full keel bluewater sailboats for sale

BLUEWATER SAILING YACHTS QUALITY CRUISING SAILBOATS FROM THE WORLD’S TOP BUILDERS.

BLUEWATER CRUISING SAILBOATS FOR SALE

full keel bluewater sailboats for sale

2019 Outbound 56

Specifying and building Outbound 56 BAREFOOT was a labour of love for her owners. They wanted to build the best quality and most practical cruising yacht that they could sail easily, as a couple, and that would carry them and their young children in safety and comfort, even to remote areas. The yacht is a very highly specified and much improved version of the well-known Hylas 56. Even after delivery the owner continued to improve and upgrade the yacht – including changing out the main engine. No cost has been spared to produce this wonderful yacht. With her hydraulic in-mast furling main, hydraulic furler to both of the headstays, electric furling gennaker, electric sheet winches - all controlled at the cockpit – she may be sailed single-handed (and has been). The interior provides a delightful aft “stateroom”, a double cabin forward and a versatile third cabin that may be used as a single or double and serves as a stowage area and workbench.

full keel bluewater sailboats for sale

1988 Sparkman & Stephens Custom 50

The Stephen Custom 50 was conceived by the renowned yacht designers Sparkman & Stephens who have designed and built some of the worlds leading cruising and racing sailboats. They did not miss the mark with this 1988 classy cruiser. This stable yacht is designed and optimized for long term cruising and is a true blue-water sailboat. A solid glass hull and full skeg make Brizo a smooth ride even in rough seaways and give assurance. Built at the Queen Long yard in Taiwan, a precursor to the fabled Hylas yachts, her build quality is unquestioned. The quality craftsmanship and fine joinery is apparent throughout the interior of this well-conceived design. A deck saloon and a three-cabin layout make this yacht perfect for cruising couples or families. If you are seeking a boat that can carry you far and wide with speed, safety, and comfort, Brizo is a must see.

All Bluewater Cruising Sailboats For Sale

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2020 Outbound 56

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2009 Outbound 46

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2009 Outbound 44

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1993 Robert Perry Custom 63

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1989 Windship 60 Cutter

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1989 Little Harbor 54

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HYLAS COLLECTION

The premier collection of pre-owned Hylas bluewater sailing yachts that are currently available on the market. Collection Yacht brokers have sold more Hylas sailboats in the last decade than all other yacht brokerages combined.

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OYSTER COLLECTION

Oyster is one of the world’s top bluewater cruising sailboat brands. Built in the UK, Oysters are finely crafted seaworthy yachts that capable of ocean passages and circumnavigation, with their most popular models being in the 50-70ft range. The Oyster Collection features current Oyster yachts for sale as well as videos, reviews, and guides.

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PASSPORT COLLECTION

Built to meet the style and taste of the American sailing market, Passport yachts are admired worldwide for their hand-crafted quality, proven passage making abilities, and well-thought out designs. While the award winning Passport 545 is perhaps the most popular model, the entire line is built to the same standards and respected for its sailing performance, fine interior woodwork, and beautiful detailing inside and out.

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Bluewater Cruising Sailboat Reviews, Guides, & News

Passport 545 Aft Cockpit Walkthrough Video

Passport yachts gives us a closer look at the interior and exterior of the Passport 545 Aft Cockpit sailboat.

Promo Video of the All New Oyster 565

A great promo video that Oyster has released highlighting features of the all new Oyster 565.

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Oyster 725 Review

The 725 was built, as many Oysters are, to sail anywhere her owners wish to go. She is the first boat in the range to have exceptional and dedicated crew quarters.

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Oyster 625 Review

The Oyster 625 is a powerful sailboat that can be handled by an experienced couple but also has ample space for a captain and crew if that is the desired cruising mode.

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OYSTER YACHT SALES EXPERTS

Collection Yachts, based in the yachting capital of the world, Fort Lauderdale, is proud to represent buyers and sellers of Oyster Yachts. Traveling with clients across the globe to find the best Oyster Yacht has resulted in long lasting relationships and many sales. Like Oyster, Collection Yachts provides top quality service for as long as a client owns their Oyster.

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13 Popular Full Keel Sailboats Worth Considering

Full keel sailboats are very stable and durable - they are great for cruising long distances. But there are disadvantages too. Let's look at what models to consider, and why.

full keel bluewater sailboats for sale

Here are 13 good full keel sailboats that are worth considering:

Nicholson 32

Island packet 380, folkboat 25, cape dory 36, vancouver 32, tradewind 33, endurance 50, westsail 32, hans christian 52.

First of all let's have a look at why you should even be preferring full keel sailboats to a more traditional, widespread classical fin keel design.

Full Keel Advantages

As with everything, there are plenty of pros and cons on each side. Full keels generally provide better handling if the weather gets tricky, they track better, provide more stability downwind, and generally stabilize the boat movements better.

Furthermore, they are way more robust, thus less prone to damage. Running ashore isn't as big of a deal as it is with a fin keel and your rudder and propeller will be more protected with the mass of the keel in front of them.

Full Keel Disadvantages

With more mass and drag comes less speed. Plus the large surface area underwater holding the direction will result in a wider turning radius, which might be annoying in smaller spaces.

full keel bluewater sailboats for sale

Fin Keel vs Full Keel: Pros and Cons & When to Choose Which

Fin keel advantages.

The largest advantage of fin keels is their speed. They also provide better maneuvering and a better turning radius.

Fin Keel Disadvantages

It is inevitably more prone to damage though, wear and tear will be a way bigger issue than a full keel. They won't have your back when a gust comes since the water-resistance to the side will be smaller.

It seems then that for serious longer passages, liveaboards, and long-term sailing, full keels are better. As long as you don't care for speed as much, but are concerned about the boat having your back, this is the answer. So let's now look at the superstars of the full keel universe.

The very prototype of a long-distance tough cruiser. It has been with us since 1963 and happens to be among the first fiberglass boat models produced on a mass scale. Nicholson 32 went out of production in 1981 and it was a model approved for the 2018 Golden Globe Race, proving that even older Nicholsons are still standing strong due to their toughness and ease of repair.

They were supposedly as durable as if made out of steel. Though I'll leave up to you whether you want to see that as a marketing claim or reality, such a statement can not be made without some base.

Plus the newer models have a lot of interior space, are manageable for solo sailing, and provide a sturdy ride to take one around the world.

The story here is similar to the above Nicholson - meaning that we are looking at one long-lasting high-quality cruiser. Not just because of this specific model's build - Island Packet in general was always known for this. And it is among the very few companies that, in the modern era, keep making full keel boats.

In other words, you don't see many shipyards focusing on full keels these days, so if you want one and you would rather go with a new boat, Island Packet will be one of the stops you will very probably make when doing your research.

If you are looking for reliable cruisers, you will like this one, since cruising is what it was built for, even if it meant sacrificing some performance aspects. It has a wide beam, a lot of interior space, all of the amenities a comfy cruiser should have, such as a big refrigerator with a freezer, as well as a fully equipped kitchen. The long keel here serves as a comfort helper, since, as mentioned before, it adds to the stability and reduces motion.

Not to sound repetitive, but the word 'reliability' has to be mentioned again. It seems that boat builders who choose the full keel design have something in common.

But since this particular boat was born during the Second World War and has been going strong to this very day, what other words to describe it? It has the Nordic blood in its veins since it was thought into existence by the Scandinavian Yacht Racing Union and since it prefers just about everything over comfort.

The boat is very stable, not just because of its full keel, but also because of its insane 55% ballast ratio. For those who haven't come across this before, the ballast ratio is the ratio of the ballast weight relative to the boat weight. So for instance the nearly 9 tonne Bavaria 40 with its almost 3 tonne ballast has a ballast ratio around 30 percent.

Thus you can imagine that a boat that 'wastes' more than half of its weight on ballast is serious about rigidity. These are performance racer numbers. But of course, if you are designing a boat that has to withstand the Scandinavian storms, you don't have a choice than to go overboard with specs. So if this toughness is what you seek, look no further.

...although as far as I know, all Cape Dory boats have full keels, regardless of their length. Their 36-foot model is just their most popular one. Cape Dories are known for their sturdiness, ability to cross the oceans because of their stability, and relative ease of handling.

They were engineered by Carl Alberg, who was inspired by the Scandinavian Folkboat, where reliability is worth more than comfort, or the interior space. This boat rocks a heavy rig for hardcore traveling, but its 1.5-meter draft makes it ideal for coastal cruising as well.

What's quite interesting about this particular model is that during its lifespan it went through very few changes. Boats usually evolve, sailors' feedback is taken into consideration for upgrades, but Cape Dory 36 remained relatively unchanged inside or out. This is a big compliment, since the brand started out in 1963, stopped production in 1991, and sold its blueprints so that they could be built further. Talk about longevity.

Let's progress in technology! Just because a long keel is an old-fashioned or more traditional approach, it doesn't mean it remains monolithic in its ideology. There were innovations in the concept, such as cutaways in the keel, to reduce the biggest drawback of this design, the drag.

So it only makes sense that Vancouver, a company that had distinctiveness and innovation in its mission and vision, would take part in this. Their 32-foot model that begun its lifespan in the early eighties, had a deeply cutaway forefoot, plus a rudder that was wider the deeper it was underwater, meaning its widest point was at its lowest point. This was to increase efficiency, and rudder response.

Technicalities aside, this boat was very well made, no corners cut, no expenses spared. This resulted in quite pricey vessels, out of reach of many, but much time has passed since, so today it can be yours for around 40 000 USD and up. And since the build quality was so high back then, you can still enjoy a proper boat, usually at a higher quality than boats equal its age.

The great thing about Australian sailboat makers is that they design their boats for long passages. How else would they get off of the continent? Freya 39 is a good example of this since it has not only circled the globe many times but also won the Sydney-Hobart Yacht Race three times consecutively. And that's a famously hard race.

The boat is built like a tank, with thicker fiberglass walls than you would find in its rivals. Despite that, its owners claim to have crossed over two hundred miles per day on it, a figure that is well known when it comes to this model. Which sounds plausible with its 7.8 kts of hull speed.

Its construction makes her one stable boat since it has been noted that during races, it was able to carry a spinnaker longer than its competitors, well into the 30 knots of wind speed.

The only drawback here is that if you fancy it, since it is so highly valued, and in demand, it will be tricky to find one to buy. And once you do, prepare to pay around 60 000 - 90 000 USD for it.

This one comes with a story attached to it. Once upon a time, a naval engineer Nick attempted to sail around the world. Halfway through, his boat gave up, which meant a lot of trouble for Nick, but he exited this disaster with a pretty precise idea for what his next project would be. He set on to design a boat that would be so sturdy that his sailing misfortune would never repeat.

Out of this incident paired with a smart brain, Wylo 2 was born. To make sure his design stands, after putting this boat on the water, he proceeded to live on it, while circling the globe a few times.

Others, seeing this success, bought his designs and they became quite widespread. As you might have guessed, this boat has a lot of space for living, for storing equipment and provisions, so it is comfy to live on, not only for your body but because of its sturdiness, for your mind too. These designs have accomplished some astonishing feats in all corners of the world, so if you put your trust in this design, you won't be making a mistake.

If I said this boat is sturdy and ready for just about any destination, I'd really be repeating myself now. So while that's true, let's talk about what's special about Tradewinds 33.

It has a rather small cockpit, so on-deck dinners while watching the sunset with the whole crew might be a bit improvised, but the space saved is used for an impressively spacious interior as well as a nearly flat deck. So moving about is a pleasure.

For liveaboards, this is a good idea, since storage space will be plentiful. Plus it's an elegant looking boat, with a forestaysail as a default setup. So rock on.

Time for a larger boat. So that if you want something that won't lack anything you might wish for, including space, I have something for you too. All Endurances are full keels, so if you fancy a smaller model, there is a way.

Even though it is relatively new, (you will find models from around 1995) it will make you feel like a medieval pirate, with its old-school helm, wooden interior, and a spacious aft cabin that has large windows facing back!

It is a proper bluewater cruiser, built in South Africa based on a famous Peter Ibold's Endurance blueprint. It sleeps a whole family, so if a circumnavigation with a few friends is what you seek, this is one for you.

If you are up for some single-handed sailing, pause here for a bit. Small sailboats are usually nimble, on the top of it, this one is also quite sturdy and stable, as full keels are.

You won't find much space below the deck, so don't expect to have a party of more than around two people, but at least it's a good looking interior, with charming round windows and many of the usual amenities.

They say that Mason sailboats are premium quality for a non-premium price. I wonder whether them being built in Taiwan has something to do with it.

Here is a quote by an owner of a 1986 model that says it all: "I am absolutely captivated by the boat and am not objective at all in my feelings toward her. The general construction is of the highest standard. Like an Irish hunter, she is a workhorse and a lady-maybe not quite as fast around six furlongs as a racehorse, but for the long pull, through timber, brush, and over walls, she is really something."

Now although this owner admits subjectivity, this boat indeed was built with quality in mind. Sturdiness too - not only is its fiberglass hull properly solid, but it also features longitudinal stringers to add further rigidity.

There is a lot of brightwork, which might sound nice at first glance, but since it requires quite a lot of maintenance, some owners even said they could do with less wood if it meant less upkeep.

All in all though, when it comes to getting a lot of boat for not a lot of money, this is it.

Does it make sense to even praise how heavy and sturdy this boat is built? Probably not at this point. Just know it ticks all the boxes. It is made of 12 layered fiberglass for Pete's sake.

The design was based on ideas of the Norwegian engineer Colin Archer, who made his boats such that they could withstand the northern seas. Pair that with the fact that the interior here is surprisingly spacious with 6 ft 2 in of headroom and you've got yourself one comfortable circumnavigator.

The issue stemming from the heavy build and a full keel, which is a slower pace, applies here more than usual though. This boat is absolutely reliable, but don't expect winning speed races.

Sadly, Westsail 32 was in production only for some 9 years. Sales were booming, they made over 800 boats, but bad business practices and cash flow issues resulted in its demise.

Not the author, the boat. If beauty and elegance are what you are after, this one will catch your eye. Just as was the case with Mason, these boats were produced in Taiwan. But since the goal of the engineers was to create the 'ultimate cruising sailboat' and they spared no expense, expect to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for these boats, even though decades old.

The gorgeous classical design paired with the high build quality makes these exclusive pieces of work, plus quite a modern one since they ceased production in the 90s. So if you don't mind the higher price mark and are looking for something relatively new, that will, thanks to the build quality, last you for many years to come, this might be your choice.

Full keel sailboats are sturdy. Not only is that because of the full keel which itself provides a lot of structural integrity. But also because the choice of putting the full keel in means you are building something that prefers ruggedness and reliability over anything else. So it is logical that the rest of the boat will be built in the same fashion.

So if you don't mind sacrificing the few knots of extra speed, if you don't mind the smaller pool to choose from, if you want a boat that will have your back in pretty much any situation and place you will choose to go to, if you want to sail the Scandinavian design, go for it.

Arthur Rushlow

What a great page. Both my wife and I sailed Faulk Boats out of Canada prior to our moving to Florida. Once we arrived in Florida we had a Soveral 26 built we raced for three years prior to my returning to College and now 5 degrees later I am an Anglican Bishop with no boat.

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Home » Blog » Bluewater sailboats » The best bluewater sailboats (we analyzed 2,000 boats to find out)

The best bluewater sailboats (we analyzed 2,000 boats to find out)

By Author Fiona McGlynn

Posted on Last updated: May 16, 2023

We analyzed two-thousand bluewater sailboats to bring you a list of proven offshore designs

BEST BLUEWATER SAILBOATS

What are the best bluewater sailboats?

This was a question we asked a lot of experienced cruisers when we decided to sail across the Pacific. We needed a boat after all, and we wanted to buy the best bluewater sailboat we could afford.

We heard a lot of strong opinions.

Some sailors thought it was reckless to go offshore in any boat that didn’t have a full keel.

Others prioritized performance, and wouldn’t dream of going anywhere in a slow boat like the Westsail 32 (a.k.a. a “Wet Snail 32”).

Opinions like these left us feeling confused like we had to choose between safety and performance.  

If we learned anything from these conversations, it’s that what makes a bluewater boat is a hotly debated topic!

However, there’s a way to cut through all the opinions and get to the bottom of it. The solution is….

We analyzed just under 2,000 boats embarking on ocean crossings (over a 12 year time period) and came up with a list of the ten best bluewater sailboats.

Where did we get our data?

The data for our best bluewater sailboats list comes from 12 years of entries in the Pacific Puddle Jump (PPJ), an annual cross-Pacific rally. We took part in 2017 and had a ball!

You can read about the methodology we used to analyze this data at the bottom of the post.

What do we mean by “best”?

We know, that word is overused on the internet!

Simply, based on our data set, these were the most common makes and models entered in the PPJ cross-Pacific rally. There were at least 10 PPJ rally entries for every make of boat on our top 10 list.

So, these boats are 100% good to go?

No! A bluewater boat isn’t necessarily a seaworthy boat. Almost every cruiser we know made substantial repairs and additions to get their offshore boat ready, adding watermakers , life rafts, solar panels, and more.

Also, you should always have a boat inspected by a professional and accredited marine surveyor before buying it or taking it offshore.

But my bluewater baby boat isn’t on this list!?

There are hundreds of excellent bluewater yachts that are not on this list. For instance, we sailed across the Pacific in a Dufour 35, which didn’t even come close to making our top 10 list.

Choosing the right boat is very much an individual journey.

Where can I find these bluewater boats for sale?

We recognize that a top 10 list won’t get you very far if you’re shopping for a bluewater boat (especially if you’re looking in the used market).

So, to help you find your perfect boat, we’re going to create a big list of bluewater boats that you can use to refine your search on Yachtworld, Craigslist, or any other places to buy a used boat .

Sign up for our newsletter to get our big list of bluewater boats list as soon as it comes out.

We’re also working on a series of posts by size class. For example, if you’re looking for a smaller boat, you can narrow it down to the best bluewater sailboats under 40 feet .

Takeaways from our analysis

There were no big surprises on an individual boat level. All of these makes are considered good cruisers, some of them are even best-selling designs! However, there were a few things that caught our eye.

“Go simple, go small, go now” still holds water

We were thrilled to see the smallest boat in our roundup at the very top of the list! Westsail 32 owners can take pride in their small but mighty yachts (and ignore all those snail-sayers).

While undoubtedly there’s been a trend towards bigger bluewater cruisers in recent years, small cruising sailboats seem to be holding their own. 60% of the monohulls on this list were under 40 feet (if you count the Valiant 40 which sneaks just under at 39.92 feet).

Cat got our tongue

So, we knew catamarans were a thing, but we didn’t fully appreciate HOW popular they’d become!

50% of our top 10 bluewater boat list consists of catamarans—a good fact to toss out the next time you’re trying to garner a happy hour invite on the party boat next door (which will undoubtedly be a catamaran).

Still got it!

We’ve got good news for all you good old boat lovers! 60% of the boats on our list were first built before 2000.

While these older models are less performance-oriented than modern designs, cruisers value these boats for their ability to stand up to rough seas and heavy weather. It just goes to show that solid bones and classic looks never go out of style.

Alright, without further ado, let’s dive into our list of the 10 best bluewater boats!

The 10 best bluewater boats

best bluewater sailboats

1. Westsail 32

The Westsail 32 is an iconic bluewater sailboat

The Westsail 32 is one of the most iconic bluewater cruisers and 19 have set out to cross the Pacific in the PPJ rally since 2009.

In 1973, this small cruising sailboat garnered a 4-page spread in Time magazine. The article inspired many Americans to set sail and the Westsail 32, with its double-ender design, set the standard for what a real bluewater cruiser should look like.

There were approximately 830 built between 1971 and 1980.

This small boat has taken sailors on ocean crossings and circumnavigations. Though considered “slow” by some, the heavily-built Westsail 32 has developed a loyal following for her other excellent offshore cruising characteristics.

If you’re interested in small bluewater sailboats, check out our post on the best small sailboats for sailing around the world .

LOA32.00 ft / 9.75 m
First built1971
BuilderWestsail (USA)
DesignerW. Crealock / W. Atkin
Hull typeLong keel, trans. hung rudder
Rig typeCutter
Displacement19,500 lb / 8,845 kg

2. Lagoon 380

Lagoon 380

The Lagoon 380 is a reliable, solidly built catamaran and considered roomy for its size. We counted 18 of them in our data set. With over 800 boats built , it may be one of the best-selling catamarans in the world. Like the other boats on this list, the Lagoon 380 has proven itself on long passages and ocean crossings, winning it many loyal fans.

LOA37.89 ft / 11.55 m
First built2000
BuilderJeanneau (FRA)
DesignerV. Peteghem / L. Prévost
 typeCat. twin keel
Rig typeFractional sloop
Displacement16,005 lb / 7,260 kg
More specifications

3. Lagoon 440

Lagoon 440 is a bluewater catamaran

18 Lagoon 440s have set out to cross the Pacific in the PPJ rally since 2009.

Why leave the comforts of home, when you can take them with you? The Lagoon 440 is a luxurious long-range cruiser, offering beautiful wood joinery, spacious accommodations, and a deluxe galley. Oh, and you have the option of an electric boat motor !

SAIL and Sailing Magazine have both done in-depth reviews of the Lagoon 440 if you want to learn more.

LOA44.65 ft / 13.61 m
First built2004
BuilderLagoon (FRA)
DesignerV. Peteghem / L. Prévost
Hull typeCat. twin keel
Rig typeFractional sloop
Displacement26,786 lb / 12,150 kg

4. Amel Super Maramu (incl. SM 2000)

Amel Super Maramu is a popular bluewater sailboat

If you follow the adventures of SV Delos on YouTube, you probably know that the star of the show (SV Delos— in case the title didn’t give it away ) is an Amel Super Maramu. These classic bluewater sailboats can be found all over the world, proof they can go the distance.

We counted 16 Amel Super Maramus and Super Maramu 2000s in our list of PPJ entries.

Ready to join the cult of Amel? Read more about the iconic brand in Yachting World.

LOA52.49 ft / 16.00 m
First built1989
BuilderAmel (FRA)
DesignerH. Amel / J. Carteau
Hull typeWing keel
Rig typeMasthead ketch
Displacement35,274 lb / 16,000 kg

5. Valiant 40

The Valiant 40 is an iconic bluewater cruiser

When I interviewed legendary yacht designer, Bob Perry, for Good Old Boat in 2019, he told me that the Valiant 40 was one of the boats that most defined him and marked the real start of his career.

At the time, heavy displacement cruisers were considered sluggish and slow, especially in light winds.

Perry’s innovation with the Valiant 40 was to combine a classic double ender above the waterline, with an IOR racing hull shape below the waterline. The result was the first “performance cruiser”, a blockbuster hit, with over 200 boats built in the 1970s.

It’s no surprise we counted 16 Valiant 40s in our data set.

Cruising World magazine dubbed it “a fast, comfortable, and safe cruising yacht,” and there’s no doubt it’s covered some serious nautical miles.

It’s worth noting that there were blistering problems with hull numbers 120-249 (boats built between 1976 and 1981). Later models did not have this problem. Despite the blistering issues, the Valiant 40 remains one of the most highly thought of bluewater designs.

LOA39.92 ft / 12.17 m
First built1973
BuilderUniflite/Valiant (USA)
DesignerR. Perry
Hull typeFin keel, rudder on skeg
Rig typeCutter
Displacement23,520 lb / 10,668 kg

6. TAYANA 37

The Tayana 37 is a top bluewater boat

The Tayana 37 is another hugely popular Perry design. The first boat rolled off the production line in 1976 and since then, nearly 600 boats have been built. Beautiful classic lines and a proven track record have won the Tayana 37 a devoted following of offshore enthusiasts.

12 Tayana 37s have set out to cross the Pacific in the PPJ rally since 2009. Read more about the Tayana 37 in this Practical Sailor review .

LOA36.67 ft / 11.18 m
First built1976
BuilderTa Yang (TWN)
DesignerR. Perry
Hull typeLong keel
Rig typeCutter
Displacement22,500 lb / 10,206 kg
 

7. Lagoon 450

The Lagoon 450 is one of the best bluewater sailboats

If this list is starting to sound like a paid advertisement, I swear we’re not on Lagoon’s payroll! This is the third Lagoon on our list, but the data doesn’t lie. Lagoon is making some of the best cruising sailboats.

The 450 has been a hot seller for Lagoon, with over 800 built since its launch in 2014. While not a performance cat, the Lagoon 450 travels at a reasonable speed and is brimming with luxury amenities.

At least 12 owners in the PPJ rally chose the Lagoon 450 to take them across the Pacific. It’s no wonder SAIL had so many good things to say about it.

LOA45.80 ft / 13.96 m
First built2014
BuilderLagoon (FRA)
DesignerV. Peteghem / L. Prévost
Hull typeCat. twin keel
Rig typeFractional sloop
Displacement33,075 lb / 15,003 kg

8. Fountaine Pajot Bahia 46

Fountaine Pajot Bahia 46 Bluewater Sailboat

There were 11 Fountaine Pajot Bahia 46s in our data set.

Fountaine Pajot released the Bahia 46 in 1997, a sleek design for traveling long distances. Its generously-sized water and fuel tanks along with ample storage for cruising gear are a real plus for the self-sufficient sailor.

According to Cruising World , “Cruising-cat aficionados should put the Bahia 46 on their “must-see” list.”

LOA46.10 ft / 14.05 m
First built1997
BuilderFountaine Pajot (FRA)
DesignerJoubert-Nivelt
Hull typeCat. twin keel
Rig typeFractional sloop
Displacement21,385 lb / 9,700 kg
 See

9. Catalina 42 (MKI, MKII)

Catalina 42 bluewater boat

10 Catalina 42s (MKI and MKII) have set out to cross the Pacific in the PPJ rally since 2009.

The Catalina 42 was designed under the guidance of the legendary yacht designer and Catalina’s chief engineer, Gerry Douglas.

One of Catalina’s philosophies is to offer “as much boat for the money as possible,” and the Catalina 42 is no exception. According to Practical Sailor , Catalina aims to price its boats 15% to 20% below major production boats like Hunter and Beneteau.

Practical Sailor has a great in-depth review of the Catalina 42 .

LOA41.86 ft / 12.76 m
First built1989
BuilderCatalina (USA)
DesignerCatalina
Hull typeFin keel, spade rudder
Rig typeMasthead sloop
Displacement20,500 lb / 9,299 kg

10. Leopard 46

Leopard 46 bluewater sailboat

Since 2009, 10 Leopard 46s have embarked on Pacific crossings in the PPJ rally.

Leopards have won legions of fans for their high build quality, robust engineering, and excellent performance.

The Leopard 46 also boasts something of a racing pedigree. It was built in South Africa by Robertson and Caine and designed by Gino Morelli and Pete Melvin, who came up with the record-breaking catamaran Playstation / Cheyenne 125 .

Read more about the Leopard 46 in this Cruising World review .

LOA46.32 ft / 14.12 m
First built2006
BuilderRobertson & Caine (RSA)
DesignerMorelli & Melvin
Hull typeCat. twin keel
Rig typeFractional sloop
Displacement24,206 lb / 10,980 kg

Methodology

What the data is and isn’t.

The PPJ data was a real boon because it reflects a wide range of cruising boats: small, big, old, new, expensive, and affordable. We think this may be because the PPJ is a very financially accessible rally—the standard entry cost is $125 or $100 if you’re under 35 (age or boat length!).

We did look at data from other (pricier) rallies but found that the results skewed towards more expensive boats.

Needless to say, the data we used is just a sample of the bluewater boats that crossed the Pacific over the last 10+ years. Many cruisers cross oceans without participating in a rally!

Entries vs. completions

The data we used is a list of the PPJ entries, not necessarily the boats that completed the rally. In instances where we saw the same boat entered multiple years in a row, we assumed they’d postponed their crossing and deleted all but the latest entry to avoid double counting.

Boat make variations

The world of boat building and naming can get pretty complicated. Sometimes a manufacturer changes a boat’s name a year or two into production, other times the name remains the same but the boat undergoes a dramatic update.

For the most part, we’ve used SailboatData.com’s classification system (if they list the boats separately, then we have also), except where there are two separately listed models that have the same LOA, beam, and displacement.

Fiona McGlynn

Fiona McGlynn is an award-winning boating writer who created Waterborne as a place to learn about living aboard and traveling the world by sailboat. She has written for boating magazines including BoatUS, SAIL, Cruising World, and Good Old Boat. She’s also a contributing editor at Good Old Boat and BoatUS Magazine. In 2017, Fiona and her husband completed a 3-year, 13,000-mile voyage from Vancouver to Mexico to Australia on their 35-foot sailboat.

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162 New and Used Bluewater Yachts

Bristol 45.5 CC

Oriental, North Carolina (United States of America)

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Beaufort Yacht Sales

Classic Blue Water Cruiser With Recent Major Equipment Upgrades; An Outstanding Value This Bristol 45.5 is an excellent example of Ted Hood’s well renowned, master design. This cl...

Beaufort (United States of America)

Fennell HULL # 1 Rugged custom blue water cruiser – Only 6 were built between 1983 and 1986 High gunwales, canoe stern, cutter rig with full keel, double ender and heavy displacement M...

Hans Christian 41T Molakai

Beaufort, North Carolina (United States of America)

Classic blue water, traditional cutter design. Described as an easy boat to sail with her split keel the HC 41 T is a heavy displacement cruiser built for comfort. She excels with a gent...

Irwin 52 Mark IV

“The boat that started the big boat deck-saloon revolution” The Irwin 52 was a trend-setting boat. It was a deck-saloon cruiser before there were deck-saloon cruisers. What’s more, the Irwin...

Caliber LRC

Ready To Sail Today – 40’ 2003 Caliber Long Range Cruiser – Your Gateway to Offshore Agandau(Silver and Gold) is an excellent example of the time proven Caliber 40 Long Range Cru...

Fort Lauderdale, FL, (United States of America)

The Multihull Company

LevioSail is the lowest-priced 2017 Lagoon. 42 in the market today. Among the many recent upgrades include: 57 HP Yanmar Engines Flexofold Propellers Full B&G Electronics Suite AIS Transceiv...

Cape Coral, FL, (United States of America)

"AQUAHOLIC", formerly "Knotty Dreamer", is a wonderful example of why the Lagoon 42 is one of the manufacturer's most sought-aftermodels. Known far and wide, the Lagoon 42 is a comfortable cat w...

Fantasi 44 Pilothouse Sloop

Lake Erie (United States of America)

Pointe North Yachts

Designed by Gabriel Heyman of Heyman Yachts and built in Sweden, only 21 versions of this design were ever built and they rarely come to market. Swedish design ethic focusses on functionality...

Dufour 44'

Newport Beach, CA (United States of America)

Denison Yacht Sales

On Order - Arriving Jan 2025 Boat | 44' Dufour 2025 Whether for experienced sailors or adventure-seeking lovers of the sea, the Dufour 44 sailing yacht is designed to deliver an unf...

Island Packet 38

Norfolk (United States of America)

1987 Island Packet 38' Chasing Summer Chasing Summer is a cutter rig, swing keel featuring a large open cockpit with full enclosure and bimini top. The upscale interior includes a spacious sa...

Vancouver 27

“UPDATE:Brand new custom interior, replaced interior bulkhead, head liner and custom teak trim (Sep 2023)– Your Day on the Water just got better!……” This beautiful little boat ha...

New Bern, North Carolina (United States of America)

The Pearson 28 has been a very popular racer/cruiser over the years. She actually sleeps 6 and would make a nice small family cruiser. Overall the boat was a lot of fun. It would move ...

MX, San Carlos (United States of America)

The 86-foot (26.5m) BUGARI F86 is a new-build masterpiece showcasing fine Italian craftsmanship, innovation and super-yacht qualities. With an unmissable Italian style, BUGARI F86’s interior is...

Fort Pierce, FL, (United States of America)

New Arrival! 3 Cabin / 3 Head layout Each head includes a shower and electric toilet Refrigerator and freezer Sink Stove/oven Microwave Gas alarm Includes standard kitchenware Fresh paint in 202...

Custom TM 52

Marseille (France)

MiB Yacht Services

Custom TM52 Plan Joubert Nivelt Attention: Rare and exceptional boat (only 5 units made worldwide)!! This TM52 designed by Joubert is a magnificent sailboat nearly 16 meters...

Ardfern S04 (United Kingdom)

Mark Cameron Yachts

The Victory 40 hull has proven its self as a capable offshore, long distance cruiser. The same Van de Stadt designed hull underpinning the European built Trintella IV. With its...

Falmouth (United Kingdom)

Bowman 40 from 1994. This is a very nice example of the sought after blue water legend. NO TEAK DECKS from new. The shallow draft and well proven sea keeping qualities make thi...

Laurent Giles 38

Rhu (United Kingdom)

A robust, go-anywhere blue water cruiser, with traditional sweeping lines and a long encapsulated keel the Giles 38 was designed in 1971 by Laurent Giles. Moulded by Blondecell...

Peter Nicholls Steel Yachts Tucker Designs Renegade 37

Northants UK (United Kingdom)

Peter Nicholls Yachtbuilders Ltd

Round bilge fast steel cruising yacht to RCD Category A. Unused demonstrator ready to cruise and live aboard in safety and comfort. Seen out of the water at our yard at Peter Nicholls Yac...

Beneteau First 435

Le Marin (Martinique)

FIRST 435 FIRST 435 from 1988 available in Le Marin, Martinique Discover this superb racing-cruising sailboat with 3 cabins (at the rear a double cabin and a single one s...

Beneteau Oceanis 55

Whites International Yachts (Mallorca)

"Designed for comfortable cruising, whether you’re on or below deck" This Beneteau Oceanis 55 from second owner is in great condition throughout and has never been chartered. She has wide tea...

Costa Rica (Costa Rica)

Vortec Marine Ltd

A stunning and professionally maintained Oyster 625 from 2019. Name: Happy Warrior Builder: Oyster Yachts...

Amel Santorin

- (Guadeloupe)

Amel Santorin Exclusive Listing at MiB Yacht Services: A superb Amel SANTORIN in a rare state of preservation. Renowned as an excellent long-distance cruising yacht, the San...

Belliure Belliure 41

A&C Yacht Brokers

Belliure 42 type deck saloon built in 1995 by the Belliure Yacht shipyard in Spain, two-cabin version. Polish flag, European VAT paid, available in Martinique. Accommodations: Two double...

Beneteau Oceanis 331

Southampton (United Kingdom)

Southampton Waters Yacht Sales Ltd

Oceanis 331, 2001 model with many features and upgrades whilst in her current ownership, she has just recently had brand new full camper covers and stacker covers done which were 6k, she has a ...

Bluewater Boat 56

United Kingdom

Williams Marine & Watersports ltd

Our single purpose at BLUEWATER YACHTS is to buiuld great offshore yachts for people who want to experience adventurein a well thought out and well built yacht that has great performance ...

Vancouver 34 Pilot

Tarbert (United Kingdom)

The pilothouse configuration of the Vancouver 34 is ideally suited to cruising in the waters of Scotland with the elevated saloon providing excellent visibility for crew to enj...

Simson Bay Village (Sint Maarten)

Virgin Islands Yacht Broker (VIYB ltd)

Probably the most famous Oyster 56 in the World, Hood Carbon mast, fully battened mainsail and Reckman electric furlers along with electric primary winches make short handed sa...

* Price displayed is based on today's currency conversion rate of the listed sales price.

ABOUT BLUEWATER YACHTS

A Bluewater Yachts is designed to be self-sufficient in rough seas and long passages. These boats are built sturdy and are designed for long-term cruising, in all weathers.

MANUFACTURERS IN BLUEWATER YACHTS

Bluewater yachts by make, bluewater yachts by country, bluewater yachts by state.

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Bluewater 56

Proven Frers design, built by the same yard that builds Outbound Yachts

full keel bluewater sailboats for sale

The Bluewater 56 may look familiar to you, as it is the same proven Frers design that was originally developed for Hylas, of which 27 boats were built. Bluewater Yachts acquired the tooling and are now building them at the same yard that builds Outbound Yachts. In fact, hull #1 debuted as an Outbound 56 in the 2019 Annapolis Sailboat Show, and in December of 2020 hull #2 was commissioned which is now called the Bluewater 56.

The Bluewater 56 features a proper offshore bow entry and hull shape which deliver swiftness, power and stability, while maximizing space down below. There is more than ample room for a luxurious owner’s suite aft, beautifully finished in hand-chosen woods. Offshore comfort is further enhanced by the way the hulls are built, the Twaron aramid fiber yields “bullet-proof” strength for added safety.

Experienced sailors will appreciate this well behaved and easily driven yacht, not just for her speed but for the safety that comes with performance and control. This also reduces fatigue on offshore passages and ensure a well rested crew. Anyone who steps aboard the Bluewater 56 will also appreciate the high level of craftsmanship and attention to detail that went into building the boat, combined with the well thought out and spacious design ensures that time aboard is time well spent.

  • INTERIOR/LAYOUT
  • SPECS & EQUIPMENT

full keel bluewater sailboats for sale

HULL AND DECK CONSTRUCTION

  • Twaron hull, a carbon aramid fiber with alternating FRP glass lay-up hand laid with no core and using vinylester resins and Isophthalic Gel-coat
  • Three coats of bottom paint
  • Watertight collision bulkhead forward of forward cabin
  • Watertight Stern sections across aft lazarettes and stern locker
  • Divided Anchor Locker with separate locker for fenders and dock lines
  • Large Aft Stern lazarettes, port and starboard with dual Bailey latches for watertight seal
  • Stern Garage with dedicated Rule Auto bilge pump with manual over ride in cockpit
  • Very large step down sail locker with deck hatch access. 5’ deep and 4’ long
  • Solid Lead Keel with solid 40mm stainless steel keel bolts with transverse mounted 13mm backing plates
  • Partially skegged rudder for optimal performance, strength and protection
  • Bottom of rudder plane in each model above the keel plane for grounding safety
  • Solid GRP fiberglass in all areas of deck for deck fittings and stress area
  • Molded contrasting nonskid available in two in linen beige or whisper gray
  • Solid stainless stern head fitting with split bow roller with stowage for 55lb Delta and 55lb Rocna or Spade anchor
  • Solid Stainless striker plates for bow protection
  • Salt-water washdown pump for anchor washdown
  • Two pair of stainless steel 12” bow cleats, pair of 12” midship cleats and one pair of 12” stern cleats
  • 32” high stanchions 1” in diameter with double lifelines
  • Side Boarding ladder with port and starboard side mounting brackets
  • Mainship 316 stainless overhead hatches and ports throughout
  • Winch Inventory: Primary Winches: Antal XT66’s (2ea) Secondary Winches: Antal XT52 ‘s (2ea) Mainsheet Winch: Antal XT48 (1ea) Cockpit Winch: Antal XT48 (1ea) Halyard Winches: Antal XT48’s (2ea)
  • Harken Stand up Staysail Blocks
  • Teak Handrails on foredeck coach roof and aft coach roof
  • Stainless steel companionway handrails
  • Stainless coach roof handrails
  • Hollywood pedestal with chart plotter and instruments
  • Ritchie 5” Compass
  • Solid Teak varnished cockpit table
  • Solid stainless Cowl Vents, 4 Total. One pair forward and one pair aft
  • Stainless protective stern plate
  • Yanmar 4JH150 4-cylinder turbo diesel engine with cockpit controls and complete alarm system
  • Morse single lever control system to protect against high RPM gear shifting
  • Dual Racor fuel filtration system allowing independent filter and bypass system
  • In line fuel pump allowing engine bypass for filtration and eliminates the need for future engine bleeding in the case of a dry fuel tank
  • Oil change pump built in as standard
  • All wire is tinned, no copper wiring except some electronics
  • All thru hull fittings are solid bronze and all bonded
  • Six AGM 8D House batteries, 1,350 amp/hr total, All batteries boxed and secured
  • AGM Engine starting battery, 210 amp
  • All batteries are isolated with a built in reverse isolation switch
  • Primary High Output 130A Alternator dedicated to house bank
  • Dedicated 60A Alternator for Engine Battery
  • Fire retardant engine room sound insulation
  • All batteries self-contained, strapped and secured
  • Shore power connection; 50/amp 125/250V
  • Mastervolt 100 amp built in battery charger
  • Navigation lights: running lights masthead anchor; tricolor steaming light and foredeck light
  • Raymarine depth sounder, speed log and wind speed indicator
  • Three independent bilges pump systems
  • Solid Drive steering system in lieu of chain and cable design
  • Freshwater hot and cold shower on stern platform
  • Stainless stern swim ladder
  • Inner Forestay Chain plate for optional inner forestay

INTERIOR FEATURES

  • Cherry interior is standard (European Oak or Maple interiors are optional)
  • Solid teak soles laid on sub flooring with epoxy urethane coating and 7 layers of varnish
  • Cherry doors and trim
  • Finely finished cabinetry with a choice of solid or louvered finish
  • Solid cherry handrails throughout the interior for easy movement offshore
  • Abundant overhead hatches and ports for excellent ventilation
  • Epoxy sealed end grains and subflooring
  • All cabin sole pieces are positive locking for offshore passage making
  • All cabinets are finished throughout including complete interiors
  • All overhead headliner is easily removed
  • 275 Gallons of Total Fuel Tankage in four independent tanks
  • 280 Gallons of Total Water Tankage in four independent tanks
  • Options available to increase and/or change balance of total and type of tankage
  • All tanks have easy access for inspection with dipsticks, threaded inspection port and larger inspection
  • Port for interior inspection and cleaning
  • Two independent Shurflow freshwater pump systems
  • Third manual freshwater pump, foot activated for freshwater accessed in the galley
  • All tankage for water and fuel is 316L stainless steel for best corrosion resistance
  • Two independent holding tanks, one dedicated to each head
  • 20 gallon hot water heater heated via engine driven system or AC supply
  • All through hull fittings are bronze with seacocks or valves and bonded
  • Galley is over 10.5’ in length with a walk through to the aft cabin offering total safety with room to brace on either tack while offshore
  • Ample cabinets, storage lockers and drawers including full length pantry for cutlery, cookware, and food storage
  • Slide out trash container with positive locking door
  • Force 10 three burner stove with propane monitor and 2 propane sensors
  • 12v Freezer/Refrigeration with thermostatic controls and temperature gauges
  • Both boxes have electric pumps for keeping drained
  • Freezer/refrigeration boxes are both top and front loading
  • Counter top recesses over stove allowing for stainless steel backsplash and increased counter space when in place
  • Manual foot pumps for fresh water

NAVIGATION STATION

  • Full L shaped nav station with two desk areas and adjustable swivel chair
  • Dedicated computer desk with slide out computer shelf
  • Split instrument panel for access to wiring harness and connections
  • All instruments and systems well labeled inside and out and traced numerically
  • Queen size Aft Berth set centerline with split mattress and accompanying starboard side settee
  • Port and Starboard side hanging lockers with optional removable shelves
  • Full length deep hanging locker centerline
  • Portside vanity with fold up mirror and drawer with three separate cabinets
  • Cabinet or drawers available under owners berth
  • Separate owners shower stall
  • Large dedicated linen closet also used for washer/dryer location
  • 42 gallon dedicated holding tank with dual “Y” valve systems for direct overboard, deck pump
  • Out and direct pump out of holding tank overboard
  • Solid Cherry dinette with removable leaf for smaller table size. Dinette drops down easily to create a full double berth
  • Full length starboard settee pulls out an additional 9” for a wide sea berth
  • All tankage in main salon is located below the sole allowing extensive storage under seating areas and behind the dinette and settee
  • Double walk through passageway offering optimal ventilation and movement throughout the interior
  • Two folding stools become footrests or cocktail tables
  • Maximum Headroom just under 7’

FORWARD CABIN

  • Centerline Berth with Lifting Top
  • Split cabinet doors or Two rows of drawers underneath berth with two separate isolated storage bins
  • Starboard and portside hanging lockers with removable shelves
  • Cabinets above the berth for added storage

FORWARD HEAD

  • Separate enclosed shower stall
  • 39 gallon dedicated holding tank with dual “Y” valve systems for direct over board, deck pump

PORTSIDE CABIN

Portside cabin can be configured to be a private double stateroom, or crew’s quarters with an upper and lower berth. There is also the option of redesigning the cabin to be a storage/utility room with a stainless steel workbench and washer/dryer if desired.

SAILING HARDWARE

  • Selden anodized aluminum mast with triple spreader rig
  • Stainless wiring standing rigging with Sta-lock Mechanical fittings. No swage fittings at deck
  • Forward and aft lowers for rig stability with individual chain plates
  • Discontinuous rigging for optimal strength and increased hardware
  • Furlex Roller Furling Forestay
  • Doyle sails including Mainsail and 135% genoa
  • Primary and secondary Main Halyard
  • Primary and secondary Genoa Halyard
  • Halyard Bales on forward dorades

GROUND TACKLE

  • RC12 Maxwell Nilsson windlass with chain feed and stainless steel plate for chain protection with bow controls and remoter cockpit windlass controls
  • Primary anchor, 88lb galvanized Rocna 40
  • Secondary anchor, 55lb galvanized Delta
  • Primary anchor and tackle: 300’ system 40-3/8” galvanized Hi tensile chain
  • Secondary anchor and tackle: 50’ system 40-3/8” Hi tensile chain and 300’ of 5/8” anchor rode
  • Four dock lines, 2 x 35’ x 5/8” premium braid, 2 x 40’ x 5/8” premium braid

full keel bluewater sailboats for sale

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full keel bluewater sailboats for sale

Bluewater Sailboats Boats for sale

1977 Erickson E-27

1977 Erickson E-27

Brooklyn Heights, Missouri

Make Erickson

Category Cruiser Sailboats

Posted Over 1 Month

27 ft bluewater sailboat , trailer optional

1984 Garcia Maracuja 38

1984 Garcia Maracuja 38

Hull, Massachusetts

Make Garcia

Model Maracuja 38

A bluewater aluminium sailboat that can take you anywhere safely. This was our home from 2015 to 2018 when we crossed the Atlantic with our 3 kids from south of France. see: www.nomadatsea.com Deriver integral (center-board) with two boards – central and a second one at the stern in front of the rudder (reaching-board). Go-anywhere with only 3 feet draft with boards up. Boat is on the hard and will require some preparations before it can go cruising again. displacement 9 tons Engine Yanmar 3JH4CE 39HP with Saildrive Yanmar SD40 from 2004 Integrated diesel tank 350 L 2 water tanks: flexible 240 L and another Stainless steel 250 L Rigging and sails Sloop 16 m Dacron Genoa 50.5 m2, anti-uv on a furler Dacron Jib 30 m2 on a removable headstay Storm sail 8 m2 All sails are from 2011 Anchoring Manual windlass Simpson-Lawrence Sea-Tiger 555 WASI 25 kg stainless steel + 60 m of galvanized 10 mm chain Brittany anchor 16 kg + 10 m of 10 mm chain FOBHP anchor 20 kg + 10 m of 10 mm chain Danforth anchor for a dinghy Electronics Anemometer Gramin GWS10 (thermoeter, barometer) Speedometer + sounder Airmar DST800V Depth sounder Garmin NMEA 2000 GPS Garmin 17x NMEA 2000 AIS receiver/transmitter Amec Camino 101 + dedicated GPS and VHF antennas 12v PC + flat screen to which all electronics are connected as well Radar Goldstar GS 916 Raymarine SPX30 auto pilot Raymarine P70 auto pilot command NMEA2000 VHF Standard Horizon GX2100 with AIS receiver VHF repeater RAM3 in the cockpit SSB Icom M802 Pactor PTC-2pro modem (used to send and receive emails and weather) Xantrex PROwatt SW 1400i, 230V, 1400W converter Solar panels 1 x 90W; 2 x 75W; 1 x 75W MPP Solara regulator Electric Energy D400 Wind generator Life raft Viking RescYou Pro 6 person Sailomat 601-X6 Windwane Lavac marine heads Black water tank 45 L General 2 cabines with double berths + double berth in the bow (‘lit breton’) Tiller in the cockpit 2 very large cockpit lockers Big and very practical stern swimming platform Plenty of spare parts

1978 Ingrid Bluewater

1978 Ingrid Bluewater

Muskegon, Michigan

Make Ingrid

Model Bluewater

Category Sailboats

1978 Ingrid Bluewater The Ingrid 38, from the pen of William Atkin, is a heavy displacement bluewater ketch derived from Colin Archer's famous double ender designs, which in turn were inspired by Viking boats renowned for their heavy weather characteristics. Perhaps Atkin sums it up best by saying it's, "the kind of boat that behaves herself in rough water and can be depended upon to sail herself". (To that part we do hear frequent mentions of the superb one-finger-on-tiller tracking and a comfortable ride.) With her old-world style she's a good looking boat with a sheer line reminiscent of the Crealock's famous Westsail 32. Her seaworthiness is there to see in her full keel, heavy displacement and overbuilt construction. Her hull is heavily hand-laid in fiberglass, there's robust outboard chain plates and an outboard rudder protected by extra fiberglass, as well as a large bronze shoe casting should she scrub the bottom. Atkins' main rework on the Ingrid 38 from Archer's original design was finer entry on the bow which cushions her landing off the waves. And also below the waterline, she has a long full keel with deep v-sections forward keeping her stable in the rough. The ballast is encapsulated and is distributed from bow to stern to keep the weight as low as possible. Rounding this off, there's plenty of flotation fore and aft which helps keep her dry. The trade off of heavy displacement and ultimate stability is usually in speed, but the Ingrid 38 is not considered fast. Surprisingly she's known to sail pretty well in light airs with owners reporting she'll do half the wind speed up to 8 knots of wind. However, she's a boat that comes into her own in heavier seas. By the numbers, her hull speed works out at 7.2 knots, but she'll more often manage a consistent 6 knots while cruising. The ketch rig gives plenty of options on all points of sail and she's an easy boat to single-hand. The sails are Schattauer Sails from Seattle and are original and in good condition. They were sent to the local sail loft and checked over for the 2015 sailing season. Maggie O'Katie is her original name and she is a fresh water boat only. This boat has never seen salt water. This is only the second owner of this vessel. The hull and deck were built by Blue Water Boats in Washington state and it is reported that these are the same builders that build the Nordic Tugs. The interior was finished in oak planks by the original owner. The interior trim and finish were never completed, but there is not much left to complete. The galley area is a great workspace for any type of cooking. The galley does show that it has been used over the many years, as can been seen by the water stains. The masts are hollow box construction and are finished bright and are now in need of refinishing. The boom bright work presents itself well, as they were refinished in 2015. The hull is solid fiberglass construction with foam insulated on the

1985 Bluewater Ingrid

1985 Bluewater Ingrid

Make Bluewater

Model Ingrid

1985 Bluewater Ingrid The Ingrid 38 from the pen of William Atkin is a heavy displacement blue water cutter derived from Colin Archer's famous double ender designed North Sea pilot boats, which in turn were inspired by Viking boats renowned for their heavy weather characteristics. Perhaps Atkin sums it up best by saying it's "the kind of boat that behaves herself in rough water and can be depended upon to sail herself". (To that part we do hear frequent mentions of the superb one-finger-on-tiller tracking and a comfortable ride.) With her old world style, Josette's a good looking boat with a sheer line reminiscent of Crealock's famous Westsail 32. Her seaworthiness is there to see in her full keel, heavy displacement and overbuilt construction. Her hull is heavily hand laid in fiberglass. There's robust outboard chain plates and an outboard rudder protected by extra fiberglass and a large bronze shoe casting should she scrub the bottom. Atkin's main rework on the Ingrid 38 from Archer's original design was finer entry on the bow which 'cushions' her landing off the waves and even may increase speed slightly. Below the waterline she has a long full keel with deep v-sections forward keeping her stable in the rough. The ballast is encapsulated and is distributed from bow to stern, to keep the weight as low as possible. Rounding this off, there's plenty of flotation designed in her ends, fore and aft which helps keep her dry. The trade off of heavy displacement and ultimate stability is usually in speed so the Ingrid 38 is not considered fast. By the numbers, her hull speed works out at 7.2 knots but she'll more often manage a consistent 6 knots while cruising. Surprisingly she's known to sail pretty well in light airs, as owners report she'll do half the wind speed in up to 8 knots of wind. However, she's a boat that comes into her own in heavier seas. The cutter rig gives plenty of options on all points of sail and she's an easy boat to single-hand. Josette is her original name and she has spent most all of her life in fresh water. She only spent one year in salt water in 1985, her original launch year. This is a one-owner vessel. The hull was built in 1974 by Bluewater Yachts in Washington state and it is reported that these are the same builders that build the Nordic Tugs. The interior cabin sides (ceiling) were finished in planking by the original owner. The hull is foam insulated to keep you cool when it is hot outside and warm when it is cold outside. The galley area is a great work space for any type of cooking. The mast is anodized aluminum construction by MetalMast Marine, with internal halyards. The hull is solid fiberglass construction and does have some gel coat surface blisters above the waterline, but they do not appear to be structural. She recently had the following engine work accomplished: new head gasket, two new exhaust valves, injector service,

1985 Bluewater Ingrid

1985 Bluewater Ingrid The Ingrid 38 from the pen of William Atkin is a heavy displacement blue water cutter derived from Colin Archer's famous double ender designed North Sea pilot boats, which in turn were inspired by Viking boats renowned for their heavy weather characteristics. Perhaps Atkin sums it up best by saying it's "the kind of boat that behaves herself in rough water and can be depended upon to sail herself". (To that part we do hear frequent mentions of the superb one-finger-on-tiller tracking and a comfortable ride.) With her old world style, Josette's a good looking boat with a sheer line reminiscent of Crealock's famous Westsail 32. Her seaworthiness is there to see in her full keel, heavy displacement and overbuilt construction. Her hull is heavily hand laid in fiberglass. There's robust outboard chain plates and an outboard rudder protected by extra fiberglass and a large bronze shoe casting should she scrub the bottom. Atkin's main rework on the Ingrid 38 from Archer's original design was finer entry on the bow which "cushions" her landing off the waves and even may increase speed slightly. Below the waterline she has a long full keel with deep v-sections forward keeping her stable in the rough. The ballast is encapsulated and is distributed from bow to stern, to keep the weight as low as possible. Rounding this off, there's plenty of flotation designed in her ends, fore and aft which helps keep her dry. The trade off of heavy displacement and ultimate stability is usually in speed so the Ingrid 38 is not considered fast. By the numbers, her hull speed works out at 7.2 knots but she'll more often manage a consistent 6 knots while cruising. Surprisingly she's known to sail pretty well in light airs, as owners report she'll do half the wind speed in up to 8 knots of wind. However, she's a boat that comes into her own in heavier seas. The cutter rig gives plenty of options on all points of sail and she's an easy boat to single-hand. Josette is her original name and she has spent most of her life in fresh water. She only spent one year in salt water in 1985, her original launch year. This is a one-owner vessel. The deck and hull was built in 1974 by Bluewater Yachts in Washington state and it is reported that these are the same builders that build the Nordic Tugs. The interior cabin sides (ceiling) were finished in planking by the original owner. The hull is foam insulated to keep you cool when it is hot outside and warm when it is cold outside. The galley area is a great work space for any type of cooking. The mast is anodized aluminum construction by MetalMast Marine, with internal halyards. The hull is solid fiberglass construction and does have some gel coat surface blisters above the waterline, but they do not appear to be structural. She recently had the following engine work accomplished: New head gasket, two new exhaust valves, injector service, new

1974 Bluewater Ingrid

1974 Bluewater Ingrid

1974 Bluewater Ingrid The Ingrid 38 from the pen of William Atkin is a heavy displacement blue water ketch derived from Colin Archer's famous double ender designed North Sea pilot boats, which in turn were inspired by Viking boats renowned for their heavy weather characteristics. Perhaps Atkin sums it up best by saying it's "the kind of boat that behaves herself in rough water and can be depended upon to sail herself". (To that part we do hear frequent mentions of the superb one-finger-on-tiller tracking and a comfortable ride.) With her old world style, Josette's a good looking boat with a sheer line reminiscent of Crealock's famous Westsail 32. Her seaworthiness is there to see in her full keel, heavy displacement and overbuilt construction. Her hull is heavily hand laid in fiberglass. There's robust outboard chain plates and an outboard rudder protected by extra fiberglass and a large bronze shoe casting should she scrub the bottom. Atkin's main rework on the Ingrid 38 from Archer's original design was finer entry on the bow which "cushions" her landing off the waves and even may increase speed slightly. Below the waterline she has a long full keel with deep v-sections forward keeping her stable in the rough. The ballast is encapsulated and is distributed from bow to stern, to keep the weight as low as possible. Rounding this off, there's plenty of flotation designed in her ends, fore and aft which helps keep her dry. The trade off of heavy displacement and ultimate stability is usually in speed so the Ingrid 38 is not considered fast. Surprisingly she's known to sail pretty well in light airs, as owners report she'll do half the wind speed in up to 8 knots of wind. However, she's a boat that comes into her own in heavier seas. By the numbers, her hull speed works out at 7.2 knots but she'll more often manage a consistent 6 knots while cruising. The cutter rig gives plenty of options on all points of sail and she's an easy boat to single-hand. Josette is her original name and she has spent most of her life in fresh water. She only spent one year in salt water in 1985, her original launch year. This is a one-owner vessel. The hull was built by Blue Water Yachts in Washington state and it is reported that these are the same builders that build the Nordic Tugs. The interior cabin sides (ceiling) were finished in oak planks by the original owner. The hull is foam insulated to keep you cool when it is hot outside and warm when it is cold outside. The galley area is a great work space for any type of cooking. The mast is anodized aluminum construction by MetalMast Marine, with internal halyards. The hull is solid fiberglass construction but does have some surface blisters above the waterline, but they do not appear to be structural. She has Profurl roller furling on the yankee to make her easier to handle as well as a staysail that can act as a storm sail if you need it. The

1980 BLUEWATER YACHTS Ingrid 38

1980 BLUEWATER YACHTS Ingrid 38

Nantucket, Massachusetts

1980 Bluewater Yachts Ingrid 38 Built by Bluewater Yachts, this Ingrid 38 Ketch is the design of William Atkin. It is a heavy displacement double ender with a full keel and long tiller. The sail inventory includes a main, mizzen, roller furling Genoa, roller furling high-cut Yankee, inner staysail and spinnaker. All are in good working condition. Ground tackle includes two 45 pound CQR anchors with 190 feet of 3/8” BBB chain and 200’ of 7/8” nylon rode. As the boat is generally moored, the ground tackle has seen little use. There is also a Bronze ABI manual windlass. This is a very solid vessel owned by a professional captain for the past 16 years. It is offered for sale as his needs are changing. There are several projects currently in the works: The engine needs an overhaul. Internal re-wiring and a new electrical panel are needed. The old wiring has recently been removed. New cushions are needed. The owner has all the material needed to complete this project. Work on most of the items above has commenced. Two projects have already been completed for Spring 2015: 1) a new Marine Sanitation System has been installed; and 2) the interior has been significantly refurbished, including painting the interior, varnishing the cabin sole, attachment of new LED lights, varnishing of all the interior teak. The boat is priced to reflect its current condition. As each project is completed, the price of the vessel will be adjusted accordingly. However, if someone wants a fundamentally sound bluewater cruiser and wants to complete these tasks, great savings can be had for the do-it-yourselfer!

1974 Fuji 35 Ketch

1974 Fuji 35 Ketch

Clearwater, Florida

Model 35 Ketch

1974 Fuji 35 Ketch This classic Fuji Ketch is located in southern Chile.  For those who have dreamed of sailing Patagonia, this is your chance!  Despite her age she is well maintained, well equipped, and ready to go! Of the design, here is an excerpt of a review from famed bluewater yacht designer Robert Perry:   By now the Fuji 35 is a very successful stock yacht. Upon her introduction I was quite surprised that there was a market for a yacht with very little of the current stock boat trappings. In fact, the Fuji 35 seemed a little anachronistic. It is, I'm sure, this feature that has brought her to the popularity she is now enjoying. The John G. Alden office has been known for years for producing fine performing yachts. The Fuji follows in this tradition. She is of a hull form that traces its model back to the well-known Alden schooners. Compared to most of the current production yachts, the Fuji is a bit narrow. I don't think it's narrow, I feel it's about right for good windward performance. While the Fuji won't point like an IOR racing yacht, she will move to weather well, to cruising boat standards. The sheer and other aesthetic treatments on the hull are done with impeccable taste, and the Fuji doesn't convey the "toy boat" image of some of the other character type designs. In fact, to call the Fuji a character yacht would be wrong. She is a traditional yacht. The beam on deck is generous. This makes for a very dry boat and has the bonus of affording large side decks and a huge cockpit area. The keel is long but cut away slightly forward to improve maneuverability. There is a slight drag angle to the keel also. This, I think, is also to improve maneuverability. There should be no question as to the Fuji's ability to track or steer herself. The large transom and the minimum overhang of the mizzen boom would be ideal for attaching a self-steering device. The displacement / length ratio of the Fuji 35 is 413. This indicates the Fuji is in the heavy displacement area. The Fuji is available in two rigs, the standard ketch and optional cutter. Aesthetically both rigs look great on the yacht, but my preference is for the ketch. It's true that you possibly could go to weather a little bit better with the cutter; however, I think the improvement would be negligible due to the hull form of the Fuji. The largest sail in the ketch rig is only 220 square feet. This would make the Fuji very easy to handle short handed. The ketch rig is very hard to beat for leisurely husband and wife sailing. While I don't care for the shape of most club jibs, they do cut down the activity during a tack. Very few people can go below a Fuji for the first time without some sort of pleasant exclamation. The woodwork is of a quality that is all but extinct and has to be one of the main selling points of the Fuji. Her builder is Fuji Yacht Builders, Japan. The molding details are the best I'v

1989 Scylla Ketch

1989 Scylla Ketch

Key Largo, Florida

Make Scylla

Model Ketch

1989 Scylla Ketch Quality Classic Ketch Dutch designed, and built by the Swallow Company Solid bluewater or great live aboard Handcrafted wood interior!!

1977 Allied Princess Ketch

1977 Allied Princess Ketch

Bristol, Rhode Island

Make Allied

Model Princess Ketch

1977 Allied Princess Ketch Yankee Lady is a very well maintained example of this popular Arthur Edmonds design. On the hard at Mason's Island Marina, Mystic  Connecticut she is in fine condition. Constructed with a solid hand laid fiberglass hull by Wright Yacht  Company Catskill, New York (hull #95). A robust yacht designed for able coastal cruising, with bluewater capabilities. Sail inventory includes Hood fully battened main, Hood mizzen, jib and 135% genoa. 37HP Westerbeke engine (rebuilt 1990). Electronics include:  Raytheon radar, Interphase sonar, and Benmar Autopilot. Can sleep up to 6 comfortably below; with forced hotair Espar heating for comfortable fall evenings. Offering the utility of a more expensive yacht Yankee Lady's owner is motivated to sell this early summer season.

1982 Stamas 44

1982 Stamas 44

Miami Beach, Florida

Make Stamas

1982 Stamas 44, This is a Stamas 44 ketch center cockpit, designed and built by Bob Johnson, who went on to design and build Islands Packet sailboats.A/C, bow thruster, 100 hp new engine, custom woodwork in salon, 1000 hr house bank...This boat looks, and is built, like an Island Packet - a true, heavily built fiberglass bluewater boat capable of sailing around the world.The salon has a lot of headroom, and huge wrap around windows for a sailboat. The original owner took out the original windows, and had a custom steel frame installed with half inch plexiglass windows.Master aft cabin with head and dedicated shower, and v-berth with it's own head and shower. Both heads recently rebuilt. New macerator pump and thru hull. 320 gallon fresh water tank. 110 gallon diesel fuel tank. 30 gallon holding tank.98 lockers onboard. The boat has a tall freeboard, carries her 14 foot beam a long way aft, and has tonnes of storage room. Great cruiser.She's 22.5 gross tonnes, 30 000 pounds displacement, 14 beam, 5'1" draft, and fits under the ICW bridges at around 63 feet tall.She spent most of her life in Lake Ontario Canada's fresh water, and I brought her south three years ago after buying her from my parents.It's been in the family for the last 18 years, and has had over $200 000 spent on her in the last ten years upgrading and adding to her.Some upgrades include; new yanmar 100 horsepower turbo diesel ($25k), bowthruster ($17k), rack and pinion steering ($17k), new Mack headsail and mizzen sail ($12k), new feathering prop ($6500), custom interior woodwork, wood floors installed, new Atkins and Hoyle davits 750 pounds limit, avon 11'2" dinghy and 20 horsepower Honda outboard (2003), new frigoboat deep fridge/freezer, ceramic stovetop, washer/dryer, bar fridge, new raymarine autopilot with handheld remote, new hot water heater, new inverter/charger, bilge pumps, all batteries new (11), 10 year old 16500 btu air conditioner barely used until this year, new air conditioning water pump and service, new foam and upholstery, cockpit cushions, center console, windmeter, rockna anchor and chain, electrical panel and wiring for a large part of the boat, high power alternator, new bottom paint ( professionally sanded down to gel coat, two coats hard, four coats ablative ), new engine room blowers, and a honda eu2000 generator, new faucets etc etc, Needs the outside teak redone at this point, though I'll be doing that before too long, the bimini top is on its last legs, and at least needs new stitching.If you want to come see her, we could arrange for you to stay in the V-berth. We're in Miami Beach marina, in South Beach Miami Beach. We could also have a skype walk around tour of sorts beforehand. $145000

2004 Beneteau 473

2004 Beneteau 473

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Make Beneteau

2004 Beneteau 473 The Beneteau 473 combines extraordinary interior comfort, volume, and light with bluewater strength. This design offers a unique combination of elegant lines with extraordinary space and performance. The 473 boasts more features and creature comforts than ever before in a boat this size.  NATIONAL LIQUIDATORS STOCK #      34979

1978 Gulfstar GULFSTAR 50 MK II CUTTER RIGGED KETCH

1978 Gulfstar GULFSTAR 50 MK II CUTTER RIGGED KETCH

Los Angeles, California

Make Gulfstar

Model GULFSTAR 50 MK II CUTTER RIGGED KETCH

1978 Gulfstar GULFSTAR 50 MK II CUTTER RIGGED KETCH THE GULFSTAR 50 MARK II IS KETCH RIGGED, 963 SQ FT SAIL PLAN, THIS ONE IS THE 3 CABIN, THREE HEAD LAYOUT. LARGE MASTER AFT WITH ENSUITE HEAD AND STALL SHOWER, PLENTY OF STORAGE, FORWARD V-BERTH CONECTS WITH VACU-FLUSH HEAD WITH SHOWER. MID SHIPS CABIN WITH OVER/UNDER ON STARBOARD WITH ENSUITE HEAD. TEAK AND HOLLY CABIN SOLE TROUGHOUT WITH TEAK CABINETRY, LARGE "L" SHAPED GALLEY ON PORT SIDE EXTENDS AFT TOWARDS MASTER. 8.5 GENSET, AC/HEAT, ICEMAKER, WATERMAKER( IN-OP , HAS PARTS FOR REBUILD, HEART INTERPHASE WITH FREEDOM 30 2000 WATT INVERTER, TWO LARGE SETS OF DEEP CYCLE BATTERY BANKS....CRUISE EQUIPPED BLUEWATER SAILING YACHT.

1984 ANGEL MARINE NASSAU 45

1984 ANGEL MARINE NASSAU 45

Destin, Florida

Make ANGEL MARINE

Model NASSAU 45

1984 ANGEL MARINE NASSAU 45 Designed by Robert "Bob" Perry, this one owner 1985 Nassau 45 is well cared for and is berthed on a fresh water tributary in the northern Gulf of Mexico.  The boat is simular to another classic Perry design, the Tatoosh 41, but with more generous overhangs bow and stern. The Perkins 4-108 inboard produces plenty of reliable power to get you through the calms.  The boat has a genset with enough power to run both air conditioners and all other AC systems at once on full load.  The owner is an engineer who designs power systems for clients all over the world and has cut no corners. This a circumnavigation-capable yacht with a beautifully fitted wooden interior and plenty of features for fast and comfortable cruising.  The boat has SSB, EPIRB, liferaft and watermaker for long bluewater crusiing.

2003 Reinke Super Secura 8m Steel Schooner

2003 Reinke Super Secura 8m Steel Schooner

Make Reinke

Model Super Secura 8m Steel Schooner

2003 Reinke Super Secura 8m Steel Schooner MARLIN is a German built bilge keeled steel schooner.  You don't see one of these every day! She is equipped for world cruising with many recent upgrades including new electronics, satellite system, water maker,  genset/ AC, washing machine, and a Parasailor chute!  Please see the full specifications for the extensive inventory included with this vessel.   Her interior is exhibits first class joiner work and appointments that rival any production boat. Bilge keels mean less than 6' draft and the ability to dry out upright on the hard!  This, along with her protected cockpit and versatile rig, brings a measure of security and self sufficiency that is hard to find on similar sized bluewater sailboats.   This is a must see to appreciate vessel for buyers looking to travel the planet and willing to think outside the box.

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Tideway Marine Tradewind 35

What is a Bluewater cruiser?

A bluewater cruiser is a type of boat designed to travel long distances on the open ocean. These crafts are typically more robust and larger than recreational vessels, with full navigation systems and ocean-ready cruising amenities to keep passengers safe and comfortable during extended voyages. Bluewater cruisers are typically designed with a deep-keel hull and higher sidedrops to prevent capsizing in rough conditions—an important feature for enduring moments of heavy weather on the high seas. With ample storage capabilities and broad-reaching sailing capabilities, a bluewater cruiser is the perfect vessel for ocean exploration.

Which manufacturers build bluewater cruiser sail boats?

Manufacturers that produce bluewater cruiser sail boats include Beneteau , Dufour , Hanse , Lagoon and Jeanneau .

How much does a bluewater cruiser sail boat cost?

A used bluewater cruiser sail boat on TheYachtMarket.com ranges in price from £4,950 GBP to £6,570,000 GBP with an average price of £495,000 GBP . Factors including the condition, age, model and specification will affect the price of a bluewater cruiser.

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British Marine

Bluewater Short Text Logo.png

Introducing the All-New 

Bluewater 56.

7iCG8Lsw.jpeg

Photo Gallery

Images marked with a * are of sister-ships from a different manufacturer., exterior gallery, click on image to enlarge.

56 Interior

Interior Gallery

Saloon Aft

Standard Specifications

And equipment, hull and deck.

Hull is laid up with Twaran, a carbon aramid fiber with alternating FRP glass.  NO CORE with vinylester resins and lsophthalic gel coat.

Two epoxy barrier coats below the waterline for optimal protection.

Two coats of Micron CSC Bottom Paint.

Watertight collision bulkhead forward of forward cabin with independent overboard drainage.

Watertight Stern sections across aft lazarettes and stern locker.

Divided Anchor Locker with separate locker for fenders and docklines.

Large Aft Stern lazarettes, port and starboard with dual Bailey latches for watertight seal.

Stem Garage with dedicated Rule Auto bilge pump with manual over ride in cockpit.

Very Large Step Down Sail Locker with deck hatch access, 5' deep and over 4' long.

Solid Lead Keel with solid 35mm stainless steel keel bolts with transverse mounted 8mm backing plates.

Fully Skegged Rudder for optimal performance, strength and protection.

Bottom of rudder plane in each model above the keel plane for grounding safety.

Solid GRP fiberglass in all areas of deck for deck fittings and stress areas.

Molded contrasting non Skid available in two colors - Linen Beige or Whisper Grey.

Solid stainless steel head fitting with split bow roller with stowage for 55 lb Delta and 55 lb Rocna or Spade anchor.

Solid Stainless striker plates for bow protection.

Salt-water washdown pump for anchor washdown.

Two pair of stainless steel 12" bow cleats, one pair of 12" midship cleats and one pair of 12" stern cleats.

32" high stanchions, 1" in diameter with double lifelines.

Side Boarding ladder with port and starboard side mounting brackets.

Manship 316 stainless overhead hatches and ports throughout.

Winch inventory

Primary Winches           Antal CST 66's

Secondary Winches       Antal CST 54's

Mainsheet Winches        Antal CST 48

Cockpit Winches            Antal CST 48

Halyard Winches           Antal CST 48's

Harken Stand up Staysail Blocks.

Teak Handrails on foredeck coach roof and aft coach roof.

Stainless steel companionway handrails.

Stainless Coachroof handrails.

Whitlock "Hollywood" Pedestal that accomodates Raymarine E120 MFD and four 4" x 4" instruments.

Ritchie 5" Compass

Solid Teak varnished cockpit table with teak drink holders

Four solid stainless Cowl Vents.  One pair forward and one pair aft.

Stainless protective stern plate.

Freshwater hot and cold shower on stern platform.

Fold down stainless stem ladder.

Chainplate for optional inner forestay

Ground Tackle

WC 2200 Maxwell Nilsson Windlass with chain feed and stainless steel plate for chain protection. Bow controls AND remote cockpit windlass controls.

Primary Anchor and tackle: 250' System 40 3/8"Galvanized Hi tensile chain.

Secondary Anchor and tackle: 50' System 40 3/8" Hi tensile chain and 300' of 5/8" anchor rode with 55 lb Rocna

Four New England Rope Premium Braid Docklines: 2 x 35' x 5/8" and 2 x 40' x 5/8' premium braid.

Mechanical & Electrical

Yanmar BY150hp 4-cylinder turbo diesel engine with cockpit controls and complete alarm system.

Morse single lever control system to protect against high RPM gear shifting.

Dual Racor fuel filtration system allowing independent filter and bypass system.

Walborough in line fuel pump allowing engine bypass for filtration and eliminates the need for engine bleeding in the case of loss of fuel supply.

Two-way oil change pump plumbed diredtly to primary engine, genset, and transmission.

Wire is fully tinned and ABYC and CE compliant.

All thru hull fittings are solid bronze and all bonded .

Four AGM 8D House batteries, 840 amp/hr total, All batteries boxed and secured .

Two 8D House Batteries for Windlass and Bow Thruster (if equipped). 675 amp/hr total.

AGM 4D Engine starting battery 1x150 amp.

All batteries are isolated with a built in reverse isolation switch.

Primary High Output 130A Mastervolt Alternator dedicated to house bank. .

Dedicated 60A Alternator for Engine Battery. .

Fire retardant engine room sound insulation .

Shore power connection; 50/amp 125/250V.

Protech 50 amp built in battery charger.

Navigation lights; Running lights, Masthead anchor, Tricolor, Steaming light and Foredeck light.

Raymarine Depth sounder, Speed Log and Windspeed indicator.

Two independent bilge pump systems, one Rule system, one Par System. Total of 2500 gallon/hour with float switches.

Mamba Solid Drive sytem in lieu of chain and cable design

Rig & Rigging

Selden Anodized Aluminum Mast with triple V-spreader rig.

Hasselford Standing Rigging with Sta-lock Mechanical fittings. No swage fittings at deck.

Forward and Aft lowers for rig stability with individual chain plates.

Discontinuous Rigging for optimal strength and increased hardware.

Furlex 400 Series Roller Furling Forestay.

Doyle Sails including Mainsail and 135% Genoa with sunbrella cover.

Primary and secondary Main Halyard.

Primary and secondary Genoa Halyard.

Halyard Bales on forward dorades.

Plumbing & Tankage

275 Gallons of Total Water Tankage in four independent tanks.

280 Gallons of Total Fuel Tankage in four independent tanks.

Options available to increase and/or change balance of total and type of tankage.

All tanks have easy access for inspection with dipsticks, threaded inspection port and larger inspection.

Port for interior inspection and cleaning.

Two independent Shurflow self priming freshwater pump systems.

Third manual freshwater pump, foot activated for freshwater accessed in the galley.

All tankage for water and fuel is stainless stee.l

Two independent holding tanks, one dedicated to each head.

10 gallon hot water heater heated via engine driven system or AC supply.

All through hull fittings are bronze with seacocks or valves and bonded.

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5 Best Liveaboard Bluewater Sailboats

5 Best Liveaboard Bluewater Sailboats | Life of Sailing

Last Updated by

Daniel Wade

December 28, 2023

Liveaboard bluewater sailboats are both comfortable to live on and capable of making long, offshore ocean voyages.

The best liveaboard bluewater sailboats must strike a balance between comfort and seakeeping abilities. These boats are generally heavy and stable and roomy enough to spend time in. They must also include the necessary hardware to make cooking, sleeping, and bathing possible in choppy conditions.

Table of contents

Bluewater Liveaboard Sailboat Design

What makes a good bluewater liveaboard sailboat , and how is it different from a coastal cruiser? There are a few aspects of purpose-built bluewater sailboats that make them different from most production vessels. The first and (possibly) most important is the hull design.

The classic bluewater sailboat hull shape features a long, deep, full keel. The keel acts as a hydroplane and keeps the boat stable on course in all sea conditions. Deep keel sailboats aren't the only kind of bluewater-capable vessels, but they're a tried and tested design.

Other vessels gain stability from having a wide beam. Beamy sailboats are far more comfortable in rolling seas, as they tend to buffett and pitch much less than leaner, narrow boats. Most ideal liveaboard bluewater sailboats balance length and beam carefully to make the most of the space and hull shape.

Space is another important quality to consider when choosing the best bluewater liveaboard sailboat. Interior space comes first, as living quarters are a key element of comfort.

Cockpit space should also be considered, especially if more than one person comes aboard. Most liveaboard bluewater sailboats sacrifice cockpit space for cabin space.

A comfortable liveaboard sailboat should include several amenities, including a head (toilet), a shower, two sinks, a galley with a stove, an icebox, a place to eat, and a place to sleep. Ideally, the dining area is separate from the primary sleeping area.

A separate chart table is ideal as well because it keeps food and clutter away from important navigational equipment. A chart table is less important on liveaboard sailboats that spend the majority of their time docked. That said, the chart table functions well as a spot for a microwave, toaster oven, or TV when you're not underway.

A separate forward V-berth, known as a master cabin, is a big plus on liveaboard boats. Separating the sleeping area from the rest of the cabin can increase comfort and coziness.

However, on a bluewater sailboat, a side berth near the hatch is essential as well. This is because you may need to quickly take control of the vessel after waking up, and it's best to sleep close to the helm.

Power and Water

Power and water shouldn't be overlooked when choosing a bluewater liveaboard. Many liveaboards spend most of their time docked and hooked up to shore power, water, and sewage. But bluewater liveaboards are designed for cruising, which means everything must be self-contained.

The best bluewater sailboats have sufficient freshwater storage tanks for several weeks on the water. Some have desalination (water maker) machines, which require electricity to run.

Solar panels are an excellent option for power generation, and they can be installed on almost any sailboat.

But all bluewater sailboats should have battery banks and a gasoline or diesel generator built into the system. On many vessels, the inboard engine also functions as a generator.

Safety is an essential factor to consider when choosing a cruising sailboat , especially if it doubles as your primary residence. Basic safety equipment such as bilge pumps and radios should be maintained and tested regularly. Backups and spare parts should also be kept aboard.

Other safety features, such as watertight hatches, can keep your cabin safe and dry during inclement weather. Self-draining cockpits are helpful when sailing offshore, as spray and waves drain from the exposed cockpit without the use of electric or mechanical pumps. If the drain ports are kept clean, no bailing is ever necessary.

Radar is another useful safety feature that, while not mandatory, can keep you in-the-know and alert you to the presence of nearby ships. Radar is especially useful at night, as the automatic alarms can wake you whenever a potential obstacle appears nearby.

Bluewater Sailboats for Living Aboard and Cruising

Living aboard a sailboat is one of the most interesting and rewarding lifestyles available today. It's even more alluring when you can sail your vessel across oceans, which is what bluewater sailboats are designed to do.

A liveaboard cruising sailboat combines comfort, seakeeping ability, and ease of handling in a compact and thoughtfully-designed package. Here are the best liveaboard sailboats for bluewater cruising.

1. Pacific Seacraft Flicka 20

{{boat-info="/boats/pacific-seacraft-flicka-20"}}

The Flicka 20 is the smallest and most interesting sailboat on our list. At only 20 feet overall in length, the interior accommodations of this vessel are spartan at best and suitable for minimalist living.

What makes the Flicka 20 stand out is its exceptional bluewater performance. This sailboat is truly an ultracompact pocket cruiser. With a full ballast keel, self-draining cockpit, and wide beam, the Flicka 20 is more capable offshore than some boats almost twice its size.

This sailboat has the profile of a traditional keel cruiser. From a distance, it would be easy to mistake for a much larger vessel. Its hull shape, manageable Bermuda rig, and small size make it a perfect starter sailboat for single handed offshore cruising.

Inside, you have (almost) everything you need to live comfortably, albeit in a minimalist way. The cabin features standing headroom throughout, which is highly unusual for a 20-foot sailboat. On the port side, you're greeted with a small but functional galley. On the starboard side, there's a small head with a toilet and a shower.

The Flicka 20 displaces a hardy 5,500 lbs. Due to its large keel, there's no centerboard trunk to obstruct interior space. A V-berth upfront makes up the sleeping accommodations, and some models feature settees on both sides with a pop-up dining and chart table in between.

The Pacific Seacraft Flicka 20 has achieved somewhat of a cult status amongst bluewater sailboat enthusiasts. Only about 400 were built, so purchasing a Flicka 20 is somewhat of a rare and expensive proposition. That said, the benefits of owning a 20-foot bluewater liveaboard sailboat are hard to beat.

Cheap slip fees, low maintenance costs, and simplicity are the major selling points of this vessel. It's trailerable behind most heavy-duty pickup trucks and technically small enough to store on the street or in a driveway.

2. Pacific Seacraft Allegra 24

{{boat-info="/boats/pacific-seacraft-allegra-24"}}

If the Flicka 20 is too small for your taste, try the Pacific Seacraft Allegra 24. It follows the same design principles of the Flicka 20, but with four feet of additional space for cabin amenities and seaworthiness.

Four feet may not sound like a lot, but it makes a world of difference on a sailboat. The additional space on the Allegra 24 adds room to the head, extends the port and starboard settees, and increases the size of the galley.

If you like the idea of a small, semi-trailerable offshore sailboat with liveaboard amenities, you'll love the Allegra 24. This stout sailboat has almost miraculous handling and seakeeping qualities while retaining the benefits of small overall size.

With the Allegra 24, you'll be able to make virtually any offshore passage and save on slip fees, maintenance costs, and overall labor. This vessel is easy to sail single handed and large enough for a minimalistic couple to live, eat, and sleep comfortably.

The Pacific Seacraft Allegra 24 is not ideal for people who need space for pets, children, or guests, as the interior is quite small when compared to other sailboats. That said, there's enough room for an occasional passenger, and the cockpit is comfortable enough for four adults to sit and interact.

3. O'Day 28

{{boat-info="/boats/oday-28"}}

The O'Day 28 is a popular sailboat that makes a great liveaboard cruising platform. This affordable vessel was produced between 1978 and 1986, and over 500 examples were produced over the years.

All in all, the O'Day 28 is a stout cruising sailboat that's suitable for offshore and coastal sailing. It features a raked stern and hidden rudder, and a helm that's similar to what you'd find on much larger boats.

The O'Day has a large fuel tank for its inboard engine and an even larger 25-gallon freshwater capacity, which is excellent for offshore cruising. Additional tanks can be added in storage spaces, making the O'Day 28 suitable for long voyages.

The cabin of the O'Day 28 is spacious and includes everything you'd need to live aboard comfortably, along with plenty of storage space throughout. The wide beam of the O'Day 28 gives it lots of space, so the cabin doesn't feel cramped for its size.

Two models of the O'Day 28 were built; one featured a swing keel, and the other had a fixed swing keel. The swing keel model is ideal for coastal cruising and shallow-water sailing, while the fixed keel O'Day 28 is more suited for bluewater cruising.

That said, both keel variants make fine offshore sailboats. The cabin of the O'Day 28 features a large galley with a stove and icebox, two large settee berths, a large center table ahead, and a V-berth forward. The head serves as a separator to the forward cabin, giving the V-berth an extra layer of privacy.

4. William Atkin "Eric" 32

{{boat-info="/boats/atkin-co-eric-32"}}

"Eric," designed in the 1920s by famous marine architect William Atkin, is a radical departure from typical modern liveaboard sailboats. However, as a bluewater liveaboard sailboat, this vessel likely outshines all the others on this list in almost every conceivable way.

Eric is a 32-foot traditional wooden ketch. This planked full- keel sailboat displaces over 19,000 lbs and has a draft of about five feet. The basic design of the hull is based on early Norweigian fishing boats, which were known for their resilience in rough North Sea storms.

Eric is a traditional gaff-rigged vessel with two short masts and a long bowsprit. Though complex to rig, it sails beautifully in all weather conditions. One of the earliest examples built survived a hurricane offshore in the 1930s, and subsequent models have completed numerous long-range ocean voyages.

Eric is a purpose-built long-range ocean cruiser. Interior accommodations are spacious and designed for comfort and utility. Unlike most sailboats of the time, Eric features a full head with shower, a 'master cabin' style V-berth forward, a full galley with an icebox, and standing headroom throughout.

William Atkin's Eric is, by all definitions, an ocean-crossing sailboat designed to take between one and four adults just about as far as they want to go. It has all the qualities of an oceangoing sailboat in a compact package, along with excellent seakeeping characteristics.

The primary drawback of this 32-foot Atkin sailboat is maintenance. Most of these hulls were constructed using traditional oak planking, which lasts forever if taken care of but requires skilled maintenance. The planks are caulked using cotton wadding, and they'll need recaulking if the boat stays out of the water for too long and "dries up."

If you're looking for a beautiful and historic liveaboard sailboat with serious offshore cruising capabilities, consider an Atkin Eric 32. Although somewhat rare, examples of this design occasionally pop up for sale on the used market.

5. Pearson 35

{{boat-info="/boats/oday-28"}}, {{boat-info="/boats/pearson-35"}}

The Pearson 35 crosses the rubicon into the 'big boat' category, as it has everything you'd expect of a large oceangoing sailboat. The vessel also has a unique displacement keel with an additional swing keel at the base.

The Pearson 35 is a roomy sailboat with excellent seakeeping abilities and a large sail plan. It's a typical Bermuda-rigged sloop with a tall mast and the usual sheet and halyard arrangement. As a result, it's fun to sail and easy to handle. It's also a fast boat, making it ideal for longer voyages.

The swing keel certainly doesn't make the Pearson 35 a shoal-draft sailboat. It has a modified full keel which (with the swing keel retracted) draws 3 feet 9 inches. With the additional swing keel down, the draft of the Pearson 35 increases to over 7 feet.

The Pearson 35 is a heavy boat with good sea keeping abilities. It was introduced in 1968, and over 500 units were produced. That makes it one of the more popular sailboats in its class, and plenty of Pearson 35s are still sailing around the United States.

Down below in the cabin, the Pearson 35 is roomy and comfortable. It features a full galley, an enclosed head with a shower and sink, and several berthing areas, including a forward V-berth. Plenty of storage is available throughout the cabin, making the Pearson 35 an excellent choice for living aboard.

There's something empowering about piloting a 35-foot sailboat through rough weather. The size of the boat provides both safety and a sense of security, which can help you keep a clear head during stressful situations at sea. The vessel is beamy as well, making it less likely to heel aggressively and increasing roll comfort in dicey seas.

Overall, the Pearson 35 is an excellent choice for a liveaboard bluewater sailboat. It's a large boat in comparison to the others on this list, and it's known for easy handling and excellent windward performance. The Pearson 35 is a common sailboat that's widely available on the used market.

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I've personally had thousands of questions about sailing and sailboats over the years. As I learn and experience sailing, and the community, I share the answers that work and make sense to me, here on Life of Sailing.

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  • Blue Water Sailboats

What are Blue Water Sailboats All About?

Blue water sailboats are the ultimate in offshore sailboats. They're intended for long-distance ocean sailing, often crewed by live-aboard sailors who have cut loose from conventional onshore living choosing a life of seaborne travel and adventure.

Ocean cruising sailboats such as these are described by the European Commission's Recreational Craft Directive (RCD) as being...

"designed for extended voyages where conditions may exceed winds of Force 8 on the Beaufort Scale (over 40 knots) and significant wave heights of 4m (13 feet) and above, and vessels largely self-sufficient."

As the Significant Wave Height is the average of the highest 30% of all waves and as individual waves can be twice that, it's clear that blue water sailboats and their crews must be prepared for pretty much anything the sea can throw at them.

And with the likelihood of mid-ocean assistance being practically non-existent, blue water sailboats and their crews must be self-sufficient and equipped for all emergencies.

What to Look For In Blue Water Sailboats

Let's take a look at what an experienced cruising couple might want to think about when choosing a bluewater monohull sailboat....

Big Enough, But Not Too Big

Because there'll have to be plenty of stowage space for the considerable quantities of spares and equipment, together with stores and freshwater for a month or more at sea, it's unlikely that anything less than a 38 feet sailboat will be big enough.

Probably 42 to 45 feet would be the ideal size bluewater sailboat for a cruising couple, which would provide an interior layout with sufficient accommodation for occasional guests or additional crew.

A Rustler 42 sailboat at anchor

Some cruising couples, particularly those with deep pockets, choose to go for much larger blue water sailboats that have been specifically designed for short-handed crews.

Chuck Paine's mouth-watering Apogee 50 and Steve Dashew's Sundeer 64 are good examples of these thoroughbred performance cruising sailboats. Their light, easily-driven hulls mean that relatively small, easily handled rigs are sufficient to drive them along at maximum hull speed .

But whilst it's true that a good large sailboat will always be more seaworthy than a good small sailboat, it's a big mistake to choose one that's too large to be easily handled by two people.

Heavy or Light Displacement?

This is where opinions amongst bluewater sailors will vary most. Whilst a heavy displacement hull - particularly one with a full keel and long overhangs at each end - is likely to provide the most comfortable ride in heavy going, it will be a relatively poor performer in lighter conditions.

Unless that is, it has a large sail area - which means that sail handling will be a problem for short-handed crews.

A very light displacement will be limited in terms of stowage - to much additional weight will affect its sail area/displacement ratio and compromise its performance, and it's likely to be a handful to manage in heavy going.

My preference is for a more moderate displacement hull, with a fin keel and skeg-hung rudder.

An Outbound 44 at anchor off Portsmouth, Dominica, West Indies

A Strong, Robust Hull

Strength and durability are the keywords here. The hull material is not as important as the robustness of the hull. Fiberglass (GRP), steel, aluminium, wood epoxy, ferrocement can all be satisfactory hull materials, subject of course to condition and build quality

An Easily Handled Sailplan

Manageability is the key issue here, ideally without reliance on power driven winches and other sailhandling devices. My choice would be a masthead cutter , either in sloop or ketch format. I'd go for a twin-groove furling gear on the headsail , a hanked-on staysail and slab-reefing on the mainsail - I'm not a big fan of in-mast or in-boom furling system on blue water sailboats .

In storm conditions the staysail can be quickly replaced by a hanked-on storm jib and there should be a separate track on the mast for a storm tri-sail.

Long periods of downwind sailing should also be catered for, using twin poles each rigged rigged with their own uphaul, downhaul and foreguy for the twin headsail tradewind rig.

Either a conventional spinnaker, lightweight genoa or a cruising chute for light wind sailing will make up the sail wardrobe.

Granny bars

stainless steel granny bars on a sailboat

If your halyards and uphauls are operated at the mast, then the security given by granny bars will be reassuring, especially in lively conditions.

They're also great place to tie your halyards off to to stop them banging against the mast, and provide a useful handhold when going forward - and they're on my 'to do' list for Alacazam ...

Sufficient Freshwater for Drinking, Cooking and Washing

You must have sufficient freshwater capacity for the reasonable needs of all crew members on your longest envisaged passage, plus say a 20% contingency allowance.

So for two people on a transatlantic passage, allow one imperial gallon per person per day for say, three weeks plus 20%, that's 50 gallons minimum. Ideally blue water sailboats will have double this capacity, split into two separate tanks so that if one tank gets contaminated the crew will still be OK.

It's prudent to be able to rig some system to catch rainwater when underway and at anchor .

Electrically pressured freshwater systems are extremely wasteful for both water and power, so a manually operated water supply at the galley and the wash-hand basin in the heads is essential. A separate seawater supply at the galley also makes a great deal of sense.

A reverse osmosis watermaker can be an extremely useful device, but should not be relied upon as the sole source of drinking water on passage. They can - and do - break down.

Fuel Capacity

Sooner or later, blue water sailboats will find themselves becalmed in sea areas such as the doldrums (or horse latitudes), and their crews will begrudgingly reach for the engine keys. It'll be reassuring to have sufficient fuel to motor at four to five knots for 500 nautical miles or so.

The amount of fuel needed will depend on the size and efficiency of the engine. For a typical modern 35hp engine using around half-a-gallon of fuel per hour, a fuel capacity of 60 imperial gallons would be about right.

The Cockpit

An aft cockpit, in preference to a center cockpit , works best in blue water sailboats. Deep, secure and well-drained it will provide good shelter for the crew. Headsail, staysail and mainsail sheets should be in easy reach of the helmsman.

Good Ventilation below Decks

Sketch of dorade vent on deck of sailboat

An adequate number of opening deck hatches and portlights will get a cooling breeze through the boat when at anchor, particularly so when equipped with a windscoop. Insect screens for all hatches are vital when in the tropics.

Dorade vents will provide fresh air below when closed down at sea in bad weather.

These clever devices will allow air to pass through into the accommodation, whilst ensuring that the rain and spray that would otherwise accompany it is deflected back from whence it came.

Self-steering

Helming is fun for a while, but not for hour after hour.

Windvane self-steering is the way to go when under sail, and an electronic auto-pilot when under power.

Good secure seaberths must be available for all off-watch crewmembers. These should be parallel to the sailboat's centreline and be fitted with lee-cloths.

Generally, the interior layout must be properly optimised for both safety and practicality when underway, and comfort and efficiency when at anchor.

It should be possible to get from bow to stern moving from on secure handhold to the next without break. Similarly, below decks, sufficient handholds must be available to prevent injury in boisterous weather.

Protection from the Weather

A sprayhood (or dodger, as they're known as by American sailors) will shelter the cockpit and its occupants from wind, rain and flying spray. They can be a either a rigid structure or a canvas version built around a collapsible stainless-steel frame. Incidentally, in the UK dodgers are the weather cloths (US) which are fixed to the guardwires to provide further shelter from the elements.

But it's not just wind, rain and spray you should be concerned about. Too much direct sunlight can be far more damaging to our skin. So no blue water sailboat worthy of the name will be without a bimini .

Anchors and Chain

At least two adequately sized anchors should be carried.

One, the bower anchor, will be located in the bow roller and will have an all-chain road of at least 200ft (60m).

The others may be on a combined rope/chain rode and can be stored below decks.

The stove, which will most likely be propane fuelled, must be gimballed and fitted with sturdy fiddles and pot clamps. Padeyes for the cook to connect his harness to are essential. Read more about offshore galley arrangements...

and finally...

Whilst this is by no means a full list of the desirable features to be found on blue water sailboats, it's a good starting point. But it's not complete, for instance, most bluewater sailors will want a reliable long distance communication system and a comprehensive inventory of safety equipment.

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Just click on the images below to see the full details of these cruising boats that are advertised by their owners ( not through a broker or other 3rd party ) right here on sailboat-cruising.com ...

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The perfect bluewater sailboat

bluewater cruiser

By Elaine Bunting

What makes the ideal yacht for ocean adventures and long distance voyaging elaine bunting investigates..

If your dream is to sail across oceans or even around the world, what is the right yacht? What type and size should you look for? And what equipment is going to add most to your safety and enjoyment of life on board?

The answers to these questions will define your experience and are going to vary depending on your budget, how long you intend to be away, and with whom you’ll be sailing. There are however some common denominators you’ll need to think about to sail safely and comfortably.

First, the fundamentals of a true bluewater yacht: its design and sea-keeping attributes. A good bluewater sailboat is capable of making long passages in comfort and will look after you in whatever conditions you encounter.

Oyster Yachts are renowned for their adventuring credentials; the yachts are well-found, luxurious and solidly built. About 95 have already circumnavigated the world and with another 25 participating in the Oyster World Rally 2022-23 soon Oysters will have logged over 100 successful circumnavigations. Starting with the fundamentals, they have hulls with integrated keels, are certified for strength and safety, and have keel-stepped masts. They are designed with self-sufficiency in mind and have generous accommodation and tankage for long ranges. Equipment is over-specified, from rig and steering gear to winches and windlasses, and there is easy access to systems and machinery.

Discover the perfect yacht for ocean adventures, highlighting key design features and insights from experienced sailors. Learn how to embark on an incredible long-distance voyage.

  • Learn about the essential features and characteristics of a bluewater cruiser.
  • Explore the design elements that contribute to comfort and safety during extended passages.
  • Find out why Oyster Yachts are renowned for their adventuring credentials.
  • Understand the significance of size when choosing a yacht for long-term cruising.
  • Get insights into the equipment, systems, and communication tools crucial for a successful voyage.
  • Learn about the importance of after-sales support and preparation for long-distance cruising.
  • Uncover the wisdom and encouragement from experienced bluewater sailors to embrace the adventure of a lifetime.

The evolution of every design in the last 24 years is linked by a common thread: Humphreys Yacht Design. Renowned yacht designer Rob Humphreys is at the helm, working closely for the last 15 years with son Tom, a Fellow of the Royal Institute of Naval Architects.

The primary job of a bluewater yacht, says Humphreys, is to be capable of being sailed by a shorthanded crew. It has to be easily handled, comfortable at sea on long passages yet capable of a reliable turn of speed that will make the miles slip by without great effort.

“The motion of the boat is important. Performance is important, too, but less so – comfort is more telling,” Humphreys explains. He favours a hull shape with “shallower rocker forward and a deeper mid-section to distribute the volume, which creates that softer ride.”

Moderate displacement yachts such as Oysters are born passagemakers.  The hull form is not only capable of producing reliable daily mileages on passage in comfort, without stressing crew or yacht, but can accommodate generous fuel and water tanks and bluewater critical items such as generator, large battery bank, washing machine and air conditioning. It also provides excellent internal stowage for stores and spares and ample locker space externally in sail locker and lazarettes.

“Control and manageability and the steering qualities are also important so there is less burden on autopilot systems. And the other side of it is that a yacht should have good load carrying abilities for stores and spares.”

The latest generation hull shapes, with plumb stems and beam carried right aft, not only look purposeful, they create a larger interior and can sail faster and more efficiently. A long waterline and greater hull volume means more accommodation in the bow area, but most particularly aft. That wider shape also benefits a yacht in pure sailing terms.

“Increased power aft helps with free stability,” Humphreys explains. “Stability is generated through hull form and is not so much dependent on the mechanical stability of the lead [on the keel]. So, in that respect, these boats are a little bit more powerful, a benefit all round, but particularly when sailing upwind and close reaching.”

Wide hull shapes are also suited to twin rudders, which in turn, says Humphreys, “gives fingertip control and makes a boat easy to steer.”

These evolutions can be traced back to race yacht design, as can the plumb bow. “That is another aspect of hull form that has translated well,” says Humphreys. “More vertical bows give you more waterline length, and that is always working for you. It gives you a better chance of sustained daily mileages, of reliable speed rather than exceptional speed.”

These latest designs also have increased freeboard, which means it is possible for yachts to have a flush foredeck for aesthetic and practical reasons, yet also really good headroom below. For Oyster Yachts it has allowed large vertical ‘seascape’ windows that let in light and connect cabins with the world and the views outside.

Other features that distinguish the true bluewater cruiser are a safe, protected and well-sheltered cockpit and helm stations, with sail controls led back; a good galley that is easy to use and secure at sea; a practical and comfortable navigation area; and clear and uncluttered sidedecks and foredeck.

The centre cockpit design that is a hallmark of Oyster Yachts is comfortable for long-distance cruise and “provides protection while sailing and entertaining in port, and is great in terms of overall visibility,” affirms owner Stephen Gratton. Stephen and his wife, Debbie, sailed around the world in their Oyster 53, Amelie, then returned through the Panama Canal to Canada and Alaska, sailed back across the Pacific to French Polynesia and are currently in Seattle.

“We have been in some extreme conditions, but even when things go wrong we know that Amelie can look after us. The comfort is great. Even in a gale, when you go below it all goes quiet. You feel like you are on a well-made boat and we like the solidity of design and thoughtfulness.”

Oyster yacht sailing from above

Other attributes that mark out a capable, go-anywhere bluewater boat include a galley that is safe, secure and easy to work in. The linear galley that is a feature of Oyster yachts is designed to be a seamanlike and usable space at sea, with abundant fridge and freezer capacity, and plentiful space for food stowage.

Similarly, a secure navigation area and chart table that is comfortable, safe and inviting to use at sea is also essential, as is a powerful, reliable propulsion system, large battery banks and multiple means of power generation. 

Shade and ventilation are very important for sailing in the Tropics. Oyster Yachts is the only builder to offer front saloon windows that open out to allow cooling air to circulate through the boat, and one of the few builders that still fits dorade vents for forced ventilation.

Every element is solidly built and made to last for hundreds of thousands of miles of sailing in all conditions. Above all, it the solidity of the design and strength of build that owners point to when describing what they most cherish about their yachts. 

“One of the things that is very important is to be able to trust your boat under all circumstances and be well prepared for bad weather,” comments Leo Nagtegaal, another round-the-world skipper, and owner of Oyster 625 Bubbles. “Your boat is actually one of the safest places to be.

What size yacht is best?

While small yachts can, and do, cross oceans, a moderate displacement, higher volume yacht has all the advantages for long-term cruising. A sweet spot for ocean cruisers lies between 45ft and 65ft. Yachts in this range can accommodate the comforts, stores and spares a crew of family and friends needs whilst also making quick passage times.

Larger yachts, fitted with hydraulic furling and electric winches, can still be sailed by a short-handed family crew, though beyond 65ft loads increase with size, maintenance demands grow too and it may require the help of professional crew.

When Leo Nagtegaal sold his business, he and his wife, Karin, bought an Oyster 56, Duchess. In 2013 they set off to realise Leo’s lifelong dream of sailing around the world.

The Nagtegaals loved the sailing life and people so much that, in 2014, they traded up to an Oyster 625. “We thought that as we’d be pretty much living aboard nine months of the year for the next five, six or seven years, we’d like just a little more space,” says Leo.

In his opinion, 45ft is the minimum size for long-term ocean voyaging: “Size is very personal,” he admits. “I have friends who went around Cape Horn in a 33ft wooden boat and did well, so they will disagree when I say that a bluewater yacht should be at least 45ft. It really depends on how the boat is equipped.”

oyster 885 luch sailing

Paul and Trish Ducker also sailed on the Oyster World Rally 2013-14 as far as New Zealand. They have ordered a new Oyster 565 and hope to take part in the 2024-25 rally. Their cruising is mainly done double-handed. “We don’t want anyone else living on board; we like the privacy and freedom,” Paul explains.

“For us, at the time about 54ft is as large as we wanted to go. Up to 60ft would be fine, but as you get older you are not so fit and strong and it tends to affect things like taking down sails and jumping around the boat coming into a marina.” On their new Oyster, they will have a bow and stern thruster to make close quarters manoeuvring easier, and headsails they can pole out for stress-free downwind passages.

Stephen and Debbie Gratton have owned six different yachts. Before buying their Oyster 53 Amelie in 2008, they owned a Contessa 32, which Stephen raced across the Atlantic in the single-handed OSTAR race. To enjoy cruising as a way of life, however, they knew they needed to change from their pretty but cramped design to a much bigger, more solidly built, heavier displacement yacht.

“Originally we thought anything over 40ft was OK for ocean passages and we thought about having a boat built for sailing round the world,” says Stephen. “But it was not going to be able to provide many creature comforts for my wife and me and we started realising that you get more comfort when a boat is over 50ft,” says Stephen.

Gratton emphasises the benefits of a bigger yacht size beyond merely space inside. “You have better ability to take the waves — the hull shape and distance between waves can all make a difference. Hull design is so important.”

Stephen Haines took delivery of his new Oyster 565, Panthalassa, in 2019. He has been planning a circumnavigation “for many, many years”. Unusually, Panthalassa represents a downsizing for Haines. He previously owned a 40m Huisman which he sailed with his young family all over the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, Bahamas and US east coast. On the Huisman, Haines had had professional crew, but for his round the world voyage he wants to skipper and run the boat himself. “Having crew on board changes the dynamics and it is not the same,” he says. “When you are employing people it takes quite a long time to make your boat a home as there a lot of people around. It can be hard work.”

Haines says the 565 is “the perfect size for me” and says: “I wouldn’t swap with a bigger boat. In terms of build quality an Oyster is right up there, strong with a good reputation. My Huisman was a one-off, but the more 565s they build, the happier I am. It is easier to get spares and it adds to the residual value.

“I bought the boat to go across oceans and for me it is about the motion of the boat. Panthalassa sits on the water like a much, much bigger boat and in a big sea I have been impressed with her seakeeping.”

what equipment do you need?

From sails to power management and electronics, a multitude of choices shape the ideal bluewater cruiser. The sail inventory, for example, is part of personalising your boat and will depend on how many crew you have and how you like to sail.

The majority of ocean crossings on a tradewinds circumnavigation are on reaching and running angles. A suitable downwind set up can be as simple as the mainsail and a poled-out genoa, or it could be twin headsails set to run day after day. Or you might want to add more power and speed with an asymmetric spinnaker on a furler, or a specialised spinnaker such as the Parasailor.

Ideally, you would have multiple off-wind sail options (including for regattas if you plan to race) and upwind sails that can easily be reefed. In-mast furling, automated systems and electric winches take all the hard work out of reducing sail.

The latest Oysters and other modern cruising designs feature bowsprits that allow an additional light wind Code Sail to be set on a furler so you can keep sailing instead of turning on the engine. But whatever you add to the inventory, the important thing is to have sails that you want to use and don’t find daunting.

Oyster 565 Panthalassa Sailing

High on the list of essentials is a robust windlass that can handle as large an anchor as possible, ground tackle of up to 100 or 120m for anchoring in deep bays, and a second kedge anchor. The CQR type is ever popular, though many Oyster owners opt for a Rocna or upgrade to the stainless steel Ultra anchor, says Durham.

Power management is one the biggest and most critical issues boat owners face. “Questions about power come up all the time. Power management is key, and trying to use as little as possible,” says Mark Durham. Most Oyster owners opt for a generator, but are increasingly looking at diversifying power sources with solar and hydro power also charging high capacity lithium ion batteries.

“It is about trying to use as many different methods of power generation as you can, for example wind generators, hydrogenerators or solar panels,” says Durham. Alternative energy sources not only reduce emissions and the consumption of fossil fuels, they also allow longer periods of silent running and extend generator service intervals.

“We are doing a fantastic project at the moment on Oyster 725 hull number 1, putting solar panels on the hard top so [the owner] will not have to use his generator as often,” says Mark Durham. “He has got 12 lithium-ion batteries giving 2400Ah. Previously he was using his generator in the morning and evening to charge batteries and make water, now all systems can be run off batteries that are charged by the solar panels, and the generator is run rarely.

Now, with 24v watermakers we can run them off the batteries, which can be charged by solar power.”

“This is a really interesting part of the planning and many owners are enjoying the process of using less diesel.”

Power upgrades are always a worthwhile element of a refit. Stephen Gratton says that fitting a new 5kW inverter and 400 A/h of lithium ion batteries to his Oyster 53 is “the biggest change we have made in the 13 years we have had our boat. I would say that the ability to have big gaps between charging and the silence when cooking is one of the best things.”

Leo Nagtegaal also upgraded the inverter on his Oyster 625, Bubbles, to a 5kW unit and has solar panels on his hard-top bimini. “That provides two-thirds of my power needs. I can run more equipment, for example the washing machine and other appliances, so that was a big improvement,” he says.

A watermaker is a prized item on bluewater cruisers of all sizes, giving crews independence from shore. A reliable, well-specc'ed autopilot that has a fast speed of response downwind, with back-up spares, is essential. Bow thrusters and even stern thrusters are increasingly popular, especially for couples who sail two-up frequently.

Communications is critical for almost all long-term cruisers. Satellite comms and on board Wi-Fi networks not only make it simple to keep in touch with home, friends and work but to get detailed real-time weather data and forecasts, and even repair advice and downloads. SSB radio, dated technology though it undoubtedly is, also remains popular with crews who live aboard for lengthy periods – this is still a good way to connect with the cruising community and the camaraderie and help it offers.

“We use Iridium for weather data and emergencies, but for us SSB is something we enjoy using,” says Stephen Gratton. “We came up from French Polynesia to the Pacific North West this year and were part of a [radio] net and we had our last discussion the night before we arrived in the Juan De Fuca Strait, 4,000 miles away. It really felt like people there were thinking about you.”

For getting ashore, and as a transport workhorse when at anchor, everyone needs a sturdy tender and reliable outboard that can easily be brought aboard and stowed away. Solid floor inflatables or small RIBs are the best choice, stored securely on davits, or mounted on the foredeck.

OYS 565 SARDINIA DETAILS

Making your yacht a home from home

On an extended voyage, your yacht is your home, a place to entertain guests and enjoy visits from friends and family. Comforts are important and, unsurprisingly, all the cruisers we spoke to advised having as many of them as possible.

Paul and Trish Ducker have lived aboard their Oyster 54, Babe, almost full-time since she was launched in 2011. For their new boat, an Oyster 565 currently in build, they are going for “all the mod cons”.

While accepting that high equipment levels may bring increased demands in terms of maintenance, Paul says: “It is our home, so we want everything, from air-con to a water maker to a washing machine."

“I would say,” he adds, “everything generally on Oysters is useful even if is not essential.” At the top of the Duckers’ priority list are a large capacity fridge and freezer; sufficient power to run a washing machine; air conditioning from time to time; an electric cooker; and entertainment equipment.

Stephen and Debbie Gratton also mention an electric hob and cooker. "It really works for us. Food is a very important part of our enjoyment at sea and entertainment with friends. The change to lithium batteries was a game changer for us as we can use any of these appliances with just the inverter.”

Andy Armshaw is one of Oyster Yacht’s most experienced project managers, helping owners make the right choices for comfortable cruising. “Good galley set-ups are important,” he agrees. “Most people now go for a Quooker boiling water tap so there is no need to put a kettle on or a pan on the stove. More people are definitely looking at fitting an induction hob and there is a move away from gas, not only from the safety point of view but getting a refill in different places.”

Owners want “really well-appointed heads, and generally want what they have at home, such as fixed head rain showers. They also expect their boat to be comfortable, and we offer a choice of soft furnishings, fabrics and timbers. Also sprung mattresses, because one of the most valuable things on board is rest.”

Good lee cloths are needed for sea berths and are worth fitting in the saloon as well as in cabins. “Sometimes people in forward cabins will migrate aft at sea,” observes Armshaw.

A bimini that can be kept up on passage will keep crew shaded from the sun. A canvas sunshade for covering the cockpit and perhaps also the foredeck will extend your outdoor living area in the Tropics. The biminis and sprayhoods fitted to Oyster yachts are also extremely solid and to be kept up permanently while sailing.

When he was spec’ing his new Oyster 565 Panthalassa, Stephen Haines thought: “If I am going to be living on it and sailing round the world, quite honestly give me everything. I want the icemaker, nice mattresses, a washing machine, a tumble dryer. I got almost everything you can get. It’s nice to have everything – why not?

Like everyone we spoke to, Haines admits that maintenance comes with the territory. What makes the biggest difference to an owner is having excellent after sales support and advice at the end of a phone line.

“I have learned more about that in the last two years than in the rest of my life and now I’m living on the boat it has become daily life. But you only have to get Oyster Yachts on the phone, and they can talk me through it. I reckon it took nearly a full season to really get to this stage and really know my boat inside out and back to front.

“Now, I am very comfortable. I know my boat can cope with any conditions. If she could speak, I think Panthalassa would say ‘There’s nothing to worry about’.”

centre cockpit on sailing yacht

Get ready to go

How long does it take to prepare to cast the lines off and go cruising? Typically, owners getting ready to go off for an Atlantic crossing or further, take a season or two to prepare, though I have met many people who have successfully done it much quicker. A longer runway, however, allows you to spec your boat, trial it thoroughly, and get your life organised for leaving.

Some owners advocate a year of home waters cruising before going further afield. For example, Leo Nagtegaal had his Oyster 56 Duchess shipped to Singapore, where he was working, and sailed from there for several years until taking full retirement and joining the Oyster World Rally 2013-14. A period of shorter-range cruising allows the whole crew to gain the knowledge, training and skills needed, including essential maintenance know-how and medical and sea survival training – and to understand your boat inside out.

But however, you plan to break free, what really helps is a deadline: a date that you are going to set off, with a scene you can visualise to keep you motivated as you work through the preparations and demands of shore life. Most preparations are really just logistics, and you’re probably already pretty good at that. The bigger obstacle is often mustering the courage to leave.

Preparing a bluewater yacht and all that is needed to set free and go is a complex project, but you’ll have plenty of good help and advice along the way. I have yet to talk to anyone who has regretted it. When I ask bluewater sailors for their best advice, it usually boils down to a simple prescription: just go. Life is too short to put off your dreams.

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The Triska is a classic Carl Alberg blue water design with wonderful sailing characteristics with full keel, long cockpit, forward cabin and rear quarter berth. The full keel traditional line of...

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