Learn to Sail

Learn to Sail in Boston Harbor. The most thorough and effective adult beginner's course in New England.

Whether you’re a complete beginner or a sometime sailor, we guarantee this course will teach you to sail safely and confidently, or we’ll continue your lessons at no extra charge (see student information sheet for details)

We’ve refined our Learn to Sail course over 45 years, so it combines our own proven lesson plans with the best elements of standardized national curriculums, without ever forgetting that we all sail for fun. 

In our classroom sessions, we will cover the fundamentals of sailing – from sail trim to basic navigation – so you will be prepared when you head out for each corresponding onboard lesson. On the water, we pair each instructor with three students so you’ll get lots of one-on-one guidance developing steering, sail handling, and crewing skills.

The Learn to Sail course is taught on Sonars and covers all the basics, including: Parts of the Boat and Rigging, Points of Sail, Tacking and Jibing, Landing at a Mooring, Balance and Sail Shape Control, Rules of the Road, Man Overboard Drills, Chart Reading and Navigation.

The result? You’ll graduate fully prepared to sail here in Boston or your favorite harbor anywhere.

All Learn to Sail graduates can activate a FREE 30-day Student Membership on the Solings and Sonars. 

Use your Student Membership to practice your sailing skills, take your friends sailing, and enjoy some of the benefits of membership here at the Boston Sailing Center. Student members can also join the coaching clinics offered on alternating Fridays during the season. Some restrictions apply. See Student Information Sheet for details. 

ASA 101 Certification awarded upon successful course completion, written ASA 101 test, and a $39 ASA registration fee. Written test must be completed within one year of course completion.

Course Fee:




Prepares you for:

Taught On:

Included Text Book:

ASA’s Sailing Made Easy

ASA Certification:

ASA 101 Basic Keelboat


The Learn to Sail Course is offered in 3 different formats: 4 Week, Vacation Week, and Weekend. All formats consist of four two hour online classroom sessions and four three and a half hour the water sessions for a total of 22 hours of instruction – 8 hours of classroom time and 14 hours on the water.

Weekend Format Description
Held over two consecutive Saturday/Sundays. ​

In person classroom Sessions are on Saturday and Sunday mornings from 10:30am-12:30PM. Sailing Sessions are on two consecutive Saturday and Sundays from 1:30-5:00PM. A new course starts every other Saturday, with the exception of some holiday weekends.

Vacation Week Format Description
Learn to sail in one week! Monday morning through Thursday afternoon. Format contains in-person classroom sessions.

Offered Monday through Thursday. In person classroom sessions are Monday through Thursday from 9:30-11:30am, followed by afternoon sailing sessions from 12:30-4pm.

4-Week Format Description
This format meets twice a week for four weeks, alternating evening Online Classroom Sessions and Sailing Sessions.

Online Classroom Sessions meet on Tuesday evenings from 6:00-8:00 PM. Sailing Sessions are either Thursdays from 4:30-8:00pm, Fridays from 3:00-6:30pm, Saturday mornings from 9am – 12:30pm or Sunday mornings from 9am – 12:30pm.

Choose Thursday, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday sailing sessions upon checkout.

Note: Due to earlier sunset, sessions will take place on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday ONLY later in the season.

Before purchasing a course, please review the Student Information Sheet and Cancellation + Rescheduling Policies.


Two consecutive weekends
$ 1120
  • See Format descriptions above

Vacation Week

Monday to Thursday
$ 1120
  • See Format descriptions above


Twice a week for four weeks
$ 1120
  • See Format descriptions above

Group Enrollment

Signing up with more than one person? We have a discount for that! Groups of two or more who sign up together for the same course qualify for discounts of 10% off the course fee after one student has purchased the course at full price (in other words, it’s full price for the first person and 10% off for each additional person).

To qualify for the group enrollment discount, purchases must be made over the phone. Contact the office at 617-227-4198 to register your group. 

Course Documents

ASA Veteran's Program

At ASA and Boston Sailing Center, we recognize the sacrifices made by the men and women who have served or are serving in our country’s armed forces. As a token of our appreciation, and our way of saying thank you, we are inviting veterans and active military personnel to share our passion for sailing by offering a discount on our ASA 101 Basic Keelboat Sailing Course. Trade in your ship for ours and join us on the water with the wind in your sails. 

Boston Sailing Center offers 10% off the Full Price of our ASA 101 Basic Keelboat Learn to Sail Course to active miliary and veterans. To receive your 10% off coupon, complete ASA’s form and once received, contact the Boston Sailing Center at 617-227-4198 to enroll with your course date (do not sign up through BSC’s website). 


Our team is here to help! Please reach out by phone or email and an office manager will be happy to assist you.