Many years ago I bought myself a Moody 31 at the London Boat Show. It was during a period in my career when I was based in London. "Shamal" was kept at Swanwick Marina on the Hamble a 2 hour drive from London. The Solent is a great place to sail and I spent many happy days exploring the creeks and rivers of the Solent. Soon I progressed to passages to the West Country and across the English Channel to Cherbourg and the Channel Islands.

I found it frustrating that a brilliant day in London was no guarantee of a sun filled day on the Solent. The unpredictability of the English weather was the incentive to do the obvious - sail south young man! So it was that in May 1988 "Shamal" cast off from Falmouth for a direct crossing to La Corruña and then on to Gibraltar.

Gibraltar is a great place to base a yacht. Rain is virtually absent between mid-May and mid-September. Wet weather gear is unnecessary throughout the entire summer. It is possible visit to four countries over a long weekend and a return trip to North Africa is possible in a day. Gibraltar's airport has daily flights from Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton, Manchester and Liverpool and the airport is walking distance from all three local marinas. The opening of a brand new 800 berth in Spain just north of the frontier has made reasonably priced berths available in the area.

If you don't want to tackle a sail down to Gibraltar them consider acquiring your boat on the Rock itself. Boatshed Gibraltar can help you with the logistics of acquiring and basing a yacht in this local area.