Flying out of Boston, we had to get up at 3am. It was going to be a long day, but the rewards were at the end! Travelling with three children is a challenge, we joke that when you have a 3rd child, you are changing from man to man to zone defense. You are a person short to watch after them. As we drove through the New England snow, we contemplated our Painkillers and sun kissed beaches. After a stop in Miami, we were flying into St Thomas. We have found this the place to get the cheapest flights to. You can fly into Tortola which can be more convenient for charters, but its more expensive.
Sailing with Kids Tip
You might initially hate yourself for it, but load up on Apples. A tiny ipod with a 2″ screen can have 5-6 movies loaded on it and can keep a small child entertained for a few hours. Ipads are great for the games (we have two). We are happy to trade our failures as parents in not having kids that behave for zombifying them with electronics for a sane plane trip.
The plane ride was uneventful. I had insisted on not checking anything, despite protests, and this helped us zip through customs in St Thomas when we landed. An easy taxi ride of 30-40 minutes to Red Hook Bay $15 each), and we met our very friendly captain Rosemary of Fairwinds Sailing School. We had a few issues with stuff not working on the boat, a tired Moorings off-charter, but Rosemary helped with fixing a couple of things and we were ready to go.
For dinner we took the dinghy a couple of hundred yards to Latitude 18, a restaurant across the bay. It had some swings and a bookshelf. Turned out that the swings entertained more than the books. They did a decent burger, but service was VERY slow. Need to remember to take snacks for kids next time to stave off the hunger meltdowns. We find that most things that you can do on a vacation with children to make things smoother tend to be preventative.
We also rented a paddle board from West Indies Windsurfing. Another handy toy for kids on a trip, something for them to paddle round in while moored or anchored. At home, we have a Walker Bay Dinghy for a tender and have a sail kit for it. It’s great for when we are anchored, we can just put the sail on it and the boys zip around while we watch from the boat.
Tomorrow, we begin, heading round the south of St John to Snorkel Bay.