Planning a Sailing Trip to the Isles of Scilly

We have talked about it for a few years now but it’s looking like it might actually happen this year; I’m talking about our sailing trip to the Isles of Scilly. We have been putting it off year after year because of all the logistics of getting there.

Planning a sailing trip to the Isles of Scilly

We estimate (weather permitting of course) that it will take us 4 days just to get there. That means that 8 days are taken up with just the travelling there and back which would mean Phil having to book 2 weeks off work to make it happen. This in the past has been impossible because of workload, this year however is looking hopeful.

Planning a sailing trip to the Isles of Scilly

I have a mixture of feelings about the impending trip including anxiety over rounding the Lizard which is a peninsula in Cornwall and is the most southwesterly point of the British mainland. It’s notorious for having very rough seas surrounding it and the mere thought of it makes me feel sea sick.

‘The Lizard’s coast is particularly hazardous to shipping and the seaways round the peninsula were historically known as the “Graveyard of Ships” .

Phil is less concerned and plans to follow the same route that his Uncle used to take on his many trips to the Scillies. If he can do it so we can we right? His Uncle documented his many sailing adventures in his logs which we now have possession of and are a great reference for us. He even wrote a book about it Tamar to Scilly: A Life-Long Odyssey to the Isles of Scilly which also has some great tips and even maps of the routes he took. 

My second fear is the long passages with the kids and the puppy. The last passage when we leave the mainland to the Islands could take up to 10 or more hours. Which is a long time to keep the little ones entertained! I’m also not sure how I feel about my first passage where I won’t be able to see land for quite a considerable amount of time. I know it’s nothing like crossing the Atlantic but for someone that hasn’t done an open sea passage before it it’s pretty daunting.

The last issue that concerns me is the weather, which of course we have no control over. What happens if we manage to get there and then the weather turns bad and we can’t get back?

I have included a map (thank you Google) that marks our starting point in Saltash and the end point; The Isles of Scilly. It may not look that far but by boat it is. Even on the huge Scillonian Ferry from Penzance the journey took 4 hours so you can only imagine how long it’s going to take on a 35ft sail boat.


I fear I am talking myself out of the whole thing which is not the idea. I am over analysing everything and I’m sure it will all work out fine in the end.

On the plus side we plan to make the journey with a few other sailing families which is what swayed the whole thing for me in the first place, safety in numbers and all that. Besides the islands are truly amazing and one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to, so I really want to go back.

We can do this!

Isles of Scilly

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8 thoughts on “Planning a Sailing Trip to the Isles of Scilly

    1. It is an amazing place and we’d really love to go back with our own boat. Fingers crossed that it all goes to plan.

    1. It would be quite an adventure! Hopefully we will get there this year if the weather is good to us. Think we are due a good Summer the last 3 have been total wash outs!

  1. This sounds incredible! Can I come? I was going to take up sailing lessons last summer but unfortunately my course got cancelled and then my car died and then my membership ran out, so it wasn’t meant to be. Beautiful photos. Thanks for linking up to #CheckOutThatView – there’s a new linky up now x

  2. That’s amazing!! Of course you can do it… and I can’t wait to read all about it 😀
    I think it’s great that other families are coming too, definitely helps with the courage!! It will be fine, and it will be an unforgettable adventure!!

    Thank you for joining #MondayEscapes 😀

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