Sailing in Nova Scotia

Sailing in Nova Scotia is an option for skilled captains and beginners sightseers alike. In many of the port towns—and most of the major towns in Nova Scotia—visitors will find many boats at the docks just waiting to head out to sea. With miles and miles of coastline, well-equipped marinas, and a full array of boats, it's easy to make sailing in Nova Scotia part of your vacations.

If you're already familiar with the requirements and skills needed for going out on your own, but lack the right vessel, consider making reservations for a charter. Many different companies are located throughout the province and can provide you with the equipment for Nova Scotia sail charters. The companies also can provide guidance on the best routes to take and give an overview of what you can see on the way. If you want to leave the planning to the experts, Nova Scotia sail charters are also an option. The boat companies can provide a captain and crew, too, and provide customized routes for sailing in Nova Scotia.

With so much to see from the coast, visitors who step aboard sightseeing excursions will be rewarded with some amazing views. These aquatic getaways can take a few hours or a full day, and a whole variety of outings are available. Whale watching cruises are popular, as are sunset sails. Many of vessels are modern catamarans, but some cruises take place aboard tall ships that would not look out place during the height of British colonies.

For a more in-depth experience, Nova Scotia sailing schools are another way to experience the thrill of taking to the water. Expert sailors teach what it takes to get anyone started in sailing. In Halifax, the Saint Mary's Boat Club has been teaching new sailors the ropes since it opened in 1905. Between April and the end of the year, the club offers an array of classes for anyone older than the age of ten for various types of single-handed and multi-handed vessels. Like other Nova Scotia sailing schools, Saint Mary's follows the guidelines of the Canadian Yacht Association. In addition to sailing, the club also rents kayaks and canoes.

You don't have to step aboard a boat to enjoy Nova Scotia sailing. People gather along the coast to watch the races and regattas, and many of the museums have detailed exhibits and full-sizes vessels in their collections.

In Lunenburg, a little fishing town on the southern coast, the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic celebrates the heritage of Atlantic Canada. Many of the boats in the collection are located inside an exhibit hall, while some are moored at the wharf. Visitors can step aboard the Cape Sable and Theresa E. Connor, two ships that once sailed the waters of Nova Scotia.

The schooner Bluenose II, a replica of a vessel that once sailed from the dock in Lunenburg, serves as the province's official sailing ambassador. Many of the same shipbuilders who worked on the original gave their time to create the second vessel. Since the 1960s, the Bluenose II has taken countless groups of visitors and residents on a tour of the Atlantic Ocean. An extensive renovation began at the end of 2009, readying the vessel for Nova Scotia sail charters for many years to come.

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