Sark is a wonderful place – whether exploring the coast or on land. It is like going back 100 years. Great people and great food.
No marinas and not really a place to stay overnight, but an amazing place to visit during the day.
Sark Tourism – www.sark.co.uk
Well – there are no marinas in Sark. If only you could go there, tie up in a marina, walk along a pontoon and a lift to the top – just dreaming!
Sark is a difficult Island to moor and land people – but with a moderate level of seamanship, the study of local pilotage notes and consideration for the elements, the effort is well worth it. The people are welcoming but visiting boat owners must show respect for the elements and local rules when using Sark waters. If in doubt ask advice from a local boatman or the Duty Harbourmaster.
Whilst the many rocks around Sark can be a hazard to the un-prepared boat owner, the greatest consideration must be the potentially strong tidal currents and eddies which occur all around the coast. See local pilotage guides or ask!
There is a speed restriction of 6 knots in ALL the bays around the Island (loosely taken from headland to headland enclosing the bay in question).
Important Note; Sark is not an official port of entry to the Channel Islands and visiting Yachtmen should clear Customs formalities at one of the other main Islands prior to landing in Sark.
I hope this page will help you to visit in safety.
There are 2 harbours Maseline is the commercial harbour and Creux is the old harbour – www.sark.co.uk
Tel: 07781 135611
Commercial traffic only – 2 sets of steps for dropping people off and lots of fender tyres. Can be used if the ferries are not in but you must not stay there.
Note it is a very busy harbour for passengers and freight 6 days a week and even Sundays can be busy, so mooring alongside other than un/loading is a definite no.
All the moorings in Maseline are private and boats have been known to be moved off if ‘squatting’ without permission. No anchoring is allowed anywhere within the Harbour area or its approaches. Ferries and French water-jet vessels operate and this can cause severe/erratic swinging of vessels moored.
Dinghies must not be tied to the railing around the harbour or the steps (both sets) or left ashore in the main passenger/freight areas.
Can be a nasty place sometimes to moor alongside (south/east swell/spring tides etc.).
If you really want to go in there – need a MINIMUM of 3m height at St. Peter Port to have 1.2m at the lowest part of the steps of Creux. HOWEVER it shoals very steeply and quickly upwards to the north, and there is a plinth/ledge of approx 1.6m wide (varies in width and height along its length) coming out from the crown head of the pier.
Many have caught their props on it sneaking around the pierhead at low water. Not recommended unless you know the harbour well.
Note: mooring between the two red painted marks [presently faded beyond vision!] which demark the area commercial and fishing boats unload at the steps must be kept clear or you will be moved off (including dinghies). Likewise, the slipway must be clear at all times. All the moorings outside Creux are private and must not be used. Anchoring is prohibited anywhere in this outer mooring area.
In addition to the plinth of the North pierhead, novices to Sark should be aware of the rocks to the SW corner of the entrance which are a hazard at low water approach and turn to the steps.
The Goulet passage has a minimum of 1.2m water at low springs BUT near to the east side (Creux harbour) only. It shoals up towards the Burons very steeply. There is a local ordinance which is largely ignored, that only north going vessels may go through this passage. Southbound you should go outside the Burons. However, this is an old, un-enforced law, created after two steamships collided, although it is suspected in the event of a new collision, the southbound vessel would be in the wrong regardless of circumstances due to the ordinance still being on the statute books.
Beware when going through the Goulet of the quarter rocks; they are immediately south of Pinnacle Rock and are cleared when the old Harbour tunnel is open south of the [granite building] known as the ’phone box’. Thus it is not recommended to go through at low water due to the quarter rocks being nearest the best depth of water.
There are Yellow Visitor Moorings at Havre Gosselin and Greve de la Ville. The Mooring fees are £15 per 24hrs, or part thereof, payable at the Visitor Centre.
On the west side of Sark, by the Gouliot passage. There is often a swell in there – especially when it has been rough recently or the wind is from the West or South West.
The walk is up to the Pilcher monument. Quite a climb!
You get ashore by dinghy to a ladder/steps and then need to tie the dinghy on a very long rope – or pull it up the steps. It is good practice to bring your dinghy up the steps at Havre Goselin, as occasionally small commercial vessels use this as a passenger landing stage and congestion of dinghies on long painters can be a hazard.
Note: Sark Moorings, along with the Sark Yacht Club and Guernsey Boatowners Association mooring buoys are regularly professionally maintained, but the owners accept NO RESPONSIBILITY to users. If rafting on these moorings make sure you are well fendered and secured as swells can occur. The moorings are normally relaid around Easter although early May 2018 reports were received they were not in place yet.
- Sark Moorings – yellow buoys, well secured and very convenient. A fee of £15 per 24hrs, or part thereof, is payable at the Visitor Centre.
- Private – some are private – please do not use
- Guernsey BoatOwners Association – they have 1 mooring in Sark in Havre Gosselin – do not use unless you are a member and flying your special burgee.
- Sark Yacht Club – 3 No South in Havre Goslin – only use if you are a member of the Sark Yacht club and flying your special SYC burgee. In 2012 there were 2 x dark orange cylindrical buoys and 1 x large white buoy.
Greve de la Ville
On the East side of Sark North of the lighthouse. There can be a surf running up the pebble beach which can make it difficult to get ashore. The walk is up a well-marked path which is a lesser gradient than the path to the Pilcher monument and comes out by the village.
At Greve de la Ville
- Sark Moorings – yellow buoys, well secured and very convenient. A fee of £15 per 24hrs, or part thereof, is payable at the Visitor Centre
- Private – some are private – please do not use
- Sark Yacht Club – 1 No N.W. and 1 No central East in Greve de la Ville – only use if you are a member of the Sark Yacht club and flying your special SYC burgee. Sark Yacht Club has also sponsored two buoys so that, subject to flying the SYC Burgee, any member can use these without obligation in Havre Goslin or Greve de la Ville, in addition to the normal SYC buoys.
Dixcart is very good with a sandy bottom and good climb up the hill to Stocks Hotel. There are no visitor moorings in Dixcart Bay (2018) so you do need to anchor.
La Grande Greve
Approx 15m Sand, shoaling up to the beach. Good holding but note there is usually an onshore swell making landing by dinghy difficult (and amusing to beachgoers). Several scores of steps take you up to the Coupee. Watch for some isolated rocks, clearly shown on the chart and local pilotage books
Good anchorage in easterly winds and for swimming off the boat. Sandy bottom.
Popular Anchorage on the east coast of Sark. Dinghy to the beach and then up a few steps for a pleasant walk through the Dixcart Valley. There are no visitor moorings in Dixcart Bay (2018) so you need to anchor.
Greve de la Ville
9-12m sand and mud. Susceptible to Northerly / NE winds.
Rouge Terrier and Port Gorey are privately maintained. Use with caution.
Derrible Bay can be a good sheltered spot to Anchor and may be quieter than Dixcart Bay but I don’t think there is a way up from the shore up to higher ground. Also, do not moor alongside another boat as the Manche Isle ferry moors in Derrible Bay and creates large waves due to the speed it approaches its mooring. The waves are potentially damaging to the boats and dangerous.
During the season boat owners should keep a good lookout for the numerous pot bobbers which pepper the coastline to supply the plethora of wonderful shellfish available at local restaurants.
Note for small commercial vessels and passenger carrying/ dive/charter boats: the carriage of passengers and or freight to Sark from anywhere in the Bailiwick of Guernsey for hire or reward is prohibited by Law.
Charts: Admiralty 808; Pilotage books include an excellent small book by John Frankland “Sark – a yachtsman’s guide” www.guernseypilotage.com/index.htm and an old, but useful book Channel Islands Pilot by Malcolm Robson. Also excellent is the Le Messurier/Petit Guernsey ‘Transit Pilot’ Book (due for a reprint soon).
Many thanks to Ray Lowe for his great assistance with some of the above – www.eventsci.com/Guernsey_Boat_Charter.h…
Guernsey Boatowners Association
Have the following lay-by moorings for use by Guernsey Boatowners Association (GBA) members only and GBA Burgees MUST be flown.
1 outside QEII Marina
2 in Havelet Bay
1 in Harve Gosselin, Sark
One of the highlights of Sark is a trip around the Island with George Guille. If the weather is suitable, this is unmissable and you should book as soon as you get to the Island. George knows every rock, passage and cave and has some wonderful stories to tell.
His brown and green boat can be seen going around the coast on most days, in and out the nooks and crannies. It is an amazing way to spend a morning or afternoon. Low tide is best and the trip takes about 2 1/2 hours.
The island has amazing caves and coves, ideally explored by Kayak. Adventure Sark provide the facilities and expertise to explore Sark from the sea, whether Kayaking or for the more energetic, Coasteering visit www.adventuresark.gg or the Trip Advisor site
Restaurants – www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurants-g186231-…