Learn How to Sail On Your Florida Vacation

It’s a dream. Sailing the high seas, all on your own, with the wind whipping in your hair and the waves softly cascading against the hull.

We love sailing. But it’s more than just a passing dream. Right on Amelia Island, this can all be turned into reality. Windward Sailing School provides a whimsical sailboating experience to anyone up for the journey. With an open mind, a bit of patience, and the wherewithal to hit the ocean, you can turn your everlasting dream of a sailboat adventure into a very real lifelong memory.

sailing on the ocean at sunset

Sailing Amelia

Windward Sailing has three main services. You can go on a sailing charter adventure and get an overall feel for the ropes. You can head by Cumberland Island, in and around the quiet waterways of Fernandina beach, or even down to Jacksonville by the most direct route- the Atlantic Ocean.

A sailboat charter is a wonderful way to get your feet wet, often quite literally. Certified sailors can also rent a sailboat and journey where their heart desires.

Sailing Lessons

Of course, the big draw of Windward Sailing School is the sailing course selection. You can learn how to sail with a veteran team of experts. The captains cover all the basics and some intermediate steps, though different courses take you to different levels of training. In the end, you can receive a Keelboat certification.

a boat knot

Things to Know

There is a lot to know about sailboat certification, and it would be impossible to cover it all here. But there are some handy basics that apply to the Windward Sailing School.

  • There are scheduled classes as well as private classes available. If you want to attend classes, but won’t be in the area for the dates, inquire about private services.
  • Deposits are required for all class types.
  • The classes are divided into two main types: on land and on water. Land instruction takes place in downtown Fernandina Beach, at 714 Beech Street, while on-water meetings will begin at the Fernandina Harbor Marina.
  • A few essential prerequisites are required for most courses, including a dedicated number of hours on the water and/or certification.

Classes are an incredible experience. You can really learn how to sail, and what it takes, even when on a Florida vacation.

Types of Courses

There are 12 different courses categorized into three main types: introduction, cruising, and navigation.

They vary by skill level, extensiveness, and length. The first is an introduction to the sailing course. While this course is not included or connected to an ASA Certification, it is still an excellent entry-point for curious enthusiasts. It is open to all ages and requires no previous experience at all.

The basic Keelboat course also requires no previous training and provides a more hands-on and elevated approach.

Coastal Cruising 103 is the first course that begins the process of receiving an ASA Certification. By the end, you will have worked as a skipper and crew on a boat, and received substantial training in navigating varying water and wind conditions.

Select the course that matches your expectations and desires. Your course interest may largely depend on how long you are staying at one of our vacation rentals on Amelia Island. While some courses are single-day outings designed as introductions, others are multi-week commitments in pursuit of proper certification.

Sights to See

While a journey with Windward Sailing School is mostly an educational one, you can’t help but see a few of the majestic sights along the way. With a trip on the water, it is entirely possible to see a school of dolphin playfully following the boat around. Due partly to the lack of an engine, local dolphins are a little more open-minded to approaching the sailboat and following it.

Take a vacation trip to Amelia Island and enjoy this quiet enclave of North Florida. Contact us for details about our available Amelia Island vacation rental homes.