A Sailors’ Voyage to Cornwall
- Vessel: Bessie Ellen
- Where: Scotland/Cornwall
- Duration: 10 days
- Embark: Oban - 22 July 2023, 12:00
- Disembark: Newlyn - 31 July 2023, 10:00
Sail with Bessie Ellen as she marks the end of summer with a journey from Scotland to her home of Cornwall.
Join tall ship Bessie Ellen in the Scottish port of Oban before she sets off on her voyage home to Cornwall to mark the end of her Scottish sailing season.
Spend 10 days working your way South down the coast of the UK with longer hours under sail. Exactly where you stop over and anchor will entirely depend on the weather forecast but Nikki should have a better of what to expect as you board.
- Skippered sailing
- Longer passages at sea
- Traditional rig
- Great for solo travellers
- All-inclusive board
- Sail area & highlights
- Life on board
- Sample menu
- Travel planning
- The boat
- What's included
- Boat schedule
LIFE AT SEA
This voyage is perfect for those wanting to experience life on the open water and tuck some sea miles under their belt. Fully immerse yourself into life at sea by taking the helm, navigating and hoisting the sails with your fellow guests and crew. Bessie Ellen is a traditional tall ship with not a winch in sight so it’s certainly a case of all hands on deck. No experience is needed and new comers are always welcome but a lust for adventure is a must!
A Sailors voyage
Once the sails have been set, depart from Oban and pass the narrow strait of Coryvrekkan between Jura and Scarba and perhaps call in at Colonsay or Jura.
Sail past the mountains of Mourne Islay (pronounced ‘eye-la’), one of skipper Nikki’s favourite locations. Historically, the island served as the meeting place for Scottish clan leaders but it is now a paradise for whisky lovers, boasting an amazing eight distilleries. Each is nestled on the shores around the island and offers the chance to sample some of the finest malt whiskies in the world.
Sailing through the St. George’s Channel offers the chance to take the night watch and sail under the stars, enjoying the sense of peace as the ship settles down for the evening. Your final port of call will be the Cornish maritime port of Newlyn.
All voyages for Bessie Ellen
Guest berths: 12 Rig: Gaff Rigged Ketch
Bessie Ellen offers quality sailing holidays on board a classic tall ship with over 100 years of history and is now one of the last West Country trading ketches.
This ship worked through both world wars during the last era of wind-powered trade when ships like Bessie were seen all over England. She is featured on the National Historic Ships Register, which identifies her as a historic vessel that needs to be conserved.
Now, her working life is very different, and she spends her days cruising around British and European waters, offering hands-on sailing holidays. With an experienced and hospitable crew, Bessie Ellen provides her guests with a comfortable and authentic tall ship sailing experience. Skipper Nikki occasionally nods back to Bessie’s past by loading her up with cargo for ocean passages, transporting beer from Harbour Brewery and making the most out of the emission-free transport that Bessie offers.
Read more about Life on board Bessie Ellen here >
Sail with Bessie Ellen and Nikki, around Cornwall, the Isles of Scilly, the Hebrides and St. Kilda, you’ll not only enjoy sailing aboard a tall ship, but experience unique coastlines, abundant wildlife, and excellent food, all sourced locally and prepared on board. Nikki and her crew are also joined by salty sea dog Bracken, who will love to go on you adventures with you!
Choose from weekend breaks, weeklong trips, or 10-day explorations for a truly unforgettable holiday.More about Bessie Ellen
Life on board Bessie Ellen
Sailing with traditional tall ship Bessie Ellen is certainly an experience you will never forget. From the moment you board, you can feel the 100 years of sailing history this magnificent classic has under her sails. Faithfully restored over many years by her owner and skipper Nikki, it’s clear to see how dedicated she is to the rich maritime history and authenticity of sailing such a tall ship.
Bessie Ellen is perfect for those looking for an immersive traditional sailing experience while enjoying Nikki’s famous hospitality, great food and team spirit. From solo travellers, to adventurous couples, sailing with Bessie Ellen will leave you with life-long memories and you’ll quickly see why her guests return year on year.
The crew actively encourage guests to get involved with all aspects of sailing such a traditional vessel – it really is an all-hands-on-deck attitude. They are well-versed in having beginners on board and are always on hand to show guests the ropes. From hoisting the sails together, taking the helm in open waters, basic rope work and even some navigation pointers, you soon feel at ease and part of the team! Believe it or not, you don’t need any sailing experience to join Bessie Ellen, just a lust for adventure.
The other important crew member is ships dog Bracken! A small border terrier who is well-versed in life on board, loves watching for dolphins, exploring ashore and sleeping while under sail.
Sleeping and relaxation
Below decks, guests are indulged in a spacious saloon with original wooden beams, comfy open bunks and two toilet/wet-rooms where you’d be forgiven for forgetting that you were even on a boat! Each bunk has it’s own light, full bedding and a privacy curtain. A tiny galley sits tucked mid-ships and you will be in awe and wonder of the meals that come out of this space.
Nikki is not only a competent skipper but also incredible cook using locally sourced produce everywhere possible and has spent many years in both Cornwall and Scotland networking a myriad of local suppliers.
- All-inclusive (breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. Soft/hot drinks)
- All bedding (pillow, sheets & duvet)
- Full crew plus tuition
- Marina and fuel fees
- All tender trips to and fro the boat
- Offshore sailing jacket and trousers for emergencies (these are not permitted to be taken ashore)
What’s not included
- Wash and/or swim towel
- All flights
- Transit hotels
- Travel to and from the boat on the day of joining/leaving
- Travel insurance
- Sailing Insurance (Please read our Sailing Insurance page for more information)
- Crew tips
- Personal expenses
What COVID policies are in place for sailing with Bessie Ellen?
There are currently no Test & Sail policies in place for the 2022 season.
Are meals included?
Yes - and we pride ourselves on the quality of food served!
Can you cater for dietary needs?
Yes, please let us know at the time of enquiry
Do I need to tip the crew?
Tips are not mandatory but are welcomed by the crew!
Do I need to bring bedding or towels?
All your bedding (duvet and pillow) is provided but please bring your own towels (washing and/or swimming)
What language is spoken on board?
English is the main language spoken, however on occasion we have crew onboard who are multilingual.
What are the sleeping arrangements?
There are 12 comfortable berths in the former cargo hold. This is an open plan area that is also used for meals and relaxing
How many toilets/showers does she have?
Bessie Ellen has two toilets/showers for guests.
Is there WIFI?
No, but you will be able to reach 3/4G when you are close to land.
Is there an age limit?
No, but we advise over 16's for scheduled voyages as there is an open saloon sleeping arrangement. There is no limit for private charter.
Can I charge my phone or camera?
Yes. We run generators every day in the morning and evening, which run the 240 volt system of normal 3 pin sockets.
Are there life jackets provided?
Are waterproofs available?
No. Please bring your own. There are a few spare for emergencies only.
Do I need to be a seasoned sailor?
Not at all. We give everyone who joins us on board the choice to do as much or as little as they like, whether the know how to or not.
Do I have to do watches?
During a passage crossings you may be asked to be part of our watch rota, this is not compulsory but is definitely part of boat life that guests enjoy when at sea for long periods.
Will there be time to get off the boat?
Yes on most of our trips we try and explore the areas we are sailing around each day, except for passage crossings where of course we are at sea for most of the voyage.
Will I be sea sick?
Everyone reacts differently but we recommend if you are worried to take some medication 24 hours before travelling.
To see where the ports are, along with your likely sailing area, please view the sail area & highlights.
Oban station is a 5-10 minute walk from North Pier. Trains run 6 times a day to Glasgow Queen Street Station where there are good travel links to the rest of the UK.
Glasgow and Edinburgh Airport both require taking a train from Oban which takes approximately 2-3hours. Flights go direct to Stansted Airport.
STAY IN OBAN:
There are plenty of places to stay in Oban. Try Witchwood House, The Scot or Perle Hotels Oban.
Penzance train station is a 10 minute drive from Newlyn Harbour. There are direct trains with Great Western Railway from Plymouth, Exeter St Davids, Cardiff Central and London Paddington into Penzance.
Newquay Airport is generally the quickest way in/out of the county during the spring/summer months. There are direct flights from a number of UK airports. A taxi ride is approximately 1 hour to Newlyn.
STAY IN NEWLYN:
There are plenty of places to stay in and around Newlyn. Try The Ship Inn Mousehole, Artist Residence Penzance or The Queens Hotel Penzance.