Top 5 Boating Getaways with Kids

The first thing that often comes to mind when people think about a family vacation is a trip that you take by car or plane. But what about on a boat? Imagine yourself cruising with your kids in the open sea, wind in your hair, and surrounded by the stunning ocean waters! Indeed, boating is a calm and relaxing way to travel with the family. 

Below, check out some of the best boating getaways with kids.

halong bay, vietnam
Halong Bay, Vietnam

1. Vietnam 

Vietnam has a lot to offer for kids of all ages with its diverse landscapes, delicious foods, rich culture, and history. It might be a backpacker’s favourite, but there are plenty of family-friendly activities to enjoy in the country. One of these is sailing. 

You’ll have plenty of route options on your family boating getaway to Vietnam. Sailing down the Mekong River is one of these. The river originates from the Yunan Province in China and runs south, forming a boundary between Laos and other countries such as Thailand and Myanmar. The path of the Mekong River crosses Cambodia and ends in southern Vietnam, including the Mekong Delta.

Another popular destination for sailing in Vietnam is Halong Bay. This exquisite limestone bay is famous for its emerald waters and thousands of towering limestones topped by lush rainforests. There are plenty of cruises that will take your family around Halong Bay, which include activities like kayaking and exploring caves. You can choose from a whole-day cruise or multi-day cruises on five-star boats with large suites designed for families with kids.

Oxford Canal
Oxford Canal

2. The UK 

Boating holidays in the UK are filled with adventures, taking you through pretty countryside and historic sites. Going for canal weekends away with your kids lets you explore fascinating places and tailor your experience to be relaxing or filled with activities as you want it to be. 

The biggest advantage of hiring a canal boat in the UK is that you have the freedom to steer your boat and stop wherever you want to, as you sail the charming English waterways, which are filled with historical cities, such as Windsor and Oxford. Many rivers in the UK are also bustling with attractions and enchanting English villages home to cosy riverside pubs. 

One of the most popular spots for canal cruising in the UK is the Oxford Canal, which has a bit of everything for families who enjoy cruising on a barge. The historic town of Oxford has plenty of scenic spots and impressive sights waiting for you to explore. Along the way, you’d come across several excellent pubs and restaurants where you can relax and take a break. The route is also famous for being home to many endangered wildlife, such as the European water vole.

Lanzarote boating
Lanzarote, Canary Islands

3. Spain  

From the Mediterranean to the Balearic and off the African coast, Spain has long been a popular destination for boating holidays. Offering a range of challenges from the Canary Islands to the smooth sailing of the Balearic Islands, discovering Spain’s charm can be made even more rewarding on a boating getaway with your kids. 

The Spanish Mediterranean coast, which consists of a 1,700 km long coastline, is a notorious hotspot for sailors wanting to experience the Spanish coastal lifestyle. Barcelona offers the most opportunities to sail on the Spanish Mediterranean coast. From here, you can sail south to explore the beautiful sandy beaches and stunning scenery that this part of Spain can offer.  

Meanwhile, the Balearic Islands, an archipelago known for its idyllic beaches and scenic coastline, offer diverse ecological and cultural backgrounds for boaters of all kinds. Each of the main islands in the Balearic caters to a range of holidaymakers. While Ibiza is famous for its rowdy parties, Mallorca is a fantastic destination for families who want to keep their kids entertained with numerous water sports activities, including kayaking.

Hvar, Croatia
Hvar, Croatia

4. Croatia 

For boating getaways, Croatia is a great choice. Its pristine nature, crystal clear waters, and countless stunning islands are not matched elsewhere. Whether you choose to sail here in spring, summer, or autumn, Croatia will have something to offer for a once-in-a-lifetime boating getaway with your family.

Croatia has more than a thousand islands, which is one of the reasons why it’s an ideal place to explore on a boat. From the stunning, isolated, and uninhabited small islands where you can find a private cove to swim and sunbathe to the more popular islands of Vis, Brac, Korcula or Hvar, boating in Croatia is an experience like no other.  

Consider going on a small ship vacation around Split, a modern city where ancient history and cosmopolitan life exist side by side. As the second-largest city in Croatia, Split lies along a bustling waterfront, home to ancient ruins dating back to the time of the Roman Empire. When you visit Split, you’ll be able to explore the Diocletian Palace, made famous by the Game of Thrones.

Santorini, Greece
Santorini, Greece

5. Greece 

Island hopping in Greece can be an amazing experience for families with kids. The freedom of being out in the open sea and exploring many beautiful places in one holiday, you’ll see why it’s a preferred choice for many families. On your boating getaway in Greece, you can visit secluded bays, beautiful beaches, bustling resorts, and traditional towns. 

There are many beautiful islands to visit in Greece. Plan your trip well and decide which islands to visit. Athens can make for a wonderful start and end to your island-hopping adventure. From Athens, you can sail towards the Cyclades. This is where you will find two of the most popular Greek islands, Santorini and Mykonos. But for families who wanted to visit quieter islands in the Cyclades with less crowd, check out Kimolos and Kythnos.

Naxos is also a popular spot to visit in the Cyclades. Here, you can go beach hopping and swim in serene seas or kick back and relax on the golden sands of Plaka. Or take the kids to the southern tip of Agios Georgios for some windsurfing lessons.

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