Cruisers Forum

Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 16-09-2017, 07:31   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Mississippi
Boat: Tartan 372
Posts: 83
Anchorage Options/costs?

When those that are sailing to far off destinations, or even staying where your at, how does that work as far as anchored, mooring or slip? Can you just drop anchor anywhere, within reason? What about mooring, slip options? Regulatory issues? Any reading materials out there to answer a beginners questions?
Tcubed66 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-09-2017, 08:01   #2
Registered User
Mike OReilly's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Good question
Boat: Rafiki 37
Posts: 13,411
Re: Anchorage Options/costs?

The very general rule is you can anchor anywhere as long as you are not obstructing other traffic or land-based facilities. Obviously, it should also be a safe place to anchor (good protection, good holding, etc.).

Now, this is only the general rule. There are restrictions that can be imposed by local governments, or when the water bottom is actually owned privately. There can be other restrictions as well, but in general, you can anchor in places that are not impeding anyone else.

Moorings are a different matter. Each country (and province or state) regulates them differently. From what Ive heard here on CF, the USA has stronger (and IMO, better) regs on the use of personal moorings compared to my home in Canada.

Slips are private or public. They are regulated by whomever owns/controls them.
Why go fast, when you can go slow.
Mike OReilly is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 16-09-2017, 08:26   #3
Registered User
Suijin's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Bumping around the Caribbean
Boat: Valiant 40
Posts: 4,626
Re: Anchorage Options/costs?

There are pros and cons to each option.

Anchoring requires evaluation of the location in terms of the bottom type, depth, protection from the wind, protection from waves, positioning relative to other boats, as well as the weather forecast. It also requires supervision. Leaving your boat unattended at anchor is not something to be done casually, without a very high degree of confidence that it will be there when you get back. You also have to be highly mindful of others who have anchored around you, that they are positioned in a way that they are not a threat to your boat and that they are secure. Advantages to anchoring are it's free, you have privacy (much of the time), you have a breeze over the boat, a great view, can go swimming, etc.

A mooring is halfway between anchoring and taking a slip, in many respects. You don't always know the quality of the mooring fittings, so some caution is required. Sometimes it's free, most of the time it's not. You're close to shore and services, groceries, etc.

A slip is obviously the most expensive. Downsides are lack of privacy, noise, potential for theft, and it can be hot and the boat not well ventilated. Upsides are convenience, not having to worry about the security of the boat for the most part, and generally better protection from weather.

In general I anchor where and when I can, and that's about 95% of how the boat spends it's nights. I'll pull into a marina after a long passage, to do some work on the boat or do a major resupply. There are also some places where the convenience of being at a dock given what you want to do ashore is just worth it.

A lot of US towns have city docks that are cheaper than commercial marinas, but with fewer amenities. I tend to pull into those when I can.

As Mike said there are varying regulations/laws/etc regarding anchorages and moorings from municipality to municipality, country to country. It's all over the map in fact.

If you're curious about anchoring, mooring, and slips in your area, take a look at the "live map" at You need to create an account but it's free. The map has icons for user submitted content on anchorages, moorings and slips. A review of it will give you some sense of what available.
Suijin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24-09-2017, 17:49   #4
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 1,076
Re: Anchorage Options/costs?

I'm pretty much the same.. After a very long passage, I grab a slip, hopefully at a community or police docks to just rest for a few days.. Then re-stock and do minor updates.. I've known people that were hard core sea salts that always anchored and paddled in and their sailboat didn't even have a motor.. Yikes.. Tons of respect from me, but wow, that is really doing it old school..
shadow is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24-09-2017, 23:50   #5
Registered User

Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Anguilla
Boat: CheoyLee Offshore 33
Posts: 644
Images: 1
Send a message via Skype™ to masonc
Re: Anchorage Options/costs?

Nevis doesn't allow anchoring anywhere, but provides inexpensive moorings. Other islands have similar requirements around marine parks. These restrictions are designed to prevent anchors damaging fragile coral reefs and grass beds. It's normally marked on the chart and described in the cruising guides.
masonc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-09-2017, 16:26   #6
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Mississippi
Boat: Tartan 372
Posts: 83
Re: Anchorage Options/costs?

Thanks for the replies. It looks like I need to do some research. Cruising guides? Will they give me directions or guidance on mooring, anchoring, or marinas? How current is the information?
Tcubed66 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-09-2017, 17:08   #7
Registered User
Sea Life's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Cruising
Boat: 42 Krogen #61
Posts: 128
Re: Anchorage Options/costs?

Try to narrow down geographically where you are going, then ask specific questions. Western Caribbean, anything goes except for Colombian islands, Eastern Caribbean, not so much. USA, varies greatly, not necessarily by law, but availability etc.
Captain Scott
Sea Life is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-09-2017, 17:36   #8
Registered User
rwidman's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: North Charleston, SC
Boat: Camano Troll
Posts: 5,098
Re: Anchorage Options/costs?

Cruising guides are a help as is Active Captain. There are also specific "anchoring guides" listing anchorages and details.
rwidman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2017, 17:13   #9
Registered User
maxingout's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Cruising
Boat: Privilege 39 Catamaran, Exit Only
Posts: 2,723
Re: Anchorage Options/costs?

I have always been able to find an anchorage sailing outside the USA. When I sailed from Turkey to Trinidad, I anchored out every night except for one night in the Gibraltar area in which I was in a Marina. It is possible to anchor out, but the cost of freedom is inconvenience as you may be a long way from where you would like to be (Stores and Marine supplies for example).
Dave -Sailing Vessel Exit Only
maxingout is offline   Reply With Quote


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Anchorage near Cape Canaveral JusDreaming Atlantic & the Caribbean 1 28-11-2007 17:17
Anchorage in the BVI ? videorov Atlantic & the Caribbean 4 26-11-2006 10:16
Another Free Anchorage Gone - How Do we Fight This?? markpj23 General Sailing Forum 145 01-10-2006 19:47
Miami Beach Anchorage Update GordMay Liveaboard's Forum 2 06-08-2005 13:11
Dinner Key Anchorage Cool Change General Sailing Forum 6 15-09-2003 09:16

Advertise Here

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 15:16.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2023, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2023, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.