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Sailing Holiday: England – France – Channel Islands

Sailing Holiday: England – France – Channel Islands

Coastal Sailing

No previous experience required

Head out on to the water for an unforgettable holiday, with sun sea, wind and top class sailing. Starting on the south coast of England, we will sail across the English Channel to the coast of France. From there we will sail west, exploring the harbours and towns as we go, before arriving in the Channel Islands where we'll sail rond and explore Guernsey, Jersey, Sark and Alderney. Freedom, fresh air, and tremendous fun.  
Sailing location image
Route Map Image

These are the available dates and routes. To book your place, please select the dates from the drop-down above the ‘Add to Cart’ button.


  • Start date / place: July 19 2021. Portsmouth United Kingdom
  • End date / place: July 30 2021. Portsmouth United Kingdom
  • Full price: £1,499
  • Deposit: £375


  • Start date / place: August 02 2021. Portsmouth United Kingdom
  • End date / place: August 13 2021. Portsmouth United Kingdom
  • Full price: £1,499
  • Deposit: £375


  • Start date / place: August 23 2021. Portsmouth United Kingdom
  • End date / place: September 03 2021. Portsmouth United Kingdom
  • Full price: £1,499
  • Deposit: £375


Please see ‘TRAVEL – GETTING TO & FROM YOUR TRIP’ tab for advice on start and end points.



This is non-refundable. On making payment, your berth is guaranteed. Full Covid money back guarantees apply allowing you to book with confidence.

Paying the balance
The balance of the invoice can be paid at any time. It must be received by Rubicon 3 90 days before the trip start date or your place will automatically be cancelled. We will remind you of the date nearer the time.

Cancellations and moving trips
Our expedition sailing yachts only have between 7 and 10 berths on them. When you book, you are committing to take one of these places. Due to these very limited numbers, we will often have turned away someone else who would have liked the berth. Unlike many other holidays, please understand this gives us little if any flexibility to make changes or to move trips. We will always endeavour to assist you (& the earlier you tell us the better), but unless we can find someone else to take your place, we usually cannot move your booking.

This is a sample itinerary only of our France and Channel Islands sailing holiday. The exact itinerary is decided in association with you the crew in light of the wind and weather at the time.

Joining day

This is all about helping you get up to speed with the boat and to learn or refresh all the basic sailing skills. We allow loads of time and you will never be rushed or pressured. These holidays are all about learning and we know that people will be at all different levels. You will be given all the time and space you need to enjoy your learning or revision! Once we slip lines, we will play around in the wonderful sheltered waters of the Solent, practising tacking, gybing, reefing, casualty overboard and all the other key skills we must have. We will likely stop the first night in Cowes on the Isle of Wight for a fun night out.

Sail across the English Channel to Cherbourg

Isles of Wight Needles

This is always a wonderful sail. It is 60nm, so a full day sail but not too long. We start by sailing past the iconic Needles, then turn south across the busy shipping lanes bound or France. We are all but guaranteed to be sailing past some huge cargo ships and it can be a really exciting job to weave our way through them under full sail. Late afternoon, the French coast appears and we can dock in Cherbourg for some well earned Moules Frites and a pression!

West to Alderney

Alderney Sailing

It’s only about 25nm to Alderney, and the very powerful tides off the north coast of France will sweep us there in no time. We can expect to be doing 12-13 knots speed over ground as we pass Cap de la Hague and so a lazy breakfast will still see us get to Alderney for lunch. We’ll take the rest of the day to explore this lovely island and noo doubt have a beer in the local (& much loved) Braye hostelry before bedding down for the night.


Burhou Atlantic Puffins

Just west of Alderney is Burhou. Each spring,  around 100 pairs of Atlantic Puffins reunite after nine months at sea in scenes that would melt even the most hardest of hardened hearts. These puffins have the same mate for life and it is an extraordinary scene if ever you are lucky enough to see it. We will anchor on the south shore then head ashore and explore


Sailing into St Peter Port

20nm south of Burhou is the gorgeous island of Guernsey. The second-largest island in the Channel Islands, Guernsey has some stunning beaches, particularly along the north coast, rugged cliffs in the south, and a lively, compact capital of St Peter Port. There are Neolithic graves to explore, Victorian forts and German fortifications and there’s always a wonderful dinner to be had in St Peter Port. We’ll likely spend a full day here to explore.


Sark Trails

Just to the east of Guernsey is Sark, considered the crown jewel of the Channel Islands. There are no cars or even paved roads on Sark so it is the most wonderful place to walk around and explore. Particulalrly lovely is the south-west side with views of neighbouring Brecqhou, gorse bushes thick with bees and butterflies, free-ranging hens and the odd Guernsey goat. There’s also the Venus Pool. One of the best swimming spots on the island, this is a natural basin in the rocks, which can only be accessed for two hours either side of low tide. Getting your timing right is worth it, though, because you’ll be able to bathe in cerulean waters before drying off on the sun-warmed rocks.


Saint Aubin Jersey

Another 25nm south east, we arrive at Jersey. At 9 miles by 5 miles, the island is the biggest of the Channel Islands and it feels much bigger than it actually is, with its myriad country lanes and long, rugged, windswept coastline. While the buzzing capital of St Helier is its heart, the rest of the island has plenty of appeal, from the superb south and west coast beaches to the castles and WWII fortifications along the north and east coasts. Add to that a world-class zoo, several poignant museums, a laid-back atmosphere and excellent food and you’ll soon see why Jersey with its sun-drenched shores is one of our favourites

St Malo

St Malo Jersey

From Jersey, it’s just 30nm south to the wonderful town of St Malo on the French mainland. The enthralling mast-filled port is always a dramatic sight. With one of the world’s greatest tidal ranges, a day of strong winds will see waves lash the top of the ramparts ringing its beautiful walled city. Hours later, as the tide recedes, you’ll see broad beaches and land bridges to spectacular granite outcrop islands. A must see!

Sail back to Portsmouth

Our time is nearly up, but there is still one more exhilarating sail, and that is the 135nm north back to Portsmouth. If we do this in one go, it will be a wonderful sail under the stars, which is always special in the warmer summer months and will give memories of a lifetime. Crossing the shipping lanes at night is also special with vast cargo ships drifting by in the night. As dawn breaks, we’ll be heading up the Solent and on our way back into Portsmouth


  • You should join the boat in Haslar Marina, Portsmouth at 0900 hrs on the first day.
  • You will disembark the boat in Haslar Marina, Portsmouth at 1200 hrs on the last day.


These adventure sailing holidays are open to everyone aged 18 years and over. If you are aged 70 or over, or have any concerns about your health, we ask that you get a doctor’s note before booking. This is just to make as certain as possible that you will be okay out on the water.


We provide the foul weather clothing, life-jackets and all other technical equipment you will need. You need to bring a sleeping bag and some waterproof boots.

See more information and the full kit list here


We believe that as many people as possible should be able to head out to sea and have a great adventure. However, it is essential for everyone’s safety that you are in a fit enough state to be on board. Ability to complete the five exercises below is a pre-requisite for joining as a crew member. They are not designed to be physically taxing and almost everyone should be able to complete them. Rather they are in place to check that you have the stability and basic physical condition to be on-board. If when you join the vessel the skipper believes you are not capable of completing these exercises, you will probably not be allowed to embark. If you have any doubts at all about your ability to complete these exercises safely, you must contact your doctor before attempting them.

Fitness to sail


Four weeks before your trip start date, you will be sent final joining instructions. At this time you will be asked to complete our medical declaration. At the time of booking, it is your responsibility to be sure that you will be able to pass all the criteria at the start date of your trip. If you cannot pass the criteria you will probably be refused permission to board.

See the Medical Declaration here


  • All crew must have adequate travel insurance in place for your sailing holiday.
  • We strongly recommend that you arrange insurance as soon as you book. This ideally will cover you for any mishaps, medical or otherwise, in the build-up to your holiday so that should you have to cancel, you can reclaim your fees.
  • Please note we will not refund your money or cancel your invoice due to medical issues that disqualify you from joining your trip.
  • For our latest guidance on travel insurance, please read here.


For a full explanation of what to expect with the various trip ratings please click here.


  • Foul weather clothing to keep you dry in any conditions.
  • Fladen immersion suits. These will keep you warm in even the coldest, windiest conditions.
  • Ocean-spec lifejackets. These are the best on the market.
  • All on-board food and snacks.
  • Daily sailing lessons and tuition from two highly experienced instructors.
  • RYA sailing qualifications where applicable.


  • Your travel to and from the start and end points.
  • Travel insurance (see our travel insurance page here)
  • Any alcohol – but feel free to bring your own or buy some along the route
  • Any meals you eat ashore


Everything’s included except for flights, travel insurance, a sleeping bag and some waterproof boots. There are no hidden extras.

  • These expeditions have small numbers of people on board. When you book, you are committing to being a part of the crew.
  • These are genuine adventure sailing holidays and you will be helping sail the boat, planning where we go, navigating, cooking and keeping the boat clean and tidy.
  • When you book, the deposit is non refundable. It is possible to cancel subsequently, however you may still be liable for the balance of the invoice, depending on how close you are to the start date when you cancel.
  • Please ensure you  have read and agreed to the T&Cs and read the Trip Notes before booking.

    Terms & Conditions