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Sailing can be a relaxing cruise along beautiful coasts, anchoring in quiet coves along the way. It can also be exciting fun in fast dinghies, splashing through the waves, enjoying the refreshing spray. Your choice.

Being close to the water, and often in it, is a refreshing experience. Sailing for pleasure can involve short trips across a bay, day sailing, coastal cruising, and more extended offshore or 'blue-water' cruising. These trips can be singlehanded or the vessel may be crewed by families or groups of friends. Sailing boats may go on their own, or be part of a flotilla with other like-minded voyagers.

If you like it wet, dinghy sailing is for you. There is lots of spray, the occasional capsize and frequent fully clothed swims. See below for clothing tips that work well on and in the water.

Reader Comments

Diver Goes Sailing

by Tom from Weymouth, UK

I wear a one-piece suit for most watersports, not just in foul weather. Out of choice I'm a cruiser so don't "plan" to be out when it's really pi55ing down, but sometimes you don't get the choice. Normally, sailing in foul weather gear is more than adequate.

Before getting an interest in sailing I was a very active diver, so wearing a one-piece nylon suit over my wetsuit is a fairly natural thing to do. I started my interest in sailing with dinghies and a one-piece suit was an obvious choice. As an aside, a fleece undersuit under sailing gear works well to keep you warm even when wet.

Watersport Centre

by Craig from Wales

Inspired by your website, my friend Andy and I went to a watersports center in Spain and had a blast. Sun, sea, and more, just what we needed. We were in and out of the water all day long. Our balcony looked like a laundry with all those dripping clothes drying in the evening breeze.

In the mornings we got dressed in our boating kit, either nylon pants, sports shirt and anorak, or a thin one piece nylon suit, like you recommended.

Then we went for a swim in the pool, doing several lengths in these clothes for strength training. It's huge fun and really gets you fit.

After the swim we had breakfast at the open air poolside buffet with lots of vegetarian delights. We enjoyed our cereal and fruits while our clothes dried in the sun.

Boats in the Morning

Next up was the boating session on the beach. We could choose from kayaks, canoes, sailboats, windsurfers and stand-up paddle boards.

While out on the water our dry clothes soon got a bit too hot from the sun and exercise. So we either rolled the kayak, splashed each other, or simply jumped into the water to get our clothes wet again. That was always refreshing fun.

After the boating session we went for the showers to rinse the sea water out of our clothes, and jumped into the pool again. Our wet clothes kept us cool during the poolside lunch buffet, but dried out soon. During the midday heat we went to our room to take all our kit off and relax on the bed.

Catamaran Sailing

In the hot afternoon we went catamaran sailing. This is a fast paced splash sport. We were asked to wear jogging suits for extra weight on the trapeze, not the loose fitting nylon kit from the morning. Andy was dressed all in a blue jogging suit. I chose blue jogging pants, tee-shirt and a white hoodie. That looked cool, but by the time we got to the beach it felt quite hot. Time to cool off.

We carried the catamaran into the sea about waist deep and ducked under to get our clothes completely wet for the trapeze sailing session. Andy took the helm, I was in the trapeze hanging just above the water moving fast, spray hitting us all the time.

Whenever we hit a wave, I got briefly dunked into the water. We swapped places a few times so Andy got dunked as well. When we got back to shore we were dripping wet and went for a swim in our jogging suits. Awesome experience.

Dinner and Pool Party

For dinner and the following pool party we dressed in loose fitting pants, polo shirts and hoodies or trendy anoraks. Before we went to the buffet we often took a sunset walk along the beach, sometimes wading knee deep into the shallow water. A couple of times we went for a swim in our dinner clothes, just couldn't resist it.

The dinner was always delicious vegetarian food, served on the patio by the pool. After relaxing for an hour or so, the pool party got under way. It didn't take long before the first guests were in the pool. Because we looked cute in our hoodies, we usually got pushed into the pool early on and really enjoyed that. Life's good.

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