Top sailing towns to visit this summer


With so many beautiful coastlines, lakes and bodies of water to enjoy, Britain is blessed with a plethora of options for sailing lovers. Whether you are looking for a solo getaway, a sailing retreat for two, or a family holiday with a sailing twist, Britain has ample options available to choose from.

Renting a boat is an option many will look towards, helping you to really engage with the water. There are also plenty of sailing facilities available to enjoy, with experienced sailors and instructors able to support with what it is you want to do.

Getting on top of what to wear when sailing in the UK is important, and we have picked out a few specific options in this blog.

As well as the joys of sailing near these beautiful towns, there are plenty of other things available to do. Coastal walking is a real joy and another fantastic way to engage with the natural environment. Again, finding the right items to wear when coastal walking is important.

With all this in mind, finding that perfect location for your summer getaway is a must. At Gill, we have a long-standing and important relationship with the UK’s sailing community. As such, we know where the best places to go sailing in the UK are, and can advise on the best sailing towns out there.

Here are some of the best sailing towns to pay a visit to this summer and enjoy both the water, and the sailing community present there.

Hugh Town, Isles of Scilly, England

The Isles of Scilly lie 24 miles off the coast of Cornwall, and their intimate relationship with the sea that surrounds them has shaped the culture of the islands for centuries.

The largest settlement, Hugh Town, is a great place to set sail. The town has a cosy feel and the peculiar feature of having a beach on both the north and south side of Hugh Town itself.

The Isles of Scilly collectively are comprised of 5 inhabited islands and 140 uninhabited islands, making sailing a fantastic way to explore what the wider islands have to offer.

Falmouth, Cornwall, England

Cornwall shares a similarly coastal culture to the Isles of Scilly, and Britain’s most southerly county has plenty of excellent places for sailing.

Falmouth is an obvious choice when it comes to Cornish sailing locations, with this picturesque town home to its own sailing week. There are also plenty of sailing clubs and activities available that can help enhance your own sailing ability.

Falmouth Sailing Week takes place from 5th-14th August this year. So if you want to tie in your visit with this special event, bear that in mind.

Salcombe, Devon, England

England’s southern counties are full of excellent locations for sailing and watersports, and Salcombe in Devon is a favourite spot for many.

Sitting on the edge of the Kingsbridge Estuary, Salcombe offers sheltered waters to sail in, while the open sea lies a short distance down the river.

Salcombe itself is a gorgeous place for a short break, so as sailing towns go, Salcombe takes some beating.

Lymington, Hampshire, England

Lymington is one of England’s most popular sailing towns thanks to its convenient location between Bournemouth, Southampton and Portsmouth.

Lymington is also on the edge of the picturesque New Forest, and whether on land or out on the water, this part of the world is a joy to be in. Offering views over to the Isle of Wight, Lymington is a great option for sailors of all ages.

Cowes, Isle of Wight, England

Just across The Solent from Lymington, Cowes on the Isle of Wight is a town with a long history of sailing and a really vibrant feel.

A trip to Cowes Week, which takes place from 30th July-6th August this year, is likely on every sailor’s bucket list. But in truth, the town of Cowes is a real pleasure to visit at any time of year.

Offering plenty of opportunities to get out on the water, Cowes is without doubt one of Britain’s premier sailing towns.

Norwich, Norfolk, England

For a slightly different type of sailing break, the Norfolk Broads take some beating. Boating is the perfect way to explore the Broads, with miles of quaint and pretty waterways to enjoy, as well as ample country pubs and villages to walk around.

Norwich is the historic centre of the county of Norfolk, and sits right on the edge of the Broads on the River Yare. This makes it the perfect spot to base yourself before heading out to make the most of the Norfolk Broads themselves.

Whitby, North Yorkshire, England

Whitby sits at the mouth of the River Esk, which flows down from the beautiful North Yorkshire Moors. The town is known for its sandy beach and the natural harbour it sits in.

Whitby is a very popular tourist destination, but has a strong sailing community too. For anybody based in the north of England and keen to enjoy a visit to a true sailing town, Whitby is a great option.

Balloch, West Dunbartonshire, Scotland

Scotland’s natural beauty and the country’s geography make it a brilliant option for sailors to visit from far and wide.

Loch Lomond is one of the most scenic locations in Scotland, with charming landscapes and a vast lake on which to set sail.

The town of Balloch at Loch Lomond’s southern end is a welcoming place with plenty of attractions. There is also ample opportunity to take in the Loch’s natural beauty by boat.

Windermere, Cumbria, England

The Lake District is bound to strike a chord with any sailing lover. With so many bodies of water to choose from, this area really is a must-visit for sailors.

Lake Windermere is one of the most revered lakes in Britain, and sailing on its famous waters is a real joy. The town of Windermere and nearby Bowness-on-Windermere are both great places to base yourself for a sailing holiday in one of the best sailing regions in the UK.

Aberystwyth, Ceredigion, Wales

It would be wrong of us not to include a sailing town in Wales, given the superb scenery and sailing options the country has.

Aberystwyth sits right on the coast of the Irish Channel, and this bustling town is a great base from which to explore West Wales.

Aberystwyth has a natural harbour at the mouth of the Afon Rheidol river, making it a great place to set sail from.

Get ready for sailing this summer with Gill

We hope this selection of sailing towns in Britain has enhanced your appetite to get out on the water this summer. There is no doubting that there are plenty of superb sailing towns to select from, so start planning a visit as soon as you can.

The Gill range of sailing clothing and accessories can support your sailing goals this summer. We highly recommend the Gill Buoyancy Aid, which can bring about the desired level of safety when sailing regardless of your age.

We are also really proud of our new Langland Hoodie, which can be the perfect addition to a sailor’s wardrobe this summer. Featuring XPEL® technology, water rolls off the fabric of the Langland Hoodie, while its fleece lining helps keep wearers warm and its large pockets are really convenient. This garment is a great way of fending off water spray when on a boat.

If you are planning on getting wet while out sailing, or doing another watersport, then a wetsuit is a good choice, with Gill’s Pursuit Wetsuit is a really strong option. Great for people of all ages, the Pursuit Wetsuit comes with a 4/3mm back zip for easy access, and has a glued and blindstitched construction with taping to keep every wearer warm. There is also a mesh skin chest and back panel with thermal fabric lining for additional comfort.

Get in touch with our team if you have any questions, and we hope you have a fun time sailing this summer!

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