Sail away on a two masted schooner for hours of adventure and relaxation. It is not in the Caribbean, or some other exotic locale, but right in New York Harbor. Manhattan by Sail offers a fantastic opportunity to see New York City on vintage sailing vessels. As you sail on these tall ships you will be transported to another time as you ply the waters of New York Harbor. This is a unique escape that will make you feel that you are not in New York but rather on vacation in the islands. Although there are other tour boats that are available for sightseeing around Manhattan, this adventure is unique.
We decided on a two hour excursion on the City Clipper, a restored 158 foot long sailing schooner equipped with two steel masts and two top sails and six fore and aft sails. The ship was built prior to the Civil War but has been renovated over the years and now has a steel hull, a long open deck seating for passengers and a full bar in the center of the vessel that serves drinks and snacks to the guests on board (additional cost).
We took advantage of the Twilight Sail which leaves from Battery Park at the tip of Manhattan and cruises for two hours in New York Harbor as the sun sets over New Jersey. It was a warm and gorgeous summer evening as the City Clipper pulled away from its slip at the Battery and made its way into the harbor. With a good wind on the water that day, the crew decided to hoist the sails and guests are able to assist in this task.
The schooner turned away from Manhattan and navigated around Governors Island and plied the waters between that island and the Borough of Brooklyn. This was a unique perspective and one not often seen by New Yorkers and visitors alike. The ship made a graceful arc south of Governors Island to catch a wonderful sunset behind the Statue of Liberty as well as other ships that were enjoying the waters that evening.
There are great photo opportunities at all points of the sail.
We really enjoyed the slow and quiet cruise under sail as well as the cocktails available at the cash bar. The bar staff was friendly and helped keep the mood lively. As the sun dropped into the west the schooner turned back toward the city and the lights of Jersey City, Battery Park, and The Freedom Tower provided a memorable light show for all aboard.
If you are looking for an unique excursion and a few hours of fun, you should experience a classic sail on the City Clipper.
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