Equipment, rules and nice locations for sailing Happy Cat in Italy this winter

  • 17.10.2022
  • 0

Hello all,

New here, first of all apologies for writing in English – I understand a fair bit of German but cannot write it.
We will be spending the winter months in Italy with a camper and our new Happy Cat Neo, starting near Venice.
I know Italy is a land of very strict rules and heavy fines, so I would like to be prepared. Hence my questions below:

– Our Neo is officially registered as a Belgian pleasure craft and is allowed up to 6NM from shelter (beach/harbour) – if I carry the appropriate safety equipment. We also have liability insurance according to Italian rules. I have a full (inshore + offshore, sail + motor) ICC certificate and VHF radio operator licence. Any other documents required?
– What equipment do we need to carry on board to be in order with Italian law? It appears I have to comply with the rules of my own country (Belgium) but there are some extra Italian requirements. Anybody who can clarify this?
– Any first-hand experience of actual police checks and (hopefully not) fines? Do they show any flexibility (examples: a bilge pump is a required item but of no use on a Happy Cat, flying Belgian nationality & Italian courtesy flags, carrying flares, flashlights with spare batteries, charts,…)
– Where are nice spots along the top half of the Adriatic coast for the Happy Cat?
– Can one just launch from any public beach or are there permissions/permits to be obtained (and paid for)? What about „private“ beaches from campsites that are closed in winter?

Any info on the above would be greatly appreciated