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post #1 of Old 12-30-2008 Thread Starter
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Charter with a crew or do a weeklong 'school'?

Hi all,

I figure the fastest way to get up the curve is to get extended time on a boat. With that in mind, I am looking at a charter for a week in the Whitsundays sometime early next year (well, 2009, we are almost 'next year' now!).

The question is, which would be better...

1) charter a boat with a captain and just go on a 'cruise' but then try and learn as much as possible on the way

2) charter a boat which is part of an official course (RYA in this case) for a week and then actually have a specified schedule/objective set

Now, I am pretty sure the second would be better from a learning point of view but of course, would be a lot less of a vacation for both the wife and I. My concern here being rather than an introduction to the fun side of sailing it feels like work and hence kills some of the best parts of cruising. In order to keep the plan on track, I think I want to keep things easy going for a first trip but am curious what the thoughts are here. Maybe these course trips are not just all 'work'.

Another question - does it really matter much if you learned on a monohull (which the one with courses I have found only has) but plan on owning a catamaran down the road? Sails are sails and ropes are ropes right? It isn't rocket science after all????



One other option - it seems in the Whitsundays that you can charter a boat and have a day sail person come along to get you going. Crazily, it seems they can then leave you to your own devices if you so choose - I assume that would mean a lot of motor sailing! The idea of getting out on our own would be daunting but also vastly more appealing from a 'vacation' point of view as well as giving a feel for what it would really be like to live on a boat as a couple. I gather you can hire this day sail person to stick around for more than a day if you want to pay and then do your own thing. I sort of like this idea but also know it likely wouldn't teach me nearly as much as the other options. Thoughts here? Definitely sounds like a better vacation but not as good of a learning one.

Last edited by yellowwducky; 12-30-2008 at 11:58 PM. Reason: thought of bonus question!
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