We are not a new company, but we have created a new website to tell more of the world about the coolest way to explore the Arctic and the Antarctic.
You might just have to pull a few ropes to get there….
We are looking for a new type of polar adventurer. We can offer you a way to travel through the polar regions on a fleet of expedition ships that have echoes of the past… but are also bang up to date when it comes to a low carbon footprint.
This is a holiday for everyone who loves nature and an outdoor life. You don’t need to know your jib halliard from your buntlines as our sea staff will train you to be a useful member of the crew. Their enthusiasm for the polar landscape and wildlife cannot fail unlock your inner explorer.
Experienced Operators – Who Are We?
Polar Tall Ships has been created by the Classic Sailing staff team. Our knowledge comes from over 20 years of experience in the traditional sailing world as skippers and travel consultants. Our personal obsession with the Southern Ocean and Arctic grounds means we go there regularly and can give you first hand advice. We don’t just create voyages in the polar regions and our main website www.classic-sailing.co.uk has a wealth of information on voyages from Cornwall to Cape Verde.
A growing number of our customers are discovering the allure of sailing in Antarctica, South Georgia, Svalbard, Iceland, Greenland and even more remote polar sailing grounds.
We hope our Polar Tall Ships Website will give you a flavour of what we do in the Summer Arctic and summer Southern Ocean….. and it is often dry and sunny.
Seven Sailing Ships – Schooners, Ketches and Square Riggers
We work with seven different sailing ships that operate in polar regions. They all have tall masts and ratlines so you can climb aloft and take incredible photos.
Step back in time to the days of Shackleton, Nansen and Scott and enjoy the silence and awe of sailing through the polar landscape under topsails and t’gallants. Grip the spokes of a ships wheel tightly as the Captain gives you helm orders to steer between icebergs or a narrow fjord. A sailing ship keeps you busy. There are always some ropes to pull together to keep you warm and outdoors for longer.
Our polar tall ships have heated cabins, hot showers, ships libraries, a bar or sociable deckhouse to relax out of the elements and fast modern zodiacs to get ashore.
Crikey – We ARE the Polar Tall Ship Experts
“Definition of an Expert: A Drip Under Pressure”
Becoming the font of all knowledge for sailing holidays on traditional boats and tall ships creeps up on you. Suddenly you realise that we have quite a team ‘in house.’ Adam, Debbie, Becky and Melissa are all charter skippers or instructors and have enough sailing miles under our belts to have sailed around the world 6 times. We run the booking office. You can talk to us directly. Our knowledge and passion for sailing in the polar region comes from a variety of sources:
Bark Europa has been sailing in Antarctica with charter guests since 2002. There are three captains who have amassed a huge amount of knowledge, and we have sailed with all of them. Europa has pioneered voyages to South Georgia, South Orkney, the Weddell Sea and both sides of the Antarctic Peninsula.
In the Arctic each destination has its specialist vessels that have worked hard to open up exciting new sailing areas. They employ the best wildlife guides and professional sailors to enhance that experience. We talk to the ships operators throughout the season.
The Classic Sailing team often sail with the ships crews and we get regular feedback, photos and stories from professionals and the guests. We deal with your booking queries ourselves, so you can ring us for an enthusiastic chat and we can give you a realistic insight into what to expect and help you find the right polar voyage or vessel.
Which Polar Region for Your Adventure?
The Arctic is a vast ocean ringed with islands and the icy frontiers of Scandinavia’s North Cap, Russia, Canada and Alaska. While the Antarctic is a vast unspoilt wilderness, teaming in curious wildlife, dazzling glaciers and snowfields, vertical cliffs and ice capped mountains where humans have yet to tread. See how different they are and how they will inspire you!
Whilst the Antarctic has been on the adventure traveller’s bucket list for years, sailing in Iceland or the High Arctic is only just opening up….literally as the ice melts. Climate change is happening on Europe and North America’s doorstep and the more ambassadors for the Arctic we can create by real life experience, the greater the campaign to save this precious ecosystem.
Sailors see more Wildlife
Our ships offer a unique and intimate viewing platform to experience the spellbinding and awe-inspiring wildlife opportunities that are available in these polar regions. You can get very creative with your camera angles from the bowsprit, crow’s nest, or framing wildlife through the ships rigging. The main decks are typically 1-2 metres above the sea so you are very close to acrobatic seals and over friendly humpback whales that love to dive underneath us.
In terms of wildlife interaction when we say small group travel we really mean it. Guest crew varies between vessels from 11 on Hildur to a maximum of 40 on Europa, so your shore landings are less intrusive.
The beauty of taking part in setting sails is it keeps you warm and it is easier to acclimatise and spend longer on deck. The more time outdoors you spend the more wildlife encounters you can experience.
Who Comes on a Polar Tall Ship Voyage?
Our crews can be younger and more adrenalin seeking than you will find on a comfortable cruise ship, but we also have plenty of intrepid travellers over 70 who want a bit of the action. A willing heart, a sense of wonder and boots with good grip would get you a place in our crew!
No sailing experience is needed to travel with us. People from all walks of life sign up for the adventure, but you need to look more than skin deep to find a common core. The voyages are about ‘hands on participation’ to reach a destination, and all the unexpected rewards that come with the journey. The type of person that appeals to is the independent traveller that can adapt to changes in the itinerary or the wildlife enthusiast that understands time spent outdoors equals the best encounters.
On our holidays you can haul ropes together with the skipper, crew and guides, or take a back seat if you are running out of steam. Living on a sailing ship that demands a response to changes in the weather tends to create a more alert sort of guest. Our voyages attract people who want to contribute to the whole, whether it is physical, social or intellectual. Being on lookout or steering the ship is a constant reminder that we all have some responsibility for our fellow traveller. A deeper understanding of the challenges and fears of the early explorers is reached. Emotions are involved and shared. Life long friendships are made.
Please enjoy! If you wish to get involved and book a trip then you can find details of voyages on our main website www.classic-sailing.co.uk, or give us a call to have a chat and get some advice.
Melissa, Becky, Anna, Debbie and Adam