December 7, 2021
St Vincent and the Grenadines is open to tourists and Horizon Yacht Charters are looking forward to welcoming our Canadian friends, old and new! You can fly from various locations in Canada via Barbados and then to St Vincent on InterCaribbean Airways or FlyOne and there are direct flights from Toronto with Air Canada on Mondays.
January 18, 2021
In Part I, Sheryl Shard ended the story at June and the start of Hurricane Season when they were once again joined by friends. This time it was Noel and Tracey Dinan, whose new shallow-draft Allures 49.5 was in build at the time, we headed north from the Exumas across the expanse of the Great Bahama Bank, dodging coral patches as we sailed to Eleuthera then Marsh Harbour, Great Abaco.
January 13, 2021
You likely aren’t quite ready to travel yet, but we have our fingers crossed that we can all fly soon. If that turns out to be during winter charter season or around the BVI Spring Regatta, you might take the opportunity to what you’ve long wanted to, fly direct to Beef Island.
September 28, 2020
I leaned my head back into the water and floated easily. Having spent my childhood playing in freshwater lakes in Ontario’s Cottage Country it always surprises me how buoyant one is in salt water. And this water was warm. I could get straight in. No dipping my toes tentatively and inching myself in for a “refreshing” dip.
July 21, 2020
NASSAU, Bahamas, July 19, 2020 – Due to the continued increase in COVID-19 cases in the United States, as well as an uptick in cases in The Bahamas, Prime Minister, The Most Hon. Dr. Hubert Minnis, has made the difficult decision to close borders to international commercial flights and commercial vessels carrying passengers from the United States.
February 24, 2020
We’ve just weighed anchor off Thatch Caye, a tiny island nuzzled by Caribbean waters flowing between the world’s second longest barrier reef and the mountainous coast of Belize to our west, and now we’re navigating a serpentine course through a crowded congregation of coral heads.
March 26, 2019
Earlier this winter it became all too apparent that I needed to get away. As a twice a week around the cans racer at ABYC in Toronto I am not part of the big league racing scene, but as it turns out it wasn’t that hard to access.
October 11, 2018
Anytime a Canadian is asked to travel south in the beginning of our spring, which this year was far from inviting, is a dream worth living. The thought of a sailing adventure, tropical breezes, the smell of spices and the warmth of the sun was too much – we HAD to go!
September 15, 2017
Just before the weekly party at Shirley HeightsSunsail staffer Chris Donahue conducts our chart briefing inthe cockpit of our chartered Jeanneau 41, lashed stern-to on a cobblestone pier where two Royal Navy officers once fought a fatal duel, hard by Sunsail’s base office housed in a stone building, circa 1795.
December 6, 2016
The 81 boats in the 2016 Salty Dawg™ Sailing Association Fall Caribbean Rally fleet arrived in the BVI earlier this month.
August 30, 2016
I set down my handheld VHF radio which was set to channel 12 for bridge communications and glanced around while my husband and…
March 17, 2016
Regatta-cation is defined as the perfectly balanced vacation for a girl such as me, who grew up with a competitive sailboat racing…
November 19, 2015
Despite the ongoing lure of the deep blue Caribbean seas, a day pass at La Marina at the Casa de Campo resort is worth squeezing into your itinerary. You’re already in the Caribbean…your next destination won’t mind if you arrive a day or so late. Mañana. Mañana. Not all marinas are created equal and this one certainly stands out. But you have to reserve ahead if you want to really enjoy all that the 370-slip La Marina has to offer. Renowned as one of the best billfishing spots in the world, La Marina attracts the most serious of the serious from February through June who come to catch a prized blue marlin, mahi mahi, or yellow fin tuna so plan to visit from November to January to ensure a good spot.
August 31, 2015
We are taking off from Antigua and are tightly belted into our twin-engine, seven-seater Britten-Norman Islander – operated by Fly Monserrat and captained by John, formerly pilot to the Toronto Blue Jays. Minutes later, we catch site of our tiny destination…
August 31, 2015
Glancing down into the water as I prepared to furl in the genoa for the approach to the Tobago Cays, a group of five uninhabited Caribbean islands in the Grenadines, I was struck by the incredible colour of the water – a sparkling sapphire blue that slid into astonishing hues of turquoise and aquamarine as the water grew more shallow near the entrance to the Cays. We could have been floating on a swimming pool. The pristine water over the white sand bottom reflects the sky here and the clarity is so amazing that nearby reefs pop out visibly in hues of greens, reds, oranges and gold. With the sun high over your shoulder, the reefs are easy to spot and steer clear of. Fish fly in diamond-like showers and turtles raise their heads in a relaxed fashion as you cruise by. No worries. Be happy.
March 6, 2015
We’ve bridled our bowline to a mooring ball in Trellis Bay just off Tortola in the British Virgin Islands. My friend, Dave Anschuetz, fires up the Force 10 on the pushpit of our chartered Moorings boat, a Beneteau 43.3 named “Teranga.” Down below, my wife tosses a salad while Dave’s wife, Barb, marinates chicken. Topside, I survey our surroundings while I concoct my own take on the iconic (and insidious) Painkillers we were drinking like water two nights ago on Jost Van Dyke.
February 26, 2015
We’ve dropped the anchor in the northwest corner of Pillsbury Sound, hard by a channel bisecting two lush islands. Waters rush through the passage, lured by the beauty of St. John, an island that reclines in the afternoon sun like a Renaissance courtesan. Our skipper today, Captain Wilson, knows these islands like the back of his hand. He should – he’s boated here almost daily since 2008. “I will take you where you want to go,” he promises. “I will show you what you want to see.” I’ve cruised the British Virgin Islands numerous times but I’m just getting my feet wet here. Today’s the perfect introduction.
February 17, 2015
I was ruined…completely and utterly ruined. At the young age of 22, my very first trip to the Caribbean was to Eleuthera, which is, in my opinion, the most beautiful place on earth. It will now be an uphill battle for me to surpass my visit there. An opportunity to go to the Bahamas presented itself to me because I spoke French and I was available. I will be forever grateful to my parents for enrolling me in a French Immersion program. The trip was arranged by Michel Sacco of L’Escale Nautique – Canada’s French-language yachting magazine); the charter was booked through a Quebec-based company, Navtours, so French was a necessity. Needless to say, my French sailing vocabulary was limited so I came prepared with notepad in hand, ready to learn how to sail in French.
February 17, 2015
Dominica has been on “the” list for quite some time now and when I actually get to do something on “the” list, my heart skips a beat! Although Dominica still remains somewhat off-the-beaten track for boaters, it is located right in the middle of the chain of Caribbean islands and can be easily accessed from Antigua and Guadeloupe to the north or Martinique and St. Lucia to the south. Chartering boats from any of these islands is easy.
February 12, 2015
It’s just so easy to get to Antigua with direct flights offered by Air Canada and West Jet several days a week in season, Antigua also offers one of the best kick-off points for exploring so many other Caribbean islands…if you have the time and the winds are prevailing in the right direction.However, don’t get me wrong. There’s lots to do in Antigua and since it’s pretty much a year-round destination, you could customize your charter vacation by planning it around Antigua Sailing Week in late April or the annual carnival in late July.
October 10, 2013
Cuba’s by far the biggest island in the Caribbean. Roughly 1,200 km long x 200 km wide at its widest point with something like 3,700 km of coastline it’s the ideal destination for Canadian boaters, right? Canadians can and do go by boat to Cuba but it’s not always simple. The Cuban government, the American government and the currents in the Straits of Florida complicate passage but don’t let any of those deter you. For those who do cross to the land of sunny Latin skies and the convertible peso, there’s a quite reasonable array of marine facilities and a very warm welcome.
October 10, 2013
It’s an awkward fact of life for us at Canadian Yachting magazine that while we know the majority of our readers are power boaters, the majority of people who want to write about their cruising experiences are sailors! In addition to that, the greatest attraction seems to be far-off and exotic locations that can be both expensive and challenging to anyone’s skills as a skipper. So, we wanted to offer the power boater’s perspective too and to remind our readers that some of the most memorable and spectacular scenery is really closer than you’d think.
October 10, 2013
As exotic and exciting as a bareboat yacht charter sounds (and is) it can still be accessible to the yachting novice because the preparations and details are all clearly spelled out and frequently, are reasonably priced too! For example the Sunsail website explains that yacht sailing is available to all. You don’t need any previous experience to start and the cost is comparable to a villa holiday.
October 10, 2013
As I left Toronto to join our flotilla in Tortola I must admit I had some sympathy, (not much mind you) at having to leave behind the other two Galley Guys, Andy Adams and Greg Nicoll whom both had other commitments. The first leg of the trip took us from Toronto to Miami and then on to St. Thomas where we were met by Elvis our taxi driver who took us to Red Hook Marina where Captain Camille of Dolphin Water Taxis shuttled us over to Tortola.