Holy GrounderCome and explore the amazing SouthWest coast of Ireland. Enjoy the beauty of the landscape and have great fun learning to sail or improving your sailing skills. Soak up the atmosphere aboard under the expert leadership of Yachtmaster Instructor Eddie English.

Sherkin IslandEnjoy quality food aboard and ashore and of course get to have a pint in great places! Escape the hustle and bustle and enjoy peace and quiet and slow down to a different pace of life. Sail to new places, experience new things and learn new skills while broadening your mind with great instruction. Relish the challenge and gain a new confidence in your own ability afloat and qualify as a Competent Crew, Day Skipper or even Yachtmaster.

Explore the Cork coast and get off the beaten track. Connect with nature and see gannets, gulls, ospreys, orcas, divers and dolphins. Enjoy the salt air and spend a healthy day working afloat. Experience adrenalin- filled adventures on the high seas and then sit back and relax .

Lobster Visit a new port and have a great "run ashore" – meet the locals (Eddie knows them all!) and chill with a pint of Murphy’s or Beamish followed by a great local meal. Enjoy the fun ashore and voyage to a new anchorage the next day! 

Fastnet RockSailCork offers daytrips, weekend or weeklong courses as well as longer cruises from Cork to Dingle and the Isles of Scilly. Come aboard and enjoy learning afloat! Sail in style on our 37” yacht, "The Holy Grounder". She is a Beneteau 36.7 built in 2002. She sails like a thoroughbred and offers all the comfort of any boat of her size. She is a joy to sail – fast yet easily sailed – ideal for beginners and improvers alike. Have a look at video of "Grounder" sailing in West Cork.


The South Coast of Ireland is one of the best cruising grounds in the world with dramatic scenery, excellent sailing conditions and a friendly welcome ashore. Cork Harbour offers the perfect classroom – tides, obstacles, harbours, quays, marinas, shipping traffic, leisure traffic, navigation buoys and a beautiful place to sail in! Have fun learning under the expert eye of Yachtmaster Instructor and race navigator Eddie English and his team of cruising instructors. We have been teaching yachting for nearly 30 years and our friendly instructors have massive experience. Have a look at a pupils view of one of our courses way back in 1999!  See video of our courses. Learn about tacking and gybing.


Come yachting for a half day, a day, a weekend or a week.

Whareas our half day "Try Yachting" is geared towards fun we work on a progressive learning programme on longer programmes. We will endeavour to see as many new ports as possible thus expanding the crews horizons and heightening the enjoyment of the cruise. The destinations will of course be entirely weather dependant.

The first day will concentrate on looking at each participants all round ability. During the rest of the course we will concentrate on improving individual skills required by the syllabus and aim towards a certified qualification.

East Ferry Cork HarbourThe Cork coastline is one of the finest for cruising anywhere in the world and combined with traditional Cork hospitality all our cruises are enjoyable learning experiences. Our base at Cork Harbour provides an excellent starting point from the secluded pictureesque marina at East Ferry near Cobh. Ports of call include: Crosshaven -home of the oldest yacht club in the world to the Royal Cork Yacht Club. Kinsale is known as the gourmet capital of Ireland and is an excellent port of call. The fishing villages of Glandore, Union Hall and Castletownsend provide safe anchorages in spectacular settings and Baltimore in far West Cork is a stepping stone to the magical islands of Sherkin and Cape Clear within view of the Fastnet Rock.


Cruises usually have five pupils with a skipper but on certain longer cruises we carry a bigger crew to run a watch system. All boats are equipped with full safety equipment, all nav. aids and powerful engines. The safety equipment includes lifejackets and harnesses for each crew member. Please ensure you have a good set of waterproofs, plenty of warm clothes and seaboots and a sleeping bag.


Courses and Qualifications

Yachtmaster CertificateEveryone now realises the value of certification – SailCork provides and excellent learning environment and can take you through the hoops from the basic qualification right up to instructor. Enjoy the experience and progress your learning with recognised certification. Scheduled courses follow a set syllabus Competent Crew, Day Skipper, Coastal Skipper, Yachtmaster and International Certificate of Competence.  


Start Yachting

The Start Yachting course is the basic introductory course for beginners –  run over a w-end. By the end of the w-end, you will have experienced steering a yacht, sail handling, rope work and be aware of safety onboard and have enjoyed some great sailing on the south coast of Ireland. Holders of a Start Yachting cert can obtain a Competent Crew certificate by completing a further one or two weekends of the Competent Crew Course.

The Start Yachting weekend is ideal as an introductory gift and like all our courses we can provide a gift voucher.


Details on ICC


Competent Crew Course

Competent CrewThis course is for beginners and those who would like to become active crew members rather than just passengers. The aim of the course is to provide an introduction to the world of sail cruising in a positive and structured manner. The course is as much about getting to grips with living aboard a cruising boat as it is about learning to sail. Experience living on board and really get to know the boat. Virtually all the course is hands on. You are the crew – without you the sails won’t go up and the boat won’t be steered.

By the end of the course you should be able to steer, handle sails, keep a lookout, row a dinghy and assist in all the day to day duties on board. You should also have visited some really interesting places and had an enjoyable Irish holiday. The Competent Crew course is run over a 5 day weeklong course, a bank holiday w-end and a full w-end or 2 – 3 full w-ends.

Syllabus and pre-requisites 


Day Skipper Course

Day SkipperA course for aspiring skippers with some yachting experience and basic navigation and sailing skills. Learn to skipper a short passage with the instructor on hand to give advice and encouragement and ensure your safety. Experience being in charge, taking credit when it all goes well and being responsible when it doesn’t. The aim of the course is to provide participants with the basic skills and knowledge necessary to skipper a sailing yacht by day in waters with which they are familiar.

Before this course, if you are not sure that you sailing is up to speed, a good way to learn in on an RYA Level 2 dinghy course. This will teach you to sail around a course and control the boat’s speed. 
If it’s help with navigation that you need, you should take our Day Skipper shorebased course. Course participants should have already reached at least the Competent Crew level. This course introduces the subjects of pilotage, navigation, seamanship and boat handling up to the standard required to skipper a small cruising yacht safely by day in familiar tidal waters. This is also the standard required by the ICC. The Day Skipper course is run over a  5 day weeklong course, a bank holiday w-end and a full w-end or 3 full w-ends.

Syllabus and pre-requisites 


ICC: International Certificate of Competence

This is the skipper’s licence as required for yacht charter and motor boat charter by yacht charter providers  in Ireland and abroad.

The International Certificate of Competence for Operators of Pleasure Craft (ICC) for users of pleasure craft, was established under resolution by the EU.  The aim of the ICC is to provide boat owners and people wishing to charter boats with an internationally recognised document certifying their competence to skipper a boat for recreational use. SailCork trains powerboat, motorboat and cruising yacht users to get their ICC certificate.
We run a two day Preparation and Test Course. On day one we work on boat handling skills required and revisie the relevant theory. The second day comprises of a practical test of boat handling skills followed by a written theory examination. Prior study is recommended for the theory and advise will be given on the subjects and standard required.

Note: Pass your ICC on a sailing yacht  – you will qualify for a dual certificate covering both motor and sail.  On our programme  we have designated a number of weekends for the ICC. Please call SailCork for dates on 021 4811237.

Details on ICC



Coastal Skipper Course

Coastal SkipperAdvanced skippering techniques for yachtsmen and women with considerable knowledge of sailing and navigation, wanting to undertake coastal passages by day and night. Like the Day Skipper course, this course consists of skippered passages in a variety of situations. Each trainee will skipper more challenging passages and learn more about passage planning, pilotage by day and night, boat handling, safety and emergency situations.
Course participants should have reached the Day Skipper standard and should have completed the shorebased Yachtmaster Navigation course. We offer "milage" courses where participants can log miles towards their certificate as well as preparing for their examination. The 5 day course includes four days of preparation for the 24 hour practical assessment by an ISA examiner at the end of the course. The Coastal Skipper Certificate certifies a recreational sailor’s ability to skipper a sailing yacht under sail and auxiliary motor on coastal passages during daylight and at night. 

Syllabus and pre-requisites 


Yachtmaster Course

YachtmasterThe Yachtmaster Certificate of Competence is often the ultimate aim of aspiring skippers. It is a well known, highly respected qualification worldwide, proving your experience and competence as a skipper. Course participants should have reached at least the Day Skipper standard, have the necessary pre-requisites and milage and should have completed the shorebased Yachtmaster Navigation course. We offer "milage" courses where participants can log miles towards their certificate as well as preparing for their examination. The 5 day course includes four days of preparation for the 24 hour practical assessment by an ISA examiner at the end of the course. The ISA Yachtmaster Offshore Certificate certifies a recreational sailors ability to skipper a sailing yacht under sail and auxiliary motor on coastal and offshore passages during daylight and at night. The certificate is endorsed for recreational use by the Department of Marine, Communications and Natural Resources. 

Syllabus and Pre- requisites


SailCork also offer all the shorebased background courses: Basic Navigation and Seamanship,Day Skipper Shorebased NavigationYachtmaster Shorebased NavigationNavigation for the iPad,VHF Radio Course, Passage Planning Courses and more.


Come yachting with SailCork!

Taste of Yachting – A three and a half hour "have a go" session. Morning 10:00 – 13:00 Afternoon 14:00 – 17:00 Evening 18:30- 21:30

Day Sails begin at 10:00 and finish at 17:00 (unless otherwise stated).

Weekend courses begin on Fri evening at 1930 and finish on Sun at 1630

Weeklong courses begin on Sun evening at 1930 and finish on Fri at 1630.

All courses begin at our base at East Ferry Marina Cobh unless otherwise stated.

Besides sailing aboard our "Holy Grounder" you may join us to "Cruise in Company"  to West Cork or to the Scilly Isles. 

Groups for courses or during weekdays by special arrangement – contact our office for details. (021) 4811237 or [email protected] 

See some great shots of SailCork sailing in West Cork from Francesco Crippa

Clip from BBC "Coast" programme with Eddie English about Cork Harbour 

                                      Eddie English


SailCork Yachting Prices 2015
  Apr-Sep Oct – Mar  
Taste of Yachting (3.0hrs): €49  €49   
Day Yachting incl sumptious lunch(10:00-17:00)  €99 €99  
Day Direct Assessment ICC (T+ Cs apply) €195 €195  
W-End Sat 0930 – Sun16:30 €290 €290  
W-End Fri 19:30 – Sun16:30 €350 €315  
Bank Hol Fri19:30 – Mon16:30 €466 €419  
Bank Hol W-E + W-E (bkd together) €775  €699   
2  W-E (booked together)  Fri 19:30 – Sun16:30 x 2  €710 €675  
3 w-ends (booked together)    €945 €899  
Week Sun 19:30 – Fri 16:30  €710 €675  
Combined Day Skip (Nav+Practical) €999  €999   

NOTE: All our cruiser courses include an extra evening onboard with a night sail and delicious home-cooked nourishing food.

Have a look at our blog (by Ita and Sean Hunt)  of our May 2012 cruise to Dingle and back and see one of our West Cork Blogs  and our Cruise Cork and Kerry


cruising cork and kerry

SailCork Yachting Schedule 2015 

Check dates on our website, but call as some may be booked or if you have specific dates in mind, please call 021 4811237 and talk to Jo. 


Book Cruiser Course now or call 021 4811237


All Courses
+353 21 4811237

Our Gallery

More Courses You May Find Interesting