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Carribean Holidays

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lyally99 View Drop Down
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    Posted: 28 Aug 08 at 8:23pm
Anyone know of any good places in the carribean for a dinghy sailing holiday which caters for both experienced and inexperienced sailors?


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tmoore View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote tmoore Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 08 at 9:16pm
sunsail, loads of different boats with racing each day and instruction available. (talking from a holiday some people at the club went on together)
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Post Options Post Options   Quote lyally99 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 08 at 9:39pm
Thanks tmoore :)
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tmoore View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote tmoore Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 08 at 9:42pm

another good source of info would probably be the RYA, they can tell you a good centre to go for coaching etc and talking to the people at your local club would also gain you a lot of knowledge of particular centres.

im sure there are loads of others, just sunsail is the one everybody has heard of.

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Post Options Post Options   Quote iansmithofotley Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 08 at 11:13pm

Hi lyally99,

As far as I am aware, the only dedicated centre in the caribbean for dinghy sailing is at Sunsail's Colonna which is situated in the very north of Antigua in Hodge's Bay.  I went there myself in May, a couple of years ago, and I had a great holiday albeit there wasn't much wind. The accomodation and food (half board) were fine and the hotel was being refurbished whilst I was there. Sunsail is part of First Choice and use their aircraft, which are great, from Gatwick. The transfer from Antigua Airport is only about ten minutes. Colonna is situated in a quiet residential area and there is nowhere else to go (bars, restaurants, shops, etc.) that is within walking distance.  St John's, the island's capital, is only a few miles away and is easily accessible by taxi. It is only about twelve miles from Hodge's Bay to  the very south of the island where there are more things to see such as Nelson's Dockyard, English Harbour, Shirley Heights, etc.

The main disappointment for me was the fact that although there was plenty of kit, in terms of dinghies, cats, boards and motor boats, much of it was neglected or poorly maintained.  In my opinion this was purely down to the laziness of the staff.  When I was there, the local Antiguan staff (land, shore and water based) were great, and very helpful, but the British staff were all poor, lazy and incompetent - everything seemed to be too much trouble for them.  Maybe I just happened to be there at a bad time and the staff may be okay now.

There used to be a Neilson site at Grand Anse Bay in Grenada but it closed down during the major hurricane a few years ago and never re-opened.

I like Antigua and have been a couple of times.  I would go to Sunsail's Colonna again as I had a great holiday despite the kit and the staff.  The only problem is that Sunsail have become very expensive if you pay the proper price, it is best to look for their special offers. 

It is also worth mentioning the hurricane season which lasts from June to November so if you were to go during this period you are taking a slight risk.

I hope that this helps.

Ian  (Yorkshire Dales S.C.)

 

 

 

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