If you're going to the Southampton Boat Show, don't miss out on these

The 40th Southampton Boat Show is nearly upon us, so if you’re heading down then here are five things you must see:


Not as obvious as it sounds, the first thing to do is head over to the booking stand (B85) for the Try-a-Boat feature – an opportunity for families to experience the thrill of being out on the water. With more boats than ever before, beginners or sailing veterans can choose from a more varied selection of the latest inflatables, powerboats and yachts to try, aned what’s more, it’s all free.

2. H2O Zone

The H2O Zone is brand new to the Show this year and is described as an “interactive area where people of all ages can experience popular on-water sports first hand”. Visitors can test their skills at canoeing, kayaking, dinghy sailing, windsurfing and paddle boarding – the latest water sport craze – with the guidance of industry professionals from the British Canoe Union and the Royal Yachting Association. The Zone runs the activities from 10.30am onwards every day, but you’re advised to turn up early to book a space.

3. The Hydropool Marina,

Work off your lunch with a stroll down by the Hydropool Marina which boasts an impressive 1.6km in length and the capacity for nearly 400 boats to explore. NBS will be promoting a hands-on Show through its Come On Board campaign, specifically designed to encourage interaction between visitors and the Show’s exhibitors who are willing and eager to offer their expert advice. All those taking part in the scheme will clearly display the ‘Come on Board’ logo.

This year, Dublin based tall ship Jeanie Johnston will be moored alongside Solent Park for the majority of the celebratory 40th Show. Explorers will be able to climb aboard the tall ship and venture both above and below deck, learning more about the voyages the original Jeanie Johnston would have taken between Ireland and the US during the potato famine.

Katie Miller, the 2006 Raymarine YJA Young Sailor of the Year, will be displaying Hot Socks, her Figaro II race boat, for the duration of the Show. Katie’s and Hot Socks’ appearance at the PSP Southampton Boat Show follows their recent triumph in the bluQube 1,000 mile race, which was their first major solo event.

Callista, another of the Show’s feature boat attractions, offers the chance to uncover the mystery of what lies beneath the ocean surface. The state-of-the art scientific research vessel, on loan from the National Oceanography Centre, features the latest scientific equipment in wet and dry laboratories.

Visitors to the Show can also learn more about The Raymarine Lively Lady project. The 40 year old Lively Lady was originally sailed around the world in 1968-9 by Sir Alec Rose. For the 40th Show, she is back from a two year round-the-world trip that has not only covered over 28,000 nautical miles, but in the process has helped young adults turn their lives around.

Completing the feature boat line up is Spirit of Mystery, the fascinating vessel that Pete Goss has painstakingly replicated from the historical Mystery and will attempt to sail to Australia without the aid of modern electrical or navigational systems.

While down at the Hydropool Marina, visitors won’t want to miss the Maritime & Coastguard Agency (MCA) teaming up with the RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution) to provide Search & Rescue demonstrations throughout the course of the Show. The demonstrations give an overview of how these heroes of the sea and sky go about saving lives and approaching their daring rescues – for best views head down to the Hydropool Marina.

4. The Main Stage – Powered by Fairline

After all the excitement down by the water, be sure not to miss out on the action on the Main Stage, which will be central to the Show’s 40th celebrations.

Throughout the day visitors will enjoy retro-style fashion shows three times a day (excluding Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday), special guest appearances as well as short films celebrating the history of the Show and highlighting the last five decades of boating – not forgetting of course the announcement of the coveted Miss PSP Southampton Boat Show competition on the final Saturday!

5. Visit the YBW stand!

Of course, your trip won’t be complete without coming to visit us on the YBW stand, where you’ll have the chance to enter our competition to win a Zodiac Yachtline rib, Yamaha outboard and SBS trailer package.

You’ll also find some great deals on our latest magazines and subscription offers – find out more at our Southampton Boat Show site.

The YBW team will be there throughout the show so come and say hello, and keep an eye out for announcements on our forums about free slurps at the stand.