8 Ways to Enjoy Yachting with Youngsters & Teens

Keep them busy. Keep them entertained. Keep them learning. 

The idea of yachting with youngsters and teens sometimes gives parents pause: What if they get bored? What if they need to be constantly supervised? 

I know from my experience in yachting with babes to teens, each age group requires thoughtful packing and planning. We’ve compiled 8 Ways to Enjoy Yachting with Youngsters and Teens.

Taking your children on a yacht vacation creates lasting memories

Before we dive into our 8 Ways, let’s begin with your well-informed charter broker guiding you through the yacht options. We need to know your:
  • family make-up
  • ages
  • water skills
  • interests
  • quirks
  • favorite foods and beverages
  • favorite eating times
  • bedtime schedules, and
  • an overall understanding of what memorable vacations you’ve had in the past

My Family Experience

My family has been chartering yachts since our youngest child was 3 months old and the oldest was in diapers. To this day, we still have great memories of the challenges and experiences we all had.

As they got older, ages four and five, we took them sailing in Belize. We packed our bags with Sesame Street and Thriller by Michael Jackson music tapes, and we were all entertained during cocktail hour.

Drawing stingrays, local birds, and iguanas kept the boys busy. The highlight, they still remember, was meeting Seto, a 60ft freestyle diver.

They met local Dangriga children at South Water Cay during our Easter vacation.  While they were quite young, they still talk about this.

As teens, we went off to the Virgin Islands where they could take the helm, snorkel for the first time in the “fish bowl” off Cooper Island, and dance to the island music near dusk.

You can do it, too, and have fun!

8 Ways to Enjoy Yachting with Youngsters and Teens

1 / Fun with High-Tech and Low-Tech Water Toys

Having fun on the water is one of the best ways to bring families together. Younger family members can learn to

  • sail
  • snorkel
  • enjoy the tow toys

While older teens love the thrill of

  • jet skiing
  • water skiing
  • flyboard-X

Advances in water toys also give families a chance to try new experiences including

  • power snorkeling
  • hydrofoil boarding

– and everybody loves an inflatable slide.

Toys both on the water and onboard are essential when reviewing a yacht’s features. Whether you choose a motor or sailing vessel for your holiday, the amenities are included.

Just note, if it’s not on the toy list, almost anything can be rented.

2 / Learn to Dive

Mixed ability groups in diving aren’t a problem, particularly if a second dive guide is available.

  • Children as young as 10 can dive in open water to a depth of 12m when accompanied by an adult.
  • No experience is needed for families who choose to do their PADI Open Water Certification but being medically fit and able to swim 200m unaided is a prerequisite.
  • Once in the water, a tropical playground awaits, from colorful coral to rays and shipwrecks.

“You could be the greatest diver in the world,” says instructor Tom Lang, “and still want to share the experience with your 10-year-old son or your grandmother.”

“I think the most exciting dives a family can do are their first dives together,” says diving instructor Tom Lang, co-founder of Dive Addiction in a recent article.  “Trusting in each other as ‘dive buddies’ opens up a whole new dimension to boating.”

3 / Reach New Destinations Frequently

One of the things children respond to is reaching a new destinations, especially where they can get out and run about. CKYCI can help you decide on an itinerary with important family-friendly features like:

  • An itinerary with frequent stops and  short passages between destinations.
  • Energetic crews can create a fun atmosphere while underway with attention to each child’s needs.
  • Creative theme nights where the entire family can participate provide fun while at anchor in the evening or during longer passages.

4 / Sailing with Children May Give Them a New Hobby

Being on a sailing charter yacht not only gives children and teenagers the experience of being aboard a sailing yacht, but opportunities also to learn to sail. This may give them a new hobby and interest, according to an article in Super Yacht Life.

  • If they enjoy taking the helm and can spend a little time “learning the ropes” so to speak, they will not forget the experience.
  • Sailing allows them to try new things and decide what they enjoy.
  • Maybe they take to sailing and want to continue when they get home.

Additionally, some families interested in a charter yacht experience may already be sailors.

  • This gives them a chance to enhance their own skills.
  • A lot of knowledge can be gained from sailing with a professional crew.
  • The crews love the waters they sail through and will share their many secrets with you.

5 / Take the Helm

For both kids and adults, taking the helm and being captain for the day is thrilling.

Although they can take the wheel under the captain’s supervision, youngsters can also learn by driving the tender to and from shore.

Guests will be supervised, but the tender is theirs for the duration of the trip, and it’s a big feature in charters because it gives a sense of achievement and independence.

6 / Learn How to Spot Wildlife

Wildlife sightings are a top-drawer attraction for most charterers. The most popular animals are

Remote destinations tend to be best for spotting

Smartphones can be valuable tools when yachting with youngsters and teens and yes, most boats have wifi. You can encourage them to use their phones to
  • take photos of what they’re experiencing (wildlife, culture, food, etc.)
  • use identifying apps for animals, plants, constellations, navigation
  • connect their Bluetooth onboard for favorite music that everyone can enjoy
  • enhance subjects they are learning in school for teachable moments

Crews can curate your experience if they know your information before boarding.

7 / Learn to Cook

Food is as important to you as it is to your child – and it brings families together. Specialty diets, fussy eaters, and snacks are prepared by top yacht chefs and keep active ones going all day.

Young people who want to roll their sleeves up often enjoy learning how to prepare

  • freshly-baked bread
  • pretzels
  • cookies
  • fruits
  • veggies
  • goodies for a family meal

8 / Learn to Love Oceans

CKYCI partners with organizations that help protect our oceans.

Teaching children to love and protect our oceans will serve them (and the planet) now and for years to come. Harness their curiosity by exploring

  • ocean animals
  • ocean plants
  • tides
  • wind
  • currents
  • islands
  • maritime activity

Parents Love to Report…

that their children are tuckered out from all their yachting activities. They also report this common mantra from their happy ones:

“When can we do this again?!”

You can start planning your “best vacation ever” with as little as a yachta destinationan occasion, or a simple plan, and we help you fill in the rest.

A luxury yacht charter affords kids of all ages a mix of adventure, excitement, relaxation, and new experiences, all in a very safe and comfortable environment.

The Family that Plays Together, Stays Together

There are so many ways that you can both interact and engage with children and teenagers on a boat while also giving them time to explore and learn.  The environment surrounds them and it is just a question of choosing. We have listed eight ways to make a trip with children and teenagers a memorable experience for the whole family. There is much more, too!

Related reading: 5 (Sensible) Reasons Why Yacht Charters Make Superb Summer Family Getaways

M/Y ZOOM ZOOM ZOOM; The Yacht for Unforgettable Family Adventures

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