What will students see and do?

Searching for school trip ideas that will improve students’ personal development and boost self-esteem? Book a school residential trip with Excelsior Trust to take your class on an unforgettable sailing experience.

Step aboard the Excelsior, a sailing ship built in Lowestoft in 1921, which has been named one of the country’s most important historical vessels.

The sailing vessel, which still races in the internationally renowned Tall Ships Race, is owned by the Excelsior Trust, a charity that aims to improve the lives of young and disadvantaged people by teaching them how to build confidence and self-esteem through sailing.

During educational visits and voyages at sea, children will learn to sail while also picking up key personal development skills.

Team-building exercises and outdoor learning activities seek to build up low self-confidence and improve self-reliance. For instance, students will be given an on-board scenario and then relate the lessons learned to a similar scenario within their family, school or society.

Excelsior’s charters and sail training activities can also involve trips into villages and towns as well as surveys of natural habitats. The only guarantee with Excelsior Trust is that every trip will be different, and the unpredictable nature of the experience is part of the exciting adventure. Visit the website to read more about previous groups’ experiences.

Teaching resources provided

Visit the website to view Excelsior’s educational resources, including a Personal Social Health Education (PSHE) curriculum-linked programme that is tailored for Year 9, but which can be adapted for other age groups and for Curriculum Enhancement days.

Minimum and maximum group size

The ship can house 12 people – ten young people and two group leaders.

Details of risk assessment

Call for details of Excelsior Trust’s school trip risk assessment.

Excelsior Trust recommends that an adequate travel insurance policy is taken out for all voyages. The policy should cover sailing on traditional boats/tall ships in territorial or international waters as appropriate.


Don't miss our downloadable A-Z guide on completing a risk assessment

icon for A-Z guide on completing a risk assessment

Facilities On-Site

Life jackets are provided, and there are also two toilets and cooking facilities on board.

You will sleep in bunks while on boarde. The skipper and crew sleep in a separate area.

Opening Times

Call to discuss dates and times for your custom sail.



Chartering the whole ship costs £1080 a night, including food, safety equipment and insurance.

There are bursary funds available if you require them.

Travel arrangements

Voyages typically set out from Lowestoft or Ipswich in Suffolk. Voyages can go as far as Belgium, Norway and the Baltics, or domestic sails around the South Coast and the Thames are available.


300 Bankside, Broadland Business Park, Peachman Way, Norwich

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Book your school trip to The Excelsior Trust

For information on booking your school trip to this venue, click below.

Book your school trip to The Excelsior Trust

For information on booking your school trip to this venue, click below.

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