Sailing experiences

Guillemot Trust operates sailing experiences from Liverpool Marina on the River Mersey and from Deganwy Quay Marina in North Wales on the River Conwy.  The Deganwy base offers greater flexibility on river sailing times and durations.  Experience itineraries for both locations can be found in the Sailing Schedule below.

We offer two types of experiences – Marina and on the River at Liverpool and on the River at Deganwy.  We can take groups up to 3 people.  Minors 10 – 14 years of age and vulnerable adults MUST be accompanied by a parent, guardian or other chaperone.  Anyone under 18 years of age requires parental or guardian consent to participate in a sailing experience.  All participants will be required to sign a good-conduct undertaking.  Details of both will be supplied upon application.  Guillemot Trust reserves the right to withdraw an offer of or curtail an experience to an individual it deems to be unsuitable to undertake the activity.

Clients should arrive at the marina at the appointed time, as any lateness ‘eats into’ the experience time – the return to the berth cannot be extended in the event of a late arrival. The durations indicated on each event, advise of the maximum time available; events can be foreshortened to meet particular needs.

Liverpool Marina experiences

These are very much suited to anyone who might have a fear of the open river and the blustery conditions out on the river, or who just feel they want a gentle introduction to being on the water.  Generally we spend two hours or so cruising around the marina, to give some experience in basic boat handing.  We usually do a man-overboard drill and if the conditions are right we use our special dispensation at Liverpool marina to hoist the foresail so that you get some experience of sailing under wind power.

River Mersey experiences

Single Tide: we exit the marina via Brunswick lock and sail out on the Mersey’s incoming tide.  Depending upon the wind conditions we sail using just the foresail or with foresail and mainsail.  Depending upon your tolerance of ‘excitement’ you might find your self criss-crossing the river at racing speeds under a 35 degree list or otherwise quietly bobbing along on the slackening incoming tide.  You then return to the marina via the lock within an hour after high tide.  The experience should be complete about 30 minutes after returning to the marina (not later than sunset).  Depending on the tide time and height, Liverpool river experiences last between one-and-a-half to three-and-a-half hours.

River Conwy experiences

Single Tide: we exit the marina via the tidal gate and sail out on the Conwy’s incoming tide.  Depending upon the wind conditions we sail using just the foresail or with foresail and mainsail.  If you have a high tolerance for ‘excitement’ you might find your self criss-crossing the river at racing speeds under a 35 degree list or otherwise quietly bobbing along on the slackening incoming tide.  You then return to the marina via the tidal gate up to two-and-a-half hours after high tide.  The experience should be complete about 30 minutes after returning to the marina.  Deganwy river experiences can be up to five-and-a-half hours, but can be tailored to suit your needs.

  • Deganwy (Harbour) – An experience taking place on the River Conwy between the Bridge and the town moorings, essentially like a Liverpool marina experience in the placid water of the river adjacent to the marina and town.  Such an experience is expected to last one to two hours, offering the possibility of delivering more than one experience on a single tide for a larger group of people.
  • Deganwy (F) – An experience taking place on the River Conwy between the Bridge and the Perch, essentially like a Liverpool river experience combining the placid water of the river with the feeling of the near open sea at the Perch.  The duration can be two-and-a-half to four hours up to the limit of the tidal window.
  • Deganwy (Conwy River) – An experience up to five-and-a-half hours.  This offers a longer experience within the confines of the river. It is suitable for several groups within the sailing window or for repeated practice of sail learning exercises.

River experience schedule

See the Sailing Schedule for dates and time for sailing experiences and the booking process.