Sailing has always been inseparable linked to the van Urk family. Even now the young generation is practicing this. Ralph van Urk often spent his early years on board with his parents. His mother gives education to the children while sailing or his father placed an advertisement for a schoolteacher who would accompany them on board during the schoolperiod and teached the children in a specially equipped cabin on board. He is, as people used to say , “born with a rope in the cradle” and that also applies to his own children, they received education on board during primary school. Marja his wife took care of this with the help of the IVIO world school in Lelystad, in addition to her work as a cook in the galley for the crew. The two sons also share a passion for seafaring.
From 1900 onwards, sailing was only done on inland waterways, but after 1946 the family sailed both inland and at sea with special built seagoing vessels with a shallow draft to avoid running aground inland and a low airdraft to pass under bridges on rivers and canals.
After 1982, it was decided to sail at sea only , which meant that the ships could also get larger dimensions, which was necessary for the growing project cargo market. At first the sailing area was only North-West Europe, but has also been worldwide for the last 15 years. All the years there was the combination of Captain and owner in one person.