by Guy Chester
There's still plenty of time to get there! The fifth Louisiades Yacht rally is being held in 2012 in mid-September. The Early Bird entry has been extended and there are various crewing and sail training positions for those interested in a great adventure.
The face of welcome to the Louisiades
The Louisiades Archipelago is 100 nautical miles east of 'mainland' Papua New Guinea, 520 nautical miles north-east of Cairns. They are truly paradise found, 100 beautiful islands with a friendly people living a very simple life who welcome cruising yachts. The Louisiades comprise sand cays, lagoon reefs, limestone outcrops (up lifted coral reefs) and continental islands with many safe anchorages. With abundant coral reefs there is snorkelling, diving and fishing galore. The local people are exceptionally welcoming to yachts and will paddle out to welcome yachts and, of course, trade.
The Louisiades Yacht Rally has become a major annual event for the community of the Louisiades Islands in far eastern Milne Bay Province of Papua New Guinea. The Rally is a cruise in company across the Coral Sea and then four weeks throughout the spectacular Louisiades, with a mix of events and time for independent exploration of the islands and their friendly communities.
The Rally provides support for those with little offshore experience, and also has proven popular with those with great offshore experience. One major aspect of the Rally are the cultural events and experiences in meeting with the host villagers at many and varied events. The rally also has a community contribution focus with many donation goods taken up and cash support for clinics and a marine ambulance.
Early Bird Entry Extended:
Rally organiser, Guy Chester, has announced that the discounted Early Bird Entry will be extended until 21 May. 'We already have 12 yachts participating this year, ranging from a 35m three masted schooner, to a 12m Adams monohull and many designs of catamaran. Not being 'sailist' we also have the well proven powercat 'Foreign Affair' joining us this year. With early entries allowing us to confirm arrangements with the host villages we have decided to extend the early bird entry by three weeks.'
Crewing Positions Available:
There a some yachts participating in the Rally who are seeking crew. Positions are available for couples and singles. The Rally will provide details of interested crew to skippers, contact Louisiadesrally@ecosustainability.com or Guy Chester on 0407 391211.
Sail Training Opportunity:
The 14m sail training yacht Belagaer is offering a sail training opportunity as part of the Rally. Crew will have pre-rally sail training, participate in the Rally events and passages and undertake sail training toward International Crew Certificate, International Watchkeeper/Flotilla Skipper Certificate, International Bareboat Skipper Certificate and International Yachtmaster Coastal Certificate (certificates subject to competence and qualifying requirements). Skipper Peter Bachelor is an experienced teacher and has cruised Belagaer to Africa and back.
Come Along in 2012:
The 2011 rally was enjoyed by all, in the words of the crew from 2009 Rally yacht, Tribal: 'Its been a life changing experience.' The 2012 Rally leaves Cairns (Yorkeys Knob Boating Club) in mid September.
The Rally is sponsored by Papua New Guinea Tourism Promotion Authority, supported by Yorkeys Knob Boating Club and organised by EcoSustainAbility.
Further information from the website, www.louisiadesrally.com or
Contact Guy Chester:
Phone 0407 391211