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Thames Explorer

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Fri 13-09-2024, 16:00London Tue 17-09-2024, 10:00Harwich Trinovante 4 NightsTR130924

Sail the Thames Estuary with the Knowledgeable Crew as your Guides…

The Roman name for the tribes in Eastern England just north of the Thames was the Trinovantians, hence the ships name of Trinovante. This voyage in her home waters is far more interesting than you would expect. Su and John have extensive knowledge and experience of their home waters. They can tell you about the maritime history. As you travel down the Thames you are exploring over 2000 years of seafaring history. see how commerce had moved further and further away from the heart of the city. Pass through the Thames Barrier and into the lower reaches of the Thames Estuary. It may look busy but Su and John know some remarkable quiet spots. You will not be disappointed.

  • Voyage
  • Vessel

Ideal for ….

  • Marine History from the Tower of London Seaward
  • Day sailing and stopping over night
  • Exploring the Thames Estuary
  • Sailing up the ages as you go down the Thames
  • Learning the ropes in a friendly and welcoming atmosphere


Vessel type / Rig 3 Masted Gaff Rigged Schooner
Guest Berths 8
Beam 4.4m 14ft 6ins
Draft 2.1m
Deck Length 21m 70ft
Overall Length 23.9m 80ft
Year Built 1994
More about the Vessel

Voyage Description

Tower Bridge to the historic port of Harwich

Trinovante with Classic Sailing
Trinovante with Classic Sailing

4 nights of fascinating and varied sailing, from the heart of London to the expanses of the Thames Estuary…

Joining at Tower Bridge

Don’t be late! Trinovante will be leaving as soon as the crew are all on board for an evening sail down the Thames to anchor (most likely off Southend Pier). There’s a huge amount to see as the city centre disappears behind you, passing Canary Wharf, the O2 and the impressive Thames Barrier. Slowly the scenery changes to industrial hinterland and then the wide open spaces of Thames Estuary saltings take over. The call of the wading birds replaces the busy hum of human activity.

Exploring the Estuary

An early start the following day Trinovante will set sail, skimming the Maplin sand banks to head up the West Swin channel. There are some options for the second night aboard, most likely is an anchorage in the atmospheric Blackwater of Colne.

On the final day there’s some beautiful exploration sailing, past the sandy beaches of Frinton and Walton, before arriving in the historic sea port of Harwich.

The Thames Estuary is Trinovante’s ‘home’ territory, where she was built, and we think a great place to sail.

Steeped in sailing history and tradition it’s one of the last places in the UK where you will see traditionally rigged boats as a matter of course. Fishing smacks and Thames barges sail and race here throughout the season.

In the quiet river anchorages, you will hear the distinctive call of oystercatchers and other wading birds feeding on the mudflats as the tide ebbs and flows.


Start & End Port


London and the Thames

Joining is often near the Waterfront Leisure Centre. Your ship will give you clear instructions.

For Joining Morgenster, use the ship’s tracker to help you meet the ship on the day: Where is Morgenster Now?

For Joining Oosterschelde, use the ship’s tracker to help you meet the ship on the day: Where is Oosterschelde Now?

For Joining Lord Nelson or Tenacious, Canary Wharf is the likely joining location. The ship’s office will contact you directly with exact joining notes once they are known.


For Trinovante

She often berths on the Downriver side of the Tower Bridge.



How to Get There

If you’re planning a visit to Harwich, getting here is straightforward, regardless of your starting point.

From the UK: Harwich is well-connected by train, and you can enjoy a scenic journey to this coastal town. If you prefer to drive, there are parking facilities available throughout Harwich. For parking options and reservations, check JustPark at

From Europe: You can reach Harwich by ferry from European ports. Once you arrive in the UK, it’s a short drive to Harwich.

From North America: Fly into a major UK airport and then take a train or drive to Harwich.

From Australia: A flight to the UK is the first step, followed by train or car to Harwich.

What to Do in Harwich

History: Explore the historical landmarks and museums, including the Electric Palace Cinema, a charming relic of the past. Don’t miss the Redoubt Fort, a coastal defense masterpiece.

Culture: Discover local traditions and arts at Harwich Arts and Heritage Centre. Keep an eye out for any local festivals that might be happening during your visit.

Sites of Interest to a Sailor: Enjoy the coastal views, explore harbours, and admire the Dovercourt Lighthouse, a symbol of maritime history.

Entertainment: Dive into the local nightlife with pubs and live music. Check out the artistic scene at the Harwich Festival of the Arts.

Eating Out: Satisfy your culinary cravings with seafood delights and traditional British fare. The Pier Hotel Restaurant offers picturesque views.

Nature: Stroll along the beaches, take in the coastal beauty, or explore the nearby landscapes of the Tendring Peninsula.

Unique Features: Harwich’s unique charm lies in its maritime heritage, from historic ships to the quaint Old Town.


Consider staying at The Pier Hotel for stunning sea views or The Goodlife Guesthouse for a cozy retreat.

Official Tourist Website

For planning your visit to Harwich, head over to the Official Harwich Tourism Website. It’s your go-to resource for the latest information and tips for exploring this coastal gem.

Special Interests

If you have a special interest that you would like to find out about for this port or to tell us about, we would love to hear from you.


Sustainable Travel Carbon Offset Schemes


By selecting sustainable travel options and actively participating in carbon offset initiatives, you can make a positive impact while journeying to or from your voyage.

Here are some suggestions for carbon offset websites.


UK: One popular carbon offset website in the UK is “Clear” who offer a range of carbon offset projects and solutions for individuals, businesses, and organisations. They provide detailed information about their projects and allow users to calculate and offset their carbon footprint online.

North America: In North America, “Terrapass” is a well-known carbon offset website. Terrapass offers carbon offset projects across the United States and Canada. They provide options for individuals, businesses, and events to calculate and offset their carbon emissions. Terrapass also offers additional resources and information on sustainable living.


Europe: A popular carbon offset website in Europe is “MyClimate.” MyClimate provides carbon offset projects and solutions for individuals, businesses, and travel. They offer a carbon footprint calculator and allow users to support various sustainable projects worldwide. MyClimate focuses on promoting climate protection and sustainability.


Australia:Greenfleet” is a prominent carbon offset website in Australia. Greenfleet focuses on planting native forests to offset carbon emissions. They offer individuals and businesses the opportunity to calculate and offset their carbon footprint by contributing to tree planting projects across Australia. Greenfleet provides detailed information about their projects and the positive environmental impacts they create.


Please note that these carbon offset websites may vary over time, so it is recommended to research and explore multiple options to find the most suitable one for your needs. 


If any of these links do not work it would be kind of you to inform us, many thanks.

Kit List

What to pack for a sailing holiday on Trinovante

Equipment Trinovante Provides

Foul Weather Waterproofs

Life Jackets

Very warm insulated water-proof flotation suits suitable for colder conditions. These will keep you toasty warm on  Offshore Night Watches  and sailing in Norway


  • Sleeping bag
  • Clean pillow case. We provide a pillow.
  • Pair of wellies. Any wellies will do. We might be able to lend you a pair – email us with your size. If you are buying some yacht wellies tend to be a bit lighter
  • Passport This is needed if your sailing holiday starts and/or finishes in a non UK port and we will be in more than one country during the voyage.
    No passport, no sailing holiday.
  • Non slip footwear – any non slip footwear will do, we are not a yacht so there is no need to buy expensive deck shoes.
  • Warm hat and clothing. Layers work best. Thick fleece, thin fleece, shirt, tshirt is a good layer set up. Thermal underwear is a great idea and doesn’t take up much room in your bag.
  • Gloves. Most people don’t bother with gloves, but if you do want to wear some, leather sailing  gloves with no fingers may be best. It can be difficult to handle ropes in full gloves.
  • Towel and toiletries. Most people bring travel towels.
  • Strap to hold your sunglasses/glasses on with. Essential if you wear glasses.
  • Hat, sunscreen, sunglasses and loose clothing to cover up from the sun. Trinovante sails in Northern Europe so you are not going to roast but sometimes it can get surprisingly hot even in Norway.
  • Any medication that you need.
    If you think you may need sea sickness medication Stugeron seems to be the one most people take. The active ingredient is Cinnarzine. We do have Stugeron onboard.
  • Travel insurance for sailing. For some of our holidays this means ‘offshore insurance’.
    We do not require that you have travel insurance for our sailing weekends in the UK.
    SchoonerSail’s  Buying Travel Insurance For Sailing Holidays has more information about travel insurance.
    One specialist sailing holiday insurer is Topsail Insurance. There are lots of other insurers and you do not have to use Topsail Insurance when you sail with us. They may or may not be the most suitable for you.

  • No valid travel insurance when you arrive onboard, no sailing holiday.

Pack everything for your sailing holiday in a squashable bag, not a large suitcase. Remember space onboard is limited.


Su and John (Mate and skipper) are an absolutely brilliant team. Their story of building Trinovante and her history is fascinating, enterprising and courageous. They were creative in turning a mainly windless week into an Attenborough like superb encounter with Orkney wildlife and history. When the wind arrived, they used humour and patience to turn us into a crew that almost knew what we were doing. It was a brilliant way to experience Britain's wilder places.


Great trip with fun guest crew and enthusiastic and understanding permanent crew.


Fantastic scenery Shetland and Orkney Fair Isle Westray good weather and fair winds. Instructions very clear safety in mind at all times. Food cooked by Sue was wonderful we had crab and fresh fish as a treat. Crew were also very friendly and helpful. Would love another voyage !


I have spent most of my sailing time in modern yachts of various sizes but having the helm of a 3 masted schooner under full sail is an experience like no other.


Thanks for a truly memorable weekend! The sailing experience and tuition were first class: I enjoyed the companionship very much: all that under the leadership of two people talented and thoroughly pleasant in equal measure. It was a privilege. Thank you again. And the megastar was Trinovante – what a ship!


“Food, laughter and space were all in generous supply,
as were the opportunities to learn as much or as little as you chose.
Thanks Su and John the tapestry of life is richer for having sailed with you.”


We have loved it all from being at the helm, hoisting sail, fixing fenders and weighing the anchor.


Just a note of thanks for the fabulous time I had aboard Trinovante across the North Sea. I think it mended something in me I hadn’t realised was broken. Of course the reason it’s so good is the way you make us incompetent crew able to share a part of your life.


The scenery was stunning. We moored or anchored in a series of small harbours and bays keeping our eyes open for wildlife. Sharing a beer on deck as the sun slowly sank over the silent scene will be an enduring memory.

Stuart & Sara

What a great time I had with you and my fellow crew members last weekend.
I really enjoyed being part of a small and friendly group and being hands-on with the sailing manoeuvres.


Thanks for a fantastic week..
It is the skill of a successful host to take a gang of disparate (desperate?) folk and turn them into a group of friends – Well done!
We are thoroughly bitten by the bug and would like to have another go next year

Chris & Alastair

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