How to Turn Your Pontoon Into a Pirate Ship

Whether your idol is the Dread Pirate Robers, Blackbeard, or Captain Jack Sparrow, you can’t call yourself a true pirate if you’re operating an ordinary vessel. Although there’s no such thing as a pirate pontoon (the name IS catchy), with a few transformations you’ll have a mimic pirate ship in no time.

Pirate Flag

You probably guessed it – the first thing you need is a good ‘ol Jolly Roger. Pirates used Jolly Roger flags to appear threatening to other boaters.


We know a pontoon boat is not a sail boat, but putting up some mock sails is sure to draw attention to your vessel. Even if your sail is just a blanket on a wooden pole, if it looks authentic, it works.

Crow’s Nest

Where else is your lookout going to stand? Because a homemade crow’s nest isn’t the safest place for a person, having one for just looks doesn’t hurt.


You’re not a captain if you don’t have a faithful squawking companion.  If a real parrot is out of the question, why not pick up an inflatable one or one of the talking parrots found at Cracker Barrel?



How can you survey the surrounding land without a handheld telescope? Their collapsible design allows for easy storage in a pocket or coin wallet. If you’re looking for a prop, try making your own out of toilet/wrapping paper tubes. Here’s a handy DIY guide for that.


There’s no way you can feel like a tyrant of the water without a steering wheel that fits the part. Ditch the bland metallic steering device for a faux wooden one that looks more like a traditional ship’s wheel. If you’re savvy with power tools, here’s another DIY guide for a wooden pirate ship wheel.


No pirate ship is truly complete without actual pirates on board. Put together some costumes with your crew and sail away!

If you’d like to make your own wear, the DIY Network offers a pirate costume tutorial.