of an enjoyable trip is to have plenty of time. Calculate the time you need and double it to enjoy it. This is also a safety
issue. Most people who get in trouble on a sailboat were trying to keep to a schedule despite less than ideal weather
I personally know six guys who sold their boat because their wife decided they didn't like cruising. In each case, the husband now admits that they didn't focus on keeping it enjoyable for their wife - too many ten hour days motoring, a scary seasick rough crossing, or sitting in the cockpit
underway in a cold rain will drive many women off the boat. And before someone complains, I know two women who love tough offshore
passages - ( on one trip I was curled up in my bunk seasick, while she was happily clipped in at the helm
at 2AM in a driving rain - singing
If you must sail the BVI's, get an off season week's charter
. It will probably cost you less than the cost of sailing your own boat there.
I can't advise you on the northern part, but a trip down the ICW
and a month or two in the Bahamas
is a great trip and a reasonable first adventure.
The best way my wife and I have found to enjoy the ICW
is to plan 100 miles every three days (two days of 50 miles and one day off to explore a town, wait out a rainy day, and provision).
There are only two potentially dangerous areas - NYC
to Cape May and crossing to the Bahamas
. To be conservative, assume that you will have to wait a week for good weather
at each one. Don't think about going in less than perfect weather.
I would also consider making it a two year trip instead of a one year trip. Skip one Canadian summer. It will make Canada
seem all the more enjoyable the next year.