The Arawak is an old sailing ship built in 1954 at the “Union & Travail” shipyard located at “Les Sables d’Olonne” in Vendée. She was the registered under the name “Le refuge des marins” (which could be translated as the sailors’ shelter) in Etel (Brittany), which was one of the most important fishing harbours in France until the 60’s.

Until 1980, her fishing activities were split along the year with trawling during winter in Northern Atlantic and artisanal tuna fishing during summer in Biscay. She was then sold en 1986 and, after several works of refurbishing, she served as a sailing training ship under the name “Arawak” registered in Lorient (Brittany) and based in Lormont (near Bordeaux on the Garonne river).

Since 2008, she welcomes also mentally disabled people or youngsters needing social insertion, the latters with the framework of official social programmes.

Apart from regional cruses, she participated to international nautical events such as “la Semaine du Golfe” (Morbihan in South-Brittany) or the “Brest Grands Voiliers” meetings.

Since 2012, she is listed at the French heritage by the French Nautical Heritage Foundation as the last witness of the artisanal fishing of Port Etel and is also labelled for youth and popular education.




On each trip, the Arawak can accommodate up to 35 persons for events (at dock), 24 persons for a day-trip and up to 20 persons for longer cruses (meaning then up to 16 trainees for such long cruses).

The crew is usually composed of 2 professionals (the captain and a sailor) assisted by an experienced benevolent team when necessary.

On the deck, you can find a spacious square and a galley.

Inside, you can find a large corridor leading to 5 cabins (3 four-bunk cabins, 2 two-bunk cabins), 2 bathrooms (each one including toilets) and a shower-room. A spare bunk is located in the corridor and is available for a benevolent crew.

Astern, there is a dedicated three-bunk cabin for the professional crew.



Gaff rigged ketch

Hull length: 21 m

Overall length: 30m

Maximum beam (width): 6m

Draft: 3m

Sail area: 380m2

Displacement:  98 tons

Engine: 240 HP Baudoin

Capacity:  24 persons for a day-trip, 20 persons for longer cruses

Off duty crew at navigation: 16 persons




Embarquez !