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“A must-do!”

Sail Channel Islands Day Tours
Ranked #1 of 15 Tours in Oxnard
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Owner description: Capt. Dan is a Coast Guard licensed master and American Sailing Association instrutor. Sail with him for a few hours or up to several days, exploring the Channel Islands ... or take private lessons. We have two yachts, one economy and one luxury boat built in France and we are the only company offering sailing eco-tours of California's Channel Islands.Our islands are often described as the Galapagos of North American and abound in sea life from whales, to dolphins to fish that ride here on either a southern current or the northern one. Ashore, you will find a landscape mostly clear of humans and protected by the National Park Service and the Nature Conservancy. Human civilization dates back some 10,000 years here, but only a handful of caretakers live here now. Come with us and step back in history 200 years, step away from civilization.
Reviewed October 24, 2012

Took a chance on Captain Dan and chartered him and his sailboat Sancerre for a 3 day trip in the Channel Islands. I had nothing to go on but his website and the various reviews I read. I am the type of person who can get a pretty good feel for someone, and I had a good feel about Captain Dan and Sail Channel Islands. He did not disappoint!

He was quick to respond to any and all questions I had via e-mail....this didn't stop once we were sailing, he is a wealth of knowledge and I encourage you to listen...you'll learn :)

I had never been sailing before (and a 3 day trip may have been a bit ambitious for my first sail) but it was a WONDERFUL experience and my husband and I are already talking about making this an annual vacation.

The boat is beautiful and very comfortable for an overnight sail. Captain Dan ensured we had everything we needed and was always checking to see if we needed anything more. We ate and drank well, I highly recommend the salmon Sancerre!

We lucked out with some wonderful weather and enjoyed 2 days of great sailing and 1 day of motoring. Kayaks were available for our use and Captain Dan knows all the best spots! We were even able to take a kayak over to Prisoner's Cove and Captain Dan patiently waited while my husband and I hiked for a couple of hours.

We loved our experience as a quick introduction to sailing and look forward to learning more about sailing and sailing more with Captain Dan!

1  Thank Suz259
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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67 - 71 of 84 reviews

Reviewed August 12, 2012

I wanted a special birthday celebration for my husband, who had talked about exploring the ocean around Santa Barbara since we moved here over 20 years ago.... but just never had the time. I found Capt Dan on the internet, and saw the wonderful reviews....so decided to set up a full day sail to the Channel Islands on his boat, the Wiley. It turned out to be as advertised: the perfect sailing experience!! On the way out of the harbor we saw single and groups of sea lions basking/floating in the water as we sailed closely by. Captain Dan imparted some of his vast sailing knowledge, letting us steer while he navigated us to beautiful Anacapa island, where we dropped anchor and he prepared a simple, delicious lunch (prior to our sail he had asked for our food/drink preferences) while we admired the island rock formations, water fowl, and gorgeous ocean vistas. Dan is a wealth of knowledge,entertaining/educating us (at our encouragement) with the history of the islands, and all things nautical, with humor and interesting stories. As we sailed back to the Ventura/Oxnard harbor, we saw a small pod of dolphins that "checked us out" while we snapped their photos, and Dan circled around so we could get the best views of the beautiful creatures. There were many flocks of pelicans flying in formation skimming the water surface close to our boat...and more sea lions watching us go by. The Wiley was a great sailboat and Dan the perfect captain; conversant and entertaining on all subjects, making us laugh, feel safe, comfortable and welcome. We highly recommend Capt. Dan and this sailing excursion for anyone visiting the area, or longtime residents like us, who just haven't made the time to explore the amazing ocean in their own backyard.

2  Thank jfriedsb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2012

Captain Dan is a great instructor and shipmate. He makes everything so understandable and fun. We had a great 4 day sail around Santa Cruz Island. Captain Dan really knows his stuff about sailing, the Channel Islands and just about everything else. Just ask him...:) I have been on several instruction cruises and this was by far the best. I had more fun and learned more with Captain Dan on the beautiful Sancerre than all the others put together. I would definitely recommend a cruise on Sancerre to my family and friends. Can't wait to go again!

2  Thank Barry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dan R, Owner at Sail Channel Islands Day Tours, responded to this reviewResponded July 29, 2012

That was a great trip!

Definitely had a range of weather that allowed us to practice our heavy weather tactics under realistic conditions. I hate when I have to demonstrate reefing and then practice on placid days. It takes a multi-day adventure to gain the real experience and practice. Of course, it's a helluva workout, but that's what puts the truth in the expression "you don't need a gym membership if you own a sailboat."

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Reviewed July 23, 2012

Sail Channel Islands also offers private sailing lessons. My friend and I have been thrilled to learn how to sail on the ocean from Captain Dan. For her, it was text instructions coming to life. For me, it brought back the pure joy of sailing that I've missed (I once had a boat and sailed on Westlake Lake when I was younger.) We had so much fun and learned a lot! Wiley, the fearless practice boat, is extremely well-maintained and in combination with Captain Dan’s knowledge and attention to keeping us all safe, provided us the chance to focus on learning instead of worrying. This is important because a nervous sailor who questions their abilities can quickly get into trouble. Captain Dan is incredibly knowledgeable, patient, and trusting. He is a motivator and mentor and all-around great guy. Captain Dan is not only instructing you in the art of sailing but, he is also teaching you to think wisely in your decision-making, all while enjoying the experience. Can you ask for anything more? I intend to keep up my lessons with Capatin Dan for as long as he will have me.

If you want to experience a day sail, an overnight trip to explore the islands, are new to sailing and need instruction, or if you want to brush up on your skills, don’t hesitate. The exemplary reviews are all truthful. Overall, I’m beyond happy with my decision to learn from Captain Dan and I know you will, too.

2  Thank Healy100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 21, 2012

After travelling to the Oxnard area for many years, we chose to try sailing. This sail was our first ever and it was the highlight of our trip! We highly recommend this experience. Thank you Captain Dan, we can't wait to go again!

1  Thank Sheryl C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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