Sailing rallies, swashbuckling fun and superyachts

Sailing rallies, swashbuckling fun and superyachts

It’s easy to cruise to the Caribbean this fall. Just join a rally! Cast off November 1st in the North Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (NARC), which targets professionally crewed yachts and departs from the Newport Yachting Center, Rhode Island, en route to Saint Martin via Bermuda. Bluewater experienced sailors cast off on November 2nd on the Salty Dawg Rally that transits from Hampton, Virginia, to Virgin Gorda, B.V.I. On November 8th, the Caribbean 1500 also sets sail from Hampton to the B.V.I of Tortola and welcomes those who prefer the safety and camaraderie of a rally on their first major offshore passage. Finally, hitch a ride on November 22nd across the pond in the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC), from Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Canary Islands to Saint Lucia. This multinational rally boasts seniors, babies and even pets as participants, although those at the helm are usually experienced yachtsmen. Each rally offers social events that are a great way to meet other cruisers and get the scoop on exploring the rest of the Caribbean during the winter.   sailopo.com; saltydawgrally.org; worldcruising.com

Pirate’s Week
Ahoy Mateys! Look for exploding fireworks, costume competitions, street performances, and more at the Cayman Islands’ famous Pirates Week November 12-22. Staged in George Town, Grand Cayman, “[Pirates Week]’s a one-of-a-kind festival, where thousands of people from all over the world can feel part of a global celebration featuring a mock pirate invasion, while getting a taste of Caymanian heritage and culture,” says Melanie McField, festival executive director. “Not to mention, the event is perfect for families as it offers plenty of dancing, music, games, local food, and drink, giving guests a chance to experience the unmatched Cayman-kind culture.” New this year is the first-ever Pirates Week Charity Golf Classic on November 20th. The next day brings the Pirate Pooch Parade to benefit the local humane society and the Illumination Night Parade featuring yachts decorated in twinkling lights circling the harbor. Dock at the Barcadere Marina or Harbour House Marina, the closest to the festivities if arriving by sea. piratesweekfestival.com

First superyacht marina on Nevis
The founding father of the U.S. Coast Guard was born here, but it won’t be until next year when superyachts can dock on the Caribbean island of Nevis. Tamarind Cove Marina will open in January 2016 in Cades Bay, four miles north of the island’s capital and Alexander Hamilton’s birthplace, Charleston. “Phase One includes five slips for yachts up to 200 feet, while Phase Two, which we will start next year, will offer several slips for yachts up to 300 feet in length with a depth of 15 feet. In total, there will be about 100 slips of various sizes,” says Adrian Dozier, director of Tamarind Cove Marina Development Ltd. The property will also feature a 126-room hotel, spa, casino, yacht club, shops, bars, and restaurants. tamarindcovenevis.com

Carol Bareuther, Southern Boating, November 2015