Published 15:11 on 31 Jul 2023
The most beautiful place you've never sailed?
What do you look for when you go sailing.. A myriad of beautiful islands? A huge choice of stunning sheltered anchorages? Well-organised harbours for watering and provisioning? Friendly locals who mostly speak English and just can't do enough to help you? And perhaps even a sauna for your crew included in your mooring fees!?
Well, amongst Corinthians the secret is already out with 20 members recently making a trip to the Stockholm archipelago led by skippers Richard, Robyn and Nigel.
The first day's sail to a remote sheltered bay provided a gentle introduction to the charter boats and to the standard Swedish mooring technique involving stern anchor and bowline ashore. Then with a few days of inclement weather forecast the itinerary was sensibly adjusted to involve a two night stop at Gruvbyn harbour on Uto allowing crews fully to embrace the outdoor Scandinavian lifestyle and spend a day exploring the island by hired bicycles or on foot or to go swimming. followed by a sauna of course.
And then once the strong winds had blown over (that had caused such mayhem in the Gotland Rund, Sweden's premier offshore race happening just offshore at the time with only 21 boats finishing out of 150+ entrants) a full days sailing downwind in beautiful sunshine enabled crew members to practise their gybing technique and navigators to check the pin-point accuracy of their chart-plotters in threading a safe route through so many rocky islands. The anchorage chosen for the night was Sack, possibly the most beautiful natural harbour in the whole of the archipelago.
Or was it the lunch stop the next day in Finnham - called 'Paradiset' - which was the most beautiful?. Where groups went ashore again to swim from the beach or to sip a coffee at the eco cafe and just marvel at the natural surroundings.
Or was it, following an afternoon's glorious reaching and tacking upwind between yet more islands, actually that evening's anchorage in Loknasviken that was the most idyllic?!.Which the three Corinthian boats had to themselves so that the revelry and hilarity involved in having to finish off the ship's provisions (and the remains of their duty free purchases) and a certain misunderstanding with a BBQ on one boat, did not spoil anyone else's evening. And being not many days past the Swedish MidSommar it was indeed a nice long one.
The route chosen back to Saltsjo Pir on the final day was through more narrow channels and past the impressive 16th Century Fortress at Vaxholm, with some boats heading into Stockholm itself for a 'fly by' of the city and the historic old town of 'Gamla Stan'.
Many thanks to Cassie, Berenice and all three skippers for the organisation of a great trip and yes..the Stockholm archipelago really does have some of the most beautiful inshore waters that you can sail.
Written by: Chris WI
Photo Credit: Robyn Griffith-Jones
Last updated 17:30 on 3 August 2023