On August 21, 2010, Laura Dekker—then just fourteen years old—began an incredible journey from the Netherlands in a run-down forty-foot boat. When she sailed it into port in Simpson Bay, St. Martin, seventeen months later, she became the youngest person ever to sail around the world alone.
Laura’s parents faced immense challenges as they battled the Dutch government over their right to raise their daughter as they saw fit. Dick Dekker, her father, is a lifelong sailor and restless nomad, and his daughter clearly takes after him. By the age of eight, Laura was already a more competent sailor than many adults around her who had been living at sea for decades—and some of them resented her for it.
Dick frequently allowed Laura to sail by herself, and although he never worried for her safety, busybody neighbours and bureaucrats soon began to accuse him of child endangerment.
The young sailor undertook her first long-distance solo voyage at the age of ten, when she sailed a borrowed cruiser some 113 miles around the northern edge of the Netherlands. This, she says, was when she decided to sail around the world, as her parents had. The following year, her father bought her a boat of her own on the condition that she do extra chores to pay him back, which she happily did. Two years later, at the age of thirteen, she sailed alone to England, a voyage of approximately 150 miles. Someone in the Netherlands told the local police about Laura’s solo journey, and English authorities ordered her father to pick her up and accompany her back home. This was just the beginning of the family’s conflicts with the Dutch authorities.
When Laura, by then something of a local celebrity, began to speak publicly about her desire to sail around the world by herself, the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science saw fit to crush her dreams. Dutch law mandates that all children attend school until at least the age of sixteen, and because Laura’s adventure would necessitate her withdrawal, the country’s prime minister stated—on television—that he wouldn’t allow it. Social workers from the government’s Department of Child Protection got involved and kept Dick Dekker tied up in court for more than a year, trying over and over to have Laura placed in state custody. Each time, the judge seemed unsure of the proper course of action but eventually ruled that Dick was not endangering his daughter by letting her sail alone. After all, she had demonstrated on numerous occasions that she was an expert sailor. Read more by Tim White in The Objective Standard
Stay in touch with Laura at the Laura Dekker World Sailing Foundation website https://lauradekkerworldsailingfoundation.com/
Laura Dekker – Youngest Circumnavigator to Sail Alone Around the World
Maidentrip Official Trailer – Documentary
14-year-old Laura Dekker sets out on a two-year voyage in pursuit of her dream to become the youngest person ever to sail around the world alone.
This riveting documentary chronicles the life and adventures of 14-year-old Laura Dekker, who set out on a two-year voyage in pursuit of her dream to be the youngest person ever to sail around the world alone.
The amazing autobiographical account of the youngest ever solo circumnavigation of the Earth. First time in English!
If you want to see the other side of the world, you can do two things: turn the world upside down, or travel there yourself.
In 2012, at the age of just 16, Laura Dekker became the youngest sailor ever to single-handedly circumnavigate the globe. In realising her long-held dream, she had not only braved the wild oceans and long weeks of solitude at sea, but also the doubts and sometimes hostile resistance of officials.
In this remarkable account of her incredible journey – for the first time in English – Laura describes in her own words what it is like to sail solo around the world, and the determination it takes to do it at such a young age.
Exciting, awe-inspiring and inspirational, this is a real-life adventure for readers of all age.
Are you ready for a life changing journey? Come sailing with Laura Dekker
Laura Dekker has learned a lot from her travels around the world, now she wants to pass these lessons on to the next generation. She has become the founder of the Laura Dekker World Sailing Foundation and is sailing the world with kids and teens between 9&17 years old teaching them valuable life skills like teamwork, self confidence and how to reach their own dreams and goals. Are you between 9 and 17 years old, don’t like to sit still for very long, want to see more, do more and try more; all with a healthy dose of adventure…Then you are at the right place! Have a look at voyage options: https://lauradekkerworldsailingfounda… The Laura Dekker World Sailing Foundation has been established to provide programs for children and teenagers to develop life skills like team work, self confidence, responsibility, creativity, and leadership.