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Old 24-10-2010, 07:35   #1
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Can Anyone Recommend a Place to Learn and Play ?

The wife and I are seriously interested in exploring the cruising lifestyle. I know enough about sailing to captain a mono hull bareboat a half dozen times, but I've never had any formal training. I have never damaged a boat or gotten lost so I assume I have the basics down, but then again, I don't know what I don't know! My wife knows which end is the stern vs. the bow, port and starboard are a bit tricky.

So here's my question; we have a month's vacation in November, where could we go to get my wife some quality instruction, I wouldn't mind a good review of the basics myself as well as some more advanced topics such as oceanic passage planning and regulations, and more importantly cat sailing? We would like to finish all this up with a week or so on a bareboat cat. In short, we would like to learn, and then do, preferable in a nice place that can also qualify as a vacation.

We are currently in the Middle East, so we could fly to South Africa or the Med easily. My concern with the Med is language and cold weather. We are open to Asia, and of course we could come back to The States or the Caribbean. I've seen all the ads in the back of the sailing rags, I'm hoping to hear from someone that has first person experience doing what we would like to do.

Thanks,
Brett
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Old 24-10-2010, 07:52   #2
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... I don't know what I don't know! ...
Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Brett.

Knowing THAT you don’t know is half the battle!
You may want to check out the ASA Sailing Schools.
http://www.asa.com/states/schools_outside.html
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Old 24-10-2010, 08:21   #3
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I have taken many classes from, and highly recommend, the Annapolis School of Seamanship in Annapolis, MD USA: Annapolis School of Seamanship. Their published November schedule does not appear favorable for your needs, however the school owner, Captain John Martino may be able to accommodate you, or have suggestions for, private instruction to meet your needs.
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Old 24-10-2010, 08:54   #4
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Hi and "WELCOME"..............
A German lady friend took her Day Skipper in Sth Africa and thought it was great... if a woman likes it it must be...
I'd give the Med a miss tho' as your learning in a 'non-tidal' area so to speak ..... so its not as good as somewhere that has a more agressive tidal effect.... used to be a different qualification... dunno if thats changed with the RYA.
Western Spain or Portugal are good though.... figure as its a holiday... go for the area that supplies the tempretures you prefer.... Summer sun or Autumnal cool.
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Old 25-10-2010, 04:20   #5
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One of the people on this forum has a great idea to jump on one of the forum members own cruising boats and go have a wander with them.

Cruisers & Sailing Forums - The $50 Dollar Cruising Club

I think there are great advantages in it over doing a recognized school.
Cruising as a lifestyle is more than someone can learn in a book or be examined by the RSA or Coast Guard. Its a blend of personal and interpersonal relationships, boat maintenance; sailing; navigating; budgets; living in a weird space; tourism; leisure and a whole lot more.

Hanging out on a 'real' cruising boat for a week or so in an active cruising area will, imho, show you more of the real pitfalls and give you more real knowledge than any other method - apart from going cruising yourself.


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Old 25-10-2010, 05:18   #6
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I'll second the ASA. Go down to the Islands and take the week course, will get you all 4 tickets. Then charter for another week, or two. By the time that's over you'll be halfway competent sailors.
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Old 25-10-2010, 07:19   #7
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Friends of mine just did a week liveaboard on a 36 foot Jeaneau in Thailand.

They got the european equivalent of ASA 101 to 104.

I can get details if you like...
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Old 25-10-2010, 09:17   #8
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Try a cruising lesson charter in the BVI.........i2f
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Old 25-10-2010, 18:56   #9
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If you are interested in catamarans, real world cruiser experience and not afraid of real wind and rain then our stars are aligned. My wife and I just spent the last 5 years sailing all over the world and now are back in Seattle (after a long uphill bash from Panama) to recharge the cruising kitty. She got a real job that has her traveling weeks at a time and I'm trying to avoid the reality of a real job a little longer by doing some pick up charters. In reality I'm sure you'd have more fun sailing some where warm and with someone who could give you a certificate of completion, but I have Chris White Atlantic 42 and sure would have fun avoiding 'real' work for a little longer.
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Old 27-10-2010, 18:03   #10
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Hi and "WELCOME"..............
A German lady friend took her Day Skipper in Sth Africa and thought it was great... if a woman likes it it must be...
Do you have any specifics such as the city and/or the name of the skipper and boat?

Quote:
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Hi and "WELCOME"..............
Western Spain or Portugal are good though.... figure as its a holiday... go for the area that supplies the tempretures you prefer.... Summer sun or Autumnal cool.

I don't know these area's at all. Can you recommend any particular city?
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Old 27-10-2010, 18:13   #11
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I'll second the ASA. Go down to the Islands and take the week course, will get you all 4 tickets. Then charter for another week, or two. By the time that's over you'll be halfway competent sailors.
I've had several people recommend the Caribbean. I've bareboated there in the past so I know there are loads of boats, and anyone with a boat will be willing to teach, but I'm hoping to get some names, either a specific company, or even better yet, an individual that specializes in teaching.

I fly airplanes for a living, and while I know a lot of very good pilots, I only know a couple that are excellent instructors. I really respect people that have the ability to teach. That is what I am hoping to find.
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Old 03-11-2010, 13:08   #12
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BVI Cat Livaboard School

My Fiance and I took the Fairwinds Sailing School week long livaboard Instant Bareboater course in the BVI last Fall. Spent a week on a 43' Leopard and got 4 ASA certifications. As far as a first taste of Cats and livaboard, along with the certs to rent a cat anywhere in the world, it was great. Not much more expensive than a weeks vacation, but their is a fair amount of pretty dry course material (sent in advance) you need to learn.
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Old 08-11-2010, 12:47   #13
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Learning to Sail/Cruise

I am an ASA instructor and have taught in the Caribbean as well as raced a lot and done a little cruising. Learning is an adventure. You get a lot with experience, and a lot with books and study materials. Then a good instructor balances those for each and every student. In a live aboard classroom situation (which I am very fond of in particular) going directly from one to another works great. If you're thinking about coming to the Caribbean, let me know. With sailing schools/instructors (Like anything else); there is the Good, the Bad and the Ugly!
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Old 08-11-2010, 13:40   #14
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dang, mark--ye just make tooo darned much sense...
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