About Us

a few words about where we've been and how we can serve you best!

Our crew shares some key values and beliefs

  • We love learning and teaching
  • We’re compulsively helpful
  • We talk like boats are people too (you too? - hello fellow weirdo)
  • We work hard and we play harder
  • Seeing our clients develop into masters on the water is very rewarding
  • Having fun along the way is essential

Here’s a little bit about how we got there and why we’re very happy to be different:

Cooper Boating delivers the best boating holidays in the world.  The formula includes spectacular people, boats and processes that have been continually refined since 1983.  When combined with the spectacular scenery, wildlife and cruising grounds of the British Columbia coast, Cooper Boating is the preferred choice for the best ‘on the water’ experiences. 

Cooper’s tradition of coaching – both in our courses and when introducing people to our boats and regions for charter experiences – sets us apart.   As boaters take to the water with Cooper, our instructors set a course for a lifetime of great cruising. Each time people come back, our staff is ready with informative vessel and area orientations necessary to ensure trouble free and comfortable holidays on the water.

Cooper Boating is run by a team of dedicated individuals who have many years of boating and business experience. Cooper is open almost every day of the year, offering year-round services in the mild west coast climate.

Our graduates go places – while we are through and through a Canadian west coast company, we’ve had graduates of our programs head all over the globe and in a few cases, all the way around it!

Whether your next adventure is to conquer an ocean or harbour, become a competent crew member aboard a friend’s boat or just become a little more self sufficient as you explore our spectacular coastline – you set the goals and we help you get there.

"The goal has and always will be getting people ready to have fun out on the water and making sure that they do."
Colin Jackson,
Chief Fun Officer

A Little History

Cooper Yacht Charters was started in 1983 by Forbes Cooper, who is often credited as being British Columbia’s most successful boat builder, with thousands of boats on the water here at home and around the  globe.  Mr. Cooper sold the charter and school business in 1988 and later sold the boat factory to others, although he does still build select custom projects under his WestCoast Custom Yachts brand (many of which are featured in the Cooper fleet.) 

Cooper Boating, as it stands today, is the product of growth and acquisitions, including asset acquisition of The Jib Set Sailing Centre, West Coast Cruising Centre, West Coast School of Seamanship, Seafari Sailing Expeditions, and Bosun’s Charters and corporate acquisition of Pacific Rim Yacht Charters Ltd.

Charters
Cooper has a diverse fleet of sailing and power vessels. Find the vessel that best suits you and your needs.
Explore
Courses
Whether you are looking to take your first steps on the water, or if you are looking to advance your skills and competencies, we have a course for you.
Learn
Having Fun
Adventures begin and continue with Cooper Boating, get onboard!
Have Fun
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Frequently Asked Questions

What qualifications do I need to charter a boat?

Chartering makes you, for the time you operate the boat, the temporary owner of the boat.  The insurance on that boat requires someone competent be in charge of its operation. So, that’s you or someone you hire (never be shy to hire someone, it makes you super comfortable and you can learn more… especially if you are new to our region). Formal courses are great plus experience as a skipper on a boat of the same size and type as the one you are chartering are what we look for. We start with a boating resume and we have a great article “insurable and comfortable”

Can I get discounts on my boat insurance if I take a course?

Yes, Dolphin Insurance not only recognizes our courses in their rating system, they come here and take classes from us and refer folks They are quite cool and bring their dogs to the office. Never thought we’d refer to insurance folk as fun… but it’s true.

What’s with all these certifications and do I need a navigation course to navigate the system?

Our industry has found specialists in making things confusing. All the various letters CYA, ISPA, IYT, ASA and RYA are part of the alphabet soup you can swim in. The good news, they all measure to few standards that exist worldwide and appear quite similar on investigation.

Our focus is to see where you are at, where you’d like to go and where we need to reinforce, fill in or correct. Learning here can be challenging in many ways… if you can dock at Granville Island, you’ll be able to dock most anywhere! Our coaching includes seeing what certifications you’ll need based on your objectives.

How do I choose the best location?

The best location really depends on what you’re looking for. Our Sunshine Coast is pretty simple as you follow a coast into some reasonably easy destinations. We’ve even got a NEWBIE itinerary . Desolation Sound is a little more for self sufficient skippers who can live with less plugging in, spotty cel coverage (it’s there, but not machine the anchorages) and maximum beauty. The Gulf Islands are a combination of marine parks and little cities. More restaurants, stores, open markets and communities. You probably need to try them all to be sure!

Don't worry this is coming soon!

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