Orca Alert: Biscay, Portugal, Atlantic Spain and Gibraltar

Read More


Welcome to the Channel Section

For many UK sailors the Channel is their home cruising ground with wonderfully varied coasts and ports to visit. But it is also where many make their first step of sailing greater distances, out of sight of land and going foreign.

The Channel section aims to help these sailors take best advantage of this area, and to encourage and support those taking their first steps abroad.

The Channel Section Area

The Channel Section covers cruising waters of France from Calais to the Brest peninsula, the south coast of England, and the Channel Islands. These areas include many miles of varied, interesting, exciting and sometimes challenging cruising.

Having crossed the Channel for many people, Cherbourg is the first port of call. It is a convenient place to start cruising the coast to the east or to the west into the Channel Islands. The Channel Islands and adjacent coast of France combine superb sailing with excellent opportunities to use the tides and to hone your pilotage skills.

The North Brittany coastline is stunning with plenty of options for having a good time out at sea or in the many attractive harbours, ports and rivers. There are plenty of secluded anchorages to forget busy lives and to slow down. To the west, beyond L’Aberwrac’h, turn south through the Chenal de Four into the Bay of Biscay.

Our goals are to mutually aid members to take best advantage of this area by providing information through the CA website, CAptain’s Mate (a cruising information app providing reports for members from members), advice via the Channel Forum, seminars, webinars and rallies to bring members together.

Where We Meet

We organise an annual one-day seminar, held at CA House, for CA members and non-members, interested in cruising in the Channel area whether they are experienced or not. The seminar is a sociable and interactive event with a wide range of topics. We are also planning a number of web seminars for Channel Section members on topics of interest.

We arrrange rallies and sails in company which are always popular, with participants being a mixture of those fairly new to cruising and those with considerable experience. We normally organise different starts, e.g. Solent and west country, and come together in different ports in the UK, Channel Islands and/or France. Many who join are crossing the Channel for the first time and find the support and camaraderie on these rallies invaluable.

Being part of our Section

Section members enjoy the diverse cruising available in the area and benefit from being part of the Channel cruising network. It provides support and information for those at sea along this coast and company if you want it. There are very good CA berthing discounts in a variety of ports and a network of local representatives (HLRs) who live and work locally and are on hand to offer advice and assistance should you need it. The section also arranges an annual seminar and cruises in company for those who enjoy the more social aspects of cruising or wish to extend their experience in the company of others.

Forthcoming Events

Plymouth Firework Championship Rally 2024
Date: 13/08/2024

Channel Section: Plymouth Fireworks Championship Rally 13th - 16th August 2024 in Plymouth We are pleased to announce details for this year's Channel Section rally to see the Plymouth...

Read more

To see all seminars and lectures see here, or the calendar of all events see here.

Interested in Finding out More?

Please contact the Section Secretaries, Bob and Sue Garrett, at channel@theca.org.uk or
CA staff at office@theca.org.uk or +44 (0) 207 537 2828.

Cruising Sections


Covers the Baltic Sea, Norway, Iceland, Greenland and Faroes. Holds a popular introductory seminar every spring.


Covers Western France, Spain and Portugal as well as crossing Biscay. Holds a popular introductory seminar every spring.

Blue Water

For those sailing outside of European waters. Holds a popular Blue Water seminar in the summer.


Covers waters from Land’s End to Cape Wrath. Meets at various west coast venues to share knowledge on all aspects of cruising the region.


For those cruising the south coast of the UK, Channel Islands, and France from the Belgian border to NW Brittany. Holds an annual seminar and summer rally/cruise-in-company.

European Inland Waterways

Covers over 30,000 km of navigable rivers and canals passing through over 20 countries. Annual seminar and lunch each autumn at CA House.


Covers the Mediterranean from Spain and Morocco in the west to the Levant in the east, and includes the Black Sea. Meets at CA House in the winter, and afloat in the summer.

North Sea

Covers the UK, Belgian and Dutch coasts. Meets at East Coast venues to share knowledge on all aspects of cruising the region.

Local / UK Sections


For members who live in Australia and New Zealand and who sail in the Northern Hemisphere.

CA London

CA London events are held at our Limehouse HQ.


Meetings held at Blackwater Sailing Club and mid-week lunches arranged.


Kent Section's 'Winter Warmers', talks by a variety of speakers, will be held via Zoom for the forseeable future.


Summer rallies with weekend meets. Winter talks with ‘club’ suppers usually at a Hamble yacht club or marina.

South West

For members living in or cruising the areas from Portland Bill to the Isles of Scilly and along the north coast of Cornwall, Devon and Somerset to Bristol.


Joint meetings are arranged with the Royal Harwich Yacht Club at Woolverstone.

Thames Valley

Winter talks are held in partnership with the Gerrards Cross Sailing Association (GXSA) at Colston Hall at The Memorial Centre in Gerrards Cross.


Talks are held at Lilliput Sailing Club, Poole.

Join our cruising community and join in the fun.

Join Us