How to Keeping Kids Entertained on Boat Trips (9 Expert Tips)

Keeping kids entertained during boat trips can be a challenge, but it’s entirely achievable with some creativity and preparation.

This guide provides ten expert tips to ensure that your journey on the high seas becomes an unforgettable adventure for your children. 

From boat-friendly games and crafts to snacks and onboard chores, each tip imbues learning with fun, transforming the boat trip into a vibrant and engaging experience.

So, set sail with our tips for the perfect family-friendly voyage.

Here are 9 Essential Keeping Kids Entertained on Boat Trips

Tip# 1: Bring along your favorite toys

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One of the easiest ways to keep kids entertained on a boat is to bring their favorite toys. They act as a piece of home comfort, amusing during quiet periods.

When selecting toys for your trip, prioritize those suitable for a marine environment. They should be waterproof to endure potential splashes, easy to clean to remove any sand or salt, and ideally, have a design that prevents them from quickly rolling or blowing away in the wind.

This approach ensures the toys last the entire trip and beyond.

Here are Some Toys that Are Perfect for A Day on The Boat:

  • Inflatable balls: These are lightweight and versatile. They can be used in endless games, both in the water and on the boat. They are also easy to pack and carry.
  • Action Figures or Dolls: Action figures and dolls are great portable entertainment for kids. They can ignite imaginative play and can keep children engaged for lengthy periods.
  • Water Toys: Any toy designed for use in water, like water guns, squishy water animals or even simple cups and buckets, can significantly enhance a child’s fun during a boat trip.
  • Board Games: Opt for compact, portable editions of your kids’ favorite board games. These are excellent for entertaining kids when you’re anchored or in calm waters.
  • Building Blocks: A small bag of building blocks such as Legos or magnetic tiles can inspire creativity and independent play, making them a great toy choice for boat trips.

Tip# 2: Organize a boat-based treasure hunt

Turn your nautical journey into an adventure with a boat-based treasure hunt. Before departure, secure small objects or trinkets around the boat.

Give your children a creative, pirate-inspired map or hints leading to the hidden treasures. This will keep their attention piqued, stave off boredom, and allow their imagination to set sail.

Children can explore the boat’s environment through this fun and engaging activity while developing problem-solving skills.

Tip# 3: Appropriate Tech Time

Incorporating technology into your boat trip can provide a variety of engaging activities for your children. Mindfully select educational games, apps, or documentaries that align with their interests to keep them occupied.

Audiobooks filled with high-seas adventure stories or family-friendly movies can be a welcome distraction during downtime.

Striking the right balance with tech usage ensures entertainment while fostering an appreciation for the digital and natural worlds on your journey.

Tip# 4: Teach Them About Nature

Appropriate Tech Time
Photo: Mylovelyboat Team

Boat trips offer a unique opportunity for kids to learn about the natural world. Guide your children in identifying local marine life, birds, and plants, and discuss their roles in the ecosystem.

If feasible, engage them in fishing and share the thrill of landing their first catch. These hands-on activities foster curiosity and respect for the environment and create a sense of accomplishment — all while creating lifelong memories on the water.

Tip# 5: Storytelling and Reading Exciting Books

Storytelling and Reading Exciting Books
Photo: Mylovelyboat Team

Anchoring your children’s imagination through books and storytelling can create a magical connection to their aquatic surroundings.

Pack adventure-themed books that match the sea voyage setting or invent thrilling stories about pirates, mermaids, or treasure islands. These narrative excursions transport your kids into a new realm of enchantment and curiosity, fueling their minds with adventure while keeping them entertained and engaged on the boat.

Engaging children in reading or storytelling is an excellent way to entertain and educate. For a nautical-themed journey, consider the following books available on Amazon:

  • Magic Tree House: Pirates Past Noon”: An adventurous time-traveling tale with pirates.
  • The Little Island: A beautifully illustrated tale about an island’s changing seasons.
  • Pirateology: A Pirate Hunter’s Companion”: A detailed guide to the seafaring scallywags known as pirates.
  • The Mermaid: A delightful story of friendship between a mermaid and a fisherman.

Tip# 6: Compact Onboard Games and Puzzles

Compact, travel-sized games and puzzles are excellent for family bonding and fun on a boat. Whether a strategic round on a magnetic chessboard, a lively card game, or an intriguing puzzle, these activities can cultivate a vibrant and engaging atmosphere onboard.

They are easy to pack, require little space, and provide hours of entertainment, ensuring an enjoyable and memorable sailing experience for the whole family.

Tip# 7: Creative Arts & Crafts

Creative Arts & Crafts
Photo: Mylovelyboat Team

Inviting artistic expression through arts and crafts can be a marvelous way to keep children entertained on a boat. Equip them with sketchbooks, crayons, or DIY kits, and encourage them to create artwork based on their surroundings.

With this mix of recreation and learning, children can hone their observational skills, imagination, and creativity while gaining a deeper appreciation for the beauty of the marine environment and the thrill of adventure.

 Useful Tools

Here Are Some valuable tools and a variety of crafting materials.

Tip# 8: Participate in Boat Chores

Engaging children in simple, safe boating chores can make them feel involved and valued. By assisting in tasks like deck cleaning, map reading, or meal preparations, they not only stay entertained but also gain insights into boating and acquire a sense of responsibility.

Involvement in boat chores transforms ‘work’ into a fun, educational experience, enhancing the excitement of life onboard and contributing to a successful boat journey.

Tip 9: Snack Time! Boat-friendly Snacks & Fun Meal Prep

Snack Time! Boat-friendly Snacks & Fun Meal Prep
Photo: Mylovelyboat Team

The joy of preparing and sharing meals can be amplified on a boat trip. Create a mini menu to add an engagement element and involve your children in preparing simple, boat-friendly snacks.

From assembling sandwiches to cutting fruits, kids can enhance their culinary skills and enjoy the satisfaction of contributing.

Moreover, ensuring a stock of healthy snacks such as granolas, fruits, and trail mix will keep everyone energized and satisfied during the voyage. Here are four boat-friendly snacks:


How do you entertain kids on a boat?

  • Entertaining kids on a boat involves a blend of onboard and water-based activities. Bring portable toys like inflatable balls or water guns, engage them in a game of I-Spy, or initiate a storytelling session.

How do I keep my kids entertained on vacation?

  • Keeping kids entertained on vacation means varying their activities. Include outdoor games, visits to local attractions, and downtime with books or movies. Tailor activities to match your child’s interests, be it nature, local history, or sports.

How do you entertain kids at the lake?

  • Lakeside entertainment for kids could include swimming, building sandcastles, or enjoying a picnic. Please encourage them to explore nature, such as looking for unique pebbles or insects. Portable toys like frisbees or beach balls also add fun.

What activities do you do on a boat?

  • Boat activities range from fishing and swimming to sunbathing and picnicking. Enjoy serene moments of bird-watching or reading. In larger groups, you can arrange game sessions or a dance party.

What can you do with kids on a ship?

  • On a ship, you can keep kids engaged with on-board activities like mini-golf, swimming in the ship’s pool, attending kid-friendly stage shows, or participating in craft workshops and treasure hunts organized by the ship’s crew.

What does a child put in the boats?

  • Boat trips ideally call for items like a life jacket, sunhat, pair of sunglasses, sunscreen, and a personal bag with favorite snacks and toys. Warm clothes for chillier weather and a change of clothes are also recommended.

Which things are kept in a boat?

  • Boats are commonly equipped with lifejackets, first-aid kits, a compass, maps, flare guns for emergencies, and basic utilities like a bucket, bailer, or anchor. For entertainment, portable coolers, picnic food, fishing gear or toys might be stowed.

What items are used to do a boat?

  • Constructing a boat requires various materials, depending on the type and size. These may include wood or steel for the structure, ropes for rigging, waterproof paint for the hull, and technical equipment like engines, navigation tools, and safety gear.

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I am a freelance writer passionate about watersports and the great outdoors. I have many years of experience in the marine industry, and I enjoy sharing my knowledge and expertise with others so that they can get the most out of their boating experiences. I like fishing, kayaking, and exploring new destinations by boat whenever I have time. Contact Us: Linkedin

Kaosar Ahamed

owner and writer,

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