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Explore the Isles of Scilly on a Traditional Sailing Ship

The Isles of Scilly are part of Cornwall, but have an island culture and climate shaped by the Atlantic Ocean and warm Gulf stream that flows past the islands. Sail a magnificent sailing ship that is part of Britain's maritime heritage to this granite archipelago off Lands End. The islands and reefs are separated by deep blue channels slowly reconnect as glittering white beaches emerge with the falling tide. Home to artists, gig rowers and curious wildlife they make the perfect summer beach combing holiday.

Embark
Tue, 20-08-2019 - 17:00
Newlyn
Disembark
Sun, 25-08-2019 - 10:00
Newlyn
Duration
5 Nights
Vessel
Irene
Voyage No.
IR200819

Berths and voyage availability

TYPE: 2 Berth Ensuite Cabin Per Person. AVAILABILITY: Fully booked. PRICE: 745 GBP. BOOK NOW
TYPE: Double Bed Cabin for 2 People - Per Person. AVAILABILITY: Fully booked. PRICE: 894 GBP. BOOK NOW

Irene - Isles of Scilly from Newlyn on a Traditional Trading Ketch

IDEAL VOYAGE FOR...

Join the professional crew of Irene for a five night voyage across to the Isles of Scilly. On this voyage you can be experienced or a complete novice. Irene is a beautiful ship to sail, the friendly crew will make you feel at ease and the food will be amazing. This Isles of Scilly is one of the most breathtaking places to visit and you will be sure to want to return on another Classic Sailing adventure.  This stunning archipelago of islands provide the perfect get away for those who enjoy deserted beaches, stunning wildlife and scenery. There will be plenty of opportunity to flex the muscles with the sailing, to helm the ship or just to sit back and let the peace and quiet of a traditional sailing voyage carry you away.

VOYAGE HIGHLIGHTS

  • Fantastic sailing from Newlyn to the Isles of Scilly 
  • Explore the stunning islands and un-spoilt anchorages of the Isles of Scilly
  • Wonderful Food cooked by the resident Chef
  • Spectacular Scenery and Wildlife
  • Comfortable and Spacious 2 Berth Cabins with en-suite
  • Luxury Double Cabin Available
Irene at anchor
Irene at anchor

FULL VOYAGE DESCRIPTION

This archipelago of granite islands will take your breath away with their natural beauty and island hopping on an eye-catching boat will provide you with images you will always treasure. The offshore passage from Newlyn means the Scillies lie just a quick hop across the water, an adventure where you will have opportunity to haul up the sails, trim the jib and helm the ship.

On a sailing voyage we never use the word itinerary, as skippers will always be aiming for the best sailing and shore landings for the forecast and most idyllic or sheltered anchors and ports. They are as keen as you to include some of the highlights described below, but you have to go with Mother Nature, not fight her. Whilst Newlyn is as close as you can get to the Scillies on mainland Britain, it can be a challenging stretch of water as your destination is out there in the Atlantic Ocean. There is no protection from any land it the wind blows from the South through to the North West so you can get ocean swell. The description below is based on what we think might be possible, based on past trips, or experience, but nothing is guaranteed on a sailing voyage. There is no single port or anchorage in the Scillies that offers shelter from all wind directions. If a summer gale makes your destination untenable for the whole voyage then Irene's skipper will aim to seek out alternative sailing grounds on mainland Cornwall.

The thrill of spotting the Isles of Scilly when this fascinating archipelago first appears over the horizon never goes away, however many times you visit. Choosing and making your destination in the Scillies is greatly cherished because not only do you arrive in style under sail but you have been part of the journey, your effort and team work has made it possible. There are five inhabited islands and countless uninhabited ones to explore. Each island has its distinct characteristics. Scilly also boasts an incredible ancient history and archaeology, alongside sweeping sea views and rugged undeveloped coasts. 

Irene

Setting Sail

Setting sail from Newlyn in Cornwall, you will make the 35 mile crossing to The Isles of Scilly in around seven hours, passing Land’s End and the famous Wolf Rock lighthouse.  Depending on wind direction, we will moor off the island or Tresco or St Mary’s.  The schedule once you are at the Scillies will be determined by you, If you’d like Irene will take you on a sail to visit a different island or can even do to a circuit of all of them so that you can genuinely say ’I’ve been round the Scillies’!  Alternatively, you can spend another day exploring one of the islands from the land. There’s no shortage of entertainment available. The final day will see us return to the mainland.  If the prevailing winds are in the normal direction, this will be a relaxing downwind sail giving a fabulous opportunity for wildlife spotting or catching up on some early spring sunshine if we’re lucky enough to get some.  We’ll arrive in Newlyn in late afternoon or early evening for a final meal on board. The following day, you will be provided with breakfast before leaving the ship around 10:00 and making your way home, or continuing with your holiday in fabulous Cornwall.

Irene

Deserted anchorages 

Irene has a big ships windlass and a lot of chain so she can anchor in places where other smaller boats cannot, including many spots in St Mary's Sound where the gig rowing takes place. She only has a underwater draft of 2.5m so she can also get into many of the yacht anchorages. The Cove on St Agnes with its disappearing sandy causeway; Old Grimsby or St Helens Pool under the sweep of Round Island lighthouse; the fjord like passage between Tresco and Bryher; The bustle of Hugh Town harbour; or chill out amongst the uninhabited Eastern Isles with only seals and Peregrine Falcons for company. The white glittering sands are reminiscent of the Seychelles, the turquoise waters are crystal clear, but the water temperature is refreshingly British! It is a paradise for divers so if you are into snorkelling please feel free to bring masks and wetsuits. Exploring ashore is a key part of the holiday with tropical Tresco Abbey Gardens to visit, or you can wander lonely as a cloud over purple heathland or beach comb amongst the oystercatchers.

Irene Saloon

WINDS, WAVES & WEATHER

On a sailing voyage we never use the word itinerary, as skippers will always be aiming for the best sailing and shore landings for the forecast and most idyllic or sheltered anchors and ports. They are as keen as you to include some of the highlights described below, but you have to go with Mother Nature, not fight her. The description above is based on what we think might be possible based on past trips and experience.

HANDS ON HOLIDAYS

Whether you are an experienced sailor or a complete beginner, the professional crew will train you to be guest crew from the moment you arrive, with the intention that everybody works together to sail the ship. The common thread to all Classic Sailing holidays is ‘Hands on’ participation on ships that use ropes, blocks and tackles and ‘people power’ to set sail.

SAILING STYLE & LIFE ON BOARD

We cater for a wide range of ages and physical abilities and how much you are expected to do varies a bit between vessels. See the vessel tab above which explains all about the ‘sailing style’ and what to expect in terms of hands on participation. There is a lot of information about day to day life, the ships facilities and accommodation on the vessel pages.

AGILITY & FITNESS

Every customer sailing with us will need to fill in basic medical questions on their booking application. If you are not sure if your current level of fitness and agility are up to a voyage, then please ring the Classic Sailing Office on 01872 58 00 22 and we can chat through your concerns and possibly find options that might suit you better.

WHAT’S INCLUDED

  • Skipper & professional crew
  • Personal Safety Equipment
  • Sailing Instruction
  • All meals, snacks and refreshments
  • Port and landing fees
  • Linen and duvets
  • Waterproofs
  • Third Party liability insurance

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED

  • Travel to Joining Port
  • Travel from end port
  • Alcoholic Drinks
  • Towels
  • Personal Travel Insurance 

 

 

Newlyn, Cornwall

Latest port updates

The address for the Strand in Newlyn is; Strand, Newlyn, TR18 5HW. Take a note of the ship's phone number sent in your confirmation in case you cannot see your vessel. 

How to get here

By Road & Parking

The car park on in the harbour is only available for a month and costs around £35. You can book and pay for for the month before your arrival, even if you only use it for a week. The number to call to arrange this is 01736 362 523. Just explain that you are joining the sailing vessel Irene. 

There is also a long stay car park called St Peter's Hill, you can view the location of the car park on the map here and read more about the cost on the council website here. 

If you cannot find parking in Newlyn, then Penzance is not far away and is serviced with many long stay car parks. It is about a 30 minute walk from Penzance to Newlyn, but you can also catch the train or bus. 

Rail & transfers

Penzance is the last stop if you are heading to the South West by train, and it is on the mainline to/from London Euston. From the station, you can either take a taxi or take a public bus from the station. Exeter has good rail links to most major towns. From Exeter St David's Rail Station, there are direct trains to Penzance which takes around 3 hours. The train station is 1.5 miles away from Newlyn harbour (or a 30 minute walk.) 

Places to stay, Things to do, Travel companions

Newlyn Harbour is a proper working fishing port with over 40 acres of harbour, and is an interesting place to start or finish any voyage. The industry is one of the most important in the county, contributing millions of pounds to the Cornish economy each year. All kinds of fishing vessels can be seen in the harbour- beam trawlers, long liners, crabbers and even small open boats used for hand-lining for mackerel in the Bay. 

The Newlyn Fish Festival is held on August Bank Holiday Monday each year, when stalls and cafés take over the quays for  the day.    

Classic Sailing invites to a private facebook group where you can connect with other sailors who have booked with us. If you want to find a travel companion or share ideas on accommodation options before your trip, then posting a request on this is this is a safer option than our public facebook page. (due to data protection laws we cannot pass on contact details for other sailors on your trip directly)

Your travel responsibilities

Passports and Visas***

*** “Classic Sailing cannot cover every possible visa scenario as customers may have dual nationality, or be working or living in a country different from their passport nationality.

To avoid any last-minute stress, we advise you to contact the local embassies of the countries you will be visiting in your country to find out which travel documents you need. Please start early, obtaining a visa can take some time. It is your responsibility to have the right travel documents for all countries you visit during your stay on board.

If you plan to travel onto other destinations please check you have a right to stay in the country too as you may be classed as arriving in a country as ‘yacht sailors in transit’ and not have same rights as a tourist.

Even if you don’t need a visa, please check your passport expiry date is sufficient for country entry requirements.”***

Travel, Health, Vaccinations and Safety

Security for tourists in certain countries, regions or cities can change rapidly. Please check with your own Government Foreign Office for their latest advice for travellers.

UK travellers check under specific destination at https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice

Likewise we suggest you check if there are any recommended or required vaccinations well before departure as some take more than one jab. For UK travellers check out ‘Fit for Travel’ http://www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk/destinations

Travel Insurance

It is compulsory that you have travel insurance to sail on any of our voyages, but you do not have to buy the insurance from us. If you purchase your own please make sure it covers sailing as an activity, and racing if you are racing crew. Most our voyages sail further than 3 miles from the shore so check that you will be covered sailing outside territorial waters.

Classic Sailing recommend Topsail Insurance http://www.classic-sailing.co.uk/travel-insurance They have policies designed for sailing crew on yachts or tall ships, whether you want an annual policy or a single trip. These are suitable for UK based sailors but the page also has links to alternative companies and recommended insurance companies for non UK citizens.

Newlyn, Cornwall

Latest port updates

The address for the Strand in Newlyn is; Strand, Newlyn, TR18 5HW. Take a note of the ship's phone number sent in your confirmation in case you cannot see your vessel. 

How to get here

By Road & Parking

The car park on in the harbour is only available for a month and costs around £35. You can book and pay for for the month before your arrival, even if you only use it for a week. The number to call to arrange this is 01736 362 523. Just explain that you are joining the sailing vessel Irene. 

There is also a long stay car park called St Peter's Hill, you can view the location of the car park on the map here and read more about the cost on the council website here. 

If you cannot find parking in Newlyn, then Penzance is not far away and is serviced with many long stay car parks. It is about a 30 minute walk from Penzance to Newlyn, but you can also catch the train or bus. 

Rail & transfers

Penzance is the last stop if you are heading to the South West by train, and it is on the mainline to/from London Euston. From the station, you can either take a taxi or take a public bus from the station. Exeter has good rail links to most major towns. From Exeter St David's Rail Station, there are direct trains to Penzance which takes around 3 hours. The train station is 1.5 miles away from Newlyn harbour (or a 30 minute walk.) 

Places to stay, Things to do, Travel companions

Newlyn Harbour is a proper working fishing port with over 40 acres of harbour, and is an interesting place to start or finish any voyage. The industry is one of the most important in the county, contributing millions of pounds to the Cornish economy each year. All kinds of fishing vessels can be seen in the harbour- beam trawlers, long liners, crabbers and even small open boats used for hand-lining for mackerel in the Bay. 

The Newlyn Fish Festival is held on August Bank Holiday Monday each year, when stalls and cafés take over the quays for  the day.    

Classic Sailing invites to a private facebook group where you can connect with other sailors who have booked with us. If you want to find a travel companion or share ideas on accommodation options before your trip, then posting a request on this is this is a safer option than our public facebook page. (due to data protection laws we cannot pass on contact details for other sailors on your trip directly)

Your travel responsibilities

Passports and Visas***

*** “Classic Sailing cannot cover every possible visa scenario as customers may have dual nationality, or be working or living in a country different from their passport nationality.

To avoid any last-minute stress, we advise you to contact the local embassies of the countries you will be visiting in your country to find out which travel documents you need. Please start early, obtaining a visa can take some time. It is your responsibility to have the right travel documents for all countries you visit during your stay on board.

If you plan to travel onto other destinations please check you have a right to stay in the country too as you may be classed as arriving in a country as ‘yacht sailors in transit’ and not have same rights as a tourist.

Even if you don’t need a visa, please check your passport expiry date is sufficient for country entry requirements.”***

Travel, Health, Vaccinations and Safety

Security for tourists in certain countries, regions or cities can change rapidly. Please check with your own Government Foreign Office for their latest advice for travellers.

UK travellers check under specific destination at https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice

Likewise we suggest you check if there are any recommended or required vaccinations well before departure as some take more than one jab. For UK travellers check out ‘Fit for Travel’ http://www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk/destinations

Travel Insurance

It is compulsory that you have travel insurance to sail on any of our voyages, but you do not have to buy the insurance from us. If you purchase your own please make sure it covers sailing as an activity, and racing if you are racing crew. Most our voyages sail further than 3 miles from the shore so check that you will be covered sailing outside territorial waters.

Classic Sailing recommend Topsail Insurance http://www.classic-sailing.co.uk/travel-insurance They have policies designed for sailing crew on yachts or tall ships, whether you want an annual policy or a single trip. These are suitable for UK based sailors but the page also has links to alternative companies and recommended insurance companies for non UK citizens.

Irene

If you want to sail a wooden beauty and an iconic example of Britain's rich maritime history then Irene of Bridgewater is the real thing. Built in 1907 to carry cargoes under sail, Irene is one of the last West Country trading ketches surviving and a fine seagoing ship. She has proved herself by crossing the Atlantic several times, featured in numerous movies, entertained the rich and famous in the Caribbean and spent decades as a popular charter vessel. In 2012 Irene carried fair trade cargoes to Brazil and her working role keeps evolving, giving her adventure holidays a modern twist with an excellent reputation for good hospitality.

AWARDS  Irene voted 'National Historic Ships Flagship of the Year in 2015' 

Statistics

 

  • Length overall: 124 ft 
  • Length on deck: 85 ft 

 

  • Year built: 1907
  • Vessel type/rig: Two masted ketch 

 

  • Guest berths: 10
  • Crew berths: 5

 

The Experts View: What Irene Does Best 

Irene of Bridgewater under full sail

Relaxed Exploration or Multi Activity Adventure

You can chose between an Irene voyage where you explore at a more relaxed pace , or a journey making passage or multi activity holiday where a higher level of teamwork and hands on sailing is required. Irene is a perfectly self sufficient expedition ship allowing you go from anchorage to anchorage in locations close to nature. There are even multi activity voyages with sailing and kayaking.

Romance of the Sea - Cabins Perfect for Couples

Classic Sailing provides a huge range of options for solo travellers which is very much part of our ethos.  Irene welcomes individual bookings but she also offers a great holiday option for couples.  The ships accommodation comprises of 5 twin/double cabins with a private en suite toilet and shower room.  Each cabin has a double bed as a lower berth and an upper bunk berth. We would never put 3 people in any cabin.This gives the flexibility to have two individuals of the same sex share a cabin with a bunk each, or provide some romantic privacy for a couple, with the upper berth not used.  If you want a really special treat, the owner's stateroom can be booked with even more room and a double bed.

double bed on Irene in the owners stateroom can be booked for a bit more
double bed on Irene in the owners stateroom can be booked for a bit more

 

Watching the World Gig Championships on Irene

 WHAT TO EXPECT

Style of Sailing

The high staff to guest ratio (5:10) simply allows you to get more out of your holiday but also a chance to just soak up the atmosphere and relax whilst the crew and the more eager guests keep Irene sailing.  There is now a distinction between two styles of Irene voyages to suit your preferred level of 'hands on' participation - 'Irene Exploration Voyages' for relaxed holidays where you can do as much or as little as you like or 'Irene Adventure Voyages' where more hands on sailing participation is expected and the themes tend to be a bit more physical like the chance to try other active sports like kayaking.

The exploration voyages are trips like West Country tours or Island hopping in the Scillies where there is generally no pressure to get involved in  all the sail handling unless you want to. The ships crew is more than capable of sailing Irene if you chose to relax and enjoy the scenery drifting past, but they will be thrilled to show you the ropes too.

The adventure voyages still offer Irene's amazing hospitality and food, but these voyages are on a mission to have fun and your hands on participation is expected.  Whether it is standing a night watch on an offshore passage up the Irish Sea or paddling a kayak around Muck or Eigg in the Inner Hebrides.  No experience is needed as the crew or activity instructor will teach you the skills you need.

Anchor windlass

Life on Board

Irene's owners explain their interior design ethos for below decks:

'We’re proud to have kept Irene as traditional as possible above decks.  We are also very pleased that we’ve made her old cargo hold below decks substantially more accommodating and most certainly not traditional!   Our four standard cabins all have a double berth with a single bunk above and enjoy a private en-suite toilet and shower room.   Despite the three bunks, we’ll never put more than two guests in a cabin – this may be either a couple sharing the double or two single travellers in the bunks.'

There is also a state room which was built for the owners. Read more about Irene's accommodation.

Irene has a tremendous reputation for the quality of her food.  We have a commercial standard galley and onboard chef to provide tasty, home cooked food to enjoy on deck and in our spacious saloon.  Breakfast, lunch and evening meal are provided along with refreshments and homemade cakes and snacks during the day.  A complimentary glass of wine is often included on the first evening. You are welcome to bring your own wine too. 

Irene under full sail

Saloon

Tall ship Irene's saloon

Below Decks

Cabin with Double Lower Berth

double cabin on Irene

Book the Owner's Stateroom

There is also a state room which was built for the owners. Owners Leslie and Pat are young at heart but not sailing on Irene as much as they used to, so the state room can usually be booked if you want a special treat. This is substantially larger than the standard cabins with a separate shower room, separate toilet and its own private companionway up to the deck. There is also a large heart shaped dining table in the cabin where you can enjoy a late night game of cards with friends after a day on the water and an interesting leather seat set into halfway up the hull which provides a fabulous place to enjoy your favourite book whilst Irene is heeled over to the wind.'

Professional Chef & Complimentary Wine

Irene has a tremendous reputation for the quality of her food. We have a commercial standard galley and onboard chef to provide tasty, home cooked food to enjoy on deck and in our spacious saloon. Breakfast, lunch and evening meal are provided along with refreshments and homemade cakes and snacks during the day. A complimentary glass of wine is sometimes served with dinner, you are welcome to bring your own bottle or two too. 

professional galley on Irene
professional galley on Irene

 

Irene Vessel Specification
Irene Vessel Specification

Vessel Specification 

Year Built/Restored 1907
Home Port Charlestown in Cornwall, UK
Length Overall 124 feet
Length on deck 85 feet
Beam 21 feet
Draft 10’6
Guest Crew Overnight 10
Professional Crew 5
Max for day sails 15
Ships boats 1
240v from generators

Irene - Meet the Captain & Crew

Irene crew consists of skipper, mate, deckhand, chef, steward/host

Many of you may already know Ieuan Finniear (bearded left) he has been sailing Irene for many years now as both skipper, but previously as 1st mate. Originally from Mid-Wales, Ieuan spent most of his childhood in France so is also bi-lingual. 
Supporting him are experienced sailors David Sermon (standing up at the back) and Martha Priest (hiding by the staysail), both returning for another year as 1st mate along with Spanish born Alvaro Moratalla (sitting farthest back) coming back for his second season as deckhand.

Of course, there are some new faces too. Experienced seafarer, Jens Marklund (front and center) from Sweden joins Irene as relief skipper this year.

Daniel Haan (behind Ieuan) from Germany and fluent in five languages along with maritime wildlife expert, Vicky Inglis (next to Daniel) are also both looking forward to their first seasons as deckhand too!

Irene crew
Irene crew

Irene's Captain - Ieuan Finniear

Ieuan (pronounced Yian) moved up from mate to Captain on Irene in 2017 and has been with the company ever since. Multi-talented Ieuan hails originally from Mid-Wales but he spent most of his childhood in France, so is bi-lingual. A little known fact about him is that he can play the harp....but we can't fit it on Irene. 

Ieuan Finniear - Irene's Captain

 

Current sailing grounds

Irene Kit List

Irene Stern Name Board Sail and Main Sheet

Kit List for Irene

Included

  • Sailing instruction 
  • Safety Equipment (Life jackets)
  • Waterproof jacket and trousers
  • All meals including refreshments throughout the day.
  • Bed linen, duvet, pillows. 

What's Not Included

  • Travel to and from the start and end port. 
  • Optional trips or tours taken ashore
  • Meals ashore (rarely taken)
  • Alcoholic Beverages, although wine with your evening meal is provided. 

What to bring

There is limited storage space on Irene so please pack all you belongings in a soft rucksack or bag.

  • Footwear: Shoes with a good grip e.g. trainers or sailing deck shoes. (Sandals are great for beaches but you do need toe protection for sailing). Irene has solid wood decks so waterproof walking boots are fine at sea in moderate winds and dry conditions and great for voyages where you might do some rough terrain walking like Scillies or Scotland voyages.
  • Rubber Boots or second pair of shoes for wet weather or getting in/out of dinghies. 
  • Swim suit & beach towel
  • Suntan lotion & sunglasses
  • Sun hat / warm hat, scarves, gloves
  • Clothes that dry quickly like fleeces and thermals. Mix of warm, waterproof & windproof layers. Wool jumpers are warm, even when wet, but can take a while to dry. Merino wool type shirts are good for under layers if sailing in colder climates.
  • Small rucksack for going ashore
  • Travel insurance documents/any travel tickets
  • Passport for French Voyages, Ireland or any 6 day voyage like Scillies where Brittany might be an alternative option. On French voyages Reciprocal Free Health Care Card for Europe.
  • Personal medicines/ spectacles/ seasick tablets –check which brand if you suffer from asthma or are on regular medication.
  • Camera/binoculars etc
  • Modest quantity of alcohol for evening meals if desired
  • You are welcome to bring musical instruments
Off

Irene - Reviews

Irene

.

Irene - Sail and Kayak 2 June 2019

Enjoy the Most

The crew were excellent, allowing us to assist in almost all of the sailing tasks, building up our confidence at the same time as being alert to doing the actions properly and safely. All done with good humour and intelligence and full explanations. So we all responded wanting to do as much as we could. The ambience of the boat was very congenial and friendly. We guests all got on well and the crew were very good company. 
We kayaked on 3 occasions, when  weather permitted and they were a highlight of a different sort...conditions were perfect and although I hadn't done it before , our instructor was excellent, combining kayaking with shoreline explorations.

Enjoy Least - Doesn't exist

Why do you sail?

I hadn't sailed before. I heard about Classic sailing from someone going on the Lord Nelson last year, and looked into it as an adventurous thing to do to celebrate my 70th. I like to be physically active, and the combination of trying sea kayaking in the Western Isles was a perfect combination. I was pleased we had a variety of weather, and mostly with a wind so we could be actively helping with the sails. The calm sunny days for kayaking came out of the blue and were perfect days between weathers.

Voyage Summary

Well done to the Skipper and crew, the chef and the kayak instructor, they were exceptionally good at their jobs, very personable and full of character

What did you enjoy the most?

The final day on Colonsay when we managed to fit in sea kayaking amongst thousands of sea birds, a picnic lunch in the sun on one beach, a walk back across the island and a barbeque supper on another beach!

The worst bits? –

The first day sailing from Oban to Jura was quite rough and very cold - the crew should have offered some sailing jackets and salopettes but we only got these later in the week by asking.

Classic Sailing has been re-assured by Irene that this oversight will not happen again, please accept our apologies for not providing the waterproofs sooner and without having to be asked for.

 

Why do your sail?

I love sailing and there is something special about doing everything manually on Irene and getting some feeling for what it must have been like back in the early 20th century when she was a working boat.  Also, sailing on a large old wooden boat is a very different experience to the smaller modern glass-fibre yachts which is where I have done all my other sailing.

 

Voyage Summary

This trip was advertised as a trip to the Small Isles but because of the wind and tide conditions we ended up going the other way to Jura and Islay.  Perhaps it could be made clearer that the Scottish voyages are likely to be changed according to the conditions.  It was also supposed to offer a choice of sea kayaking or island exploration but there was only one guide/instructor for both activities so it wasn't really possible to have one group doing kayaking while another group went ashore.  That said it was my first experience of sea kayaking and I really enjoyed it - the equipment provided kept us warm and dry and our guide Tim was excellent and took some amazing photos which he shared with us all.  It was my second trip on Irene (which is a beautiful boat in every sense) and it was good to be reunited with Dave (second in command) and Keith (wonderful chef)! Ian M June 2019

Irene June 2019, Jonathan P

Please accept our apologies for the failure to get to the Small Isles. As you mentioned the wind and weather conditions did not make this sensible.

On ALL our voyages we state the following –

On a sailing voyage we never use the word itinerary, as skippers will always be aiming for the best sailing and shore landings for the forecast and most idyllic or sheltered anchors and ports. They are as keen as you to include some of the highlights described below, but you have to go with Mother Nature, not fight her.

 

Online Review
The crew was fantastic!

What did you think of the safety briefing?

Good

What did you think of the accommodation onboard?

Excellent

Did you have enough personal attention?

Excellent

Did you think of the Captain/Skipper and the paid crew?

Excellent

What did you think of the food quality?

Excellent

How was the sailing?

Just right

Did you have any rough weather?

None

Did you feel the voyage had?

A good mix of sailing and ashore.

What was the best bit?

The crew was fantastic! They clearly enjoyed what they were doing, they shared and taught us and had us working as a team day 1. They were all great, but Alex, our chef was fabulous. The meals were top notch, so much variety and an incredible attention to detail. Jens our captain was so easy going and friendly and sharing, made us feel like part of the family.

What was the worst bit?

A little too much motoring due to wind conditions some days, couldn't be helped if we were going to stay on schedule. (The lack of wind also made it difficult, says Adam at Classic Sailing.)

Why do you sail? 

I enjoy the quiet and the outdoors.

Irene 21st June 2019 Leonardo K.

 

Sail, Paddle & Walk Voyage

What was the best bit?

All of it, even though there was bad weather that limited the amount of canoeing we could do it still didn't ruin the event. l went on this trip as it combined, canoeing, sailing and some hiking too, so what was there not to enjoy.

 

What was the worst bit?

The end of the trip..

 

Why do you sail?

I enjoy sailing as it gets you involved also gives you a good feeling when after all the hard work and your sailing along at a few knots as a result of that hard work, also you are learning all the time as there is always something that needs doing.

 

Any other comments

Irene's crew were great, the Skipper had a real calm outlook that clearly comes from his years of sailing, the second mate Dave, who clearly has so much knowledge of Irene and throughout the trip was always looking out for crew and guests safety. The Deck hands Vicky & Dan were also great ensuring we were safe and assisting us in all we done, they also done a wonderful BBQ on the beach for us, the chef Keith, his food was really nice with so much attention in making our meal time enjoyable. Tim Hamlet had so much knowledge in his field and shared that knowledge with us whenever we were canoeing and hiking.. The crew were a great mix as were the our guests... Please pass on my thanks to them. - By Gary C. Guest Crew member Summer 2019

Gary C customer feedback photo from Sail, Paddle, Walk voyage on Irene
Gary C customer feedback photo from Sail, Paddle, Walk voyage on Irene
Irene in Scotland with Kayaks

You enjoyed –

Kayaking through waterfalls and around secluded bays. Being amongst an amazing variety of flora and fauna including a sea eagle, oyster catchers, seals, porpoises and minke whales. We foraged for food on one outing and enjoyed seaweed, sea thrift, mussels and periwinkles for dinner.

But not –

A frustrating day of rain and no wind.

Why sail –

Getting close to nature, often in remote areas not easily accessible otherwise.

A new place to explore almost every day. The trips I have chosen have been a great mixture of both sailing and time ashore in interesting destinations. Sharing the adventure with interesting and friendly shipmates and free spirited crew. A welcome break from Brexit, news, TV and wifi! Spectacular seas and starry skies.

Summary –

I had a great week in the Hebrides on board Irene. Our skipper made the trip interesting and fun -  always in good humour, very intelligent and hugely capable. Keith the cook worked tirelessly to provide us with lovely meals and Vicky and Dan were friendly and helpful. Cag, our kayak instructor was a joy - full of energy and extremely knowledgeable.

Thanks for a fabulous week - really great memories.

The Isles of Scilly

The best bit - The sail back from the Scillies was spectacular.  We had a perfect wind to enable us to do a broad reach straight to the Cornish coast and reached 8 knots at times.  The sun was shining and we were also joined by a large pod of dolphins that swam along with us for several minutes - a very special experience!

The worst bit - The chosen anchorage on the first night was a bit exposed to the swell and made sleep a bit difficult at times.

Why do you sail?

I have always loved sailing but experience to date has all been on modern yachts of less than 40 feet.  This was a chance to try something different and get a taste of what it must have been like 100 years ago when Irene was a commercial cargo boat.  It was a fantastic experience and one I am keen to repeat.

In summary - The crew were very young (relative to the 'guests') but were all very professional when it came to the sailing and boat handling and they inspired confidence.  They were also happy to accommodate our requests and answer our many questions. 

Jonathan P Aug 18 Isles of Scilly

Relax!

Hannah, the skipper, was a tribute to the world of sailing. She is clearly very competent and knowledgeable and instilled confidence whilst maintaining a relaxed and fun atmosphere. I therefore felt very safe and was able to relax and enjoy my first adventure at sea. I very much enjoyed the kayaking and Mike was also very knowledgable and accommodating. Lotte, the chef, was first class

Whisky, Wildlife & Waves

What was the best bit?

The skipper knew his job thoroughly, as did the mate and they very ably supported by the crew. They went out of their way to ensure that everybody could get the most out of their holiday. The food was superlative. This was one of my best weeks’ holiday ever. John H, Whisky Wildlife and waves, June 2018

What was the worst bit?

Not long enough! Door in the head didn't fully open due to the size, would have been better to have consetina door.

Why do you sail?

Never sailed before so the mix of walk, kayak and sail was very attractive

Any other comments

6 days is too short to make the most if the environment" 

Julie H. Customer Feedback Photo
Julie H. Customer Feedback Photo
Falmouth Taster

What was the best bit?
"Hauling up the mainsail for the first time and feeling her filling with wind."

What was the Worst Bit?
"There wasn't a worst bit. Trying to store the foresail in the evening while bouncing around on the netting, but I still enjoyed it."

Why do you sail?
"I used to sail when young, but only inland and I wanted to go out onto the sea after reading about it so often. I'm in my 70s now and want to make the most of my body while I still can. Father and grandfather were in the Royal Navy and it feels like I'm continuing the tradition" 

Any other comments?
"Although we caught what were probably the only 3 days good weather down in Falmouth in April and so had no wind, the skipper still gave us a good sailing experience. All the crew were great, full of good humour and experience even though they are young - well, under 30, which is young for me. The cook, Alex, was attentive to my dietary needs and his meals surpassed my expectations." 

Jackie W. Guest Feedback Photo
Jackie W. Guest Feedback Photo
Five Stars!

I had the best trip of my life on Irene, from Oban to Newlyn. We arrived on Friday and have just been to have a last look at her before going home tomorrow . I'm totally in love. With a ship! Fabulous crew and food and sailing companions and pre-sail admin and everything. Fiona F ***** 5 stars

Seriously good whiskies!

"What a week of amazing experiences – incredible crew (thank you!), sailing and food.  Topped off by seriously good whiskies! Heaven!  KA 3rd June 2017

Wonderful!

 "Wonderful few days with such a welcoming and friendly crew.  Excellent food, weather and company.  Looking forward to seeing you all in Bristol next year.  Thanks for everything. " EH 11th May 2017

Thank you!

"A thousand thanks for the wonderful time and fantastic food.  Most of all, thanks to Irene for the pleasure of her company." CB 21st May 2017

Video Feedback below from Andrew E sailing from Dartmouth to Oban on Irene. 

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