Boat holidays represent a different way of exploring new destinations and this applies to both adults and children. Actually, just because you have a family you don’t have to quit on the idea of a fantastic vacation at sea. You might think that it can be stressful, but the truth is that sailing with children could be a fantastic experience for the whole family. You should only take some additional precautions but, believe us, bring your kids on board could be really fun and even more fulfilling.
Furthermore, it is crucial for them to learn how to behave on board, explore new things and it is an excellent opportunity to know the right attitude at sea. On the other hand, you shouldn’t expect the same kind of experience as you were single or alone with your partner. Children can easily get bored, so you should think about activities to keep them busy. Consider also to indulge their curiosity as they will surely want to explore the boat, especially if they are on their first experience on a yacht.
But don’t worry, we got you covered! We compiled a list of suggestions about sailing with children. They will surely be of much help if you’re thinking about taking them on a sailing holiday.
Safety measures and precautions
The most important when sailing with kids is to ensure all the possible safety measures, and when we speak about “safety”, we mean especially “physical safety”. The first thing to take into account when you’re still renting a boat is to ask your agent to add a safety net. This is a special netting hung onto the boat’s railing essential when sailing with kids or pets too. It basically keeps them from falling overboard. In yacht charters, the lifeline netting is always an extra that you can add to the price of the boat. The cost changes depending on the boat and on the owners, but they will also attach it for you.
Accidents may happen when least you expect them with children, so they have to wear lifejackets when on the deck of the boat. Even if they can swim, they should wear a lifejacket when sailing and, of course, it is obligatory for no-swimmers. That’s why it is necessary to fill out the crew list in advance. The owner will prepare the number of lifejackets according to the number of passengers. If there’re children aboard he will also provide lifejackets according to their age and weight.
The following includes general guidelines for adults and children because we can suffer from seasickness just like them! In this case, it’s very helpful to stay on the deck, breathing fresh cool air and focus on the horizon or on a distant, stationary object. Remember that sailing on an empty stomach can make you more susceptible to sickness, but it’s better to avoid coffee, tea, carbonated soft drinks, and fruit juices.
Of course, don’t forget to bring some over-the-counter anti-nausea drugs. Also, you can use some acupressure bands and bracelets.
The ideal is to bring some friends when sailing with children. It is better for them to have someone to play with. In any case, don’t forget to bring toys and some watersport equipment. The best is to organise some activity onboard, especially if you have long sailing hours ahead. In these moments their favourite toys, colouring books or video games can be of much help.
Regarding water toys, you can organise some kayaking or canoeing, whereas sup will be great for the whole family. Another great idea is to do snorkelling as they can familiarise with the sea and the marine fauna. To have sheer fun you can also opt for waterski, jetski or some inflatables.
If you were afraid of sailing with children, we hope that with these suggestions we demonstrated that it is perfectly manageable. You will see that with these basics measures it will turn out to be a fun experience! It’s all about to be prepared, and now that you’re, get ready to enjoy your sailing holidays with your family.