Yacht Charter and Boat Rentals in Southampton
One of the major yachting centers of the South Coast, Southampton is a large harbor city with an important yacht racing pedigree. Home of the famous Whitbread round the world yacht race and now the Clipper round the world yacht race, though around nine miles from the Solent it is still seen as one of the centers of UK sailing.
With the bars and restaurants of Ocean Village close to the two main sailing marinas, as well as excellent train and road links to London and its airports, a Solent yacht charter out of Southampton could well be a good choice.
On a motor yacht charter or a sailing yacht charter you won't be disappointed with the great hotels, nightlife and shopping around what is still one of the UK's most important deep water ports. The start of RMS Titanic's fateful voyage (her quay now where Ocean Village is), Southampton is still home to major cruise liners such as the fleets of Cunard and P&O. Just beware that these vessels take priority over sail thanks to the channel being relatively small for them.
Explore Southampton By Renting A Yacht
Centre of the Solent sailing paradise on the UK South Coast, a Southampton yacht rental could well be the start of a week or two afloat to remember. Whether on a captained yacht charter or bareboat charter the world is your oyster!
The city itself has a cosmopolitan vibe yet in just five minutes heading up Southampton Water you can be under full sail or power and heading out past the Hamble River and out to the world yacht racing Mecca of the Solent or bound for the beautiful backwaters that surround it with their important coastal ecology and birdlife.
Cowes Week comes around every August where it is said you can walk to the Isle of Wight just treading on boats as you go. Nearby is the historic Royal Navy town of Portsmouth Harbour and to the west, the beautiful Lymington and the Beaulieu River sailing centers.
How To Get To Southampton
Southampton is accessible by good air, road and rail links.
Southampton Central railway station is a short taxi ride from Ocean Village and Shamrock Quay marinas, and is just 90 minutes from London Waterloo railway station.
The town is on the Southern end of the M3 motorway to London, and is the mid-point of the M27 that links the New Forest and South West to Portsmouth and West Sussex.
There are also air links to Europe and the rest of the UK via Southampton Airport.
Marinas In Southampton
There are two major marinas in Southampton - Ocean Village and Shamrock Quay in nearby Northam. From there you can bareboat charter or captained charter a motor yacht or sailing yacht out to the Solent and South Coast ports beyond.
Ocean Village Marina:
Max Length 90m (295 Feet)
Max Draught 15m (49 Feet)
List additional services: Shore power, water, laundry, WiFi, dentist, restaurants and bars, supermarket (nearby), cinema, boatyard, boat hoist, chandlery. Fuel is available at Port Hamble Marina or Hythe.
Shamrock Quay Marina:
Max Length 70m (229 Feet)
Max Draught 15m (49 Feet)
List additional services: Shore power, water, laundry, WiFi, restaurants, shops and bars, boatyard, boat hoist, chandlery. Fuel is available at nearby Port Hamble or Hythe.
Suggested Sailing Routes From Southampton
On a seven or 14 day yacht charter you can enjoy the best of the Solent, mixing some of the best yachting towns in the UK with quiet evenings at the mooring buoy watching the world go by.
Southampton and the Solent - 7 days: Over seven days you don't need to travel very far to enjoy the best sailing conditions and the Solent's fabled double-high tide that makes it such a great place for a bareboat or captained yacht charter. You can head off to Portsmouth Harbour after a day afloat and enjoy the nightlife and then a quiet following evening in the scenic Chichester Harbour nearby. Turning west, find a mooring in East Cowes and pay a visit to one of the many sailing pubs. Take in Lymington after another day of fun on the water and another quiet evening on the Beaulieu River before returning, perhaps with a night in Port Hamble or Warsash on the way back.
14 days - Solent and South Coast: Over 14 days you would be highly dependent on the prevailing winds. In the summer these often come from the east so you could head out via Portsmouth Harbour and its attractions to Chichester, then on to the famous party town of Brighton (known locally as 'London on Sea' for its links to the capital and cosmopolitan boho vibe). If the Azores High is still overhead you can do a dead run back down the coast and visit the Isle of Wight. The fun vacation towns of Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole are to the west, and remembering the 12 mile military firing range exclusion zone to the west of that, explore the quirky Isle of Portland and seaside town of Weymouth before returning to the real world on the Solent.
Best Times To Rent A Yacht In Southampton
The sailing season runs from late March to mid September on the UK South Coast, though you will see hardier types afloat throughout the year. There can be gales at any time of year, with Westerlies especially fierce through the Solent. In the peak boat rental season of July and August it can still be fun sailing, though the bars and marinas can be expensive and full.
Cowes Week? You will need to book well in advance, both marinas and mooring buoy moorings as well as restaurants and pubs! A motor boat with a well stocked fridge can be a good way to make new friends during this event too...
Sailing Weather In Southampton
April and May: Westerlies prevail but you will often find warm days with brisk sailing conditions of a F4-5. Gales will come through earlier in the year, funnelling through the Solent and hitting F10-12 in gusts. This is Britain - expect rain!
June-August: In June there will be southerly and westerly gales at times but these tend to die out in July and August with the Azores High moving north and providing settled conditions and light easterlies. Expect temperatures in the high 20s C range with the odd few days at 30C plus. As ever, keep your oilies to hand as even in the height of summer things can change.
September-October: Grey skies and gales start to return. While often in the high teens Celsius in September with some great sailing conditions, the westerly procession of lows start coming up the English Channel and things can get a little uncomfortable by early October.