Maritime skills

At the heart of the Captain Kidd Pirate Ships Experience is participation on board the three ships themselves, as it sails all over the world in the case of the Adventure Galley, and as they are sailed and rowed down the Thames in the cases of our two slightly smaller ships. 

The Adventure Galley

For nearly all of its voyages, the Adventure Galley will be under sail. On board, there will be a professional crew of around 20 individuals, supplemented by around 100 paying members of the public. The latter will participate fully in the running of the ship, learning traditional sailing, rigging and navigational skills.

Each leg of a voyage across the world will likely last from a week to a month, depending on the distances and challenges involved. By joining us for a leg, you will have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn a wide variety of traditional skills, and to work as part of a team. Participation will be open to individuals or small groups.

Our two Thames-based ships

These ships will be taking passage along the Thames in the Pool of London, generally for half a day, although there may be full-day voyages as well. Skills here will include traditional sailing and rigging, as well as rowing. The emphasis will very much be on full participation, although there will be a limited number of places available to those who just wish to be on board rather than participate (or are unable to due to disability, infirmity or age).

Other skills you can learn

There will be various land-based opportunities to learn about and participate in skills related to traditional ships.

These will include:

  • Navigation – using the stars and instruments in use in the seventeenth century and later, such as astrolabes and sextants.
  • Rope decoration and macramé – making hammocks, bell fringes and belts was a common occupation of sailors in the past.
  • Knot learning – every sailor on a traditional ship had to know a wide variety of knots, and it still plays an important role in modern-day sailing.

Those participating in an ocean-going voyage of the Adventure Galley will also have the opportunity to learn these skills.

Find out more

For learning about and participating in the building of the ships, please go to Shipbuilding Skills

To read more about the ships we will be building, see Our Ships

For details of who can participate, go to All Aboard!

To register your details and be kept informed, please contact us