Bring the kids to Captain Mayhem's School of Piracy and watch them set the sails, steer the schooner and learn sailor skills!
On this trip:
- The crew will be in pirate costumes!
- Young Pirates will help with raising the sails!
- We will be firing the cannon!
- Children will get themed tattoos!
We depart from the Riverwalk Landing Pier in Yorktown.
Box lunches are available if ordered in advance.
Please also note that Pirate Cruises run from late May through the beginning of September. If the date you desire to attend is not yet on the calendar, please check back soon!
What Is Not Included?
Also gratuity for the crew is not included.
- Do I have to purchase tickets in advance?
- Advance purchase is strongly recommended, and sails often sell out. To maximize your chances of getting the day and time you prefer, please buy your tickets well in advance. Tickets can be purchased with a Visa, Mastercard or American Express. You can purchase tickets with cash at the ship on a space available basis.
- Can I pay cash for tickets?
- You can purchase tickets at the ship with cash on a space available basis. If you are buying tickets with cash you should come early to purchase.
- Which schooner will I be on?
- You will set sail on either the Schooner Serenity or the Schooner Alliance. Both vessels offer an amazing sailing experience that will allow you to get a feel for what it was like to be a sailor back in the Age of Sail!
- How long is the sail?
- The total experience is one hour and 30 minutes long.
- What happens if the sail is sold out?
- Unfortunately, we do not have a wait list for our sails, so please book well in advance. However, if you find the sail you are looking for is full, check out an afternoon sail instead!
- Is there parking and how much is it?
- Yes, there is free parking at the meeting location. Details will be provided upon purchasing your tickets.
- What type of ticket should I buy if I'm bringing a very young child?
- Children under 1 year of age can attend for free, but must have a free ticket due to Coast Guard regulations. Children between the ages of 1 and 12 have a special reduced priced ticket!
- Can pregnant women attend the sail?
- Yes! Because we sail in protected waters, the cruise should be moderate and easy for pregnant women. However, if you are in your last trimester, it is always a good idea to consult your doctor before purchasing tickets.
- Can I bring a pet?
- You may be able to bring a small pet if it is well behaved. If you're interested, please click on the "Contact SailYorktown" link and let us know what you'd like to do!
- Is food served during the sails?
- Food and beverages are not included, but a variety of snacks and drinks will be available for purchase on board.
- How about drinks? Should I bring those?
- Personal beverages are not allowed. There will be beverages available for purchase during the sail including soda, water and juice boxes for $1, beer for $3 - $4, and wine for $5 - $7. Bring extra cash and valid ID with you if you'd like to purchase alcoholic beverages on board.
- Are the Schooners safe?
- Absolutely! Both the Serenity and the Alliance are Coast Guard Certified and fully equipped with modern safety equipment.
- How steady is the sailing? Am I likely to get seasick?
- The Schooners are steady, safe vessels. It is very rare for our guests to become seasick since we stay on the York River in protected waters. While most people do not experience any sea sickness on the schooners, you may want to consider light medication if you normally take it for motion sickness. We cannot officially advise you to take any medication, however!
- Is there a bathroom on the boat?
- There are men's and women's bathrooms at the head of the dock at our meeting location. Please use the bathrooms before boarding. We do have a head on the ship that is down a very steep ladder.
- Is there an age limit for these sails?
- While there is no age limit for any of our sails, we definitely recommend families with children under 12 years of age attend a day sail in the morning or afternoon (this pirate sail is the perfect option!) rather than a sunset sail.
- Can I stow anything (eg, my briefcase) during the sail?
- There is limited room on board to stow personal belongings. Please do not bring any heavy or large items such as strollers or coolers.
- What should I wear?
- Please wear flat soled shoes and avoid heels or platform shoes. Also bring a jacket in the spring or fall seasons!
- Where does the sail finish?
- Our sails will end at the same pier from which they departed.
- Do you ever cancel sails due to bad weather?
- The sail usually runs in light rain and other moderate weather situations. The only time we cancel a trip is in the event of severe or unsafe weather conditions. Our captains monitor the radar to watch fronts and cells in the area on days when inclement weather is possible. Cancellations are made on the day of the sail, by the Captain, up to 1 hour prior to sail time. If you have purchased tickets for a sail that is cancelled, you will have the opportunity to to reschedule your tickets (subject to availability) or receive credit towards a future event.
- What happens if it starts raining when we're out on our sail?
- In the event of mild rain, we'll still continue the sail. There is no covering on the boat so you may want to bring a rain jacket. And remember - a little rain never hurt anyone!
- Is gratuity included in the price of the sail?
- Gratuity is not included in the price of the sail. The crew work very hard to engage your kids and show them a good time. If you've enjoyed your experience, tips for our hardworking crew are greatly appreciated!
- Is the boat handicapped accessible?
- The Alliance can accommodate a small wheelchair. It will need to be carried down 2 steps off the gangway to get on to the deck. The Serenity is unfortunately too small to accommodate a wheelchair.
- Is there an easy way to get there from Williamsburg?
- Yes! There are convenient and frequent shuttles that run between Williamsburg and Yorktown - details will be provided upon purchasing tickets.
- Is there assigned seating on the sails?
- No, seating is first come first served on the day sails. You will be sitting on deck boxes and cabin houses. There are no chairs. This is a real ocean going sailing ship and you will have a real sailing experience!
- Can I book a private charter sail?
- Private sails are available on both the Alliance and Serenity. Alliance can carry a maximum of 49 guests. Serenity can carry a maximum of 26 guests and is perfect for a smaller more intimate group! If you're interested in a private charter, please click on the "Contact SailYorktown" link to make a request!
- Are gift certificates available for this sail?
- Yes, gift certificates are available and they make a perfect gift for holidays, birthdays or any other occasion! To purchase a gift certificate for this cruise, please click on the "Gift Certificates: Purchase" link in the box above.
Schooners Alliance & Serenity
Their two schooners include the gaff-rigged 105' schooner the Alliance, and the 65' gaff topsail schooner the Serenity. Both boats give you the opportunity to explore the Chesapeake Bay tidewaters!
For those who love history, yearn for romance, or have dreamed of experiencing a true sailing adventure, your ship has just come in!