The Columbus Challenge will be started from Continental Portugal October 2021, and will follow in the tracks of some of the great early explorers on their way to discover both Asia and the Indies. The trip will will have two options, first being for those who require a 600+ NM qualifying ocean passage for the RYA Yachtmaster Exam. This will be a direct sail to Las Palmas and will be navigated solely by traditional methods, Compass, log and sextant.
This is ideal for people who wish to complete the 3 elements needed, Theory, Practical & Oral for the RYA Ocean Yachtmaster qualification
5 Day Theory Course Portugal or UK
1 Day Practical Prep
600 + Mile Ocean Passage Practical Element
Oral Exam Canaries or UK
A Second option will be offered, if no Ocean candidates book, and will be that we will offer it has a cruise and include a visit Porto Santo then Funchal capital city and port of Madeira before we reach the final the destination Las Palmas on Gran Canaria in the Canarian archipelago.
The option chosen will be made known before any confirmed bookings are taken.
Columbus & Las Palmas
Not many people know of Christopher Columbus' Canarian stopover in 1492. In fact, the original plan was to sail on to the westerly island of La Gomera where he planned to stock up on food and other supplies. However, after his fleet was sabotaged by his own crew Columbus made an unscheduled stop in LP, a fledgling settlement that had only been founded 14 years earlier following the Spanish conquest of the island.
Noted Columbus academic Manuel Rosa explains how important the Mid-Atlantic setting of the islands were. "The Canary Islands were very strategically located for Atlantic sailing, and therefore it was an almost mandatory stop for any voyages heading west or south, he reveals. "The Canaries were so important for Atlantic exploration that the King of Portugal had already tried to control them around the year 1340 and for those 150 years prior to Colón's (Columbus') voyage, the Portuguese tried with no success to conquer these islands."
Columbus left the old world, on a trip, and knew not where he was going, He did not know where he was, when he arrived there, and when he returned, he was not able to tell anyone where he had been." No wonder Columbus remains such an enigmatic figure.
The resort of Vilamoura in the Algarve region of southern Portugal is best known for its large marina, golf course and casino. Vilamoura also boast fine beaches, red cliffs, Cerro da Vila archaeological museum has a ruined Roman villa with bathhouses and mosaics and the delightful fishing village of Olhos de Água. Vilamoura merges with the town of Quarteira, to the southeast, with more beaches.
Nicknamed the Floating Garden, Madeira is Portugal’s answer to the Garden of Eden. Fuchsia bougainvillea, scarlet poinsettias and lilac jacaranda trees blanket the landscape, turning entire villages Technicolor. The good looks aren’t limited to the island’s interior. Make your way down to Madeira’s coast and you’ll come across small rocky coves and pebbly bays.
Las Palmas is a capital of Gran Canaria, one of Spain's Canary Islands off northwestern Africa. A major cruise-ship port, the city is known for duty-free shopping and for its sandy beaches. At Playa de Las Canteras, a coral barrier lines the beach and shelters swimmers. The annual Las Palmas de Gran Canaria carnival brings together flamboyantly costumed performers, music and dancing.