10 Kid-Friendly Travel Destinations to Visit by Boat

When it comes to family vacation ideas, a boating trip is one of the best ways to bond and create unforgettable memories. Not only does it offer an opportunity to see new sights, but it also allows families to spend quality time together in nature.

Here are ten kid-friendly travel destinations to visit by boat in the U.S. or Caribbean that are perfect for families:

The Top 10 Kid Friendly Boating Destinations

1. Florida Keys, Florida

The Florida Keys is one of the best kid-friendly boating destinations that offer a perfect blend of adventurous and relaxing activities for the whole family. 

Snorkeling, fishing, kayaking, and paddleboarding are popular water-based activities in the region that will keep the kids entertained. And if you're looking for a more lowkey experience, the Florida Keys has plenty of beaches and laid-back restaurants to enjoy.

2. Bimini, Bahamas

Bimini is a small island located just 50 miles from the coast of Florida. It's renowned for its crystal-clear waters and diverse marine life, making it one of the top family-friendly boating destinations.

Take a scenic boat trip around the island to see colorful marine life, or lounge on the beach and soak up the sun. Unlike other kid-friendly boating destinations, you can swim with dolphins at the Bimini Dolphin House. Dolphins are a great way to get your family excited about boating!

3. Lake Powell, Arizona/Utah

Located on the border of Arizona and Utah, Lake Powell is surrounded by stunning red rock formations and endless water-based activities. Families can rent a houseboat and explore the vast lake, from water skiing and tubing to kayaking and fishing.

For a more scenic experience, take a boat tour of the iconic Antelope Canyon.

4. San Juan Islands, Washington

The San Juan Islands in Washington is a hidden gem for families seeking adventure on the West Coast. Surrounded by tranquil waters, visitors can spot orcas and other marine life while kayaking or paddleboarding. 


Families can also enjoy whale-watching tours and visit charming seaside towns like Friday Harbor, with plenty of restaurants and shops to explore.

5. Abacos, Bahamas

Located in the northern Bahamas, the Abacos are a less crowded version of the more popular Bahamas destination of Nassau. 

The Abacos' calm aqua-blue waters are perfect for sailing, snorkeling and a great spot to take the kids fishing. Other attractions include:

  • The island's charming architecture.
  • Delicious local cuisine.
  • The famous swimming pigs of No Name Cay.

6. Lake Champlain, Vermont/New York/Quebec

Lake Champlain is a beautiful freshwater lake in the northeastern United States between Vermont, New York, and Quebec. 

Families can rent a boat to visit charming lakeside towns and explore the area's rich history. Kids will love the lake's numerous beaches and the opportunity to go fishing, kayaking, or even attend a pirate cruise.

Read Next: 6 Boredom Busters for Kids: Boating Edition

7. St. John, USVI

For a more remote destination, St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands is one of the top kid-friendly travel destinations.

The island's pristine beaches and crystal-clear waters offer excellent snorkeling and swimming opportunities. Families can rent a boat to visit the nearby uninhabited islands, hike through the island's lush vegetation, or tour historic ruins.

8. Lake Tahoe, California/Nevada

Located on the border of California and Nevada, Lake Tahoe is known for its crystal-clear waters and striking natural beauty. Families can rent a boat or take a paddle-wheeler cruise and admire the stunning views of the surrounding mountains. 

It's easy to get your kids involved in the fun of boating in Lake Tahoe. Other popular activities include fishing, kayaking, camping, and visiting the nearby national parks and ski resorts. 

Read Next: 8 Fun Ways to Teach Kids About Boating

9. Exuma, Bahamas

The Exuma Islands in the Bahamas are a chain of 365 cays and islands known for their secluded beaches and incredible wildlife. 

Families can rent a boat and explore the area's many deserted islands, swim with pigs at Pig Beach, or dive in the Thunderball Grotto. There are also plenty of fishing, snorkeling, and jet skiing opportunities.

10. Lake Cumberland, Kentucky

Located in southern Kentucky, Lake Cumberland is one of the country's favorite family-friendly boating destinations. The lake stretches over 100 miles long and offers plenty of opportunities for tubing, water skiing, and fishing. 

Kids will love exploring the many coves and waterfalls along the lake, and families can even rent a houseboat for a more immersive experience. And for a unique experience, don't miss the opportunity to visit the historic Mill Springs Battlefield and Museum.

Final Thoughts

Boating is a fun and unique way to spend time with your family and create memories that will last a lifetime. From the turquoise waters of the Bahamas to the crystal-clear lakes of Arizona, there are plenty of family-friendly boating destinations to consider.

When planning your next boating vacation, consider one of these destinations and choose a location that caters to your family's interests and preferences.

By finding a family vacation destination, you can ensure that everyone has a great time and experiences something new. Boating offers an excellent opportunity to disconnect from technology and connect with your loved ones in a beautiful natural setting. 

With plenty of activities and attractions to choose from, there are plenty of adventures to be had on the water. So pack your bags, grab your life vest, and head out to discover these ten incredible family-friendly boating destinations.