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Watch Leader

Voyage code




Voyage highlights

Develop and showcase your leadership abilities in a dynamic and challenging marine environment
Build your understanding of the RYA theory, enhancing your navigation and seamanship skills
Work towards your RYA Watch Leader competencies and actively support the development of your crew
Engage in exciting maritime adventures while mastering the skills to plan, execute, and review voyages on our Challenger
Explore innovative ways for maritime professionals to protect and preserve the ocean environment

Our Leadership Voyages promise an intense, adventurous journey that includes navigation, passage planning, watch leadership, and encounters with potentially demanding offshore and overnight sailing conditions. 

Due to the rigorous nature of these voyages, this challenging voyage along the south coast is perfect for seasoned sailors aged 16 to 25; individuals who have completed the previous phases of our three-voyage journey or the RYA Competent Crew course and looking to elevate their skills and emerge as true leaders. If you have significant experience in the outdoors in residential and challenging settings this may be for you too!

With a strong focus on personal growth and development, you’ll have the chance to work towards achieving your RYA Watch Leader certification, mastering the art of planning, executing, and reviewing activities and projects within a youth development voyage.

Imagine navigating the open sea, leading a team, and making critical decisions in real-time. This is not just a voyage; it’s an adventure that will push your boundaries, enhance your leadership abilities, and instil a deep sense of camaraderie as you work alongside peers who share your passion for sailing.

As part of your Leadership experience, you’ll be involved in ocean sustainability activities with your team, the focus for your trip will be decided onboard as a crew, planned and delivered during the voyage. Our commitment to understanding ocean health and improving knowledge of our ocean environment is critical whilst onboard.

To participate in this unforgettable experience, prior participation in a TSYT Voyage of Empowerment or a similar challenging outdoor learning programme is required. 

If you have relevant skills and experience but have not yet completed a RYA Competent Crew course, there will be the opportunity to have this certificate awarded on the voyage.

Set sail with us on this voyage and embark on a path toward a rewarding maritime career. 

Places you’ll visit

The beginning or end of your voyage may include stopovers on the Isle of Wight, in Cowes or Yarmouth, or in Weymouth or Poole along the south coast.

Depending on the weather conditions, we may sail to Alderney, Sark or Guernsey in the Channel Islands, or you may voyage along the South Coast and explore the historic port of Falmouth. 

Takeaways from your sailing adventure

Navigation and passage planning. Team leadership. Challenging sailing. Training and mentoring. 

Throughout the week, you’ll cover essential safety drills before you take charge of the yacht to plan, prepare, execute and review each component of the voyage. 

You will take turns to lead the team in all aspects of sailing the yacht, from deck work to provisioning, cooking, cleaning and day-to-day maintenance. 

This voyage is a great opportunity to make tangible progress towards achieving your goals, with time to reflect on your achievements and opportunities to learn about yourself as a leader and team player, and to develop the optimism, aspiration and expertise you need to influence your community as well as your own future. 

Each crew member will receive a personal assessment covering their leadership, teamwork and communication skills — a great addition to your CV. 


During your time on board, there’s the potential opportunity to fulfil some of the requirements for the RYA Watch Leader course. 

The RYA Watch Leader syllabus covers the following up to the standard required for taking charge of a watch at sea or in harbour, it has been specifically designed for sail training vessels.

  • Watchkeeping
  • Seamanship
  • Navigation
  • Safety 

 RYA logbooks are available for purchase on board at a cost of £6 (Skippers are only able to take cash for this). 

Duke of Edinburgh

All voyages of four nights or more qualify for residential section of the DofE Gold Award. Please let our Reservations Team know before sailing if you want to use the voyage for this. 

Further information

The Skipper will determine the final route depending on weather and other variables. 

Your Skipper can alsorecommend you for our volunteer crew training programme, if they feel you have the skills and attributes that we’re looking for. You can speak to your TSYT crew if this is something you’d be interested in and you’d like to find out more. 

Our Leadership Voyages have clear learning objectives and outcomes and we can support your application to school or college for an authorised absence. Please ask for more details of how we can support your application. 

All meals on board are included. 

TS Challenger Current Navy 1



Vessel Details

handbook challenger


Challenger Handbook


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