Cruising Spotlight: Southampton and Beyond

With established offices throughout Europe, Argo Yachting has direct access to some of the world’s most seductive boating destinations. But if you want to enjoy a range of first-class cruising opportunities right here in Britain, the English south coast is a very exciting place to be – we take a look at cruising in and around Southampton.

Southampton: infectious and historic

Southampton is a commercial port city with a thriving university and renowned marine industry as well as being a popular sailing area. The Titanic set sail from the harbour in 1912 and you can see an interactive model of the famous cruise ship at the SeaCity Museum.  If you want to put yourself among the throng of England’s historic yachting scene, with a brilliant mix of nautical towns, world-class regattas and charming rural hideaways, the Solent is tough to beat.

Charles Wilkinson, Sales Broker at Argo Yachting in Southampton, said: ‘Where we’re based, at the top of the Hamble River, there’s a really idyllic village vibe. There are lots of marinas and some great pubs, as well as easy access to the Solent via Southampton Water. From there, you’ve got the Isle of Wight, where places like Cowes and Yarmouth give it a lovely ‘English Riviera’ feeling. And to the east there’s Portsmouth and Chichester and to the west there’s Lymington and Poole, so you have plenty of cruising options, all within an hour or two.  The beautiful Beaulieu River is charming for a relaxing cruise and home to the Beaulieu National Motor Museum and the Abbey.’

Best anchorage: Newtown Creek, Isle of Wight, is lovely. It’s just around the corner from ‘The Hut’ at Colwell Bay, that ferries picnic hampers out to you in a little speedboat.

Best marina: Ocean Village Marina by MDL Marinas, has a prime location nestled within the heart of Southampton surrounded by a plethora of bars, restaurants, shops and a cinema creating a bustling vibe. Formerly a basin for commercial ships, it is deep enough to accommodate large luxury yachts.  And for an additional indulgent experience, its also home to the 5-star luxury Harbour Hotel offering a roof top restaurant with panoramic views and a stunning spa.

Best overnight stop: Lymington always delivers. Steeped in sailing history, this quaint Georgian market town is set in the New Forest district of Hampshire.  There are 2 large marinas for visiting yachts and sailing clubs as well as chocolate-box cottages and boutique shops, cafes and pubs along winding cobbled streets.

Best waterfront pub: The Jolly Sailor, near the office in Bursledon, is fantastic.  Dating back to 1751 with exposed brickwork and beams, it is set right on the pretty Hamble River with a pontoon.

Best maritime event: The Southampton International Boat Show is superb, as is the British Motor Yacht Show in Swanwick where Argo Yachting display a fantastic range of brokerage yachts across all brands along with new yachts from Chris-Craft and Saxdor. But Cowes Week is just massive. Even if you’re not a sailor, its festival atmosphere is amazing.  Established in 1826, it’s a key British sporting event that spans 7 days and hosts a wide programme of sail racing events and shoreside entertainment.

Best beaches:  West Wittering is a naturally beautiful sandy beach with a grassy area for picnics enjoying wonderful views of Chichester Harbour.  While to the west the infamous Sandbanks Beach has powder white sand backed by a promenade and unique Grand Designs-style houses.

If you’re in the Southampton area, pop in to our offices: