Sailing on international waters allows sailors liberties that can't be taken on land, such as marrying a video game, naming a dog a swearword, or rebroadcasting NFL games without the written consent of the league. Go above the law with today's Groupon: for $99, you get a three-hour sunset group sail for two people from Windward Sailing in Amelia Island (a $220 value).
Windward Sailing has escorted experienced and unpracticed seafarers alike around the firths and fjords of northeast Florida since 1988. An hour before sunset, one of Windward Sailing's 10 USCG captains steers six passengers out of Fernandina Harbor Marina toward Cumberland Sound. Dolphins, sea turtles, manatees, and vacationing polar bears swim in the surrounding waters, and Georgia's nearby Cumberland Island shelters wild horses, sand dunes, and salt marshes. To the east, the Atlantic Ocean glistens as the sun retires for the night. Like an overachieving frisbee, the bathroom-equipped boat sails for the entirety of the three-hour voyage, so deckhands are encouraged to supply their own refreshments. Since the sun sets at different times throughout the year, mariners should call ahead to schedule their sail.
From their dock on Amelia Island, Windward Sailing's US Coast Guard captains float out into the Cumberland Sound, where dolphins, manatees, and sea turtles swim alongside the boat's speeding hull. As these tours progress, the captain turns passengers' attention to the wild horses that gallop across the banks of Cumberland Island.
Though these tours introduce customers to the thrill of sailing, it's Windward Sailing's school that transforms the sport into a lifelong passion. In classrooms and on boats, instructors teach students to cruise local waters and prepare them for American Sailing Association exams. Depending on the course, instructors might teach fledgling captains to sail in light to moderate winds or navigate using nothing but constellations and the giant map NASA inscribed on the moon.
1 N Front St.
Amelia Island, Florida 32034