Transit the Caledonian Canal and onwards to Norway 2019


Start from Oban - sail to Mull, transit the Caledonian Canal, participate in a 300nm north sea crossing,  visit  Hardangerfjord and end in the picturesque town of Bergen.  This is one of our most varied trips of the year and not to be missed.  Weather dependent as always, but with sensible weather the options are unlimited.

We start in Dunstaffnage Marina just outside Oban.  Our first day we head across to the Isle of Mull and anchor for the night after a day of skills and drills.  Then we head northwards to Fort William and the entrance to the Caledonian Canal.  The transit of the Caledonian Canal will take us 3 or 4 days to Inverness. Here it is time for final boat preps and a wait for the weather before we head off to our final destination Bergen.

Bergen is located on the west coast of Norway in the heart of Fjordland, and once across the North Sea we will have time to explore some of the offlying islands and the spectacular Hardangerfjord before arriving in Bergen itself.

However the route plans out you will gain miles for your log book and experience taking part in a watch system.  As we head north the days will get longer, and once north of 60 degrees it will not go dark at all.  You will get to feel the wind in your hair and the power of the sea as you take the helm across the ocean. We are happy to teach the wonders of navigating by the stars, use of a sextant and how the GPS works!.

This trip will be at least 500 miles and include some proper ocean sailing.  It can be cold and rough, but also calm and sunny. There are some ports of refuge if needed along the way and we do have time to explore ashore once we arrive in Norway.   Plenty of adventure for the hardy sailor. 

Prior sailing experience is required for this trip.

Our Sailing Holiday highlights include

  • A non stop 300nm crossing of the North Sea
  • Climbing Neptunes staircase at the entrance to the Canal
  • Searching for Nessie as we transit the Caledonian Canal and cross Loch Ness
  • Exploring ashore in some very isolated places
  • Spectacular landfall and arrival in Norway with great places to explore ashore
  • Using a sextant and getting an accurate position
  • Learning how to helm in all conditions
  • Experiencing the beauty of sunrises and sunsets
  • Relaxing and enjoying being away from the hustle and bustle of the busy office


At a Glance

4th June- 16th June 2018

£1595, fully inclusive once on board - for details see What's Included

Embark / Disembark

Difficulty Level AAAA - click for more info   
 day sailing, overnight sailing and up to 72 hours of watchkeeping
 Previous sailing experience of at least 10 days is required for this trip.

See our notes on Ocean Passages

12 nights

The Route
See Map 

UK Travel Info

Norway Travel Info

Read our Guest Book
See Our Photos
Read our Blog


This is a sample itinerary only, –on ocean passages the weather dictates the programme so we may vary our approach and transit time of the Caledonian Canal to allow for weather on the North Sea side.  

Day 1 – Arrive on board 1800.  Welcome reception, introductions and itinerary discussion. Dinner is served on board at 2000.

Day 2 – Breakfast followed by safety briefing.   Skills and drills afloat before anchoring in Loch Aline in the sound of Mull.

Day 3 – Head north up Loch Linnie to Fort William - the beginning of the Caledonian Canal. 

Day 4, –  Early breakfast and head to Corpach to wait for our turn to enter the lock.  First we will climb Neptunes Staircase and then begin our transit of the Caledonian Canal.  The canal locks work from 9 – 5, so at 4pm each night we will find somewhere to stop. 

Day 5, - Transit through the Caledonian canal  - sail or motor depending on the wind.

Day 6 -  Transit through the Caledonian canal – today we sail across Loch Ness, will we see the monster!

Day 7 - Clear the Caledonian canal and moor in Inverness marina – time for some last minute preparations and weather forecasts before heading east to Norway 

Day 8 - Its tidal at this end of the Canal, so wait for the tide and head east out of Inverness and into the Moray Firth.  Start the watches immediately and look forward to 2 nights at sea.

Day 9, Watchkeeping and at sea overnight

Day 10 – Watchkeeping and landfall on the islands south of Bergen – head amongst the islands to Rosendal in Hardangerfjord. – A historic village near the Folgefonna glacier

Day 11, A day to rest and enjoy Norway – explore ashore and catch up on sleep.

Day 12, Final sail north amongst the islands to Bergen

Day 13  Breakfast, depart from Velvet Lady at 1000. 

 This is an example itinerary for a ocean passage aboard Velvet Lady.  Velvet Lady is an Oyster 55 skippered yacht and all our passages are great for milebuilding and hands on sailing no matter what your experience.  All our sailing holidays are weather dependent and the exact itinerary will be decided by the skipper to suit the weather conditions. On all our trips it is possible to book an individual berth and become part of a group. To see our other opportunities for ocean passages and milebuilding  please see our schedule

Difficulty Level AAAA - day sailing, night sailing and watchkeeping of up to 72 hours at sea.  Previous sailing experience of at least 10 days is for this trip. Make no mistake, although the Caledonian Canal may be calm, the crossing to Norway is a real open ocean adventure.

  • Date: 4th June - 16th June 2019
  • 1 Berths available

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