PROGRAMME 2017-18
 PROGRAMME 2018-19

Delivery Passage from Falkland Islands to Cape Town 25 Apr - 5 Jun 2017 - Including RYA Yachtmaster Shorebased Course

Pelagic Australis will be embarking her crew at Port Stanley on the Falkland Islands on 25th April 2017. After the 5 day RYA course on shore, and a further 2 week's cruise of the Falkland Island's scenic anchorages to put these skills into practice, the vessel will depart for her transatlantic voyage. This 4500 mile ocean passage is expected to take 21 days with an ETA into Cape Town of about June 5th. Weather and circumstances permitting a stop at the remote island of Tristan da Cunha is a possibility.

Tristan da Cunha from Pelagic Australis

Tristan da Cunha

After the RYA Yachtmaster Course in Stanley, the focus of this programme is to use the two week cruise within the complex nature of the Falkland Islands archipelago for honing people’s inshore navigation skills. This will be under the guidance and assistance of the RYA instructor joining the vessel for the course, and of course by the Pelagic Australis crew. Then, the ocean voyage from Stanley to Cape Town serves to provide students with an opportunity to grasp every aspect of what it takes to pilot and crew an ocean sailing vessel across the breadth of the Atlantic Ocean. The miles gained en route are over twice that required by the RYA for the Yachtmaster Offshore license.

Navigation theory and practice

Please Take Note: This is a hands on situation and is not a leisure cruise. Crew members will be required to stand a watch throughout, take turns at cooking, cleaning and maintaining the vessel. A reasonable degree of fitness and vitality is necessary for making this an enjoyable experience. In order take part in the RYA course training it is essential that the student is fluent in spoken and written English.

Experience Required: This is not a voyage for beginners. Every crew member is expected to have a reasonable degree of offshore experience to fully benefit from the course, not least of all in having a chance in passing it, which is not guaranteed. An RYA Day Skipper qualification or other equivalent is the level we are looking for. Every prospective crew must submit any qualifications they have, plus a sailing CV in order for Pelagic Expeditions to judge whether he or she is suitable for this specialized voyage. There is no age limit, but we stress again that in order to benefit from this passage and the course, a reasonable degree of fitness and a high level of self motivation is required.


Pelagic Australis is run as a 'dry ship' when at sea and possibly at some anchorages when there is a real possibility of having to 'up anchor' and move off. This is at the Skipper's discretion. In port reasonable amounts of alcohol can be consumed but excessive alcohol consumption that leads to situations which put people at risk, or where the harmony of life on board is disturbed to an extent that other guests are made uncomfortable will not be tolerated. If this situation arises, the Skipper reserves the right to return to port and to disembark any Charterer at an intermediary port, or disembark the entire group in a group charter if necessary.

Pelagic Australis is a recognized and licensed RYA training facility. Pelagic Expeditions will provide a qualified RYA Instructor to conduct the RYA syllabus in addition to the vessels skipper and crew who will instruct the students in all else as mentioned in the general syllabus.

Click here for details of the syllabus

Learning rope and rigging skills


A students view on the 2012 Trip to Cape Town - Download a description of the 2012 Chile to Cape Town trip by by Matt Whitehead, 19 year old gap year student and Hobie champion from Cape Town in pdf form here.

2010 Delivery Trip and RYA Course - Click image for end of 2010 season delivery and RYA shorebased course gallery. Pictures Miles Wise and Laura Parish.

An instructor's perspective on the 2009 trip - Read an account in RYA magazine on the trip from Tierra del Fuego to Cape Town. See 2009 Delivery and RYA training trip Chile to Cape Town .

A former student writes about the 2007 RYA run - I would like to take this opportunity to let you know that I thoroughly enjoyed the voyage from Punta Arenas to Cape Town. Particular thanks to Stewart and Lawrence who's experience, sailing skills and forgiving attitude made a pretty tough journey both rewarding and enjoyable. Jess needs to be congratulated on her patience and consistent good humour when faced with a number of the crew who would clearly be challenged at home if asked to find the TV remote. The journey was particularly rewarding for myself as it fulfilled a long held ambition to visit the higher southern latitudes, to sail an ocean and particularly to do some meaningful astronavigation. All of these were fulfilled and more. The Chilean fjords were magnificent, to see a string of glaciers plunging into the sea and then spend the evening moored in a hurricane hole feasting on roast lamb and good Chilean wine is the best day sailing I am ever going to experience. The route as far as Puerto Williams was a holiday in itself, chugging up the Beagle channel must bring a lump to any Englishman's or scientist throat, it conjured up a picture of Darwin miserably seasick and crammed in to less space than my berth on Pelagic turning over ideas in his mind that resonated around the thinking world to this day.

The failure to get to Cape Horn only enhanced its reputation, I am glad to have failed in a 50 knot sou'westerly than to have succeeded on a calm day in bright sunshine. I shall however take every opportunity on my future RYA courses to remind my crewmates that I passed my Yachmaster navigation paper anchored at Isla Herschel, 55 deg south, having four hours the previous night on anchor watch in a 60 knot gale gently dragging 85 metres of 16 mm chain toward Antarctica.

The journey to the Falklands gave a hint of what real winter might be like at those latitudes and our arrival in a snow squall with HMS Edinburgh proceeding on patrol into the teeth of a westerly with the back drop of the rugged East Falkland coast was about a dramatic a land fall as I am ever likely to encounter. The 5 days on the islands was a great change of routine and thanks to Russell and Ian we had a great tour of the island with images of the 1982 campaign translated from television and written images to the reality of trudging through peaty swamps or being locked up for a month in a sheep shearing shed.

The ocean passage was a completely different experience, it taught me the different disciplines needed on extended passages, the importance of provisioning and how 10 people can find things not to disagree about when confined to a limited space for 3 weeks. Sighting Tristan da Cuhna, an incredibly remote place, then watch it disappear into the night as it's cloak of clouds lifted but the suns light fading so that she kept her volcanic mid-ocean profile a secret from us.

None of this would have been possible without out a great boat. Pelagic Australis was comfortable, warm, superbly equipped and a joy to sail. Clearly she is a distillation of your many years of experience sailing the worlds oceans and we benefitted enormously.

My one disappointment. I put on a few pounds prior to the trip expecting to quickly lose them in the austral winter and crewing the boat, however thanks to the incredibly high standard of provisioning and cooking I didn't lose and ounce. Many thanks for a memorable trip,

Best Regards,
Ken Barker
27 July 2007



Students will arrive in Port Stanley on April 25th via the Saturday Latam flight from Santiago and can go straight on board. An alternative is to take the RAF flight from Brize Norton in Oxfordshire which will arrive a few days earlier. Guest house accommodation can be booked directly or through International Tours and Travel. We can recommend hostel or hotel accommodation for those nights prior to the embarkation date, and meals on those days will be the responsibility of the students.

They will then move on board on April 25th and begin the five day RYA course in a classroom in Stanley. On or about May 1st, Pelagic Australis will depart Stanley and begin the cruise through the archipelago of the Falklands Islands concentrating on West Falkland which has the best wildlife and points of interest. If the weather is favourable the entire island group will be circumnavigated before returning to Stanley to fuel and provision up for the ocean crossing to Cape Town.

The remote island of Tristan da Cunha is along the track at 40 degrees South and if the surf off the open roads is reasonable a landing will be attempted for a rare visit to this British overseas outpost, largely populated by descendants from ship wrecked sailors of old.

On a good day, Table Mountain can be seen from 50 miles offshore and our ETA is expected there about June 5th 2017. Cape Town – Tavern of the Seas!


The Falklands are a specialist destination. Local agents to book your flights to Mount Pleasant Airport in the Falklands and arrange for transfer to the vessel once there are:

International Tours and Travel LTD
1 Dean Street Stanley FIQQ1ZZ
Falkland Islands
+500 22041 tel +500 22042 fax
Contact: Sally Ellis



The Malvinas Hotel is the only true hotel, but there are other guest houses and boutique accommodations available. We can advise on those and you can book directly or through International Tours and Travel.


Crew must make sure they have visas if required for the Falklands and South Africa. Photocopies of these visas and proof of a return ticket out of South Africa will be required by Pelagic Expeditions. It is essential that you have at least two clear pages in your passport BEFORE entering South Africa.


RYA Delivery per person 8,600 GBP cost includes all course materials for the RYA Yachtmaster Shore Based Course This cost includes:

  • Provisions while on board ·
  • Use of all navigation and sailing equipment on board ·
  • Use of safety equipment including lifeharness, PFD and Sail Racing sailing foul weather gear
  • Use of Inmarsat communication system on board (note: satellite time is billed separately as used).
  • All port fees and local taxes for the vessel ·
  • Fuel for the vessel


Not included: ·

  • Travel costs to point of departure and arrival ·
  • Meals or entertainments ashore ·
  • Cost of Inmarsat communications ·
  • Cost of RYA practical assessment after the delivery



Click here for details of the syllabus


Equipment List 2 - For the Atlantic Deliveries (which include the RYA course with the Beagle Channel cruise) and short cruises in the Falkland Islands in high summer.

Please  e-mail Skip Novak to reserve a place