Off the beaten track: sailing the Balearics

Jul 06 2013

Off the beaten track: sailing the Balearics

Spain is famous for great food, wine and culture; and for those seeking warm weather and fun in the sun, the Balearics are just the ticket. If crowded resort towns and beaches sound too hectic, why not get off the beaten track and charter a yacht for your Spanish holiday?

• The country features two of the longest stretches of coastline in Europe, making it one of the top sailing destinations in the world. The Balearic Islands in particular are some of the most sought-after places to visit- they are truly a feast for the senses!

• Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera are the largest of the archipelago, and all offer beautiful sailing experiences for both seasoned and novice sailors. Hiring a yacht allows you to slip away and enjoy the true essence of these rich and varied islands. Imagine the luxury of rising each morning to the gentle rocking of the waves and enjoying your morning coffee along with a beautiful Spanish sunrise. Days can be spent sailing from port to port and taking in incredible ocean vistas.

• The position of the islands enjoys very favourable local winds. There are also plenty of natural coves and inlets for exploring, dropping anchor and of course swimming and sunbathing. Mallorca for example has stunning aquamarine waters and numerous places that are only accessible by sea. Avoid the busy resorts and visit charming villages by boat! If you’re wondering about the feasibility of chartering a yacht and sailing in the Balearics, rest assured that it’s more accessible cost and skill-wise than many people think.

• Essentially you have three options for chartering a yacht in Spain. If you are an experienced sailor, or have one in your group, you can do a bareboat charter and plan to skipper the boat yourself. This requires an International Competence Certificate, or the equivalent to the RYA Day Skipper certification. For this option you’ll be planning your own itinerary, and reading weather patterns and sea conditions on your own.

• You can also take part in a flotilla charter – although this option also requires sailing certification, you’ll be setting off with a group, meaning you’ll have support when needed for things like mooring, charting a course and finding the most beautiful places to stop off. Flotillas are really what you make of them- you can plan to spend the majority of the time with the group, and enjoy dining and sight-seeing together. Or, set off on your own as much as possible.

• For those with no sailing experience, there is the option of a skippered charter in the Balearics. Here you’ll have a skipper to manage every aspect of the boat, leaving you free to relax and enjoy the ride!

Whichever option you choose, sailing in the Balearics offers an incomparable experience of sun, sea and adventure. To get off the beaten track, consider hiring a yacht.

Article by David Johns