There are few things better than pulling your boat up alongside your favorite restaurant and enjoying a delicious meal with great company and a beautiful waterfront view. But it’s not always as easy as pulling up your boat and heading up the dock. To ensure your dock and dine is always divine, follow these helpful tips!
- Call ahead – Before heading out, be sure to call ahead and get all the necessary details about the restaurant and docking situation. Make reservations for both your meal and the dock, if necessary. Determine if there is a fee involved with docking and be sure the dock can accommodate your boat’s length and beam. The last thing you want is to pull up ready for a nice waterfront meal without a place to moor your boat.
- Make a plan – It’s always a good idea to be prepared every time you head out on the water and setting sail for your favorite waterfront restaurant is no different. Study navigational charts to ensure you know the best route to and from your destination. If one of your passengers has limited mobility, ensure they can access the restaurant without climbing a ladder or a steep ramp at low tide. Lastly, plan your departure time. Don’t make sunset reservations unless you’re prepared to navigate home after dark.
- Be aware – When entering and leaving the dock channel, be aware of your surroundings. Don’t block through traffic while waiting for a slip to open up at the dock. Instead, find a place to drop anchor or tie up while you wait. Watch out for other boats during your approach or departure from the slip. Lastly, remember to always Designate a Sober Skipper. Consuming alcohol before stepping up to the captain’s chair can reduce your awareness and put your boat and all its passengers at risk.
Be smart, be safe and, most importantly, have fun!
Have a favorite waterfront restaurant or want to share your own tips? Comment below!