As a marine enthusiast, you know that boating is one of the best activities you can do with family members and friends. That said, traditional boating activities, such as fishing and sunbathing, can get repetitive over time. To bring the spark back into boating, here is a list of unconventional and fun boating activities you can enjoy with your loved ones.
1. Adventure in the Great Circle Route
Also known as America’s Great Loop, the Great Circle Route is a network of waterways that encompasses the eastern portion of the country. You’ll boat through the Great Lakes, the Mississippi River, the Gulf of Mexico, New York City, and more on this epic trip of a lifetime. It’s one of the safest cruising routes in the world that spreads over 5,000 miles and offers amazing opportunities to explore the eastern part of the US from the water.
The entire route usually takes around a year to complete, but you can easily boat a portion of the Great Loop for a shorter adventure. You can visit the American Great Loop Cruisers Association to learn more about planning your experience.
2. Sleep on Your Boat
Anchoring out on the water and sleeping under the stars away from the hustle and bustle of civilization is one of the best boat experiences to exist. It’s very different from sleeping on your boat while it’s docked at the marina. Being out in the water at night is a unique experience that makes you feel connected to nature.
Do it with your loved ones to make unforgettable memories or solo if you’re in the mood for some solitude.
3. Enjoy the Water Sports
Trying different water sports is one of the best fun things to do on a boat with friends. Water skiing, wakeboarding, wakesurfing, stand-up paddleboarding (SUP) — there are a ton of fun activities to explore on the water. Water sports are a great way to burn some calories, too.
If you don’t want to buy the equipment before trying your hand at a particular water sport, you can rent it from a shop. It’s a smart idea to rent before buying so you can try different kinds of activities and figure out which ones you like best.
4. Cook on Your Boat
What’s better than enjoying a delicious snack on the water? Cooking a mouth-watering meal right on your deck and sharing it with your loved ones. There are a few ways you can cook on your boat, but we’re going to share our favorite two.
First, investing in a marine grill to mount on your deck is a great way to upgrade your boat and elevate your experiences on the water. Cook meat, fish, or vegetables to serve sizzling hot. Second, making ceviche from your fresh catch if you’re into fishing is a unique way to add zest to your typical fishing boat trips.
5. Party on a Sandbar
Sandbars are famous boating party spots, and there’s no better way to spend the day on the water than hanging out with your friends, enjoying cold drinks, and getting your groove on. Sandbar parties are also a great way to meet new people and bond over your love for boating.
Sandbars are shallow spots that offer scenic views and can be a great place to celebrate a special event, such as your birthday or a bachelor party.
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6. Try Boating Camping
Using your boat to camp is a fantastic way to spend the weekend and bring your family or friend group closer together. You can use your boat to reach a campsite or you can actually camp in your boat overnight, depending on the kind of adventure you’re looking for. Either way, camping with a boat is a cool way to explore your surroundings and spend some time in nature.
Boat camping requires some careful planning. Make sure to make a list of the things you’ll need during your trip, such as a tent, gear, food, and essentials like toilet paper. Many parks have camping sites that you can use and some of them are boat-friendly.
7. Dock and Dine
If you love boating and eating out, you’ll love the idea of going to a restaurant in your boat. Some waterfront restaurants have private docks where you can anchor your vessel and enjoy a nice meal. Other restaurants are located close to a marina and sometimes can deliver food straight to your boat.
8. Have a Movie Night
A great family boating activity, watching a movie on your boat is a fun way to turn an everyday pastime into a unique experience. Getting a TV to work on your boat can be a little tricky, but using a projector allows you to have a movie theater right on the water. Bring some snacks, cozy blankets, and your favorite movies for a cozy night in.
9. Go Spear Fishing
If fishing from your deck is getting boring, it might be time to try spearfishing. Spearfishing is classified as an extreme sport that can give you the much-needed boost of an adrenaline rush. It’s a form of underwater fishing that involves hunting fish with a speargun. You can dive from your boat and spend a few hours chasing after your prey for an unforgettable adventure.
10. Host a Game Night
Playing games with your friends and family is one of the best ways to spend time together, and doing it on your boat can make it even more fun. To host a successful game night, the key is to have all of your essentials on hand. Stock on popular board games, such as Monopoly or Catan, snacks, and drinks. It’s also important to make sure that you have a comfortable seating area where the entire group can fit.
11. Ride a Tow Toy
What’s more fun than riding in a towable tube or inflatable “banana” at a high speed? Few things compare. Tow the tube behind your boat while the people in it enjoy the ride and try to hold on. You can get tow toys in different sizes, shapes, and colors for more variety.
The boat captain can go fast or slow, depending on the kind of experience you want the people in the tube to have. If you’re riding with young children, it’s best to go at a slower pace. It’s also important to remember boating safety rules and wear a life jacket.
12. Have a Picnic
Find a spot with a scenic view and anchor there to have a leisurely picnic on the water. You can do this with friends and family members, but this can also be a great way to surprise your partner and spend some quality time together. Pack sandwiches, nuts, fruits, and other snacks to enjoy on your deck. Sunset and sunrise are both great times to do this activity because of the mild weather and gorgeous light.
Elevate Your Boating with DEKit
Having the right products on your boat can make or break your entire experience, whether you’re adventuring through America's Great Loop, hanging out with friends at a sandbar party, or having a quiet picnic on your deck.
DEKit creates industry-leading, high-quality marine products to take your boating experience to the next level. Shop our foam boat flooring, helm pads, YETI cooler tops, and RTIC cooler tops for more enjoyment, beauty, and comfort on the water.