BVI Sail and Dive
Published by Swain Sailing School and Yacht Charters on Thursday, 2nd July 2015 - 12:00PM in Flotillas & Specials
The BVI is a sailing and diving paradise; our sail and dive cruises Integrate the best of both. Your platform for exploring the varied anchorages and dive sites of these unique islands will be a 40-45 foot catamaran. The pace is catered to each guest's mental and physical “decompression”- from a lazy morning coffee in the cockpit to reggae dancing at an anchorage nightspot.
Whether you’re looking to complete your Open Water certification dives, or to progress your skills with a knowledgeable dive instructor, the BVI is the perfect venue. Between dives we will sail the Sir Francis Drake Channel as well as venture into either the Caribbean or Atlantic sides of the islands. You’ll spend 6 nights in beautiful island anchorages and will have the opportunity to log 8-10 dives. We’ll dive directly from the stern of your charter yacht allowing us to select sites based on current weather, sea state and your abilities.
For those with basic keelboat certification or equivalent experience, who are interested in earning their Bareboat Charter certification, sail training and certification can be incorporated into your sail and dive holiday.
The following is just a sample of the anchorages and dive sites that we’ll have to choose from:
Anchorage: Norman Island – Robert Louis Stevenson based Treasure Island on this picturesque isle and indeed BVIslanders found treasure in her caves in past generations. The schooner restaurant/bar Willy T is a harbor stop.
Divesites: Angelfish Reef offers a sandy bottom at 40 ft for initial Open Water training dives but gently descends to 60+ as we follow coral and sponge ridges. Sea turtles, Moray eels, Spiny Lobster and large French and Queen Angelfish abound.
Rainbow Canyon: 35 to 70 ft depth. Prolific Sea Fan, sponge and coral growth lead to a sand and sea grass edge. Brown Garden Eels burrow tail first as they sway amongst the sea grass. Red Banded Coral Shrimp and Flamingo Tongue snails are amongst the smaller creatures we will point out but be ready to see Hawksbill or Green Turtles.
Anchorage: Peter Island: Great Harbour is a great staging site for several nearby dives. Look closely and you’ll see native iguana amongst the prickly cactus.
Divesites: The original Willy T schooner lays upright at 60+ feet beside a 20 foot coral ridge. We descend directly onto the wreck and may see squid playing around her massive windlass at about 40 feet. Sargent Majors protect their purple egg patches laid on the sunken hull.
Painted Walls is named for the brilliant multicolored sponge and coral underwater walls within numerous submerged mini-fiords. Lobster and Coral Crab will watch us as we pass.
Anchorage: Cooper Island: picturesque and home to the Cooper Island Beach Club, a great spot for a sundowner or supper, mind the nearby Manchioneel Trees which exude toxic sap.
Divesites: The 1865 RMS Rhone, off Salt Island is consistently ranked #1 Caribbean wreck by virtually all dive mags. Your leader has logged hundreds of dives here and will point out the ships features reviewed in the pre-dive story of the Rhone. It is a wonderful habitat for a broad selection of fish and crustaceans and a hallmark in your divelog.
Wreck Alley is another site with several ships turned habitat. These are sitting beside a coral mini wall. We see a log of stingrays and dozens of fish species. Blonde Rock is a mini underwater pinnacle 20 ftt at the peak/mooring and decending to 70ft. Black Coral will frame some approaching shark species, conch and triton shells move along the bottom. We’ll point out numerous coral and fish species in ledge undercuts and may well see a giant Eagle Ray.
Anchorage: Virgin Gorda North Sound. The Bitter End Yacht Club or Saba Rock are favourite watering holes. There is a good collection of Rhone artifacts (collected in early days) ashore. We begin to dive Atlantic side sites
Divesites: The Chimney off The Dog Islands features a beautiful underwater rock passageway and is a gentle 30 – 50 ft dive. The Chikuzen is a 350-ft Japanese fish processing ship that met her kharma and lies in 80 ft in the Atlantic. Now she sustains schools of fish. We often see large pelagic fish and turtles nesting in her compartments.
Anchorage: Cane Garden Bay on Tortolas north shore is a quintessential sand beach rimmed Caribbean bay featuring local musician Quito Rymer
Divesites: Brewer Bay Pinnacles host massive biomasses of bait fish amongst her underwater rock and coral spires. They behave like a force field, always 6 inches away from your body parts as you glide through them… an opening ahead will reveal 6-ft silver Tarpon gliding through as they feed.
Anchorage: Jost Van Dyke offers either Great Harbour featuring the music of the world famous Foxy or White Harbour and the always popular Soggy Dollar Bay and the most beautiful beach.
Divesites: The Playground on the Atlantic side is a low traffic site offering chances to see visiting Pelagic species and fairly virgin diving.
Night of arrival sleep aboard
7 day/6 night Live Aboard Sailing
Provisioning: All breakfasts, 4 lunches, 3 dinners, snacks and starter kit
Boat water and fuel
Yacht Damage Insurance
National Parks Fees
Tanks and airfills
Sailing Courses and Certifications Available:
Basic Cruising and Bareboat Cruising (and catamaran cruising if training on a catamaran) certification available
Crew with their Basic Keelboat certification or with small boat sailing experience can incorporate their bareboat certification course into the week of sailing for tuition of $195. Tuition supplement includes:
Basic Cruising and Bareboat Cruising Exam Fees
*Catamaran Cruising certification available with Sail and Dives offered aboard catamaran
Crew holding their Bareboat Cruising certification and training on the catamaran may test for the Catamaran certification. Fee is $125 and includes text and exam fee.
PADI Referral - 4 Open Water Cert Dives - $195 per student
Discover Diving - Resort Course - $95 per student
Advanced or Rescue Diver Cert - $295 per student
Three meals and other activities ashore
Beverages and ice
Government departure tax
Contact Us to schedule your Sail and Dive vacation.