All aboard: A beginner’s guide to dinghy sailing in Norway

Dinghy boat sailingPhoto: Alexander Andrews / Unsplash
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Whether you are looking to dip your toe in or soak up some of nature’s hidden gems, dinghy sailing is a great way to reset your clock and refresh your perspective. Beginners are spoiled for choice when it comes to dinghy sailing in Norway. Blessed with 450,00 lakes, you would be hard-pressed to turn down an opportunity to set sail here.

Dinghy Sailing
Photo: Michael Schofield / Unsplash

Where do I start?

In a country where one in three people own a boat, of which 10-15% makes up sailing, there is no shortage of expert seafarers in Norway.

For beginners, however, joining a sailing course is one of the easiest, safest, and most fun ways to learn the craft.

Fortunately, Norway has two Royal Yachting Association (RYA) recognized centers and countless others that follow the same syllabus for those yearning for a taste of dinghy sailing.  

Dinghy Sailing in a lake
Photo: Michael Henry / Unsplash

What is a dinghy sailboat?

A dinghy is a small, light boat, typically open, with a sail that harnesses the wind to propel you through the water.

Small boats are generally easier to control, but still require quick thinking, ensuring you take the helm from the start.

However, they are prone to capsizing, so it is good to get comfortable with being in the water!

Lifejackets
Photo: Bas van den Eijkhof / Unsplash

What should I pack?

All Norwegians will tell you that there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothes.

The weather may be unstable, but you can still take steps to prepare for it! A good tip for beginner sailors is to remember the 3 W’s – warmth, waterproof and windproof – and prioritize quality over quantity.

Your instructor should provide a packing list, which may include:

  • Baselayer with breathable fabric
  • Cap
  • Dinghy boots or waterproof footwear with good grip
  • Lifejacket
  • Midlayer (e.g. a fleece jacket or thick wool jumper)
  • Outer shell jacket, both windproof and waterproof
  • Raincoat
  • Sailing gloves
  • Suncream
  • Sunglasses
  • Warm socks
  • Wool thermals

If you are struggling to get ahold of some items, speak with your instructor as they may be able to provide specialist equipment such as a lifejacket.

Dinghy Sailing in a lake
Photo: Salva Alandi / Unsplash

When can I go?

The best part about sailing is that it offers versatility, meaning you can go whenever you like!

However, mother nature can be testing, especially in some parts of Norway such as the west coast, renowned for rainy days and turbo wind.

For optimal dinghy sailing temperatures, head to Norway in the summer months and hope for sunshine, warmth, and of course, some wind to keep you moving across the water!

Source: #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayTravel

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