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Over 12 years old


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Yacht & Sail Training Courses

Whether you are a complete beginner or a more experienced sailor, we offer a full range of courses and qualifications to introduce you to yacht sailing or help develop your skills. Learning in the sun while cruising around the beautiful Greek Islands is an enjoyable way of learning to sail, gaining your skippers license or taking charge of a yacht for the first time with our expert yacht team always close by.

Our sailing courses can be paired with a Flotilla (or Bareboat charter) so you can get qualified in a week and skipper your own yacht in week two. We have chosen to teach in Vassiliki in the south Ionian, to encourage quick learning and development of key sailing skills.

 OFFER: 10% off sailing courses when you book 2 persons [more]

Start Yachting: Cruising Level 1 & 2

Our Start Yachting course - Cruising Level 1 and 2 - is a great way to give yacht sailing a try and introduces pupils with no sailing experience to our sport. Each course runs over 2-3 days and you can extend it to 5 days and do a complete Level 1 and 2 course.

It’s a great course for novices to take alongside more experienced sailors doing other courses like Competent Crew or Day Skipper. All these courses can be taught on the same tuition boat and at the same time; so allowing friends and family to learn together. Min age 10+.

Competent Crew Practical

If you are completely new to sailing, this is a great place to start. This course aims to take you from absolute beginner to valuable crew member as our excellent instructors deliver a comprehensive syllabus in just 5 days. It’s a fun and practical course spent sailing and out on the water. By the end of it, you will be a useful and able crew member on any sailing yacht. Recommended age from 12+.

Day Skipper Practical

Our week long course (5 days tuition) is suited to those with some prior sailing experience, (100 miles/5 days), and will help you achieve the valuable Day Skipper qualification so you can charter yachts worldwide. During the course we will teach you the basic practical skippering techniques to enable you to feel confident to set sail as the Skipper. You will take charge as skipper on a number of short passages, under the guidance of our instructor, looking at topics like passage planning, weather and mooring.


Coastal Skipper Practical

The Coastal Skipper course builds on the Day Skipper and is arguably the most rewarding course in the cruising schemes.

The training moves away from the shorter passages of Day Skipper and starts looking at passages that require watch-keeping routines, crew management and the ability to pilot a vessel both day and night. It will involve consideration of the requirements for offshore passages.

Day Skipper ‘Fast-track’ course

As a beginner with no experience, you can combine our courses in a ‘fast-track’ package which brings together the Competent Crew and the valuable Day Skipper course into one complete course taken over two weeks. On completion, you will be qualified to skipper a cruising yacht and embark upon an exciting lifestyle of yacht chartering, worldwide.



Yacht Skills (Flotilla Prep) course

Our popular one-day ‘Yacht Skills’ course is a great course to add-on to your Competent Crew or Day Skipper, as it can be done in the same week - after your course - to top up and fine-tune your skills.

It also suits Beach Club guests (on a Stay Sail) who want to get some practice in, or develop their boat handling skills before embarking on a flotilla in their second week. We will practice handling under sail and power, stern-to mooring, anchoring techniques and other manoeuvres with an RYA yacht master instructor right beside you.



Why learn with Ocean Elements?

We’ve been running RYA training centres for our Beach Clubs for the last ten years and we have a fantastic reputation for our standards of tuition. Our philosophy is to make learning fun and rewarding, so you enjoy the experience as a holiday and not just a sea school. We have chosen to keep our yacht programme small and focussed, so we can deliver a higher quality of service to new skippers in this exciting time of their yacht careers.  
Your first steps as a Skipper

Getting qualified as a Day Skipper is an exciting time. We have chosen Vassiliki in the Ionian for its suitability to new skippers. It’s also ideal if you can combine your course with a second week on flotilla - so that our lead crew can be on hand to help you take your first proper steps as a skipper.


Our Tuition yacht 

Our Bavaria 37 Cruiser and RYA yacht master instructor are based in Vassiliki. She’s a fully equipped, fully coded tuition yacht - set up for running our courses - with 3 double cabins. You can live aboard the yacht and cruise around the Ionian with our instructor as you learn in the sun. You can also rent the yacht and instructor privately, if you have a group.

Book a Private Course

Why not book our tuition yacht and instructor privately, for your week? Private bookings work well for groups of 2-5 and you can liveaboard as you cruise around the Greek islands, learning in the sun.

Private yacht charters (with an instructor) can often be cheaper than a skippered yacht.



What’s included?

  • 7 or 14 days aboard the yacht (for liveaboard)
  • Tuition from our RYA Yachtmaster Instructor
  • All course material, completion certificate included. Logbooks are extra
  • Provisioning for breakfast and a light lunch each day (dinner is ashore)
  • All fuel, water and marina fees
  • Bed linen and towels
  • An optional day of free watersports at our Vassiliki Beach Club on Freesail day



A key element is where we do it

Vassiliki is perfect for training aspiring skippers thanks to the local winds that make it famed as a world-class water sports venue. 

Here, budding skippers can practice new techniques in reassuringly light winds in the mornings, while building skills and understanding as the breeze increases to a force 4 to 5, with gusts in the afternoons. Therefore, after getting to grips with core techniques in a benign environment earlier in the day, our graduates also get to hone their skills while handling stronger winds. This is the biggest single challenge for new skippers and is invariably what marks out a truly competent sailor.

Will I definitely pass?

At Ocean Elements we love to introduce people to sailing. It’s our mission to ensure that every one of our pupils - be they total newcomers to sailing or more experienced - pass the course in a week so they get to skipper their own yacht for the first time, in week two.

Passing the course is within everyone’s capabilities so long as you have done the background reading (our E-learning course) and are willing to listen and learn. We have not had to fail anyone yet, and nor do we intend to. If skippers need a little extra coaching on certain topics, then that can be covered in extra time, by special arrangement.

The continual assessment nature of our courses make it easier on pupils without loading everything onto a nasty exam at the end. The emphasis is on learning. Not failing.

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