Whether you’re embarking on a romantic holiday for two, an exciting adventure with a group of friends, or something altogether different, a sailing vacation to a tropical or exotic destination is the kind of getaway everyone dreams of. Regardless of your final destination, it’s bound to be a trip of a lifetime. Here’s a primer on getting your sea legs under you before your holiday at sea begins.

Give Yourself Time to Adjust

Whether you’ve rented a modest sailboat for the month or an elaborate luxury yacht for the week, it’s going to take some time to get used to spending all of your time on the water. Make sure you take plenty of time–ideally the entire first day or two–to familiarize yourselves with the way the boat works and feels without overtaxing yourself.

Plan Your Itinerary Carefully

You’ll want to do your research before planning a sailing vacation for the first time, and a big part of that is choosing your itinerary with care. If it’s your first time out on the water, choose calm seas and areas of low traffic. Remember that you will still be learning the basics, and your best bet will be to practice where there will be a good chance for minimal crowds and the lightest possible winds. You’ll also want to choose your vessel carefully as well–a large boat with more sails will be more difficult to control for a first timer than a smaller boat with fewer lines.

Tackle Seasickness Head-On

Nobody likes the idea of spending their entire vacation in the bathroom, but the fear of potential seasickness keeps far too many people from enjoying their first sailing vacation. Instead of avoiding the water altogether, a better solution is to simply know how to effectively combat spell of seasickness should it rear its ugly head.

For example, it may seem like a logical choice to head down below when queasiness sets in, but that’s actually one of the worst things you can do. An enclosed, rocking space is only likely to make the entire situation worse. Instead, experts suggest finding a quiet, comfortable spot up on top of the deck to lay as flat as possible. Then, set your gaze as far out to sea as possible, choosing a solid vantage point to lock your gaze on whenever possible.

And finally, don’t hesitate to stock up on medication. Many over the counter motion sickness remedies are immensely effective, and if you’ve experienced any type of sea, air, or motion sickness before, a quick visit to your doctor can give you a simple patch you can wear behind your ear or on your wrist that will keep you feeling well and active.

Make the Entire Trip an Adventure

If it’s your first time sailing, you’ll want to make the entire experience as memorable as possible. Depending on what your schedule and budget allows, that may mean adding a scenic drive along the coast before setting sail, or a weekend in a cottage by the sea at the end of your trip. However you make your vacation memorable, it’s sure to be one of your most fondly remembered.