Course Objectives and Outcomes

The RYA Essential Navigation course is aimed at a wide audience, including anyone new to sailing, motor boating, fishing, diving, experienced dinghy or keelboat sailors.

This online course is the perfect stepping-stone to the more in-depth RYA Day Skipper shore-based course, or to courses on the water such as the Powerboat, Start Yachting or Competent Crew.

By the end of this course you should feel you have an introduction to the topics covered during this course, which can be viewed under the ‘What Will I Learn?’ section.

What Will I Learn?

  • Navigational charts & publications
  • Safety
  • Engine Checks
  • Buoyage systems and rules of the road
  • Tidal awareness
  • Basic Navigation Techniques
  • Basic visual and electronic navigation
  • Pilotage and passage planning
  • Basic weather forecasts
  • Anchoring
  • and Rules of the Road

What Certificate Do I Get?

RYA Essential Navigation and Seamanship certificate presented upon successful completion of your course.

What Do I Need To Do The Course?

All you need is internet access. A course pack with Charts, Plotter, Dividers, Handbook and course notes will be mailed out to you (Australia-wide) after you register. We can also send this internationally for an extra postage fee.

How Long Is The Course?

The course is completed 100% online, and takes around 16 hours. Access to the course is 12 months.

Course Preview

What To Do Next?

To keep growing your sailing skills we recommend the RYA Competent Crew as your next port of call.

RYA Competent Crew

This course is for beginners and those who would like to become active crew members rather than just passengers. Experience living on board and really get to know the boat. Virtually all the course is hands on. You are the crew - without you the sails won't go up and the boat won't be steered


Bob course completed 5th March 2020

“ excellent introduction that all new boat users should be encouraged to complete. It gives you the confidence to get the most out of your boat, whilst being aware of the risks.”

Misty course completed 17th August 2018

“ be recommended for newcomers, but also very useful for those who want to do more than pull ropes and tie on fenders.”

Lachlan course completed 16th August 2019

“I would definitely recommend it to new boat owners or anyone keen to get into boating.”