you head for the Penzance – Scilly Ferry on foot or follow the road signs for the Scillionian Ferry you will find the Wet Dock. Next door is the famous Penzance Swimming Lido with bright blue flags.
The Penzance Wet Dock has a lock gate that can only be entered 1.5 hrs before or after high water, and the entrance is exposed to Southerly or SE gales, so it is possible the skipper of your vessel may have to dock in the nearby fishing port of Newlyn.
"The crew were awesome. Led by Seb they were full of energy and enthusiasm and lots of patience for explaining what needed tobe done or what was happening. Maybe is a beautiful boat. we were well fed and had lots of fun as well as learning. would highly recommend a two night trip if you're a novice sailor." Liz M. Maybe 13 Sept 2019
What did you enjoy the most?
The general atmosphere on board was excellent and the journey along the Caledonian canal was fantastic.
The worst bits? - don't think there was one.
Why do your sail?
Travel, meeting new and interesting people, experience and learning more about sailing.
George M Maybe June 2019
What was the best bit?
Sailing between Islay and Jura: sun shining, music playing and interesting winds rolling down from the hills.
What was the worst bit?
Getting up for my watch after the first wave of seasickness.
Why do you sail?
This was my first trip. Wanted to experience the landscape from a different perspective and get to places I couldn’t easily reach otherwise.
Any other comments
The experience was very much enhanced by the attitudes and actions of the crew (including the volunteers), who combined technical and people skills with their love of sailing to create something more rewarding than I had anticipated.
I learned so much and it was a pleasure and rewarding experience achieving my RYA Competent Crew cert. I didn't want the trip to end, I would have happily sailed on and enjoyed the beautiful ship Maybe with her crew and my new friends! Thank you for a wonderful experience, I hope to put my new skills to use soon."
I recently joined MAYBE on a delivery voyage from South Portugal to West Wales. I have had some amazing experiences in life but this topped it for me. Not only having an opportunity to sails a much bigger boat than I am used to but also dealing with much more challenging seas than I am used to. Thanks to the experienced knowledge the permanent crew we had the chance to sail MAYBE in 57 knots of wind and athough it was hairy at times the whole crew felt safe on the resiliant MAYBE.
This has been a life changer or affirminator, see you on the water." Sayed Almaghrabi, April 2017
Joseph D April 2019 Crossing the Bay of Biscay which is always a challenging voyage!
You enjoyed the most –
Dolphins chasing the bow at 6am
A small songbird resting on our boat just after we crossed Biscay
How the crew came together and supported each other through the rougher weather of our Biscay Crossing.
Least enjoyed –
Seeing all the beautiful cooked food and not being able to eat much because of the sea sickness
Why do you sail?
I sail because it’s completely different from any experience on land.
"I really enjoyed my sail on Maybe, Seb Ben and Phil were fantastic. A great combination of knowledge, skill, enthusiasm, ability to teach, fun and patience - I can't fault those three guys.
TS Maybe delivery trip Portimao, Portugal to Cork, Ireland (in the end) was an amazing experience. Having always wanted to do longer sailing passages, experience ocean sailing and push myself with challenging experiences, this lived up to everything I expected. It was a shame we were plagued with non-stop N/NE winds that meant we couldn't sail without motor as much as I would have liked...but that's the nature of the trip. A massive thank you to all the rest of the crew who were great folk and hats off, praise & thanks to Skipper Seb, Helen, Jessie & Mo who guided us on the passage. An incredible voyage, a great memory and a taste for more of the same. And at times it was like Bake Off at sea!
Anthony S 14-03-19
Hi everyone on Maybe! I loved my week sailing with you. Now that I'm home it all feels so special to have done this. The experience
certainly changed my attitudes to so many things and I can see how the teamwork made everyone work beyond their usual comfort zones. We had so many laughs, I can hardly believe it was that much fun. Now I have to try to settle into 'normal' life but I can feel the pull of future voyages - Maybe? love to you all......Valerie S. 5 star facebook review 30 July 2018
"Very nervous before the trip because I have not sailed before. Staff very experienced so made me feel safe and I could relax and enjoy a great experience. Highlights - millions of stars at night, dolphin pod, viewing land from another aspect, new and different experience. Thank you for a great trip 10/10." Jacqui Robinson, aged 53, Greenwich Tall Ships Regatta
"At the end of this trip I was asked if there had been anything negative about the experience, I can only think of one, that is, the trip is over, I am no longer sailing aboard Maybe, and yet I so desperately which that I were. Till next time. P.s Thanks for rekindling my love of sailing and the oceans." Will Clutton, Cornwall, 20.10.2014
"Had a brilliant time on board Maybe for the 2nd time!! You didn't scare me away the first time and I hope to be back on board in the furture! You have introduced me to a totally different experience and alternative lifestyle living on a boat. Thanks for all your hard work and patient teaching. Keep up the brilliant work as it is truly life changing." Matthew Ireland. Liverpool. Apprentice Ship Cup
Had a great time upon the maybe boat, trip of a lifetime that I shall never forget! Big thanks to all the crew members and for looking after us so well and teaching us so much!! And all the trainees for making it such a memorable trip! Highly recommend to all." Rodney Moorehead, Northern Ireland, Tall Ships Races
Wooden Gaff Ketch Maybe is an excellent vessel to learn to sail on and develop your skills. Photos from Classic Sailing customers, ships crew and professional photographers. We hope it gives a flavour of her sailing, life on board, the people that come, her beautiful sailing grounds and what it is like to live below decks.
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