About the cruising yacht and sailboat cruising. I have been fortunate enough to build, own, refurbish, cruise and liveaboard some great cruising yachts and cruising sailboat in my life. In addition, I have had some greater yacht charter experiences and also had some excellent cruises crewing for friends and others on various sailing and cruising yachts. It never gets old as anyone who has done a few cruises will tell you. I started my sailing life racing around the cans in various dingy classes, and then somehow started crewing on some racing yachts. All that intensity wasn’t for me and I had a more Jimmy Buffet attitude to sailing and cruising. Then I ended up altering my electrical career into the marine and maritime world and have spent a good many years on merchant vessels trading around the world and several years working offshore drilling rigs. As some know I have also been heavily involved in cruising yacht and motorboat electrical and electronic systems. Some of you will even have purchased one of my books, and thanks for that and hoped they helped. Cruising is still in the blood and as things keep changing I also keep trying to keep up with changes in yacht systems technology. “I once gave up sailing, it was the worst morning of my life!”
There are so many systems and equipment on the average cruising yacht these days. Hulls are made from exotic composites as are sails and rigging. I will cover sail handling and anchor handling elsewhere on the site. Also I am covering many of the topics from my various books, everything from marine diesels, batteries and battery charging, refrigeration to lightning protection, boat lighting, water systems and so on. Not to forget lots on electrical wiring systems, radar and communications, instrumentation and GPS. Then we have other challenges such as heating and cooling in a cruising yacht, and about cooking food and storage. Then we have important safety gear, mooring ropes and fenders, yacht tenders, and I guess I missed plenty of items.
These are some of my favorite quotes and excerpts about sailing and yachting, words from the sea. I have always had these quoted pasted into the front of my log books. Yes! I still maintain a log book! They serve to remind you why you chose to go cruising in the first place and when things get a bit fraught and challenging then simply referring to these helped give some perspective. If it were easy everyone would do it.
“The sea is dangerous and its storms terrible, but these obstacles have never been sufficient reason to remain ashore….unlike the mediocre, intrepid spirits seek victory over those things that seem impossible….it is with an iron will that they embark on the most daring of all endeavours….to meet the shadowy future without fear, and conquer the unknown.” Ferdinand Magellan (c1520)
“Son of a Son of a Sailor, The sea’s in my veins, My tradition remains, I’m just glad I don’t live in a trailer!” Jimmy Buffet
I don’t know how many people I have listened too expressing their views on modern production yachts being unsuitable for deepwater, bluewater ocean cruising. Like you I have heard all the arguments about the hull being unable to cope in big seas, rigs too flimsy to cope and so on, better with a long keel. I have owned and sailed steel classic cruising yachts, a classic timber cruising yacht and I can tell you while I loved them, I would settle on one of the many great production cruising yachts on the market. If you are well in well prepared sail boats, have a modicum of sailing skills, you will survive most conditions. Given that many sail short handed, most of these cruising boats are designed to be sailed like that, and extra crew is a bonus. Even just cruising the coast have similar decision criteria as bluewater cruising sailboats.
What is the best long distance cruising yacht? There are so many great cruising yacht and sail boat makers out there, many are almost household names. The question what are the best cruising sailboats is a very hard one to answer. I have built and helped many home yacht builders over the years, and some of my favorite yacht manufacturers have long since gone out of business. I will do some basics on catamaran sail boat and the trawler yacht and some of these famous boats. Likewise having had a few trips on a cruising trimaran they are also worth considering.
Superb offshore cruisers like the highly reputable Hallberg Rassey, and the classy Nautor’s Swan, and another Scandinavian favorite Sweden Yachts. Over in the UK while the ranks have thinned Rustler Yachts and Moody Yachts are still coming out with great offerings. The household French names include the Beneteau sail boat, having had many great experiences on some of their products. I have always admired the German Bavaria Yachts as well. Then we look at the excellent US cruising boats such as Island Packet Yachts, Hinckley Yachts and the Catalina sail boat and Hunter sail boat designs.
There are several more including Tartan Yachts and Morris Yachts as well. If you want to buy or sell then list your cruising sailboats for sale advert here, or look at your favorite yacht sales source. Keep up to date with all the cruising yacht information.