Sailing with kids
So, you are probably wondering - how is it even possible to share a sailing experience with your children and at the same time feel safe and relaxed…
We can’t say this question isn’t quite often and also very much in place - not just for safety reasons but also out of fear that kids might feel trapped on the boat and become impossible, looking for constant attention and amusement.
Long story short: as parents, sailors and experienced charterers, we can honestly say – kids love boats!
It is in children’s nature to enjoy being on a boat for an active vacation. Babies sleep on waves like in a cradle, toddlers enjoy the new spaces to explore and older children like all the possibilities of learning something fun. I mean, what is more fun than jumping in the sea, snorkelling, learning the ropes or ‘driving’ the boat?! And let’s not forget about the most difficult audience (the teens) - we have unlimited internet and hammocks to help them get away from everybody. They all love the barefoot and relaxed sailing lifestyle – and the life experience and confidence they will get from this kind of vacation is something they will always remember.
In Dalmatia, we sail with our children from the first months of their lives, both in summer and in winter time. They learn to live with the sea, in a new and interesting environment, so close to the nature. It broadens their horizons, develops imagination but also improves their health. For example, our daughter (Alma, she is 8 now) went on her first short sail when she was just 16 days old, and for her first winter regatta when she was 30 days old. Later on, when she was a toddler and also a young restless girl, it became more challenging, but the memories and experience are priceless!
For any family sailing vacation, however, it is also very important that at the same time the adults get the best of it: being relaxed and knowing that the children are safe and happy. So if you are an experienced sailor we’ll provide the extra safety equipment and help you with suggestions on the routes, things to do and see with children. And if you are not a sailor, just let us take care of everything; our skippers are experienced with children and everything you need to know when spending time on a boat. For us, with children on boat there are no surprises, because we’ve had it all.
Anything you think might help you feel more comfortable, we’ll do our best to organize: from sleeping cots, extra baby linen and towels, toys, baby food provisioning and so on. As standard equipment, all our boats have snorkelling equipment, water toys, board games and cards… all of which are there to help your children have more fun.
The only thing you have to do is decide on a family adventure… and the rest is on us!
A few quick tips to help you relax completely:
Always make them wear life vests when not in the cockpit
To reduce any chances of boredom and impossible moments – try to keep the sailing distances short
You know your child the best – prepare in advance with water toys, movies, music, board games, books… or anything else that they find fun and comforting
They will love taking on sailing responsibilities – no matter what age, by making them part of the crew they will take sailing seriously and have fun at the same time, not to mention how many new things they will learn
Dinghies, SUPs (stand up paddle boards), lilos… these are great fun for kids – they can explore the bays, be captains/pirates of their own little vessel…
If seasickness is a problem, keeping them topsides as much as possible helps. There are also sea sickness tablets on all our boats. And if you are sailing with a skipper of ours – he will always choose the most comfortable route for you.
They will get quite hungry – all day in the sun, fresh air, jumping in the sea countless times, swimming, sailing… and they will for sure go crazy for our fresh local seasonal fruit
They will be very busy – so keep reminding them to hydrate.
Sun block – use more than you think is necessary. And if you can convince them that wearing a hat and sunglasses is what cool kids do – that would be a nice bonus.
…Chartering with kids doesn’t seem like a bad idea any more, does it? :)