RYA Day Skipper Two Week Special

Avoid the classroom and sail for two weeks! Having studied your Day Skipper theory at home prior to arrival, week one you will complete your RYA Competent Crew practical and in week two, your instructor will assist you in understanding how to apply your theory knowledge and practice your new skills, passage plan, pilotage and skippering the yacht.

Please note: The RYA Day Skipper Theory certificate is not a strict prerequisite to take this course! However, you must have a good understanding of the navigational theory at Day Skipper level prior to your arrival!

  • full 6 days with 4:1 or (larger yacht) 5:1 client to instructor ratio
  • You get your own cabin! No-one shares unless by choice when booking
  • You learn to sail and berth a clean, modern yacht of between 36ft to 40ft

2 Weeks (12 full days sailing)

Pre Course Experience
Pre Course Experience

See book links below for suitable study material/exercises

Assumed Knowledge
Assumed Knowledge

Basic navigation: Tidal heights, tidal streams, compass variation, course to Steer, passage planning, compass bearings, clearing bearings, 3 position fixes and knots. IRPCS

Course Content
Course Content

Week 1 – RYA Competent Crew and intro to RYA Day Skipper Practical
Week 2 - RYA Day Skipper Practical course

Expected Learning Outcome
Expected Learning Outcome

Skipper a small yacht in familiar waters by day


From €1995/pp (shared cabin for 2)


From €2250 (own cabin)


52 Weeks of the year, subject to availability

Book Links
Book Links

RYA Competent Crew

Day Skipper for Sail and Power (Only available on Amazon)
Day Skipper Exercises for Sail and Power (Only available on Amazon)

For those clients wishing to study the book before you arrive, books can be purchased online prior to your arrival. Alternatively they can be purchased at our school when you arrive. 


Click here for local weather links 


Pre-course Knowledge

In order to complete the two week Day Skipper Practical Course with Canary Sail it is necessary to home study prior to your arrival. Although it is not a requirement to hold the Day Skipper Shore-based Course certificate prior to the practical course, your understanding of the theory side should already be at a point where you understand and are able to:

  • Work out times and heights of HW & LW
  • Use a tidal curve to establish tide height
  • Extract information from a tidal atlas or diamond
  • Apply Variation and Deviation
  • Convert bearings between Compass, Magnetic and True
  • Plot bearings and fixes on a chart using a plotter
  • Produce a Course to Steer
  • Produce a Dead Reckoning and Estimated Position
  • Interpret chart symbols and abbreviations
  • Identify sound signals, lights and day shapes for different types of vessels

Your instructor will be available to refresh your existing knowledge during the course but there is insufficient time to teach these elements from scratch. Please contact us if you have any questions about your level of ability.

Course Content

Week one – RYA Competent crew

Below is a list of the course content you will understand by the end of your 6 day RYA Competent Crew course with Canary Sail

  • Yacht parts and sea terms – So you know where to be when asked!
  • Terms of sails and rigging
Handling Sails
  • Set and learn to reef sails – Reefing the sail stops the boat healing over too far!
  • Use of ropes that adjust sails
Other ropes that do other things
  • To hold the boat, tie knots and tidy or coil the lines afterwards
  • Prevention & Hazards – Learn what to do if it happens!
Life jackets etc
  • How they work, how to check they work – the rules
  • How to prevent a man over board is the key. If it happens, how to get them back on board
  • How to use distress equipment and (in the unlikely event of) to abandon ship
Customs & Manners
  • Environmental issues plus what to do with your ensign and when!
  • How to arrive into harbour when late – as quietly as possible!
Rules of the sea
  • How to keep a look out at sea – at all times!
  • How to get in & out without getting wet
  • How to row in a straight line
  • Where to find the forecast and to learn your Beaufort scale!
Sea Sickness
  • Some of us are, some of us are lucky – Stay with us if you are, give it a couple of days and you will have great fun!
Steering & Sailing
  • Learn to steer in a straight line and to handle the yacht under sail and power
General Duties
  • Keep the yacht in order and share the duties with your fellow crew – always!
  • Crew welfare including hygiene on board
  • Theory revision on any topics of your choosing
Week two – RYA Day Skipper

Below is a list of the course content you will understand by the end of your 6 day RYA Tidal Day Skipper Practical course with Canary Sail

Preparing for Sea
  • We will supply you with a checklist-at the end of your course!
Working on Deck
  • Reefing for prevailing conditions
  • Preparing a yacht for anchor
  • Berthing alongside buoy, springing off and general boat handling
Navigation on board
  • Plotting fixes, using GPS, DR & EP, tidal heights and streams, course to steer, ships log, depth log and lead line
  • Leading lines and transits, sounding etc.
  • Interpretation of barometer and shipping forecasts, source of forecasts
  • Working knowledge
Fix it!
  • Can make minor repairs/impeller change for example
  • Thorough brief on fuel and cooling systems, including routine engine checks
Stocking up
  • How to ensure enough of everything required is on board
  • Must be able to recover an MOB
  • Emergency equipment
  • VHF & distress messaging
  • Towing (maybe with a real tow!)
  • Helicopter rescue procedures
Handling a yacht under power
Handling a yacht under sail
Passage working
  • Plan a passage, and undertake it with yacht and crew
Night Cruising
  • Now included in the DS syllabus to give day sailors experience of night entrie

Typical Itinerary for Week

Day 1 – (Saturday – 17.00)

We will meet and welcome you and settle you onto your yacht. You are then invited to join us all for drinks to meet the team, your instructors and fellow students or crew. You will be made very welcome by the Canary Sail team and we can advise the best restaurants for you to sample!

Day 2

After the initial safety briefing, you will learn the ropes, be shown how to prepare the boat for departure and almost always be taken out for an introductory sail in the wind acceleration zone (WAZ) just off he harbour wall. This is to help you feel comfortable and (for some of you) familiar with your new surroundings on board

Day 3

Instruction on boat handling in and around the marina before making the first passage normally through the Wind acceleration zone (WAZ) to Marina Los Gigantes situated on the northwest of Tenerife. Here you will moor the boat in ideal conditions and be ready to relax before heading off for dinner in one of the many restaurants or bars available. Los Gigantes is a perfect set off point for your next destination

Day 4/5/6

The schedule for these days will depend on what you hope to achieve during the course, the level you are working towards and the winds. We aim to sail around the north of La Gomera to Vueltas or Valle Gran Rey on the west of the island. This route takes us through no less than 2 more of our WAZ zones thus almost ensuring you of great sailing in superb conditions on all points of sail! This fishing harbour is a more rustic location offering a wide variety of foods from local fish to Moroccan cuisine, experiencing the sunset from this charming habour. The WAZ zone situated just north of Vueltas serves us with ideal training conditions for sailing exercises during the following day. You may then depart Vueltas and complete your circumnavigation of La Gomera calling into Santiago, a beautiful fishing village, either for the evening or as a set-off point for the highlight of your week – The Night Sail to San Sebastian La Gomera!

Day 7

Further sailing, anchoring and general boat handling we finish back at your base in the afternoon where we begin the de-briefing, clean-up and issuing of your certificates. The course ends at around 4pm. Remember – your accommodation on the last evening is also included!

Day 8

Leave the yacht at 09.00.  Enjoy a day of rest before joining your second week.

Week 2

In your second week with us your instructor will endeavour to plan for alternative routes and harbours.

Exclusive Course Yacht” option for couples, families or groups on 36 to 50ft cruise yachts – now also including our Lagoon 38 C2 Catamaran option!

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A wide range of practical and theory courses offered all year round

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Choose from a variety of sail cruises around the Canary Islands and beyond

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From Bareboat to skippered charter, we have an option to suit your needs

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Recommended accommodation options in La Gomera and Tenerife

Get in Touch

Phone any time on our UK Divert No. (UK call cost): 0044 1252 837648
Phone (USA): 001 855 866-5566
Phone (Spain): 0034 922 141 967

Postal Address:
Apartado 211,
Calle Del Medio, 38800,
San Sebastian de La Gomera,
Islas Canarias, Spain

Office opening hours:
Tuesday-Friday 08.30-15.30

Calls diverted outside of office hours, excluding Mondays. Please send us an email and your enquiry will be dealt with promptly.

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