15 Fun Boating Games to Play On-Board

Have you ever brought board games on the boat with you? They can provide easy entertainment for kids and adults alike, and many are easier to pack than you might think. We even recommend them as an essential when packing the perfect boating bag and as a thoughtful new boater gift. Read on to discover some of the best boating games for your next on-water adventure.

Why Bring Games on Your Boating Adventures?

Although bringing boating games out on the water may not seem necessary, they can be helpful entertainment. 

If you want to soak in the sun and enjoy interacting with your family members or friends, games can help. Games are a great option if you want to pack something for the kids to do while the grown-ups fish. 

Some benefits the following games may offer include compact sizes, travel cases, versatile age ranges, and even water-related themes. Read on to find the version(s) that will be the best for your specific boating entertainment needs.

Kid's Boating Checklist

The Best Boating Games to Bring With You

1. Uno

Uno is a compact card game that offers fun for almost all ages and abilities. It can help younger kids master colors and numbers and turns into a game of chance and speed for the older crowd. It’s even available as a waterproof set called Uno Splash.

Age Range: 7+
Number of Players: 2-10

2. Battleship

Bring this classic, competitive game to keep things nautically themed. Two players battle to sink each other’s hidden ships by shouting out coordinates.

Age Range: 7+
Number of Players: 2

3. Yahtzee

Yahtzee is relatively compact, making it easy to take on board. It can be played by kids and adults alike, making it a great family game.

Age Range: 8+
Number of Players: 2+

Spot It!

Spot It! takes mindfulness and agility as kids hold one card and try to spot a matching symbol on the next. It can be played solo or in large groups and only requires a neatly-tinned stack of cards.

Age Range: 6+
Number of Players: 1-8

5. Let’s Go Fishin’

Even the youngest children can join this game. Let the little ones catch pretend fish as they spin around the circle, so you can focus on catching the real ones.

Age Range: 3+
Number of Players: 1-4

Learn More About Fishing Boats

6. Scattergories

This game is funny and fast-paced, requiring only a deck of cards. It’s best for the teens and adults on board — especially the ones who grew up playing Scattergories.

Age Range: 13+
Number of Players: 2-4

7. Ticket to Ride Rails and Seas

Ticket to Ride is a recent favorite in the board game world. This waterway version is the perfect way to tie boating into your fun. Make sure you play on smooth waters, as many tiny pieces are required to participate.

Age Range: 10+
Number of Players: 2-5

8. Chess and Checkers

These classic games are great options for longer days on the water. Choose your favorite version and get to playing!

Age Range: 5+
Number of Players: 2

9. Rush Hour

Rush Hour is a single-player game, making it an excellent option for only-child entertainment. Choose a layout for your parking lot and slide the vehicles one at a time to help the red car escape.

Age Range: 8+
Number of Players: 1

10. Go Fish

This classic card game is a family-friendly option that requires nothing more than a deck of cards. The fishing theme makes it an extra fun boating game.

Age Range: 4+
Number of Players: 2+

11. Catan

Catan is a longer game, but its devoted fan base would argue it’s still worth bringing on board. The traveler version or seafarer extension pack could be even better for boating entertainment.

Age Range: 10+
Number of Players: 3-4

12. Bananagrams

Bananagrams is a new take on Scrabble. Players race to arrange their tiles into words before their opponents can do the same. Everything zips up into a cute banana-shaped pouch for stress-free storage. There’s even an oceanic edition to take your boating games to a new level.

Age Range: 7+
Number of Players: 1-16

13. Guess Who?

This kid-favorite is easy to take on-the-go with its fold-up style. It also requires no reading, so the little ones can play while the adults enjoy the beautiful boating scenery. 


Age Range: 6+
Number of Players: 2

14. Monopoly Bid

Do you love Monopoly but not necessarily the time it takes or the number of tiny pieces required? Monopoly Bid is a compact card game that offers the same type of fun without all the fuss.

Age Range: 7+
Number of Players: 4

15. Cribbage

Take this classic out on the water to entertain older children and adults. This set even folds up, storing the pegs and cards inside for easier travel.

Age Range: 8+
Number of Players: 2


 All in all, boating games are an excellent option for keeping everyone entertained while you roam the water. Make sure you choose a version that fits the age range of your riders while also being fun and relatively compact. Your future self will thank you for creating an opportunity for easy fun on board!