Lymington River

One of the Meccas of sailing with several marinas (We shall ignore them for our purposes). Follow the river past all the marinas and the ferry berth up to the town quay. At weekends the walk ashore pontoon at the quay gets packed solid, but if you fancy it you can take your chances. A (slightly) more peaceful option is to pick up a pair of fore and aft visitors buoys opposite the quay. Space is very tight so you need to work out what you are going to do before you enter the trots and try to figure out an escape route if it all goes wrong. The harbourmasters are very helpful if you do get in a pickle.

Saturday mornings there is a large street market, several pubs for food and drink, chip shops, takeaways, supermarkets and chandlers cater for every need. Walk down the western side of the river and you pass the park, with swings and a pond for the kids, the open air swimming pool, for the hardy, and you come to the coast. Here there is a path through the creeks and salt marshes into the surrounding countryside.

Guide price : 11.50 (28ft 2003 on buoys). 12.00 (28ft 2006 on buoys).

Just inside the entrance to the river there are several swinging moorings on the port hand side. These are often empty and, as long as you stay on board and are prepared to move if the owner returns, can provide a handy stopping point. We have had the odd overnight stop here when we didn't want to go ashore. Also just inside the entrance on the starboard hand there is a small pool containing moorings. We haven't tried it but it should be possible to anchor here just outside the channel.

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The TightWad Sailor