Children on yachts
Just reading the above heading makes me smile because a yacht is a wonderful place for children to spend their holiday, if not the very best place! Children will spend all day jumping, swimming, snorkelling, singing, kayaking and when the sun sets, they'll be out-with-the-lights for a full nights sleep after an exhausting day filled with excitement & adventure. For parents safety is, of course, a primary concern, and with a bit of planning, we can help cover all the bases so that you and your family can enjoy your holiday on the water with peace of mind. It is very important that you let us know you have children on board when making your charter booking. Your Charter Coordinator will talk with you about your circumstances, age groups, swimming capability, likes and dislikes, and make suggestions about things you should bring with you, but here’s some tips.
Children's life jackets
Comfort is the key to having a child accept wearing their life jacket, and they don't work if they don't wear them. If you're sailing with a child that cannot swim, we strongly suggest that you invest in a quality, fitted life jacket for them, and bring it with you. Island Spirit does have a selection of buoyancy vests suitable for some children but we can’t guarantee we’ll have a perfect fit for your child; please book in advance to ensure availability.
If you have very young children, we can install a safety net attached to the safety lines and stanchions around the yacht. Note, however, not all yachts have safety lines that go all the way around the yacht, particularly modern Catamarans. So if having safety netting is essential to you, make sure you let your Charter Coordinator know when you make your booking and check that it is possible to put one the yacht you plan to book.
Protecting your child from Sun and the Outdoors
You're coming for the sunshine yeah? And we have plenty of it. So don't forget to bring sun protection.
Protective clothing and suncream
Having plenty of suncream is good, but it should be your last resort. Children are often in and out of the water all day long, and the cream washes off , so some good quality UV protective clothing designed for swimming is a much better, longer-lasting option.
Hats are a crucial part of your arsenal against sunburn, but they are so easily lost; bring along a few spares for each child.
Sunglasses are essential for children yet are often seen as cute accessories. Glare from the sun is even more damaging for children than for adults (google it!) Like hats, children easily lose their sunglasses (unlike us responsible adults), so bring some spares. They don't need expensive brand-name gear, just quality glasses that provide protection against UV and polarised, so they can see the fish!
Mostly, you and your children won't need shoes! But on the beach and in the shallows where children often run, so to protect their little feet against shell and coral shards and anything else lying about, it's best to have some shoes designed for both wet and dry conditions (open, so they drain). These are also good for children when they are snorkelling.
Thailand has good hospitals, but the availability of medication varies around the world. If your child needs specific medication, then you must bring it with you. If the medication you require cannot be imported, please discuss availability and local purchasing option with your Charter Coordinator.
Things to do in-doors
On the off chance you get a rainy day or night falls before the energy dwindles, it's good to have some books or old-fashioned board-games and a pack of cards with you to keep you going into the night! Mobile phone coverage is reasonably reliable across most of our cruising grounds; however, the internet speed is often insufficient to access streaming content and online games (yes there is a god!).
Educational experiences ashore
Many of the larger islands offer cooking schools, dive courses for kids, nature walks and so on. Life onboard is great for children, but getting ashore and doing something together is a nice way to break things up, and Thailand is soooo children-friendly, you can be sure your children will have a wonderful time.