Tag: sailing

Itinerary Ideas, Spain’s Costa Brava

Spain’s Costa Brava is on many travelers’ bucket lists, and visiting from the sea lets you explore every inch of this amazing coastline. The following itinerary from our partners at Be Charter will show you the highlights the northern portion of the coast in seven days. 

Home base is L’Estartit, which has plenty to see in its own right. The Medes archipelago is a great spot for sailing and snorkeling (anchoring is forbidden, but buoys are available). While there is plenty to explore sailing south from L’Estartit, this itinerary covers the northern route.

Stop 1:  Cala Montgó 

Logistics: Sail 4.5 nautical miles to the north, you can anchor and spend the night here.

What to see and do:

  • On the way, stop at the many other smaller coves of Montgrí Coast and enjoy the beautiful landscape full of coastal cliffs, pine trees, islets and coves.
  • Eat seafood at one of the many beach-side restaurants.
  • Hike to the Montgó tower, an old defense tower from 16th century on the top of Montgó Massif, which offers panoramic views.

Tip: On the way to Cala Montgó, you’ll pass La Foradada, a sea cove that is open on both ends, and which you can cross in a small boat.

Stop 2: Cala Pelosa 

Logistics: Sail 9.5 nautical miles to the north, stopping at Cala Montjoi on the way. 

What to see and do:

  • Stop at Cala Montoi, a small and quiet cover in the Cap de Creus National Park. 
  • Eat at the Bulli Foundation, a gastronomy innovation center by Ferran Adrià the mastermind behind the famous El Bulli restaurant.
  • At Cala Pelosa, anchor to a restaurant buoy and order a paella to eat on board.

Tip: Anchor at either Cala Pelosa or Cala Montjoi, as both coves provide good shelter from the wind.

Stop 3: Cadaqués

Logistics: Sail north for 6 nautical miles.

What to see and do: 

  • Take in the scenery that inspired the likes of Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dalí.
  • Wander the village streets, keeping an eye out for art galleries, shops and restaurants.

Tip: On the way to Cadaqués, keep an eye out for wild beaches and stop for a quick swim.

Stop 4: Portlligat

Logistics: Portlligat is just 2.5 miles north of Cadaqués so today’s trip is very short!

What to see and do: 

  • Visit the Dalí House-Museum; Salvador Dalí lived here for many years.
  • Keep an eye out for old fishing boats stranded in the sand.

Tip: Book your tickets to the Dalí museum ahead of time, as tickets sell out, particularly in the summer.

Stop 5: Port de la Selva

Logistics: Sail 10.5 Nautical Miles to the northern area of the Cap de Creus peninsula.

What to see and do:

  • See the Cova de s’Infern (another cove open on both sides) and boat through on your dinghy or kayak.
  • Appreciate the incredible geology of Cala Culleró.
  • Visit the medieval monumental complex of Sant Pere de Rodes, which features a monastery, church and castle.
  • Appreciate the perfect combination of beach and mountain, as well as the quaint fishermen village, from the top of the lighthouse.

Stop 6: Roses

Logistics: Begin your journey back south by sailing 20 miles down the coast to Roses.

What to see and do:

  • Relax in this tourism-based village full of services and restaurants.
  • Families might be interested in the Water Fun Park of Aqua Brava, or the more adventurous can try their hand at skydiving in the town.

Tip: On your trip, stop at one of the many coves and beaches of Cap de Creus.

On your final day, as you sail back to L’Estarit, consider spending some time at Medes Islands, a picture-perfect marine reserve. Sorkeling is a must here, and a perfect way to end your trip.

To try this itinerary, rent a boat in BeCharter.

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What you should consider.

Whether you are travelling as a couple, with friends or as a family group. If you have never sailed before what should you consider?

First off you need to think about whether you would prefer to charter a bareboat with a skipper, or a crewed yacht. If you click here you can read more about the differences between the two.

Once you know which one would suit your trip. Then it’s on to look at where you wish to visit and the boats Enaviga have available for your trip.

Take a look at the Enaviga Website. Here you can carry out a quick and easy search. You can specify destination, dates or yacht type.

If you hit the search tab, there are more criteria offered. As a non-sailor, you should start with crewed yachts and then use the sliding bars to refine your choices. Unless you have chosen a destination or date, you are seeing worldwide availability.

What destination would you like to visit?

This depends on when you are looking to travel. If November – May then you would generally be looking to visit the Caribbean. This is because the weather will be warmer than the Mediterranean.  Are you looking to travel May – October?, then you should consider the Med, Australasia or the United States.

If you did want to sail ‘off season’ you will find quieter anchorages and better deals on both flights and boats. If travelling to the Caribbean / Southern United States. There is a risk of a hurricane from June – November. Research the area you wish to travel to in advance. Some restaurants and amenities may close.

What type of boat do you want to hire?

Do you have a preference between a monohull or a catamaran? Click here to read about the differences between the two. Enaviga also offers you the choice of Gulets or Powerboats. Gulets are traditionally available to charter in the Mediterranean. Enaviga also has Gulets sailing from locations such as the Seychelles and Phuket.

A Gulet is a traditional Turkish sailing boat. She has two or three masts (so one more than a regular sailing boat).  Despite the extra masts, bareboat Gulets are ‘sailed’ with their diesel engine. If you wish to enjoy a traditional sailing Gulet, then you will need to join a crewed Gulet.

A Powerboat is a boat that does not have any sails. She is dependent on her engine to move. Generally, a quicker method of travel, albeit noisier than sailing.

If you are still unsure then contact the qualified team at Enaviga are on hand to help with any queries that you may have.

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Itinerary Ideas from Athens, Greece

Sailing the Greek islands is on just about everyone’s bucket list, and Athens is a clear first stop, especially if it’s your first time in Greece. If you’re taking off from Athens, be sure to spend some time in the city. We recommend a visit to the Acropolis to see the Parthenon and the Monastiraki neighborhood. Once you’re on board and ready to go, consider this itinerary to tour the Saronic islands and nearby coast.1

As you begin your trip, keep in mind that many Greek places have similar names, so it’s always a good idea to double check your plans and destinations.

Stop 1: Aegina

Logistics: The trip is about 18 nautical miles to the south-southwest, and the main port is on the northwest side of the Island, near Aegina Town.

What to see and do:

  • Eat pistachios. They’re grown on the island and are a local specialty.
  • Visit the temple of Aphaia, a doric temple from the fifth century B.C. with sea views. Admission is less than 5 euros.
  • Make pottery in old Aegina village. You can arrange for private lessons with locals who have passed the craft down through generations.
  • Visit the fruit boats near the Agios Nikolaios church.
  • Stock up on any provisions you forgot to get in Athens; Aegina is a fairly popular island with ATMs and other modern conveniences. 

Tip: Because Aegina is popular and close to Athens, the harbor can be crowded, particularly on weekends. Be sure to get there early. You can also use the secondary harbor or any of the three anchorages.

Stop 2: Poros 

Logistics: Sail 15-20 nautical miles to the south. To reach the harbor, sail through Poros Lagoon, watching for ferries and hydrofoils.

What to see and do:

  • While en route, keep your eyes and nose peeled for Methana. This dormant volcano is on your starboard (right) side and smells distinctly of sulfur.
  • Hike up the hill in Poros Town to enjoy the view. You can also visit the Poros clock tower for another great view of the town and sunset, if you’re there at twilight.
  • Snorkel in Vagionia Bay, where you can see the remains of an ancient city below the water.

Tip: On your way to the harbor, anchor in Poros Lagoon to swim and eat lunch.

Stop 3: Palaia Epidavros (or Archaia Epidavros)

Logistics: Leave Poros Lagoon and sail around the Methana peninsula and follow the coast to the town of Palaia Epidavros on the mainland.

What to see and do:

  • Archaia stands for ancient, and ancient Epidavros is the town of Argolid from the Illiad. You can visit historic sites, including a large historic theatre.
  • A smaller version of the ancient theatre still hosts productions during a summer festival.
  • Consider a paragliding session, leaving from the beach.

Tip: Epadavros is sometimes spelled Epidaurus, which can help as you research the destination.

Stop 4: Korfus (or Korfos)

Logistics: Sail north up the coast toward Korfus. When you arrive, you can either anchor at the small shingle beach for the evening or stop off at a restaurant pontoon for lunch.

What to see and do: 

  • Korfus can be a great place to eat and drink, and is often a good day stop.
  • Locals on AirBnB recommend a fish restaurant at the end of the town’s port, called Selana, and Valera beach bar.

Tip: As you sail up the coast, keep an eye out for dolphins. When researching this destination, make sure you are looking at the coastal town; some internet searches may redirect to the island by the similar name of Corfu.

Stop 5: Agistri

Logistics: After a day-time stop in Korfos, head southeast about 10 nautical miles to the Island of Agistri.

What to see and do:

Tip: The harbor in Agistri is notoriously shallow, though the north end offers more depth.

  • Take photos for social media and people watch: Agistri is a picture-perfect Greek town, filled with cobbled streets and whitewashed houses.
  • While there are plenty of places to jump off rocks and swim, Skala beach is a popular sand beach. It is also the shallowest beach on the island, so it’s the perfect go-to for families.
  • Chalikiada beach is popular with naturists and campers.
  • The southern portion of the island is mostly wild, with thyme and woodland growing up to the water’s edge. To experience this part of the island, consider a horseback ride.

As a final stop, you might consider heading back to Aegina, or returning to Athens from Agistri.

If you’re interested in traveling the itinerary in this article, explore the boats available in Athens.

1 Everything in this article is accurate to our knowledge. If you find something isn’t as stated here, or discover new tips and trips to try, send us an email at info@enaviga.com.

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from Lefkas, Greece

The white beaches and light winds of the Southern Ionian are calling for your next Enaviga charter. If you are collecting your yacht from Lefkas, then our sample itinerary may offer you some ideas of places to moor up.

Lefkas

Lefkas is also known by the locals as Lefkada. A  hilly island steeped in history and beauty. Many say that it remains as one of the most unspoilt Greek Islands, unaffected by tourism. It is definitely a relaxing place to enjoy – take books, people watch and enjoy greek delicacies. 

Sail to Nikiana

Once you are ready to cast off, set sail to Nikiana. A small fishing village with a picturesque harbour. Dock for the night at the town quay or anchor off and dinghy in. There are plenty of  local taverna’s. Enjoy a drink or some local fare. A nice relaxing stop for your first evening onboard.

Your next destination is Sivotas on Lefkas Island

Located on the south east of Lefkas Island. Sivotas is a picturesque harbour with lots to see.  Not easy to spot from the sea, you can choose to moor on one of the quays or anchor in the bay. A popular place to stay, moorings fill up early afternoon.

Sail onto Ayia Eufimia on Kefalonia

Ayia Eufimia is on the East coast of Kefalonia, the largest of the Ionian Islands. An excellent stop to take on water, recharge batteries and provision.

This is a great location if you wanted to go ashore and visit the Cave of Melissani. This  underground lake, fed by a stream which flows all the way across the island from Argostoli. You can hop aboard a  small row boat and the boatmen will guide you through the turquoise waters.

Kefalonia

Sail to Kastos

Keep your eyes peeled for Dolphins as you set sail to your Kastos.Anchor off and swim or dingy into the beautiful beaches. Port Kastos is always quick to fill up. You can choose to berth there or anchor.

Sailing onto Meganissi

The old village of Spartachori located on a cliff above Port Spilia on Meganisi Island. It’s well worth the hike up to the village, which offers magnificent views over the harbour. You have the choice of 3 ports to dock in or you can anchor on the NE coast of the island.

For your last day sail over to Palairos

Palairos is a harbour where the old agricultural ways are blending with tourism. You can moor on the harbour breakwater or on the pontoon. If the weather is good you can also anchor north of the harbour.

On the final day of your charter, sail back to Lefkas.

If you have time before you leave the Island. Speak with the team at the yacht base for ideas of local places to visit.

Enaviga have a variety of Monohulls and Catamarans than can be chartered from Lefkas. Click here to see what is available for your next Ionian adventure.

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from Split, Croatia

If you are heading to the Dalmatian coast for your Enaviga charter then you’ll be picking your yacht up in Split.

Split is the second largest city in Croatia after Zagreb. A city steeped in history and if time allows, you should visit the Palace of Diocletian. Below we have given you some ideas for a week’s itinerary after you have boarded your Enaviga yacht.

Sail to Hvar Town.

When you sail close to Hvar, see if you can smell lavender. Grown alongside grapes, figs and olive oil. At certain times of the year you can smell lavender whilst on the water.

Berthing on Hvar Town Quay is popular, so get there early to moor up. There are also around 20 mooring buoys. You are only allowed to drop anchor outside of the bay.

A visit to the walled town is a must. It’s pedestrian only and full of decorated mansions and historic buildings. It’s a walk upwards, but don’t let that put you off seeing the breathtaking views.

Your next destination is Korcula.

Korcula was a source of quarried stone during the long period of Venetian rule. The home to a flourishing shipbuilding industry. It now relies on tourism, wine and olive oil production. Korcula was also the birth place of Marco Polo. You can even visit the Marco Polo museum in Korcula Town if you wish.

Choose from a selection of marina’s or anchor in one of the smaller settlements around the island. Some anchorages have facilities near by, some do not.

Korcula

Your next port of call is Lastovo.

It’s only within the past 20 years that visitors have been granted access to Lastovo. It’s previous life was that of a a military island. In 2006 Lastovo became part of the Croatian National Park.

There is one main sheltered harbour, Luka Velji Lago where you can tie onto the quay or anchor off. There are 2 smaller anchorages on the north and 1 on the south side of the island.

You are now going to sail north to Viz.

Viz is a green island noted for its wineries. A marked change from its history as a base for Tito’s partisans during World War II.

You can moor at either Viz Town on the north east of the Island or Kormiza on the west. You could also drop anchor, with the most popular anchorages being at the north of the island.

From Viz you are going to sail NE to Stari Grad.

The oldest town in Croatia. The  settlement is thought to have been founded by Greeks under the name of Faros in 385 BC. Stari Grad was the capital of the island until Hvar Town assumed that role in 1278.

Walk the cobbled streets stepped in history. Look out for the most popular tourist stop, home of Croatian poet, Petar Hektorovic.

Tie up at town quay, Western or Ferry Jetty. Or pick up one of the mooring buoys on the north side of the harbour.

Sail north to Solta.

An untouched island, Solta is a lovely island to spend one of the last night’s of your trip.

You have the choice to stay in 1 of 3 well equipped marinas. Or you can anchor in some lovely sheltered spots around the island.

On your final day, sail back to Split.

If you have time before leaving the island. Why not ask the staff at the yacht base for suggestions of things to see and do.

All the team at Enaviga hope that you enjoy a fantastic time in Split and her surrounding islands. Why not let us know if you find some hidden gems that we can share with future visitors to the islands. 

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a Catamaran or a Monohull?

You’ve decided on where in the world you’ll next be sailing in. The question now is whether to charter a catamaran or a monohull.

Most trips you take onboard a sailboat will be different. Why? because the party you are sailing with will change with each trip. This may be party size, dynamics or age.

Who are you travelling with?

Thinking about the trip you are making plans for. Are you travelling with your immediate family or with extended family or friends?

What ages are the people you are travelling with? Will there be young children or older adults? Are they all agile? Anyone get motion sickness or doesn’t like confined spaces?

Is everyone onboard a seasoned sailor or do you have some newbies onboard?

By considering your crew, it may be immediately clear that a catamaran charter will be best.

Why Catamarans?

A 40ft Catamaran has a much larger beam than it’s monohull counterpart. Space onboard can seem vast in comparison.

They are more stable, with less heel. This makes it easier and more comfortable to cook, sleep and move around the vessel.

They have two engines. I know we choose a sailing boat because we like to sail but the auxiliary engine has its uses. We have all experienced engine failure or a fouled propeller.  If one fails you still have another to get you to a safe harbour or out of danger.

Manoeuvrability in confined areas is exceptional. With two engines and the two propellers a good distance apart, it is easy to turn on a dime (or sixpence!).

More space equals more comfort. You will find larger water tanks. There may also be a generator, air conditioning etc.

Dinghy storage on the davits is simple and easy.

You can fit more people on a 40-foot catamaran than you can a 40-foot monohull. If travelling with friends, there is a degree of separation in sleeping quarters.

Plenty of storage space. Lots of room for extra beer, dive equipment and water toys.

They sail fast and furious off the wind.

Your galley cook will not be sweating below decks. He/She will be on the same level as the outside seating, so not feeling left out.

Why not Catamarans?

They cost more for berthing. Expect to pay 1.5 x least what you would for an equal mono-hull. This will affect your pocket more in the Mediterranean than in the Caribbean where you’ll probably be on a Mooring Buoy.

They do not sail well upwind.  You will have to come further off the wind to get these beasts moving. But in my experience, a 40-foot cruising cat will go faster than a 40-foot cruising monohull. Even though it will have to put in more tacks and sail further off the wind, it will still get there quicker.

Wind effect. With two powerful engines, they are easy to dock. In a strong gust, they do not have as much grip in the water. With their high freeboard and large coach area, they do react to the wind and can slide sideways.

Chartering a Catamaran for the first time is a great way to introduce non-sailers to sailing. Whichever vessel you charter, the team at Enaviga know that you will have a fantastic time aboard.

Click here to see all of the Catamaran’s available to charter through Enaviga. If you have decided that a Monohull is the boat for you, then click here to see all the Monohull’s available

 

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on your next yacht charter

You’ve booked your yacht charter and are very excited at the prospect of stepping onboard. Why not take a moment to think about whilst on your trip, how you can make a difference to the environment.

The amount of plastic in the ocean is a hot topic at the moment. It’s up to all users of the sea to try and keep the oceans clean.

At home, it’s quite simple to know which can to sort your rubbish into. Splitting cardboard, plastic, compostable, glass and other waste is no biggie. When you go to a place you aren’t familiar with, will being friendly to the environment be as simple?

Here are a few tips from Enaviga to try and keep on the right side of your environmental conscience.

Before you go

Ask Enaviga for your charter based contact details. Get in touch and ask how they recycle. This may have an impact on your provisioning choices.

If you find that they are able to recycle glass and not plastic. When provisioning request, where possible. To have glass-filled bottles of juice, soda, mixers, wine and beer.

Water is usually only available to buy in plastic containers. Buy the largest bottle you can and decant into glasses to drink rather than buying one drink bottles.

Pack a reusable bottle suitable for drinking water. Whether you top up from drinking fountains, or from one huge water bottle. It will save dozens of smaller plastic water bottles going to landfill.

Take your sturdy bags for life. Use them when you go shopping. Saving countries who aren’t quite so organised double bagging with thin carrier bags.

When choosing soap for washing dishes, shampoo or shower gel. Choose one that is biodegradable. If one is not available, take one from home.

Did you know that biodegradable suntan lotion costs no more than regular lotion? Consider buying family sized bottles rather than many small bottles.

When you are there

Check with the base where you’ll be able to recycle when out on the water. This will help you to divide your rubbish as needed.

Say no to plastic plates, cups and cutlery when eating out. Take Tupperware from the boat for takeaways.

At bars and restaurants, request no straw if the straws on offer are plastic.

Always use your own bags for life. Store well so they don’t go overboard.

If buying Ice, can you buy it and scoop into your own reusable bags rather than by the bag?

You may see other ways in which you can help make your trip better for the environment. Why not share tips learnt with Enaviga on your return. We’d be happy to share them with future travellers.

Whichever country you are travelling to has their own methods of recycling. As a visitor, you may feel happy or dismayed at the way they recycle. Take a moment to stop and consider why their recycling programme is different from home.

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Ideas to keep under 8’s amused on a boat

If you are taking a sailing holiday with young children. It’s always wise to consider ‘what will children enjoy doing’ during your trip away. Luckily on a sailing trip, there are lots of things to keep them amused. Sailing with young children should be fun so here are a few of Enaviga’s favourites ideas to keep your children happy.

Before you set sail

Take a look at the RYA website. Here you can buy a variety of children’s books for activity/sticker/log book. Opt for the paper version rather than the e-book. Children can then diarise their trip with ease. 

Pack some playing cards, matchbox (or similar) for the fun listed below.

Check with your sailing company whether they provide children’s lifejackets. If you have your own that fit well and have room in your luggage. Always pack them. Your child will always feel more comfortable in their own lifejacket.

When you step on board

If your children are keyboard warriors stow the electrical devices when you board. If you can include all adults phones also, this will be a great start to your family fun trip.

Day activities

Are you planning to snorkel when on the water? If so you could pick up a local fish identification card from a local dive shop. These laminated cards will help you ID any fish spotted during your trip. If your children are too young to snorkel. You may be able to rent a body board with clear window. Your child can then lie down whilst you drag the board for them to see shallow fish and coral. Use the card to play fish bingo – who will be the first onboard to spot them all?

Involve all children in every aspect of sailing the boat. Whether you are skippering yourself, or have a captain. Let all children have a chance under supervision to ‘play’ Captain. You may ignite a passion that will be with them forever.

Whilst sailing with a young family, one game which keeps children still but occupied is ‘eye spy’. One person gives the first letter of the name of a part of the boat and everyone else has to try and guess what it is.

If you have a matchbox or similar sized box for each child on board. You can play the matchbox scavenger hunt. Write a list of items that you believe will fit in the box and are available to find. Challenge each child to fill the matchbox with as many items as they can from the list. The winner is those who find all the items to fit in the matchbox first.

When you moored near a beach, dinghy in with your children carrying a clear glass/plastic bottle. Let them scoop sand and water from the shallows into the bottle. Then sit and watch the sand move as minute sea creatures start to stir.

Evening activities

Depending on where in the world you are sailing, you may have long evenings onboard, as the sun sets early. A perfect excuse for a family games evening. Pack a set of playing cards and teach your little ones gin rummy. Have two children enjoy a game of snap. For younger children, you can use the cards to start a game of number recognition. The choices are endless.

After a day of sailing, swimming and playing, your children will be worn out and need a good night’s rest. Make sure you have some of the local tipple on board to enjoy!

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5 Tips for Boating With Children

Boat trips are always exciting for children – sometimes even more so than for their parents, guardians, and elders. But while many people love the idea of taking their children boating, some worry that it may not be safe for them. However, the safety and well-being of children – even babies and toddlers – can very easily be maintained with a few basic principles out on the water. Here are five tips for boating with children.

Life Jackets

safe kids

Before you even get to the dock, put life jackets on any infants accompanying you. It is advisable to have life jackets on all children regardless of age, especially if you’re sailing at high tide or through particularly lively waters. For older kids, don’t fret too much about it as long as they can swim capably – older kids generally only need life jackets if you hit choppy waters, are very distant from land, or you run into inclement weather.

Naptime

safe kids

For infants and toddlers, take a Pack N’ Play or something similar on board with you if you need to put your infant down either for a nap or if you need your hands free to tend to on-board tasks. Secure the play area so it doesn’t slide around or fall over out on the water, supply it with some toys, a blanket, and a pillow, and you’ll be home free. Older children can help you attend to the tasks of the boat, and also keep an eye on any of the younger children out on the water.

Regular Schedules

safe kids

Portrait of young woman and her daughters sitting by dinner table and having meals

Even on holiday, it’s important to keep kids on a regular schedule. If you typically let your kids stay up a bit later on vacations or weekends, by all means, continue to do so – but keep bedtimes and mealtimes regular so children can maintain some sense of routine and family equilibrium. If they usually do chores on a daily basis, assign them easy tasks on board the boat that they can handle in lieu of their typical chores, including keeping the cabin neat and the dishes washed.

Create Shade

safe kids

The skin of young children is much more delicate than that of adults’, and very young children will be more prone to heat sickness and nausea than adults as well. Create shade on the boat for children to play under so they don’t get sick by spending the entire day under the hot sun, which can easily done by a Bimini or similar attachment to keep sunlight off. Make sure your children are equipped with sunhats and other protective wear, and have them wear plenty of sunscreen, particularly if they have very fair skin.

Pack Supplies Carefully

safe kids

You don’t want to overpack on any boat trip, but make sure you pack carefully to make sure your children have everything they need – waterproof diapers and a waterproof diaper bag, baby food and formula, plenty of food and water, pacifiers, and toys. Make sure you have a well-equipped first aid kit as well, with not only the requisite items for wound and sprain treatment but fever reducer in case they should fall ill and sunburn gel in case of a burn.

Taking your children out on the water will be a thrilling experience for them and for you. As they become acclimated to travel by boat, you’ll find ready shipmates, lots of laughter, and memories that will last your family a lifetime.

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5 Tips For Sailing Safely On Your Holiday

Traveling by land can be hazardous; traveling by sea can be even more so. Before entrusting yourself, your family and friends, and your possessions to the mysteries of the open waters, make sure that you go well-prepared. Just like taking driver’s ed before getting your license, learning how to boat safely is an absolute essential. Here are five boating safety tips to follow – whether you’re on a long-distance trek out on the open ocean or cruising for an afternoon on a lake, you’ll be sailing safely!

Check the Forecast

safesail

Before you head out on the water, make sure you know what kind of weather to expect, especially out at sea. The chances of a boating accident increase with inclement weather, particularly storms. Being well-prepared won’t just ensure that you enjoy beautiful weather during your boating excursion. It will also help you to anticipate rain, lightning, or storms and sail around them.

If you do see storm clouds incoming while you’re out on the water, get ashore as soon as possible. If you are too far from land, try to sail around.

Use Proper Equipment

safe sail

Make sure everything aboard your boat is functioning properly, from the rigging and sails to the satellite and compass. Ensure safety gear, like life jackets, are aboard and that there are enough for everyone (and in the proper size!). If anything on board seems out of sorts or missing, make sure to see these to rights before you set sail.

Should something malfunction while you’re out on the water, though, don’t panic. Use your best common sense, and report any malfunctions or damages to the boat owner when you return your boat rental or charter.

Create a Trip Itinerary

sail safely

Map out an itinerary as precisely as possible and leave it with family or friends. Detail where you’ll be setting sail from, which destinations you will sail to, how long you will be gone, and when they can expect you to check in. Doing this helps to ensure that someone ashore knows when they may want to contact the Coast Guard or other water authority should they suspect something has happened to you. If you somehow lose contact while out at sea, make contact with your family and friends at home as soon as is possible.

Don’t Get Drunk

sail safely

The likelihood of a boating accident or a man-overboard increases dramatically with consumption of alcohol. Those aboard should avoid alcohol consumption, particularly if entering rough or choppy waters is a possibility. If you are hosting a party aboard your boat, consume alcohol sparingly and only if you are moored – and then, only if you have a designated person to guard against any accidents, especially drowning.

Become a Competent Swimmer

sail safely

Being a good swimmer is an extremely important skill that can save your life in the event you fall overboard, particularly on the open ocean. Remember that it only takes two minutes for a human being to drown. It may take longer than that for others aboard the boat to pull it around to get you back aboard.

In addition to becoming a competent swimmer, be as physically fit as you can. Contending with the sea demands a lot of strength. Even a calm cruise aboard a boat on a sunny day has its own rigors!

Sailing safely doesn’t have to be complicated. The risks involved – as with any other adventurous undertaking, from driving to hiking – need not be panic-inducing. Following these tips will help you minimize the risks of the open waters, and feeling prepared will help you enjoy your boating trip that much more.

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