Our focus may be on staying safe, but that doesn’t have to mean staying home this holiday season. The perfect base for a family holiday, a superyacht provides peace of mind and a sense of seclusion that is much needed in the current travel environment. Burgess charter experts recommend the best yachts for family charters this winter season, along with their tips on how to make the most of your time aboard.
Space for everyone
With endless activities, impeccable service, tailor-made cuisine, and your very own itinerary, superyachts provide the perfect balance for ultra-private family time and space to be alone. Children can feel free to do their own thing, while parents are confident that youngsters are in a safe, controlled environment. For example, while you are on the aft deck chatting and sipping cocktails, your children can be lying in kids’ heaven in the onboard cinema with access to hundreds of movies.
Alternatively, while you are enjoying the latest blockbuster yourself, your youngsters can play on deck under the watchful eye of the crew, or even try some watersports. Evenings can be equally flexible, with adults socialising in the main lounge while the sky lounge is transformed into a kids’ zone, allowing the adults to linger, untroubled, over their gourmet dinner.
A charter allows for plenty of valuable family ‘together’ time. Unlike a resort, where families may hardly see one another, a yacht means quality time together in a private environment. From lazy breakfasts, beach picnics and family barbecues, to time spent in the water enjoying the yacht’s water toys, every generation can be included when on a yacht charter.
Childish cruising grounds
Countless cruising areas can easily be adapted to excellent family charters, but those with the greatest appeal for winter include the Caribbean and the Bahamas. With endless islands to explore, fantastic watersports opportunities and welcoming locals, the various cruising grounds in these two areas all have their own distinct identity, allowing for a new vibe every day and ensuring that even the most surly of teenagers won’t be bored.
For those looking for short passages between anchorages located close together the British Virgin Islands are ideal for island hopping, while all the islands have plenty to offer in terms of activities and culture ashore, be it along a deserted beach or at one of the many family-friendly resorts. The best time to cruise the Caribbean is late December to early March, while the Bahamas has a welcoming climate year-round.
Garage load of watertoys
A superyacht’s toy box always adds a fun dimension to any yacht charter, but when it comes to family fun they really are a necessity. From paddle-boarding to water skiing, and windsurfing to water-trampolining, the water toys are a major attraction for most families. For some adults it is also the chance to embrace your inner-child as you fall about with the younger children on inflatables.
For those with older children in the family, a handful of yachts have their own dive centres with PADI-accredited dive instructors within the crew – just think of the memories you can make learning to dive and exploring a whole new underwater world together with your teenagers. And it’s not just the water toys that are popular with the older children. Most of the larger yachts have gyms, which can be popular with teenagers, while the audio-visual equipment is usually so state-of-the-art that even the techiest of teens is impressed.
From the latest game consoles to dedicated cinema rooms and a hyper-fast internet connection for streaming, most of the top-tier yachts are well-prepared and will have the latest equipment on board. That said, some families take the opportunity to switch off and ban gadgets – but the choice is always yours.
A charter yacht with a reputation for an enthusiastic and engaging crew will always be the most popular with families. A dynamic and well-trained crew can transform a rainy day into a fun-fuelled adventure, entertaining the children with treasure hunts, arts and crafts, or even teaching them how to be a deck hand.
Keeping children busy and engaged is of course not the primary role of yacht crew who will also have other duties, and for those with younger children (age 13 and under) bringing a nanny on board is often advisable. However, as long as everyone is aware of where the responsibilities lie, most family-friendly crews will do their best to ensure that all guests are happy and if that means helping out with the younger children, then the crew will always step up where possible.