Learn To Sail
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I always fancied having a go at sailing. Then, one day, as a student, the opportunity arose. Thing was, my first sailing experience was in extremely high winds on a reservoir … in Manchester … in the UK … in October. It just about put me off for life! If only I’d begun my sailing career in the clear, blue and pleasantly warm waters around Malta!
You see when you’re sat quivering, even though you’re wearing a wetsuit, and the gale force blasts blow the boat over almost every time it catches your sail, you can lose your enthusiasm fairly quickly. The embarrassment of having to be repeatedly rescued by a motor launch when you’ve once again been blown down to the end of the reservoir also doesn’t help.
You’ll be delighted to learn however that none of the above happens in Malta. Well, nearly none! You almost certainly will at some point lose control and get blown over if you get your technique in a twist and it happens to be a little gusty. But the difference is that hitting the sea when it’s 34C and sunny is actually quite refreshing! It’s certainly much more tolerable than landing in a lake when it’s 4C.
The temperate climate on Malta all year round makes it an ideal place to literally learn the ropes of sailing. Add to that beautiful scenery, no dangerous tides or big waves, pleasantly warm and fairly gentle breezes - and that all adds up to a fairly perfect package.
That’s why the Middle Sea Race, a highly rated offshore classic that starts from Malta and finishes in Malta, attracts sailors, skippers, crews and boat owners from every port in the world.
Committed and passionate sailors often compare cruising the seas around Malta to flying. The boat glides along on the wind, skimming the smooth surface of the water and through the clear waters you can sometimes even see the shadow of the hull on the sea floor. All under your expert control of course.
There are many sizes and shapes of boat that are powered using a bit of cloth and the wind – from futuristic looking catamarans to simple teaching craft that look like little more than a surf board with a mast stuck in the middle. They all work on the same basic premise, and once you get gist of how to harness the wind, manoeuvre, turn and steer then it’s all about practice, trial and error.
Malta is home to many excellent sailing schools, all established to take advantage of the perfect prevailing conditions and all vying for your custom. They’ll provide anything you need from beginners’ ‘have a go’ sessions to helping you achieve internationally recognised qualifications.
They all operate within strict regulations and safety guidelines too and employ highly experienced and fully-qualified instructors. Their aim is to ensure all sailing students receive the necessary training before being let loose on a boat of their own.
Sailors are responsible for all people in the water they might encounter as well as the vessel itself and their crew. You’ll also be taught about the international regulations concerning what equipment is legally required.
It’s vital to hammer home all the safety messages in the early days because they will set you up for a much more enjoyable sailing career afterwards. And if you become a full-fledged and qualified skipper you can live the dream and navigate your own boat around Malta and to other islands and countries beyond!
Address: 10 St Lawrence St, Sliema, SLM 1410
Phone: +356 2133 9655
Website (Fairwind): www.fairwindsailing.com.mt
Email (Fairwind): firstname.lastname@example.org
Address (Fairwind): 51 G. Balzano Street, Rabat
Phone (Fairwind): +356 2145 9398
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