It is just over three years since the Cruising Association of Ireland fleet visited Belfast Lough. And now another trip north is planned for the middle week of August. The CAI has managed to keep active through the COVID 19 Lockdown with virtual meetings and online talks, during which time the membership has satisfyingly increased by 10%, including several new members from the North.
Commodore Vincent Lundy said “It has been an incredibly difficult year for us all but the bottom line is that we need to go cruising. Needless to say, we are bound to remain compliant with all restrictions imposed and these same conditions will dictate the levels of social interaction for the safety of our membership. Indeed is our duty to do so”.
This year the cruise-in-company is based around key locations where a greater number of boats may be accommodated within the safety of a marina able to berth reasonable numbers.
After a muster in Malahide on 12th August, the fleet will head north to Carlingford Lough, that spectacular fiord like stretch of water with the Mourne Mountains on the north and the Cooley Mountains to the south. Then on north to Belfast Harbour Marina, right in the centre of the city close to Titanic Belfast, followed by the option of moving on to the historic town of Carrickfergus with its Norman castle or heading east down the Lough to Bangor. From 21st August its free sailing home with the possibility of a visit to another fiord like sea inlet, the island-studded Strangford Lough.
The catering arrangements at each location is under continual review with respect to the current COVID guidelines