Whether you’ll climb aboard a dinghy, a luxury yacht or an adventure vessel, a sailing holiday will give you an experience like no other. From the lush seaside resort of Salcombe to the rugged Kyles of Bute in Scotland, the UK has an abundance of sailing destinations that are worth trying. If chartering a boat and sailing in some of the most scenic waters of the UK has been on your travel wishlist for a while, now is the time to get some inspiration from our top sailing destinations.
We have been providing specialist Sailing Travel Insurance for over 25 years to UK citizens. Our comprehensive policy can protect you to sail in both the UK and across the globe.
Some sailing enthusiasts compare Salcombe with the world’s most beautiful yachting destinations such as the West Indies, Australia and the Mediterranean. From the wonderful wildlife and stunning cliff silhouettes to the variety of golden beaches, our shores are undoubtfully respected rivals.
You can easily get involved in Salcombe’s favourite maritime activities – dinghy sailing and racing. Fleets of dinghies are a regular sight heading out along the estuary and into the channel.
Cowes, Isle of Wight
If you are a keen sailor, you might have tried sailing around the Isle of Wight either in by the wind or the power of your motorboat. Separated from the mainland by the Solent, it is known for its 57 miles of breath-taking coastline, popular tourist attractions like Osborne House and The Needles, as well as the island numerous events and summer festivals.
Its popularity is showcased each year when the prestigious Cowes Week Regatta is hosted. The event has been running since 1826, with up to 1,000 boats competing in 40 different handicaps. It is the oldest and largest annual sailing regatta in the World, and an iconic feature of the British sporting calendar. If you are keen to join, you can bring your own vessel or use the hire service on the island.
Why not try: The Isle of Wight is also a preferred destination for surfing and bodyboarding and there are some amazing spots to do it with sandy shores and good waves in the right seas.
Windermere, Lake District
Lake Windermere is another popular choice for sailing due to the stunning scenery of the Lake District as well as being able to stop off at the numerous pretty villages around the lakeside. You can learn to sail, try traditional or luxury sailing experiences with a range of packages including brunch on the water or four course dinner and fine wine.
Why not try: The Lake District is an action-packed spot for all types of holidaymakers. From family adventure days and water sports to rock climbing and mountaineering – you will be spoiled with choice.
Kiles of Brute, Scotland
The Kyles of Bute is synonymous with sailing in Scotland. It offers the most spectacular coastline and a great variety of wildlife to enjoy. Tighnabruaich and Kames are popular weekend cruising destinations, as sailors have many sheltered anchorages to choose from, both on the Bute side and along the mainland. Don’t miss out on the feral goats and resident birdlife on your adventures!
Why not try: You can try your hand at fishing at Tighnabruaich. There are three stocked lochs set amidst wild and beautiful scenery where there is fly fish, brown and rainbow trout.
New Quay, Wales
The stunning Ceredigion Coast is a heaven for sailors and water sport enthusiasts. Enjoy the stunning views of towering cliffs, golden sands, tranquil bays and hidden coves on your boat trip. You’ll even have a chance to catch a mackerel or two for your tea! Adrenalin seekers can experience zipping across Newquay Bay at speeds of up to 40 knots.
Tresaith beach is ideal for windsurfing, dinghy and catamaran sailing, and the Cardigan Bay Watersports Centre in New Quay are some of the most popular.
The annual Cardigan Bay Regatta, which has been held since the 1870s, is an amazing three-day event to join. It is held every summer with sailing races for all classes and shore based, swimming races as well as fun activities for the whole family.
So why not sail away this summer and enjoy a fabulous experience on the water! From beginners to seasoned sailors, there is an adventure waiting for everyone at all these magnificent UK sailing destinations.
If you’re thinking of adding a serious dose of adrenaline to your every day, our blog World’s Craziest Extreme Sports might be worth reading.