Do you know that girls as young as 16 years old have sailed around the world all alone? 16-year old Laura Dekker from the Netherlands is the youngest person ever to circumnavigate the world solo after Jessica Watson of Australia did it just before her 17th birthday. Dekker was 16 and 123 days.
Jessica Watson became the youngest person to sail around the world with no stops and completely unassisted! While the just as impressive, Laura Dekker, completed her own sailing adventure around the globe with stops.
Another fascinating fact is that Dekker almost didn’t make it. The reason for this was the interference of the Dutch government. They didn’t think it was a good idea for a teenager to sail the world. However, she proved them wrong in all sorts of ways. You can learn more about Dekker’s journey in the film documentary Maidentrip.
The youngest circumnavigation isn’t recorded in the Guinness Book of World Records, because they don’t want to encourage 14-year olds to sail around the world alone.
What do you think, should we recognize such achievements and therefore encourage them? Or are people right to worry for young kids who are interested in such fascinating, but dangerous endeavors? Tell us in the comments below or on our Facebook page!
- By Laura_Dekker.JPG: Savyasachiderivative work: ukexpat (talk) – Laura_Dekker.JPG, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=16600220
- By Andrew Fraser (Jessica Watson’s manager) – Flickr, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=20885774