5th October. This was the final passage in our voyage – a very short one, with time to enjoy it. We were joined by our friend Lucy plus Jonathan’s sister Kirsten and nephew Sam, who had been our crew on the very first passage out of Beaulieu back in April. Kirsten has been our ‘safety person’ who we inform of our destination and ETA for each passage, and that we have arrived – it has been very reassuring to know someone is checking up that we have arrived safely: thank you Kirsten.

The day started misty as we motored out of Lymington down the river, past the sea water swimming pool advertising ‘Yoga on Paddleboards’ and ‘Swim with your Canine’. We resisted temptation and sailed gently across the Solent to one of our favourite spots: Newtown harbour on the Isle of Wight.  Through the narrow entrance and over the bar we turned left and dropped anchor for lunch, careful of our tidal calculations and conscious of the risk of doing something daft on our final day.  The sun came out and we ate on deck, watching the sails in the Solent and enjoying the quiet surroundings of the harbour, with only a few other boats anchored. We scanned the island looking (unsuccessfully) for sea eagles – six of them have recently been reintroduced somewhere on the island, 240 years after they were last seen in England. 

the Solent from Newtown harbour

After lunch we headed east again towards Beaulieu, relishing Nova’s good speed even in the lightest of winds.  As we passed between the green and red marker posts of the river we crossed our track heading east in April – we had completed our voyage round the British Isles! Savouring the moment, we inched up the river under sail to Bucklers Hard and then motored back down river to pick up a buoy close Nova’s usual mooring.

Beaulieu river

Then it was time to relax and celebrate in the evening sun.

What next? We have already been asked about our plans. But we have no further adventures in mind at this stage. First we need to lift the boat out for the winter (in Lymington this time), return home, and spend some time adjusting and reflecting. As we’d hoped it has been more than merely a journey. It has been a voyage to discover, celebrate and to enjoy the people and places of these beautiful islands.

  • Distance: 13nm. Sailed 3h motored 2h
  • Wind: E2


On our passage ‘Around These Islands’ Anne is writing about each trip, and Jonathan is writing some more ‘technical’ blogs, from our perspective as ordinary cruising sailors. We are sharing what we’ve learned, and welcome your thoughts too. Please remember that this blog – and your comments – are public.

There’s also a special focus on 12 key ports on our planned route, with articles from These Islands and a series of podcasts from Chrome Media called ‘Around These Islands in 12 Ports’.


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