The Stevens family took on nappies, teething and potty training when they sailed across the Atlantic with kids


When Stephanie and Richard Stevens set sail from Jersey to Grenada, they knew it was going to be a challenge with two young children.

“I’d have been busy if I was on land and exhausted on land so why not chuck in a couple of night watches and see a bit more of the world?” said Stephanie.

Roux on the morning of his transatlantic. Credit: Ali Wood

The couple sold their RIB tour business and set sail with Stephanie’s dad David Seymour, and brother-in-law Jonty Stevens, on the  ARC+ rally, which left Las Palmas, Gran Canaria on 5th November.

PBO met the excited family an hour before the start, when 7-month-old Roux was enjoying a banana for breakfast. At the time he was just learning to crawl. When we met him in Grenada, he was crawling and pulling himself up on the seats of the Nautitech 46 Open Pinnacle.

Stephanie with Jesse and baby Roux. Credit: Arthur Daniel

The first leg – to Mindelo, Cape Verde – was the roughest, with Roux spending a lot of time in his carrier and Jesse in the soft area inside the cabin, but despite it being ‘a bit rocky and rolly,’ none of the family suffered from sea sickness.

The second leg, to Port Louis, Grenada, was much calmer.

“They settled in nicely and learned some new tricks,” said Stephanie. “Roux was teething and learning to stand up and Jesse using the potty – not least because I wanted to save on nappies!”

“It’s been quite nice for us bringing these two little ones,” said Richard. “The ARC provided such a comfort, ticking off all the safety things that you need when you’re travelling with young children. You want to make sure you’re doing everything completely right.”

“It definitely wasn’t easy,” he added. “These guys like to pull everything, and they had to be barricaded around the boat, but they still had a good space to run and crawl around in. Having a catamaran was definitely a blessing for us.”

Pinnacle passes St George’s, Grenada on their way to Port Louis Marina. Credit: Arthur Daniel

Stephanie was very grateful to have her dad and Jonty with her, whom she described as ‘hands-on-help’. Toys were regularly rotated and books were a blessing, with Jesse enjoying constant reading time with all his family.

On calm days the kids even managed to enjoy a ball-pit on the catamaran’s trampoline.


“They loved it,” said Richard. “Now and again when you got close to an another boat Jesse would be like, ‘big boat!’ and there would be lots of smiles. We saw a few dolphins which is always exciting and shooting stars, sunrises, sunsets – all of the things you want the kids to be excited about rather than screens.”