Ligurian-tyrrhenian sea 2021

LEG 1: 29.May–04.JUNE, cannigione - elba

LEG 2: 05.june–11.june, elba - genoa

The Mediterranean Basin — a sea neighboring the Atlantic Ocean and surrounded by Africa, Europe and Asia — is the cradle of world civilization. It is a symbol of creativity, the search for the meaning of life and wisdom, and the love of people and nature. It is also a huge and sensitive ecosystem of marine biodiversity; albeit exposed to tourism activities, maritime routes and urbanized coastal areas which can increase marine debris. Today about 320 million tourists spend their holidays at the Mediterranean Sea annually. This tourism creates a 40% increase in marine litter during the summer period above and beyond the 208-760 kg of solid urban waste produced annually by the 150 million people living by the Mediterranean basin.

In 2018, Sail & Explore began collecting marine debris data in the Ligurian-Tyrrhenian Sea (near Olbia-Elba-Genoa) during the first two weeks of June.

Our comparison study results (published in 2020) highlight the importance of monitoring the levels of plastic particle pollution in sensitive ecosystems during different years in order to ascertain the long-term trends in particle concentrations.
The aim of our expeditions is therefore to collect data on a ten years scale to evaluate if there are any changes which can be detected with regard to the quantity and spatial and temporal distribution of microplastics found in the area(s). For our next expedition, we are partnering with FOSsailing, which will enable us to collect marine debris samples with two catamarans simultaneously.


FOSsailing is committed to sailing projects with young people. In general, sailing has proven to be very valuable as an educational and experience event for sustainable development as well as for environmental education. For twenty years, FOSsailing has been organizing youth projects with the club's own catamarans Solea and Planado, which were built by students from 2000 to 2002 as part of a youth project.

A course week includes: 

  • All course participants will serve as crew and be integrated into the sailing routine as much as possible. This involves navigation, watch duty, setting sails, reefing and anchoring.

  • You will sleep like a real crew and sharing beds/bunking with other participants. 

  • Assisting with the sampling by using the Manta Trawl system and conducting the first evaluations on board. 

  • Daily lectures on plastic pollution and its impact on the environment as well as the structure of the marine ecosystem. 

  • We will have in each week marine biologist on board, helping us out with the sampling and also giving hands on insight into their work

  • The chance to have a look through the microscope on board to explore the world of the plancton.

  • Last but not least, we are also on vacation and the "fun factor" will not be neglected. Swimming and land excursions are just as much a part of the program! 

The boats:


The costs per course week are as follows :

Costs per course week per participant                                                              CHF     950.-

Total cost per person when booking two weeks                                               CHF  1'700.-

The costs include food and drinks (all inclusive) on the ship and board cash contributions per week per participant (fixed). With the board cash all boat expenses are covered like harbor fees,

diesel, etc.


Food and drinks on land are not taken over by the board cash.

Participants pay these themselves.

are you between 18 and 30 years old and Interested?

Use the contact form below to get in touch with us!