This is a chance to do some serious offshore sailing and to cross the Bay of Biscay in a very sound boat.
These two trips are not necessarily for the faint hearted as the Bay of Biscay can be unpleasant at this time of year. The yacht we are using is a steel 55ft Bruce Roberts. She is a very sturdy yacht and has many luxurious elements to her. She is 'coded' to go anywhere in the world and in 2019 we took her to Northern Norway to explore.
You can expect to get some good offshore sailing experience. There are only 2 double ensuite cabins available on each leg. There will be a skipper, mate and maybe one other. There will be a watch system and you will be expected to get involved.
You need to be reasonably fit and agile, have a willingness to get stuck in and you need to be at least Day Skipper level or above. If you are looking to build miles and get some offshore sailing experience then these two voyages will suit you.
Joining the yacht in Plymouth the plan will be to cast off and head to Falmouth as an initial shake down voyage. From Falmouth you will head South crossing the continental shelf and into the Bay of Biscay. You may well end up heading further west before turning South to get a more favourable wind angle but also to miss the continental shelf area where the depth drops from 100 meters to 4000 meters over just a 10 mile distance
The plan will be to stop in A Coruna in northern Spain and then Baiona just south of Cape Finisterre. If you like seafood such as razor clams, prawns and octopus then you are in for a treat as this area of Spain, Galicia, has some of the best seafood in the world. From there you may pull in to Porto in Portugal before arriving in Cascais.
The dates of this trip are 16th to 26th October. You should aim to join the yacht in Mayflower Marina in Plymouth for 1600 on 15th October. You should aim to depart the yacht in Cascais by 10am on 26th October.
You can expect to sail about 780nm.
This leg will see you depart from Cascais and south west and out into the Atlantic to the small island of Porto Santo and then Madeira, a distance of about 450 nautical miles or so. From there you will head south to Tenerife and the Gran Canaria. There is a half knot of southerly current to help you on your way and the prevailing wind direction has a lot of south in it so it should be a nice down wind leg. That said it is quite possible the wind may come from another direction! Depending on the wind the plan may change and you may to somewhere like Lagos instead of Porto Santo and Madeira.
The dates of this trip are 28th October to 8th November. You should aim to join the yacht in Cascais for 1600 on 27th October. You should aim to depart the yacht in Las Palmas in Gran Canaria by 10am on 8th November.
You can expect to sail about 800nm.
Santosa was launched in 2017. She is a 55ft (16.7m) steel ketch of Bruce Roberts design with a high latitude rig and has been built with cruising in mind and to provide an exclusive and luxurious experience.
She has hydraulic headsails and an electric mainsheet winch. She has two helming positions, one on deck in the cockpit and one in the spacious coach house allowing you to steer the boat staying cosy and dry if it is cold and wet on deck.
Displacing 33 tonnes she is a solid boat. She is ‘coded’ to Category Zero meaning her structure, the safety equipment on board and the experience and qualifications of the skipper and mate meet the UK’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) international standards to sail anywhere in the world.
She has heating, air conditioning, hot water, a water maker.
From the cockpit you come down into a spacious and sociable coach house with a raised saloon area offering panoramic views, leather seating and a dining table. To starboard there is a helming position and navigation area.
Aft of this area you step down into two luxury en-suite cabins, one each side of the boat. Plenty of storage is offered and a wardrobe. The en-suite has a power shower with seating, heated towel rail and electric flush toilet. The cabins also have heating, aircon and black out blinds.
Forward of the coach house saloon, you go down a level to a well designed galley on the port side and a snug seating area to starboard. Beyond that is mainly crew accommodation consisting of another heads, another double cabin and two bunk beds, and a work shop right up in the forepeak.
Come as a couple, by yourself or with a friend whom you are happy to share a cabin/double bunk with.
Experience is always welcome. You should be at least a Day Skipper. You will need to be healthy and reasonably fit. Whilst our experienced skipper and mate are perfectly capable of sailing the yacht by themselves that would be quite hard work and you are expected to take part in all aspects of keeping a watch and sailing the boat and helping out in the galley (sea legs permitting).
When on passage all food is included. When in port one breakfast and either lunch or supper will be included, leaving you free to sample the local cuisine for one (or both) of these meals.
You should get some exciting sailing.
Warm clothing will be needed for the first leg. It will get warner as you head south.
Two luxury double ensuite cabins are available on each leg.
The price is £5287 per cabin which works out at £2644 per person if you come as a couple. A cabin could also be suitable for two good friends who don't mind sharing as the double bed can be split in two with a lee cloth.Or you are welcome to come by yourself.
The price includes accommodation on board; all food on board, bar 1 or 2 meals a day when in port giving you the opportunity to taste the local cuisine; gas, fuel and mooring fees. You will need to bring your own oilskins and arrange your own travel insurance ( from a company like TopSail Insurance).
To pay a deposit of £2000 to secure your place use code SANTOSABISCAY for the first leg and SANTOSACANARY for the second leg in the check out stage.
Plymouth - Travelling by car to Plymouth is easy enough. Plymouth mainline railway station is about 3 hours from London. Bristol, Exeter and Newquay are the three closest airports. Heathrow and Gatwick may better serve you depending on where you are coming from. This visitor link is worth looking at.
Cascais - Cascais is conveniently located very close to Lisbon. It is about a 30 minute car (taxi) ride from Lisbon International Airport.
Gran Canaria - Gran Canaria airport is on the eastern side of the island. Las Palmas is at the top in the North about 30 minutes or so away by taxi. There are also buses.
Coming soon - details of the sail across the Atlantic from Gran Canaria to the Grenadines in the Caribbean plus 10 day Caribbean voyages.