The ASA-certified instructors of New York Sailing School have been teaching the exhilarating art since 1968. With access to a fleet of beginner-friendly Sonar 23 skiffs, they instruct courses both on land and water, venturing out into the Long Island Sound with tender-footed aquanauts and Waterworld fanboys alike. NYSS alumni and ASA-certified sailors are also welcome to rent boats for daytime jaunts across the water.
Since 2004, the first-aid- and CPR-trained crew at Port Sailing School has ferried passengers over Manhasset Bay for sailing lessons, charters, camps, and certification courses aboard the school's fleet. The outfit's nine noble vessels include such seafaring specimens as the J 24 keelboat, the two-cabin Beneteau 36, and the Sonar 23, designated as the fleet’s primary lesson boat for its roomy cockpit and no-mutinies record. Aboard the Sonar 23, students learn sailing skills and marine laws through instructional courses that range from private introductory sailing lessons to state safety certifications. Based on the course topic, lessons may focus on such boating aspects as docking, mooring pickup, anchoring, or advanced racing techniques, each dictated by the desires of the student and the daily attitude of the sea.
Atlantic Outfitters facilitates maritime excursions with its stable of paddle-propelled vessels. From the fiberglass-ensconced safety of two sleek kayaks, or from the commanding view afforded by two standup paddleboards, seafaring friends can spend two hours exploring the watery expanses, tributaries, and wooded shorelines of the pristine Manhasset Bay. During the journey, paddlers can picnic on the open water, use their feet as anchors in the shallows along sandy beaches, or reenact favorite scenes from a documentary about waterfowl. Numerous kayak launch sites along the coast provide easy access to the bay.
Classic Harbor Line offers glimpses of modern-day Manhattan, Newport, Key West, and Boston with their fleet of sailboats and classic yachts. The sail line recently added Hoboken, NJ to its list of City Lights cruise attractions with excursions departing in north Hoboken at Pier 13 in Shipyard Marina . Passengers can engage in day trips, private charters, and special events in the harbor that grant glimpses of the sunset and shimmering night displays of city lights. Tours on the Line's yacht Beacon showcase a throwback to 1920s elegance—the mahogany bar, the wraparound seating, even the varnish was selected to emulate the vessels of that day. Classic Harbor Line prides itself in catering to customers by providing a luxurious and hospitable cruising experience where guests can sip champagne or take in the setting of the sun as sails comfortably cruise calm waters.
Hudson River Community Sailing is a unique combination of a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and sailing club. The proceeds from adult lessons and memberships go toward funding scholarship-based programs for at-risk urban youth. Each year, their Sail Academy,—an after-school academic program built on experiential, student-first lessons—immerses these students in the world of sailing and boat building. In addition to unlocking the secrets of boating, these sessions teach students the functional fundamentals of math, science, and self-esteem, earning them credit towards graduation along the way. The club's other youth work include the First Mates program—which preps students for college and career through a deep dedication to boating, racing, and navigation—and the City Sail summer program, which groups students into a small crew for a week of character-building exercises aboard a working 24' boat.
Hosting frequent fundraising events, such as the Dark and Stormy benefit, helps the team introduce as many new mariners as possible to the singular pleasure of sailing the Hudson. Their sailors also enjoy the perks of the club's location, drinking in awe-inspiring views of the Manhattan skyline that the Beatles saw just as they landed their moon module on Ellis Island.
Just a subway train's throw from Manhattan, City Island seems like a different world—tree-lined banks and sprawling waters that stretch toward the New York City skyline and out into the open Sound. New York Sailing Center's owner Captain Stephen Glenn Card touts the location for its absence of man-made disturbances such as wind shears and strong currents. Captain Card has taught since the 1980s, and continues to lead multiday immersive-sailing classes for everyone from beginners to advanced cruisers and navigators.
Throughout the years, they have developed a fine-tuned training system that combines in-classroom instruction (including practice with a large, moveable boat) and on-water obstacle courses within Eastchester Bay and Long Island Sound. Atop these waters, students practice on Beneteau sailing boats —twin-rudder vessels that can accommodate beginner's mistakes, and are also the only boats to receive endorsements from a national sail training organization, such as ASA or US Sailing. As students progress, instructors teach more advanced skills such as bareboat cruising and navigation. They even take some of their brightest pupils on sailing trips to destinations such as Italy or Captain Hook's retirement home.