by Pete Green
Buying Christmas presents for friends and family can be tricky, especially if they have a hobby that you know little about. We have done the hard work for you and researched some gift ideas, some are quirky, some practical and some will keep you amused. Have fun!
Packing a bag for a sailing trip can be quite daunting, the task of taking just the right amount of clothes and equipment can be a challenge, especially as you then have to make it all fit into your bag! Packing cubes are a fantastic way of organising your gear and the sort that compresses your clothes can help to save space too.
Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker
Music or audiobooks whilst on board can help to soothe or energise the crew and help keep everyone entertained. A waterproof Bluetooth speaker will allow everyone to connect to a single device and it will cope with spray and rain showers.
There are often long periods off watch during a voyage that can be used to think and reflect. A journal is a lovely way to record your thoughts and write down any practical aspects of the trip such as tides, weather and celestial information.
Drones have had a bit of bad press over the past few years but used responsibly they can be a wonderful way of capturing a cruise from the air. Practise on land beforehand, or you might be putting your man-overboard skills to good use!
Garmin Inreach Satellite Communicator
These nifty devices allow selected people to track your yacht’s position at any time, along with information about its speed and course. There are different subscription levels available, but most allow the owner to send and receive a selected number of text messages a month and obtain weather information.
Travel Coffee Press
Small luxuries at sea can make a big difference to morale, especially on a long voyage. A good cup of coffee is a real pleasure and for some sailors, a necessity! We feel that the best ones are compact, simple to use and don’t have too many fiddly bits to clean.
No boat is fully equipped without a pair of binoculars, they are essential for spotting navigation marks, passing vessels, land features and marine mammals. However, arriving at a boat that has a pair that are scratched, heavy and can’t be focused is just as bad as not having any. Carrying your own set will ensure that this never happens.
Need we say any more? Our yacht delivery crew have a knife attached to them somewhere about their person most of the time. They are a vital piece of equipment both from a safety and practical point of view. The most useful ones have a Marlin spike and a shackle key.
Charging facilities for phones, laptops, speakers etc can be limited on boats, especially on older vessels that might only have one USB charging point. A portable power bank will allow a sailor to take a precharged device along with them that can provide several hours of backup power.
Waterproof Phone Case
Most modern sailors have a range of apps on their phones that provide information on weather, tides, navigation etc. A strong waterproof case will protect your phone from harmful salt water. A case that has a strap or lanyard will also stop it from falling into the sea. We’ve seen that happen a few times….!
Hat with torch, stereo, speaker and mic
We thought that this was really useful: a hat that combines a headtorch, speakers and a microphone!
No more trying to make tea in the sink or a washing-up bowl. This handy tray holds up to 4 mugs and allows the sailor to brew up in even the most challenging of conditions.
Sailing at night can be wonderful, especially if it is clear and you can see the stars. Most people are keen to try and identify the principal constellations and planets. A star finder can be the perfect gift for those new to star gazing or sailors considering more advanced celestial navigation.
This contraption fits easily onto a yacht or motorboat and acts as a deterrent to gulls. It is wind-powered, eco-friendly and harmless to birds. The rotating arms scare the gulls away and stop them from landing! Less time spent cleaning up bird droppings.
Captain Fitzroy Storm Bottle
Aboard the HMS Beagle during the Darwin Expeditions of 1831-36, Captain Robert Fitzroy developed and refined the 18th-century storm bottle. This involved much testing and observation and resulted in him being able to make weather predictions with a fair degree of accuracy. No one is quite sure how the storm bottle works. Is it atmospheric pressure? Temperature? Electrical disturbances? It’s this element of uncertainty that makes these storm bottles so fascinating.
And for the armchair sailor…
Model Sailing Boat
Who doesn’t love a model boat? This version has a ballasted keel, fabric sails and a moveable rudder. It comes with a full set of sailing instructions and can be used on ponds and the sea.
Merry Christmas Everyone!
With highly qualified and experienced crew, Halcyon Yachts Ltd offers a dedicated international yacht delivery service. For more information or to see details of their recent deliveries please visit: