|When I met two kitesurfers from Denmark on Maui last Christmas,
I did not know I would get an invitation to go sailing with them
for two weeks in Denmark the following summer. However, there
I was waiting for my luggage at the Århus Airport, without
knowing where to go from there, clutching a piece of paper with
a phone number in my hand and hoping to see a familiar face.
When I saw Jonas Troense waving at me, I relaxed. The adventure,
sailing around the island of Fyn for two weeks, was beginning.
Tanistan, a 41-feet sailboat, and Frk. Himmelblå III, a
49-feet motorboat, were waiting for us at the harbor in Horsens.
And so was part of the crew, although we would still pick up
more people on the way from different harbors. After spending
rest of the day repairing the propeller of the motorboat, we
were ready to sail out next morning.
Sailing is an excellent way to relax and to spend days doing
practically nothing – with enough wind, trimming the sails
and changing course with the winds are the only physical tasks.
In addition to that, days are filled with conversations, reading
good books, listening to music, and tanning on the deck. However,
after two days we were all ready to do something else.
We had kitesurfing equipment, two surfboards and a banana boat
aboard, and a dinghy trailing behind the motorboat, so when boredom
struck we anchored and played in the water. We could wave board
behind the dinghy, enjoy the speed and splashes of cool water
while lying on the banana boat, jet ski, and just swim. Even
when moving full speed with the engine running on the sailboat,
we would tie fenders to the extra ropes and tow them and any
volunteers. The possibilities turned the group of 20-year-olds
into children again.
The most memorable thing for me was when I was hanging on a rope
behind the sailboat,” said Arnt-Andrè Dullum from
Norway. “However, I was disappointed about the wind conditions.
I really hoped for stronger winds, so that I could try kitesurfing.
And also do a little more sailing.”
The harbors, where we spent the nights, offered another way to
add activity into our holiday. After a full day of sailing, feeling
land underneath our feet was a welcomed change. After handling
the necessary tasks – such as grocery shopping, laundry,
taking a shower, and using a regular toilet – we were ready
to get to know the towns surrounding the harbors. Short sightseeing
tours with our Danish hosts, checking the little harbor shops,
camping on the beach, hitting at least 200 golf balls all over
a golf course in the middle of the night, and enjoying the rides
at the carnival were a fun change to sailing.
However, living on a boat for two weeks also has its down sides.
Space is always tight leaving everybody with very little privacy.
Our only private moments were in the bathroom – after spending
couple of days figuring out how to lock the door – and
asleep. The cabin I was sharing with another girl was so small
that we both could not stand inside the cabin at the same time
and close the door, and every night we had to move our bags outside
to have enough legroom to sleep. In addition, the bunks were
so narrow that I kept hitting my knees either on the side of
the boat or the edge of the bed every time I turned. Because
of the tight space and limited privacy, the crew needs to get
along very well with each other.
It is not easy to find people that just have your sense of humor,
and you just click with from the first moment on,” said
Marieke Bülow from Denmark. “I would have maybe expected
one or two, but two boats full of great people. I will never
It was amazing that so many different people who did not know
each other in advance were able to get everything run so smoothly,” added
Tue Andersen, also from Denmark.
Nevertheless, if you are willing to give up your privacy for
an adventure, sailing is an excellent option. And sometimes taking
the leap of faith with people you do not know very well, is worth
You do not need to know someone with a sailboat to experience
Denmark from the sea. Organized, everything included Sailing
Holidays, from a couple of hours to several weeks, are offered
all around Denmark. For more information, visit www.maritimtcenter.dk
Sailing Lingo 101
• Bow: front of the boat
• Check: to ease a rope a little and then secure it
• Cleat: a metal fitting to which a rope is secured
• Coil: to lay a rope down in circular turns
• Dinghy: a small boat, usually carried on or hauled behind
a bigger boat
• Fender: a cushion used over the side of a boat to protect
it from chafting when alongside another boat or dock
• Furl: to fold or roll a sail and secure it to its boom
• Gasket: line used to secure a furled sail
• Galley: kitchen
• Head: bathroom
• Rigging: lines holding up the masts and moving the sails
• Stern: back of the boat
• Tack: to change the course of a boat by sailing against
the wind and forming a zigzag course
• True wind: the actual direction from which the wind is
All photos courtesy
the crews of Tanistan and Frk. Himmelblå III
Tanistan with all the sails up, the crew aboard, and tacking
for the first time. We were very lucky with the weather, only
two days of rain, but our luck with the wind was just the opposite.
However, when we had enough wind to have the sails up, we enjoyed
every minute of it.
in Brundshuse. Apart from Brundshuse, where we stayed in a
private pier, and Rævekrogen (Fox Corner), where we
camped out on the beach, we spent the nights in 11 different
Sitting at the bow gave a change to check out the scenery
or just have a brief moment by yourself.
Our days were spent on seperate boats, but it was always
a priority to eat dinner together. After picking up the last
three crew members from Fåborg, the now 12 man crew celebrated
the arrival of the new members with a delicious meal and a
glass of wine.
While staying two nights in Sønderborg we took a short
sailing trip close to the German border during the day. Being
able to steer a 41-feet sailboat was the highlight of my trip.
It was very hard to stay in course because I could not feel
how much the boat was going to turn when I steered, and sometimes
the fog made me lose my focus point in the horizon.