All Year Round - Water Taxi and Harbour Trips.
A 21ft open launch licenced for 12 passengers.
GENERAL 20 MINUTE TRIPS - I offer these trips all day every day through the year on my 21ft open launch licenced for 12 passengers. The trip is a local harbour trip around the Packing Shed Island. Approximately 20 minutes. On a clear day you can see the Clacton wind turbines from a distance and Bradwell Power Station can also be seen. On your boat trip you will pass many different pleasure and cruising yachts, motorboats, oyster dredging boats and fishing boats. There is the possibility of seeing the seal and there are also many different bird life species that are attracted to Mersea Islands' tranquil area of marshlands and mud banks, including turnstones, curlews, cormorants, egrets as well as the common tern and herring gull. A very enjoyable and relaxing boat ride. Maximum of 12 people for boat trips. However, a full boat of 12 people is not needed, we leave as and when people would like to go, with as little as 1 person aboard. Children are welcome as long as they are supervised by an adult. £3 per person, all ages the same price, for a 20-minute boat trip. The Lady Grace runs 7 days a week. Great fun for children, particularly as a birthday treat for them and their friends. Longer boat trips can be booked in advance to secure a time and place aboard, or alternatively you can turn up on the day and wait for the boat to return to the hammerhead for a short 20 minute trip. I offer the longer trips for special occasions such as Birthdays and Wedding Anniversaries, see below for more details:
PICNIC SUNSET TRIPS. You can hire the Lady Grace for 2 hours during the evenings with prior notice given to watch the fantastic Mersea Sunsets whilst having a picnic. You can either bring a homemade picnic or you can book to collect a seafood platter from the Company Shed or Oyster Bar to bring out on the boat. Hire of the boat is £50 per hour.
TEA AND CAKES EVENING SUNSET TRIP - You can book a 1.5 hour boat trip where we will go on a boat trip up Salcot Creek before picking up a mooring, serving tea and cakes and heading back into the quay. Cakes include a selection of 5 cakes from the following: shortbread, flapjacks, chocolate muffins, peanut butter cupcakes, butterfly cakes, malt loaf, bread pudding. £10 per person, maximum 12 people.
PIRATE PARTIES -TREASURE HUNT ON THE BOAT. I offer a pirate party for a maximium of 12 people where we have a treasure hunt boat trip with a treasure map finding scull and crossbones chocolate coin treasure hidden in the creeks on other boats on our boat trip round and I even dress as a pirate too! 1 hour trip, £75 for the hour.
VALENTINES SPECIAL - Book in advance and send me 10 reasons why you love you partner and I will put these reasons into love notes in little cork bottles, your partner will think you are taking him/her out on a romantic boat trip round Mersea, when in actual fact he/she will discover your love notes have been scattered in cork bottles round the creeks for him/her to discover, like 'message in a bottle'. If you have planned on showing your partner just how much they mean to you and plan to propose marriage, then that last bottle he/she discovers can be an extra special discovery. You can continue the romance for a further hour and have a picnic out on the water too. £75 for the hour.
EASTER EGG HUNT BOAT TRIPS. I offer an Easter egg hunt where I dress up as the Easter Bunny and we go on an hours boat trip in search of chocolate nests containing Easter Eggs, the child to spot the most nests gets a big Easter egg. The nests will be hidden out on other boats in the creeks. It is a 1 hour trip, maximum of 12 people on the boat, £75 for the hour.
HALLOWEEN TRICK OR TREAT TRIP - All dressed up in our scariest costumes we go in search of 12 black nags hidden amongst the creeks, once found we have to put our hand in the bag without looking and pull out whatever its contents is. It may be sweetie treats or it may be nasty tricks such as bloody eyeballs and severed fingers or rats, bats, spiders, cobwebs, cockroaches or even a snake. Would you dare to put your hands in.... Maximum 12 people, £75 for the hour.
CHRISTMAS REINDEER HUNT BOAT TRIP. At Christmas time I offer boat trips where I dress up as an elf and the children have to help me find Santas reindeers which have gone astray in the local creeks, we have to round the reindeers up and as a reward for finding all Santas reindeers in time for Christmas eve the children get chocolate reindeer treats. Maximum of 12 people, 1 hour reindeer hunt boat trip, £75 for the hour.
WEDDINGS. You can have a basic office wedding carried out at your local registry office which covers the legal paperwork and the 2 legal sentances required to legally marry. After, you can hire the Lady Grace to perform the full wedding ceremony of exchanging vows and rings infront of your close friends and relatives and hire the Packing Shed after for the reception. A romantic, quiet setting for small weddings. £100 for the hire of the Lady Grace, the the wedding ceremony performed by the skipper is included in this price.
FERRY SERVICE. I am also available for launch service to get to and from your boat, for both local and visiting yachtsmen. I can be contacted either on my mobile;07791 859 624 or by the VHF on channel 72, call sign 'Lady Grace'. We have many places to eat at Mersea for both visiting yachtsmen and visiting tourists including; The Art Cafe and the Blackwater Pearl for light snacks and full English breakfasts; The Coast Inn and The Victory for great traditional meals and beverages; And not forgetting the well-known 'Company Shed' and the 'Oyster Bar' which are extremely popular for their locally caught fresh fish to eat in and the option of taking fillets of fish and pots of shell fish home for another day. Needless to say, both the Company Shed and the Oyster Bar sell our local Native Oysters, of which Mersea is famous for. Mersea is definitely a port to put on your list to visit. If you visit Mersea during Mersea week in the summer, you will also catch all the entertainment of music, the travelling fair, bagpipes playing through the town, the local yacht racing, rowing races, greasy pole and our excellent display of fireworks. For people wanting to go to and from their yachts during normal working hours the fee is £3 per person each way. Requests for a water taxi outside of normal hours will be accommodated with prior notice given and a fee will be negotiated depending on the times required.
BIRDWATCHING AND PHOTOGRAPHY TRIPS - Why not take a fascinating wildlife boat trip and see some of the amazing birds and creatures we have along this coastline. You might even see the Mersea Seal or even a porpoise! You probably don't realise just how many different species of birds and other wild life creates inhabit our shoreline around the Mersea area, I will point out many different birds and other wild life as we come across them. You never know what you will see and every trip is different!
Bird & Wildlife watching trips are available during November through until April. We will take a slow ride up the local creeks including Salcot creek, Ray Channel, around the Packing Shed Island out Mersea Fleet, up the Strood and take a ride round the Great and Little Cob Islands in Tollesbury depending on the length of trip booked. Local birds sighted include Curlews, Cormorants, Egrets, Turnstones, Knots, Marsh Harriers, Shags, Sanderling, Dunlin, Brent Geese, Swans, Shell Ducks, Mallard, Oyster Catchers, Bar-Tailed Godwits, Black-Tailed Godwits, Ringed Plover, Redshank and Greenshank, Whimbrel, Herons, Greylag Geese, Guillemots, Red-Throated Diver, Great Nothern Diver, Avocets and not forgetting the common and black-headed gulls and common terns and many more. Wildlife and bird watching Groups and Clubs all welcome.
To hire the whole boat I charge a flat rate of of £50 per hour for you but I would suggest a maximum of 6-8 people so that you don't get in one another's way and everyone has plenty of room.
I have 4 different bird watching trips I offer;
1 hour trip up Salcot creek on low water which you will see the different waders so is a good trip for complete beginners;
2 hour trip over high water where we go in and around the marshes in Tollesbury so see the marsh waders and all the murmurations in the sky;
1.5 hour trip around the Great and Little Cob Islands on the flood tide when hopefully we will see the flock of 50-200 avocet along with other waders too;
And finally my 3 hour trip which includes the 1.5 hour round the Cob Island to see the avocet and then the final 1.5 hour we wind round up to Salcot creek on high water up to the Church to see the Northern Diver, Ducks and birds of prey.
Lady Grace is also available to book for ash scatterings, a nice way to say goodbye to a loved one at £75 per hour.
CANVASES AND CARDS AVAILABLE.
I am a keen photographer myself and I have a selection of photos available to purchase on canvas and on All Occasion cards. All my pictures are of birds, wildlife, boats and the water. Please visit my website on www.essexboattrips.co.uk and click on the Artwork Shop heading to buy on my online shop. They make lovely birthday and Christmas presents.