Every sail trip starts with a dream. With a dream that has been sailing in our minds for many years and which grew on us. A long-time friendship of Peter and Michal is nurtured by our common hobby – yachting, as well as a passion for travelling, water and boats. How did we realise that we were born for yachting, and we want to shout it out from the rooftops through Marinatips?
We have always been drawn to water. We became good friends instantly when we met for the first time in our lifeguard course. Gradually we realised that we were attracted by the sea beyond the buoys where no lifeguard’s sight can see. We came to yachting by a total coincidence already thirteen years ago. We were young and ideas were spontaneously coming out of our mouths every second. A friend of ours, a sea captain, approved of our plan – to pass the captain exam. Nobody had any idea about where we were really going. We knew that there was no way back and that if somebody experiences yachting, it is hard for them to break away.
Since our captain exam and our first sail trip, we have literarily been living for this hobby. We sailed for the first time during our captain exam in 2008 which was also one of the conditions to obtain the sea boat captain licence. We sailed off on a hired boat from a Croatian town of Sukosan and we chased our experience and knowledge for about 300 nautical miles, which is approximately 500 kilometres. From that moment, we have been sailing every year. We like to discover new hidden places, which is the thing that we love about yachting the most – freedom and the wind in our hair. Boats, the sea and the sun can engulf you so much that you even cannot imagine not to spend some time on the sea every year. Even though we cannot always sail off because of our little future yachtsmen, we just cannot stop ourselves from watching yachts sailing on the sea.
Since the beginning we have admired Croatia. Northern, Central or Southern Dalmatia have its own magic and there are still many things to discover. Little islands or secluded places always manage to persuade us that we have chosen the right place, and therefore we return there regularly. Also, sometimes, we cross the sea to Italy, which lures us with its coastal diversity. From there, it is only one step away from Corsica and Sardinia. These islands are ranked amongst the top destinations, as well as little extreme areas for yachting. Even though they are beautiful, they can be quite strenuous for the crew. Despite that, we really recommend these islands, ideally with an experienced crew. We like many destinations; however, we never stop exploring new places, which can often surprise us with something new.
That is why we ask ourselves this basic question before each sail trip – what are we going to visit this time? Croatia? Italy? Greece? Spain? The list of options is almost endless. After choosing the destination, it is important to put together people and the crew, then choose a boat which would be ideal for that sail trip. We know already which country we want to visit, though, we must plan the itinerary and our final destination. We want to please everybody and agree on a common choice.
It is also important that the boat you choose is suitable mainly for the number of people who sail. You should consider whether the boat is comfortable enough for everybody or whether everybody has their own spot on the boat as well. From our experience we know that planning of the route can take a couple of weeks and there is always something that changes. We have an idea about what the sail trip should be like. However, there is always a moment when it is crucial to search for information. For the beginner yachtsmen it is a smaller problem, as calmer waters or locations should be chosen. It is also important to check the availability of services in the locations, the needs of the crew, to try to discover something, to create memories or to visit places that are easily reachable.
It is the selection of information and our general knowledge that led us into creating an application that would make sail trips easier for many yachtsmen around. Firstly, we invested our time and creativity into a webpage into which we put all the information. There was no complete overview of the types of anchorage for boats. We could not find out if in the given place, there was a marine, a pier or whether there was a suitable anchorage or available buoys. On the boat we realised that it was not the most practical solution. Searching for information on a webpage on a mobile phone took too long and the network coverage was not good enough everywhere. As a result, we started developing an application which contains everything in a well-arranged way, even including offline maps. During a sail trip the plans often change, and you must improvise and search for suitable alternatives. In the app, we have been focusing on information that are inevitable for the captain, the simplicity of use, user-friendly environment, intuitive search, and many other functions.
We tried to make searching and sorting of relevant information by yachtsmen easier as much as we could. The application gives them the possibility to choose freely whether they will visit the place in the direction of the sail trip or whether they will carry on. It will give them instant concrete information about the location and the availability of services for the boat and the crew. It will find the nearest places depending on the type of anchorage, make the contact information with the description available and show the photo gallery of the location. The notifications will make them aware in advance about an oncoming place. Also, they will receive the weather forecast a couple of days beforehand. What is really the most important thing is that the user finds everything only in a couple of clicks in the app without any lengthy research.
The application Marinatips currently carries information about ten countries and the database is getting bigger all the time. We focus mainly on the European coastal locations with a direct access to the see, such as Croatia, Italy, Spain, France, Malta, Portugal or Slovenia. Soon, information about Greece and northern countries will be added. We continue to improve the application and we are working on some attractive functions which you will not be able to find anywhere else. We are proud that we make sail trips easier for all yachtsmen who actively use our application.