Sailing In December: The Best 9 Places to Visit

December is a great month to go sailing with the Caribbean season in full swing and more destinations around the world for winter sun.

Sailing In December: The Best 9 Places to Visit

The best destinations to go sailing in December vary with temperature and crowds depending on what type of yacht charter you desire. December is a great month to go sailing in Caribbean destinations as the weather is warm and the sailing season is in full swing, with plenty to do and see. The Indian Ocean and Australia are also great places to go sailing in December as the winds have stabilised.

Some of the best destinations to go sailing in December are Australia, Thailand, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean. December is a great time to go sailing as conditions are favourable, with great deals to be had for yacht charters and flights. In December you can often find the last minute or bargain trips in early December before the holiday period with fewer people opting to go to sailing in December before the holiday period.

Depending on where you decide to take a sailing trip too, December has superb weather and favourable sailing conditions. The water temperatures are still ideal for swimming when you go sailing in December.

1. Whitsundays Island

Weather. Australia’s Whitsundays Islands are the ideal destination for sailing in December with an average daily high of 29c (84f) and a low of 24c (75f). During December the wind conditions in the Whitsundays blow in an east southeast direction with an average wind speed of 15 knots. The Whitsundays also offer easy line-of-sight sailing for everyone no matter what ability.

The Whitsundays. The Whitsundays are a collection of 74 islands located off the coast of Queensland, Australia. Famous for having white sandy beaches, lush greenery, diverse wildlife, and the opportunity to snorkel or dive in the Great Barrier Reef.

Islands To Visit. The Whitsundays Islands are one of the best places to go sailing in December thanks to its variety of islands to explore and discover. The main islands in the collection worth visiting are:

  • Hamilton Islands – The location for the Hamilton Island Race Week yachting festival, beautiful sunsets, and the bustling resort island. 
  • Hook Island – Nara Inlet is a green and peaceful island, fishing spot, and snorkel to see tropical fish. Stonehaven is a great location to watch the sunset.
  • Whitsunday Island – Coral Sea, largest chain, Tongue Bay with beautiful scenery, turtles, and a beautiful lookout. Whitehaven Beach a beautiful beach in the area.
  • Long Island – Long Island has a large number of plant species, animal species, and a great place to enjoy cycling, and hiking.
  • Bali Hai (Black Island) – Great place to snorkel and enjoy the calm waters and marine life.
  • Lindeman Island – 19km of walking trails, 90 species of birds, humpback whales, and dolphins.
  • Daydream Island – Man-made lagoon and aquarium, marine life in natural habitat.

2. St Vincent

Popular Destination. Originally named “Hairoun,” which means “Land of the Blessed” in Caribe, St. Vincent is truly an authentic Caribbean gem. With a diverse landscape, St. Vincent has everything adventurous travellers could ask for – hiking trails, botanical gardens, an active volcano, beautiful beaches and excellent diving locations. Made up of 32 islands, St. Vincent and the Grenadines is an ideal yacht charter spot. Along with the exciting activities, St. Vincent has many beaches and cays where you can anchor and layout in the sun.

Weather. When sailing in December in St Vincent the average weather is a high of 30c (86f) and an average low of 25c (77f). St Vincent is ideal for sailing in December with over 9 hours of sunshine a day and the water temperature averaging 28c (82f).

3. Puerto Rico

Destinations. Puerto Rico is a small island with over 270 miles of glorious coastline with white sandy beaches. The Caribbean island is a US territory, with luscious forests, beaches, natural wonders, heritage, delicious flavours, a dynamic culture, colonial architecture, cultural events, and adventurous activities. Puerto Rico is perfect for all sailing abilities and sailing in December is the perfect time to visit.

Weather. Puerto Rico has 8 hours of sunshine a day in December with an average high of 28c (82f), and an average low of 22c (72f). These temperatures and an average water temperature of 27c (80f), make it an ideal for sailing in December with great spots for snorkelling and swimming.

4. Grenada

Weather. Grenada is the ideal location to go sailing in December, with an average temperature between 28c (82f) and 24c (76f). In December hurricane season has come to a close and the wind has settled in a northeasterly direction ranging from 10 – 25 knots.

Grenada. With beautiful mountains, unique fauna and flora, lakes, and an abundance of wildlife, Grenada has something for everyone. In addition to its deep colonial history, Grenada is an island of volcanic origin. This gives it a wonderfully interesting landscape of rocky coastline and beaches set against bright green foliage and rich vegetation. Coupled with the amazing scenery, the island is home to armadillos, mona monkeys, and mockingbirds. The marine life is also present in abundance, Grenada’s waters are full of colourful coral reefs, seagrass beds – making it ideal for snorkelling and sailing in December.

5. New Caledonia

Weather. New Caledonia has a tropical climate with hot and humid summer months (November to March) and a cooler drier winter months (June to August). New Caledonia is a great place to go sailing in December with the average weather in December having temperatures ranging from 28c (82f) to 22c (72f) in the evening. The islands average 7 hours of sunshine a day with the sea temperature reaching 25c (77f), which is ideal for swimming and snorkelling.

Island. Located within the Southwest Pacific, off the coast of eastern Australia, and is a French overseas territory. New Caledonia is a small collection of islands, islets all filled with beautiful natural scenery, UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the form of lagoons, landscapes, and culture. New Caledonia is a great place to go sailing in December and these are some of the islands worth visiting;

  • Grande Terre (largest and main island)
  • Loyalty Islands
  • Chesterfield Islands
  • Belep archipelago
  • Isle of Pines

6. Guadeloupe

Wind and Weather Conditions. When going sailing in December in Guadeloupe the average weather tends to stay at between 30c (86f) and 20c (69 f), with steady winds blowing from a northeasterly direction between 20 to 25 knots. Which is ideal for intermediate sailors with a line of sight navigation, open waters, and larger distances between destinations.

Places to Visit. Guadeloupe is a small butterfly-shaped island which is split into two main islands and connected by a bridge. The two islands are called Base-Terre and Grande-Terre, these two islands along with over 12 others island make up the area of Guadeloupe. Basse-Terre is a volcanic island with mountains and beautiful beaches, and Grande-Terre is flat with rolling hills and picturesque coastlines. Great places to visit when sailing in December are Pointe-a-Pitre, Marie Galante, Les Saintes, Islet Gosier.

7. British Virgin Islands

Winter Sun. The British Virgin Islands are a great winter sun sailing destination. December is a great time to take a yacht charter in the BVI as high season has got into the full swing and hurricane season has finished. The BVI is one of the best places to go sailing in December.

Weather In December. The BVI’s weather makes it one of the best places to go sailing in December. The average high for the month is 83f (28c) and the average low is 76f (24c), although rainfall can occur it is rare at this time of year.  The wind tends to be stable between 15 – 25 knots in a northeast direction, which varies from a southeast direction in the earlier winter months.

Peak Season. The peak sailing time in the BVI is between December and April, with private boats venturing from the Mediterranean across the ocean, bring more boats and tourists to the area. In December the majority of these boats have only just begun to arrive from the Mediterranean in preparation for the high season later in the month, which means the BVI is beginning to get busier.

8. Thailand

Weather. Thailand is an excellent year-round sailing destination with the year split into two seasons – wet and dry season or SW and NE monsoon seasons. It is one of the best places to go sailing in December as it is the beginning of the northeast monsoon season (November – April), with winds typically between 10 and 20 knots in a northwest direction. This is considered the dry season with dry and sunny conditions and average temperatures remaining between 31 – 23c (87-73f).

Thailand. Thailand is one of the best places to go sailing in December with some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, on islands waiting to be explored with tropical rainforests, world-class marinas, famous bays, and thriving resort towns.

9. Bahamas

Weather In December. The Bahamas is one of the best places to go sailing in December with an average high of 78f (25c) and an average low of 64f (17c). The water stays at a comfortable 79f (26c) and wind conditions stabilise at 9 knots and decrease throughout the month. Gentle, trade winds of between 5 -20 knots, which are usually blowing from the northeast.

The Bahamas. 200 km of island paradise; Gentle winds and easy sailing conditions allow guests to enjoy some of the finest scuba-diving spots in the world, and navigation is very straight forward, mainly line of sight.

Have you ever been sailing in December? Let us know your tips and experiences in the comments below.

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