The Brilliant program focuses on educating participants about sail handling and theory, teamwork, being a good shipmate, stewardship, navigation, and proper seamanship. All sailors are expected to fully participate in all aspects of daily vessel operations from hauling on lines and steering, to helping in the galley. Participants work together under the guidance of the professional crew of a captain, mate and cook, to safely sail hundreds of miles and learn traditional seamanship skills. The vessel anchors each night in various ports during multi-day programs.
During our youth sailing programs, participants are integrated into the crew of Brilliant while cruising the waters of southern New England and visiting scenic anchorages and ports of call. All hands take part in the vessel’s operation, including steering, sail handling, furling, hauling up the anchor, helping in the galley, daily cleaning, and watch standing.
Going to sea and sailing this iconic vessel is as challenging as it is fun and rewarding. Brilliant has fostered and developed teamwork, leadership, stewardship, and traditional seamanship in youth for more than 60 years. Participants learn and grow under the guidance a U.S. Coast Guard-licensed Captain and professional crew.
These programs are open to teens between the ages of 15 and 18 and are great for those who enjoy being on the water, sailing, and being challenged by a dynamic environment. Sailing experience is not necessary; we will teach you everything that you need to know.
On all programs, participants must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19, physically fit and agile, and competent swimmers.
Take a look at the Brilliant Youth Sailing Handbook.
Schooner BRILLIANT Overnight Sailing Program
The Brilliant program focuses on educating participants about sail handling and theory, teamwork, being a good shipmate, stewardship, navigation, and proper seamanship. All sailors are expected to fully participate in all aspects of daily vessel operations from hauling on lines and steering, to helping in the galley. Participants work together under the guidance of the professional crew of a captain, mate and cook, to safely sail hundreds of miles and learn traditional seamanship skills. The vessel anchors each night in various ports during multiday programs. Multi-day teen programs: 15-18 year olds board at 9am on the first day of the program, and depart at 3pm on the last day.
5 day programs:
June 19-23– Mystic, CT to Mystic, CT Sold out – please speak to reservations to be added to the waitlist.
June 26-30– Mystic, CT to Mystic, CT – Sold out– please speak to reservations to be added to the waitlist.
10 day programs:
We strongly recommend that first participants complete a five-day overnight trip onboard BRILLIANT before signing up for a ten-day.
July 3-12– Mystic, CT to Mystic, CT (includes racing in the Vineyard Cup) Sold Out
July 21-30– Mystic, CT to Rockland, ME
August 7-16– Rockland, ME to New Bedford, MA (Please note that this trip will have a different time to meet the vessel in Rockland.) Sold Out
Scholarship awards are generally granted for up to 50% of the program costs, but additional funds are available if needed. For more information, please review the Application for Financial Assistance for Schooner Brilliant at Mystic Seaport Museum.
Five Day Trips
Ten Day Trips
The schooner Brilliant sail-training program introduces teens and adults to life aboard a classic schooner while sailing the New England coast. Our programs range from two-day trips to 10-day voyages, and are open to all experience levels. While sailing onboard Brilliant, teenagers and adults become part of the crew while cruising local waters and visiting scenic ports of call. As one of the oldest sail training program in the country, Brilliant has fostered teamwork, leadership, stewardship, and traditional seamanship for more than 60 years.
Brilliant is owned and operated by Mystic Seaport Museum and inspected by the U.S. Coast Guard. Though traditional in operation and construction, Brilliant carries modern navigation and safety equipment. It has been described by WoodenBoat magazine as one of the 100 most-beautiful classic boats in existence and “one of the best maintained and sailed classic yachts in the country — if not the world.”
While Brilliant is not a summer camp, we will be using the same electronic health record system, CampDoc.com, as the rest of the Museum’s camps do. All registered youth sailors and their parents will receive an email directly from CampDocs.com with detailed instructions on how to submit the required health forms and paperwork. The site is secure, encrypted and password protected.
Join other adults and the professional crew aboard Brilliant for a hands-on, full-participation sailing experience aboard a classic yacht. Learn to sail or expand your existing skills on a 74-foot schooner while cruising local waters and visiting scenic anchorages and towns. You’ll become part of the crew as you raise sails, haul on lines, steer, help in the galley, and learn traditional seamanship.
Common ports of call may include Block Island, RI and Shelter Island, NY. The nightly anchorages are weather dependent and at the Captain’s discretion. When space and weather permit, Brilliant will lay to a dock permitting shore leave for the crew. While Brilliant has modern safety and navigation equipment, her accommodations are true to her original construction providing open sleeping quarters and traditional heads.
We offer a variety of programs to suit your needs. The day sails are geared toward novice sailors, while the multiday trips are a great opportunity for the more adventurous participants to try overnight experience in protected waters. The coastal passages are for the more physically fit, experienced sailors with great attitudes.
Participants must be physically fit and agile as well as competent swimmers to take part in the sailing program. Once you reserve a berth aboard Brilliant, you will be sent a health form and handbook outlining what to bring, arrival information, as well as many other details. Participants must be at least 16 years old to sail on one-day trips and at least 18 years old to sail on multi-day trips.
Friday, September 8th
Saturday, September 9th
Sunday, September 10th
Wednesday, October 11th
$155 members, $205 non-members
12 max per trip
This is an easy sail, well suited to those new to sailing or with years of experience. Please bring your own lunch. The boat will provide drinks and snacks
Multi Day Sails
October 6-9, 2023 Friday to Monday (SOLD OUT)
$1050 member, $1150 non-member
8 people max
Enjoy three days aboard Schooner Brilliant exploring local waters during the day and anchor in the evenings.
This is a moderate sail, best suited to those with some experience aboard Brilliant or other vessels. At the minimum, a great attitude, ability to move around the vessel freely, and willingness to pitch in are required!
* These are late season trips and there is a potential for being cold and wet in rough weather. Participants should be physically able to move about a rolling deck and be prepared with warm clothes and rain gear. It is at the Captains discretion whether a participant is capable of safely joining the trip.
Once you reserve a berth aboard Brilliant, you will be sent a health form and the Brilliant Adult Guest Crew Handbook outlining what to bring, arrival information, as well as many other details. No previous sailing experience is necessary.
On all programs, participants must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19, be physically fit and agile, and be competent swimmers to take part in the sailing program. On overnight trips, all meals are provided while aboard.
Interested in chartering Brilliant for your school or family group? Email email@example.com to create your own unique and safe experience. A second vessel, capable of carrying 6 students, is available for charter to sail in company with Brilliant.
Mystic Seaport Museum is currently planning for summer programs and evaluating how to best serve our participants. We will continue to assess the situation and follow any directives from the CDC and the state of Connecticut. As always, the health and safety of our sailors is our highest priority. You can expect additional screening measures to be in place for check in to ensure everyone is healthy before the boat leaves the dock. We will post details about those additional procedures as we get closer to summer. Should we need to cancel any Brilliant programs, you will receive a full refund.
75 Greenmanville Ave
Mystic, CT 06355