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13 Best Small Catamarans For Cruising 2024

The best small catamarans for cruising are affordable and comfortable, making great sailboats for a number of different purposes. If you’re looking for the best small catamarans to start your cruising life then look no further!

When searching for a catamaran for our adventures we scoured the internet for any and all information we could find on just about every size, shape, and model!

Although in the end, we opted for a bigger catamaran, in the hopes of having more family and friends on board, we did heavily research the best small catamarans as an option.

One of the best small catamarans for cruising out at anchor.

Each small catamaran has different pros and cons. As with every sailboat, there will be compromises, but hopefully, this post will help you firm up what you’re really looking for in a multihull and find the right smaller catamaran for you!

Here are what we consider the best small cruising catamarans out there, costing anywhere from $40,000 to $300,000. You can also read up on the average costs of sailboats here.

Why choose a small catamaran for cruising?

The downsides to small multihulls for cruisers

The best small catamarans for ocean sailing

The best small catamarans for coastal cruising

Why Choose A Small Catamaran For Cruising?

a small multihull on an ocean passage, cutting through the water.

The main advantage to choosing a small catamaran for cruising has to be the cost. Not only are smaller sailboats cheaper to buy initially, but they are also cheaper to maintain and to dock in marinas or dry storage.

Why buy a small catamaran over a monohull? This isn’t the post to go into the pros and cons of multihulls vs monohulls, but a few of the main reasons you might prefer to buy a small cat over a bigger, cheaper monohull is the living space and the comfort underway and at anchor.

Living on a sailboat is very different from taking the boat out for a sporty sail every now and again. Having a catamaran over a monohull means you won’t be heeling or rolling at anchor half as much, you can leave out your coffee cup, and you have the space you need to spread out a little.

A small catamaran will enable the more comfortable lifestyle you’re seeking at a more reasonable price tag. So what’s not to love about small cruising multihulls?

The Downsides To Small Multihulls For Cruisers

a sailboat with its sails up, goosewinged.

Of course, just with everything in sailing, there are always compromises to be made when it comes to small multihulls.

One of the biggest downsides for cruisers is the weight issue smaller catamarans present. You won’t be able to carry half as much as you would on a larger catamaran or monohull, which might be a problem if you live onboard full time.

The other negative is that smaller boats usually aren’t quite as seaworthy as larger ones. You might find you’re limited to coastal cruising if you choose a small catamaran, so make sure you have your cruising intentions in mind before you buy.

the sails of a sailboat against the blue sky.

Another big thing to look out for when it comes to choosing the right small cat for you, is the bridge deck clearance. This is often worse on smaller catamarans, and can cause nasty slamming in any sort of sea, both when sailing and at anchor.

With these downsides in mind, we’ve split this post into the best small catamarans for ocean sailing and the best for coastal cruising. Obviously this is a little subjective, as many people have sailed around the world in much smaller and less seaworthy vessels!

The Best Small Catamarans For Ocean Cruising

#1 wharram tiki.

  • Suitable for: Bluewater sailing
  • Fixed Keels
  • Draft (max): 2.08′
  • Engines: Single outboard, though some versions have twin inboards
  • Price: Roughly $100,000

small catamarans sailing with the sunset behind

We have lusted after the Wharram catamarans since our adventures began and would have opted for one of these if we had found one for sale this side of the pond.

Designed by the legendary James Wharram, these small multihulls are pretty unique. They are based on the Polynesian catamaran design, and the plans enable you to self-build these boats if you have the time, money, and space for a project of this magnitude.

If you aren’t keen on taking on a project then you can commission a boat builder to complete the design for you, or buy one second-hand. The advantages of having one made yourself are that you can tweak things to your personal taste, and you can even contact the Wharrams themselves to see if they can adjust the designs for individual requests.

The Wharram catamarans have a lot of charm dues to their traditional design, and the old-fashioned appeal continues inside the boat too. You won’t find the same huge hull space as some of the modern design catamarans now have, but the outside entertainment space is perfect for entertaining.

One of the best small multihulls for ocean cruising

These small catamarans don’t have an inside space across the hulls, so all of your inside living space is below. If you’re used to monohulls then this won’t be a problem but if you like the idea of a galley-up then these boats aren’t for you.

Wharram catamarans, especially the Tiki 38, have great reputations as around the world, bluewater boats. They have fantastic bridge deck clearance so slamming is minimum and they sail well.

Most models have a double cabin and two singles, a galley, a head, and a small salon area below. They are smaller catamarans than many newer 38ft multihulls but this does make them more affordable.

small catamarans in the Caribbean with a beautiful white sand beach behind

A big appeal for us was the fact these boats are designed to be self-made. Although a secondhand model could potentially come with a lot of problems (get a decent survey before you buy!) it does mean that almost everything onboard can be self-fixed. This is a huge bonus if you plan on sailing your small catamaran around the world.

Another thing we loved about these smaller catamarans is the fact they have outboard engines, which we felt would be easier to maintain and replace if necessary. This is a personal choice though so consider this before you get your heart set on one!

One of the downsides to the Tiki 38 is that there aren’t many of them around. These are unique boats and they don’t come on the market frequently. When they do, they tend to be scattered all over the world so you’ll have to be prepared to travel to find one!

#2 Prout Snowgoose 37 : Small Catamaran For Ocean Cruising

a sail on a cruising catamaran and the ocean in the background.

Prout catamarans are a popular choice for cruisers, and you’ll find many owners who have circumnavigated in them. The Snowgoose is no exception. Prout no longer exists as a company, as it was bought by Broadblue in the 90s.

Broadblue still makes catamarans today, and they have very similar features to the original Prouts, though obviously they are far fancier and have all the benefits of a more modern design!

The Snowgoose is a great small multihull to go for as you get quite a lot of space inside and out. We weren’t sure about the berth in the salon area, but it might make a great space for a baby or small child while underway!

The compromise in the Prout Snowgoose is the bridge deck clearance and this was something that put us off these smaller cruising catamarans. A low bridge deck clearance makes the boat slam in waves, both at anchor and underway.

#8 PDQ 36 : A Small Catamaran Without Too Much Slamming

  • Suitable for: Bluewater
  • Draft (max): 2.82′
  • Engines: Twin inboard or outboard
  • Price: Over $100,000

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

These small catamarans have an excellent reputation among cruisers because of their solid build and use of decent materials. They come with either outboard engines for coastal cruising or inboard engines designed to withstand offshore use.

If you like the sound of the PDQ 32 but need a little more room then you’ve got that here! It’s also a boat that people have crossed oceans in, though you might want to consider something more tried and tested like the Prout Snowgoose or the Wharram if you’re planning longer ocean sails.

The boat has three cabins, a galley, salon and head, but there’s a more spacious feel compared to the smaller model. Again, the bridge deck clearance is good so you shouldn’t experience too much slamming.

#9 Lagoon 380 : One Of The Most Popular Small Multihulls

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

  • Fixed keels
  • Engines:  twin diesel engines
  • Price:  from $100,000, used

The Lagoon 380 is one of the most popular catamarans out there, and you’ve probably already spotted a lot of them in your search! This is a great option if modern cats appeal to you, as it’s pretty ‘with the times’ as far as smaller catamarans go!

There are lots of different layouts of this boat available all over the world. Some were built for charter with numerous berths and others were commissioned for couples or families with differing cabin and head options.

This is a proven catamaran from a reputable company, but obviously with so many of these boats out there, they come in a range of conditions. Make sure you get a thorough survey done before purchase!

Lagoon 37 TPI

  • Draft (max): 4′
  • Engines: Twin inboard diesels 
  • Price: Over $100,000 USD 

This is the smallest catamaran built by Lagoon, and unfortunately there aren’t many of them out there. These boats were built mainly for the charter market, and have a smaller rig than some similar sized catamarans.

There are two big queen-size forward doubles port and starboard and a smaller double in the starboard hull aft. The galley and salon are designed to be simple and timeless, with none of the fancy trims you’ll find in the newer Lagoons.

As this boat was intended for charter it probably wouldn’t make a great ocean-going vessel. For starters, it isn’t designed to carry too much in the way of provisions. That’s not to say it won’t be a suitable bluewater boat with a few tweaks. Sailors who have circumnavigated in them have increased sail area and added folding props to get more speed from the vessel.

#11 Catalac 9M/30

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

  • Draft (max): 2.5′
  • Engines:  two outboard engines or one diesel engine
  • Price:  from $50,000

The Catalac 9M is a little different to a lot of the catamarans on this list, as it was built for sailing in the North Sea! This is a great small catamaran for anyone wanting a boat built to be safe!

The bridge deck clearance is reasonable but the boat is light, which can make it more prone to slamming. The unique feature of this small sailboat is the hard dodger, designed as somewhere safe and dry to stand in bad weather.

It sails well, though like a lot of catamarans there is technique involved in getting it to tack smoothly. Once you’ve got the hang of though, this boat will make good speeds for its size.

The Best Small Catamarans For Coastal Cruising

  • Suitable for: Coastal
  • Draft (max): 3.62′
  • Engines: Twin inboard
  • Price: Up to $300,000 for a newer model

The Mahe 36 is the smallest of the Fountaine Pajot range, and these small catamarans can go for a heafty budget if you find a newer model!

This tiny multihull packs a lot into a small space, and because of its modern features, you’ll feel like you’re in a much bigger boat when you step aboard.

This boat is a fast mover, with an ok bridge clearance and some attractive upgrades compared to their last small catamaran design. Most notably the full-length hard top bimini which has the reviewers raving!

If you have the money to splash out on a newer, more expensive small catamaran then this should definitely be on your list to consider! Although they come with a large price tag, these small catamarans are considerably cheaper new than some of the bigger models.

#4 Gemini 105Mc (34ft)

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Suitable for: Coastal cruising Centreboards Draft (max): 5′ Engines:  Single inboard Price:  from $80,000

The Gemini 105Mc is still in production in the US, which speaks to its popularity. Obviously if you buy new you’ll pay a much higher price! This is one of the smallest catamarans on the list, but it’s still a great option for coastal cruising (or some have even successfully completed ocean passages on them in relative comfort).

For a small multihull this boat sails pretty well and is fast for a coastal cruiser. The living space is decent with good headroom. It has two double cabins and a master bedroom, and the interior finishes are nice too.

A big negative to this boat is the bridge deck clearance which really isn’t amazing, but as we said at the start, there’s always a compromise! This is a sporty-looking little catamaran that’s a good contender for the top smallest catamarans out there!

#5 EndeavourCat 36

Suitable for: Coastal cruising Fixed keels Draft (max): 3′ Engines:  two inboard Price:  from $100

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Designed and built by Endeavour Catamaran, these American built boats are great cruising catamarans. A big advantage to this little multihull is that it will fit into most monohull slips, so if you anticipate using marinas a lot then this might be the small catamaran for you!

This isn’t a slow boat, and owners report speeds of 8-9 knots. Bear in mind though that the narrow beam does make it less suitable for any offshore passages. It has good interior space with 6′ standing headroom throughout, three double cabins, and a decent-sized galley below. The salon area can seat 6 people comfortably.

This cat is great for single-handed sailors, as all the lines lead to the cockpit and the main and jib are completely self-tacking.

#6 Prout Event 34

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Suitable for: Coastal/bluewater Fixed keels Draft (max): 2.72′ Engines:  Single inboard Price:  from $30,000

These multihulls are quite hard to find, but if you like the Snowgoose but are on a tighter budget then they might be just what you’re looking for. They share lots of features with the Snowgoose and look very similar, only smaller!

There are three cabins, one head, a salon, and a galley, only they are rather squeezed in compared to the larger model. Personally, we thought there was plenty of space for a smaller sailboat but it’s worth seeing them in person if you’re keen on this model.

They do have the same downsides as the Snowgoose though, with limited headroom and low bridge deck clearance. These boats are known for their slamming!

Coastal Engines:  twin outboards Price:  from $80,000, used

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The PDQ 32 is a great budget option catamaran and should be cheap(ish) to buy second hand and maintain. With two outboards that are easy to replace on a smaller budget, you’re looking at some of the usual pinch points on a boat becoming a lot more affordable!

This small catamaran only has two cabins, so sleeps less than a lot of the boats on this list, but it is roomier than you’d imagine inside with a decent galley and salon area. It has decent bridge deck clearance so shouldn’t slam too much in any waves.

This isn’t a boat for longer passages as it is a little small (and perhaps underpowered) to face serious weather. If you’re searching for something to potter around in then this is a fun boat to sail and live in!

#12 Dean 365

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

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  • Suitable for: Coastal cruising
  • Draft (max): 3′
  • Engines:  one or two inboard
  • Price:  from $45,000, used

These South African catamarans are great little coastal cruising catamarans that are hard to come by anywhere other than South Africa!

They’re pretty tiny, but have enough space for a galley, 3 or 4 cabins, and 1 or 2 heads. Some of the designs even have a bathtub, which speaks of their liveaboard suitability rather than their sail performance!

These boats are some of the smallest multihulls on this list, so don’t expect much in terms of headroom or bridge deck clearance. That being said, if you’re looking for a tiny catamaran to live on and you are prepared to compromise on sailing ability then these are a solid choice.

We have heard that the build quality can vary somewhat with these multihulls, so make sure you do some solid research and get a good surveyor when buying one of these. If you get a good version then they can make really solid boats.

#13 EndeavourCat 30

the lines of small catamarans tied off to a cleat

Suitable for: Coastal cruising Fixed keels Draft (max): 2.1′ Engines:  single or twin outboard Price:  from $70,000

This is a boat built for comfort over all else, so if you’re looking for a budget catamaran to live in then take a look at the endeavourcat 30. Some people don’t like the boxy design, but we quite liked how it looked in the water. I guess it’s personal taste!

This sailboat has two double cabins, a decent sized galley and salon for the size of the boat, and a head. The bridge deck clearance is low so that’s something to bear in mind before you buy, but the headroom is good (another reason why this would make a good liveaboard catamaran).

Hopefully this has given you some inspiration when searching for small catamarans for cruising, and helped you to find your dream boat!

We’re passionate about helping people live this incredible cruising lifestyle, so if you’re planning your dream liveaboard life make sure you check out our guide on how to run away to sea, with everything you could possibly need to know before, during, and after starting this adventure of a lifetime!

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

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Such small mention of probably the best catamaran for overall cruising, focusing on ease of helming, speed and livability. Simple rig, great ergonomic features, style and definitely a pedigree on the water. The FP Mahe duo! Sea proven. Most delivered on their own bottoms from France. Wide beams and light. Beautiful interior arrangements and easy to maintain. I’m confused about so little mention of probably the best entry level and beyond real cruiser out there.

You forgot the edelcat 35. Great boats, and have circumnavigated!

I wonder why Broadblue 346 is not on the list.

Appreciate it’s a bit more expensive than most cats listed here but what about the Aventura 37? Technically a small cat but with ocean going abilities and an actual live aboard!

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10 Best Pocket Catamarans (Under 38 ft)

  • Post author By Rick
  • Post date September 11, 2020
  • 3 Comments on 10 Best Pocket Catamarans (Under 38 ft)

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Smaller cruising catamarans are an excellent entry level gateway into cruising catamarans and of late have become very popular. This is an effort to select some of the most well respected of these smaller catamarans. This was a difficult task, as many of these boats, designed and built some time ago, are still found in all the popular cruising grounds, and a list like this is subjective after all. All I can do is apologize in advance for leaving a boat off this list.

  • Prout Snowgoose 37

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Snowgoose  (all iterations) was the first truly popular mass produced catamaran with more than 500 built. Known as safe, strong and capable of being sailed off shore, which some say is because of the position of their main mast, they make a perfect coastal cruiser or circumnavigator for an adventurous couple. This is a lot of boat for the money. These boats began their model run as a 35’ boat but as time went on Prout changed the mould by extending them to 37’. The Snowgoose can be found in every ocean on the planet.

The interior is simple and lightweight in order to maintain good sailing performance. A combination of classic woods and modern materials give the boat a spacious and open feeling that is hard to find on a boat this size.

Under sail, the Prout Snowgoose 37 is consistent, and it doesn’t need to be micromanaged, making it an ideal passagemaker. During passages,150 miles per day can be expected without pushing the boat. The Snowgoose 37, with its flexible cutter rig, balances easily and handles well under autopilot.

The Snowgoose is renowned for its rugged construction and sea kindliness as these boats were built to cross oceans, and not as additions to Caribbean charter fleets. Somewhere around 500 boats were built, and, although statements like this are impossible to confirm, its been said that nearly 100 have completed circumnavigations. True or not, Prouts have probably done more circumnavigations than any other catamaran of their era. The Prout designs have proven themselves time and again as tough, reliable cruisers and if a sailor wants a cat to sail around the world, there’s a good chance he’ll probably end up in a Snowgoose.

  • Gemini 105M

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The most popular American line of catamarans with over 1100 deliveries, this Gemini 105MC is one of the most affordable catamarans on the market. The Gemini’s performance is legendary yet they still manage to surprise unsuspecting newcomers.

These boats squeeze 3 cabins, a head and full Galley (in starboard hull) and a deck layout and rig which offers a stable, safe, and well-reasoned platform for whatever comes your way. And the ingenuity of lifting centerboards and kick-up rudders will have you sailing through less than 2′ of water, making this boat the ultimate Island hopper. All this and more at 33′ 6″ length and a 14′ beam that can dock in a standard slip or truck across the country.

The Gemini 105M has plenty of room, is an excellent value, with outstanding accommodations, and solid sailing performance.

  • The Lagoon 37 TPI

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Lagoon 37 TPI catamaran was built by the famed boat yard Tillotson Pearson in Rhode Island. They were introduced in 1993 following the success of the Lagoon 42 in the US charter market and draws from a long lineage of great multihull designs and continues the collaboration of Jeanneau of France, and TPI (American). With the same designers and builders as the forerunner model and targeting the same market, these boats have achieved cult status among catamaran sailors. Their pointing ability, and comfort aboard are legendary.  These boats were designed with the much preferred straight propeller shafts instead of sail drives and were sold as 3 cabin 2 head laid out as an Owner’s Version.

A French design, built in the USA by TPI in Rhode Island, they have become a very sought-after catamaran. These boats are fast and comfortable both at sea and at anchor with ample storage room and comfortable accommodations.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The PDQ 36 was a Canadian built catamaran offered in two arrangements. The LRC (Long Range Cruiser) is a legend among cruising catamarans and included 2 Yanmar diesel engines coupled to straight shafts. The PDQ 36 Capella, was built with pods for two Yamaha extended shaft outboards.

These are solid boats with excellent construction as the expert use of materials and construction techniques results in a strong boat yet keeps the hull weight low. With twin inboard diesels, she’s designed for coastal cruising. They aren’t seen for sale very often.

These are well-built and well-regarded catamarans, designed with a gracious entertaining area, and two luxurious staterooms complete with queen-size beds. At 36′ the boat is the ideal size for single-handing, as the twin engines contribute to excellent maneuverability in tight spaces while the diesel engine version offering considerable charging capability.

Two equal staterooms with plenty of storage throughout the boat. The head and shower stall are one piece for easy cleaning. The galley is located in the port hull, has dual sinks, a Force 10 oven with two burner range and refrigerator for easy access. The salon seats six for dining.

The cockpit is spacious with pilot and co-pilot seats and an aft bench seat. The engines are either inboard diesels or in pods and retract out of the water for no drag when under sail. 

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Catalac 9M was a British built, 30 foot design, with a modest rig, high coach roof, large  cockpit and 5 berths in four sleeping areas which provided lots of sun bathing deck space, a shallow draft, and had reasonable performance. In a good blow (>20 knots of wind speed) 10 knots at 45 degress apparent can be expected from the Catalac 9M and in enough wind the boat will tack inside of 45 degrees. In strong quarterly winds speeds of 12-14 knots under sail has been documented with the outboard engine configuration in a lightly loaded boat. Remarkable performance from such a boxy design  given that it’s design priority was comfort rather than speed

The mast is cabin stepped in a tabernacle. These were designed be raised and lowered single handed. They were sold with a mainsail, working jib and a 170% Genoa. When the rig is set up correctly, they sail with a very balanced helm. Twin rudders contribute to their agility and later models (>1980) have matching skegs just forward of the rudders to increase windward ability. About 250 boats were built.

  • Endeavour 36

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

EndeavourCat 36 cruising catamaran is an American designed and buit boat by Endeavour Catamaran Corporation of Clearwater, FL. The EndeavourCat 36 draws less than 3 feet and can go most places that others can’t. These boats are very easily docked with twin diesel engines. They were built with three staterooms with queen-size beds. There are identical staterooms aft in each hull with a bedside table, hanging locker and drawers. Each stateroom has a ceiling light, reading lights, large hatches, opening ports. The bright, airy salon can comfortably seat 6-8.

The Galley is located in the port hull and is large enough for two people to prepare a gourmet meal side by side. Designed to be sailed single-handed without ever leaving the cockpit, all lines lead to the cockpit, two two-speed winches make easy work of sail handling. Both main and jib are completely self-tacking.

  • Endeavour 30

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Endeavour 30 was built by Endeavour Catamaran Corporation of Clearwater, FL and features spacious Salon, Massive Galley, Huge Head with separate two-person shower with a built-in seat. Twin Queen births with full hanging cedar lined closest and plentiful storage space.  The hull, deck, and structural bulkheads are manufactured of biaxial fiberglass with isophathalic vinylester resins and NidaCore (a polypropelene honeycomb) coring. Vacuum bagged construction was used to enhance stiffness, strength, and reduce weight. There is a full interior fiberglass grid used as the interior mold for strength and rigidity. The headliner is a full fiberglass molded piece. The hulls and decks are fastened both chemically and mechanically for strength. Twin fiberglass molded keels are foam filled and have integral sumps. The balanced rudders are constructed of high denisty foam/fiberglass.

These boats have a very unique layout merging the cabin with the cockpit with broad companionway doors. Tons of features packed into her 30 foot length. A lot of catamaran for the money.

  • Fountaine Pajot Mahe 36

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Fountaine Pajot Mahe 36 was based on an Olivier Flahault design and with a Joubert/Nivelt hull, The Mahe 36 is built for safe navigation with comfortable, bright living areas and a fully protected cockpit alongside the salon.

The Mahe 36 features an open-plan / sheltered cockpit and saloon and raised helm station.  Entering the main salon through the sliding cockpit door the well-appointed galley is to starboard and the Nav station and storage is to port. Down into the starboard hull is the master stateroom aft with a Queen berth with several opening ports, a hanging locker and shelf storage with vented doors.

Forward to starboard is the ample head with shower which is a single fiberglass unit very easy to keep clean. Down from the saloon to the port guest stateroom aft with a Queen berth with several opening ports , a hanging locker and shelf storage with vented doors. Forward to port is the ample head with shower which is a single fiberglass unit very easy to keep clean. The large windows forward, Port and Starboard in the saloon make for an airy, open feeling.

These boat offers great comfort both sailing and at anchor while at the same time offering excellent performance. The Mahé 36 allows you to move around freely onboard, enjoying comfort when navigating (at the helm, in the cockpit or down below) or while moored. Everything has been thought out so that you can move about on this 36 ft yacht without anything getting in the way.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Catalac 8M is a pocket cruising catamaran which has a solid reputation for quality, strength and durability. Many of the boats found in North America today, were sailed there from Great Britain. The Catalac 8M, although classified as a pocket cruiser was designed with blue water sailing in mind. Offered in two versions, twin diesels or a single outboatd engine. The twin inboard diesel models can easily motor almost 1000 kilometers without refueling. The 70 amps of charging and 70 gallons of stock water tanks in the Catalac 8M and 9M make even these smaller boats terrific coastal cruisers. The Outboard versions sail a bit quicker as the engine can be raised during sailing, reducing drag. Constructed with solid fiberglass hulls, these are quality boats which were built like battleships. Chuck Kanter calls them one of the catamaran brands that live on through the decades.

The Catalac 8M is masthead rigged with a relatively short, but thick mast. As with all boats in the Catalac production lineup, this contributes to a stable boat with a low center of effort. No Catalac has ever been known to fly a hull under any circumstances.

The mast is cabin stepped in a tabernacle. These can be raised and lowered single handed. The standing rigging is over sized to withstand the extra loading experienced by catamarans. They were sold with a mainsail, working jib and a 170% Genoa. When the rig is set up correctly, they sail with a very balanced helm. Twin rudders contribute to their agility and later models (>1980) have matching skegs just forward of the rudders to improve windward ability. 

Designed with a single full size berth forward, a large 8 foot long galley in the starboard hull, a quarter berth, nav station and head in the Port hull, these small catamarans pack a lot of features in a small package. Their cockpits are as large as a 38 – 40 foot catamaran. Most of these boats are in Europe but a fail number were either imported or sailed to North America.

  • Seawind 1000

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Seawind 1000 is an Australian built 37′ catamaran. These Australian designed and built catamarans have won world wide acclaim and awards for their stability, spaciousness, luxury and performance.  The Seawind 1000’s blend of simplicity and sophistication is an example of what a modest cruising catamaran needs to serve the minimum needs of its crew, and what it should have to make sailors want to use and keep their beloved catamaran.

She has a well equipped galley with plenty of bench space and storage and the large open saloon. Featuring 2 cabins, 4 berths, large bathroom, and very nice galley. They feature a large double bed, additonal bunk and bathroom portside. On the starboard side, kitchen, additional bunk, desk and seperate cabin. The saloon features a large table that can convert to a huge daybed for lounging while under sail. Her large trampolines up front are perfect to laze around and for sun baking. The large open saloon with seating and table is fully open to the cockpit for plenty of space for the guests to move around.

The functional galley is loaded with fridge, a small oven and gas 2 burner stove top making meal preparation hassle free. She has a galley bench top w/ integral double sink and drain.

The Seawind 1000 is a solid, safe cruising catamaran that moves beautifully in the water and more than comfortable to live on.

  • Tags Buying Advice

Rick

Owner of a Catalac 8M and Catamaransite webmaster.

3 replies on “10 Best Pocket Catamarans (Under 38 ft)”

Thank you, Rick. My wife and I are planning on cruising the Med in a few years and the boats profiled give a good starting point for the “perfect” boat. ?

Excellent work…

Gerry Gray hear from Pointe Claire Yacht club looking to buy a super clean pocket cat on the east coast or in the carribean or central america….under 100k cad please.

Cheers Gerry

Hi Gerry: Best thing to do is sign up for our mailing list to be first to hear of new catamarans.

https://www.catamaransite.com/contact-enroll/

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The Boat Galley

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Small Catamarans

10 Small Catamarans for Cruisers

Published on January 23, 2021 ; last updated on November 7, 2023 by Carolyn Shearlock/Rick Marcarelli

Is a cruising catamaran your dream? Check out these 10 small but sturdy boats you might want to consider.

I hear from many readers interested in small catamarans. Recently, the folks at www.CatamaranSite.com reached out to interview me about our experience cruising on our Gemini 105, Barefoot Gal and we began chatting about the various small catamarans on the market. One thing led to another and I’m pleased that Rick Marcarelli was willing to contribute a guest post sharing information comparing ten of the most popular small catamarans on the market.

When most buyers think of catamarans these days, they think of designs by Lagoon, Leopard, and Fountaine Pajot. 

These are all fine vessels. But they were built to cater to the charter markets. And so they may not be the best boats for long-term, liveaboard cruisers. 

Charter vs Liveaboard Cruising

The typical charter catamaran accommodates three or four couples sailing for one to two weeks in the Caribbean or Mediterranean. Usually they will provision once, sail a few daylight hours, eat out more than a typical cruiser, and anchor or moor for the night.

Compare that itinerary to the typical liveaboard cruiser. 

Most cruisers spend over 90% of their time at anchor or a dock. They provision repeatedly and usually for many months at a time. Many cruisers rarely eat out at restaurants. And most importantly, cruisers sometimes sail non-stop through the night for multiple days or weeks when making a passage between cruising destinations. 

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The differences between charterers and cruisers cause them to desire different cabin layouts and amenities.

For charter boats, the focus is on several small cabins, each having its own accompanying head. They also have minimal storage space and enormous salons and cockpits. 

Long-term liveaboards generally desire a large master cabin, fewer heads, and significant storage space. They are usually willing to compromise space for superior sailing performance to reduce passage making days and increase safety by avoiding severe weather. 

Affordable Catamaran Market

Unfortunately for liveaboard cruisers interested in catamarans, the market is dominated by enormous, often very expensive, four cabin-four head charter models. In fact, our analysis of sales data suggests that about 38% of the market consists of Lagoon catamarans and over 50% are Lagoon or Fountaine Pajots. In addition, 90% of the market consists of catamarans over 38 feet in length. Please see the infographic. 

While a majority of catamarans for sale are large, expensive, charter catamarans, our site’s traffic suggests that 40% of buyers are looking for smaller, simpler, affordable catamarans under 38 feet in length. 

These are buyers like Carolyn was when she purchased S/V Barefoot Gal . And they are buyers who may be like you and are looking for something affordable that is suited to your liveaboard needs. 

Modest Cats for Cruisers

Consider widening your net. Here are some additional models to consider in your search:

Prout 37 Snowgoose

  • Cruising Grounds: Bluewater
  • Underbody: Fixed Keels
  • Draft (max): 2.08′
  • Mast Height: 40’ (Standard) / 50’ (Elite)
  • Bridgedeck Clearance: Average
  • Layouts: 3 cabins, 1 head; galley down; open version has larger salon while private stateroom has larger master cabin
  • Speed: Slow
  • Engines: Usually single outdrive; rare versions have twin inboards
  • Availability: Relatively common all over the world
  • Ballpark Price: Around $100,000 USD

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

  • Cruising Grounds: Built for North Sea
  • Draft (max): 2.5′
  • Mast Height: tabernacle mast
  • Bridgedeck Clearance: Above Average
  • Layouts: 3 cabins, 1 head; galley down
  • Engines: Single gas outboard or twin inboard diesels
  • Availability: Somewhat rare; usually a couple on the market or 8M sister ship; more in Europe
  • Ballpark Price: Under $50,000 USD

Lagoon 37 TPI

  • Draft (max): 4′
  • Mast Height: 55’
  • Layouts: 3 or 4 cabin; 2 heads; galley down
  • Speed: Fast 
  • Engines: Twin inboard diesels 
  • Availability: Very rare; cult classic 
  • Ballpark Price: Over $100,000 USD 

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

PDQ 36 Capella

  • Draft (max): 2.82′
  • Mast Height: 47’ (Standard) or 55’ (LRC)
  • Layouts: 2 or 3 cabin; 1 or 2 heads; galley down
  • Engines: Single gas outboard, twin gas outboard, or twin diesel inboard
  • Availability: Usually a few on the market and more likely in USA
  • Ballpark Price: Over $100,000 USD

Seawind 1000

  • Draft (max): 3.2′
  • Mast Height: 47’
  • Layouts: 4 cabins; 1 head; galley down
  • Speed: Fast
  • Engines: Twin gas outboard
  • Availability: Usually a few for sale; newer models still being built; originally built in Australia
  • Ballpark Price: Over $150,000 USD

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

  • Cruising Grounds: Coastal
  • Draft (max): 3.35′
  • Layouts: 4 cabins or 2 cabin Maestro; 2 head; galley up
  • Engines: Twin inboard diesels with saildrives
  • Availability: Usually a couple on the market often in Caribbean
  • Ballpark Price: Around $150,000 USD

Endeavour 36

  • Draft (max): 2′ 9″
  • Layouts: 3 cabin; galley down
  • Engines: Twin inboard diesels
  • Availability: Rare and likely in the USA

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

  • Draft (max): 3.62′
  • Mast Height: 55′
  • Layouts: 3 cabin / 1 head; 2 cabin / 2 head; galley up
  • Availability: More common especially in Caribbean
  • Ballpark Price: Newer version up to $300,000 USD
  • Underbody: Centerboards
  • Draft (max): 5′
  • Mast Height: 47’ (M) or 48’ (MC)
  • Bridgedeck Clearance: Below Average
  • Layouts: 3 cabin; 1 head; galley down but open
  • Engines: Single inboard diesel with retractable outdrive
  • Availability: Common especially in the USA

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

  • Draft (max): 3′
  • Mast Height: 46′
  • Layouts: 4 cabin / 1 head; 3 cabin / 2 head; galley down; bathtubs on some
  • Engines: Single or twin inboard diesels
  • Availability: Rare model
  • Ballpark Price: Around $50,000 USD

Rick Marcarelli is the webmaster of CatamaranSite.com featuring cruising catamarans for sale by owner as well as educational articles. Rick is the owner of S/V Catalpa , a Catalac 8M based out of Merritt Island, Florida. The site also functions as the owner’s website for Catalac catamarans. If you are planning on buying a catamaran, CatamaranSite.com might save you a considerable amount of money and lead to years of happy sailing.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

And check out our other courses and products

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

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Reader Interactions

January 31, 2021 at 5:58 pm

I would think draft on the fixed keel boats would be important to many who are considering cats.

Carolyn Shearlock says

February 1, 2021 at 12:49 pm

I’ll see if we can perhaps add that.

Richard says

February 9, 2021 at 11:03 am

Good addition. I have provided drafts to Carolyn, so please watch this article for that to be updated. Any questions or additional information you would like added please comment again.

Drew Frye says

February 20, 2021 at 11:46 am

The best way to look at speed ratings is the PHRF rating or other handicaps. I used to own a PDQ 32 and never found a Gemini I couldn’t pass rather easily on autopilot, so I don’t think it rates slow if well handled. Granted, mine was turboed a bit and carried a 120 rating.

Florida ratings, according to US Sailing

PDQ 32 135 Seawind 1000 137 PDQ 36 156 Gemini 105 MC 168 Snowgoose 250 The others rate around 130-145

And of course, this is only fast or slow within the class. Fast multihulls cruising (?) multihulls rate 0-60.

February 21, 2021 at 7:59 am

Thanks! Good info.

September 10, 2023 at 5:55 am

I have an Edel 35′. For their price, they are a good option, for this size of catamaran. They are not slow, by any means. Disadvantage: clearance under nacelle.

Erin Michaud says

February 23, 2021 at 10:22 am

Great info, we met an owner of a Catalac 9M in Key West Garrison Bight Marina a couple of weeks ago. His name is Eric & he moved his boat to the Boca Chica Navy Marina. I will send the contact info for Rick to him specifically for the Catalac boats! Thanks!

February 24, 2021 at 5:54 am

Catalacs are great boats. We saw a couple for sale around the time we bought Barefoot Gal but they were sold the same day they were listed so we didn’t get to even look at them.

January 6, 2022 at 11:32 am

Hello. I was wondering if you can identify this open catamaran which boasts a GRP cockpit with seating?

https://imgur.com/gallery/2wzUJmR

Bruce Bayne says

February 20, 2022 at 9:57 am

I noticed that the Privilege 37 and 39 were not mentioned in your 10 list of catamarans. Is there a reason? How do they stack up to the others with regard to speed and bridgedeck clearance?

June 6, 2022 at 10:44 am

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small catamaran sailboat with cabin

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

8 Best Catamarans That Are 30 Feet or Less

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

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Large-sized catamarans are appealing due to their ample spacing and comfort. Therefore, a cruising family or couple looking to buy a boat is more likely to go for one of these. But are there small cruising catamarans that provide the performance, comfort, and amenities found in larger boats?  

The best catamarans under 30 feet (9.14 m) include the TomCat 6.2, Cadillac 27and 30, Gemini 30, Endeavour 30, and Maine Cat. These time-tested cruising cats are easy to handle, premium built, and are great for daytime sailing, overnight trips, and some even suitable for long-range sea passages. 

In this article, you’ll find a list of the best cruising catamarans below 30 feet (9.14 m). Keep reading to discover which catamarans make this list, what they have to offer, their pros and cons, and how much they cost.

If you are unsure whether or not 30ft is too small for your needs, then I suggest you check out another article I wrote named Best Size Catamaran , it will discuss why length matters and how it affects safety.

Unlike most catamarans designed for racing purposes, the TomCat 6.2 is a medium-sized cat that’s well-suited to daytime cruising. It boasts high-quality construction, vacuum-bagged hulls, and a plywood-reinforced deck.

This 20 footer (6.09 m) comes with an 11-foot (3.35 m) beam and not only offers you safety and comfort but performance and versatility as well. 

This boat has a centrally placed outboard engine and two rudders that allow it to turn quickly and maneuver confidently into and out of marina slips. The 9.9 hp outboard propels it to speeds of around 8 knots (9.21 mph or 14.8 kph), though the boat has the potential to move faster if desired.

This simpler type of cat (just one engine as an example) also allows for cheaper and easier maintenance. Maintenance costs are something most people underestimate when getting a cat, if you want to get some real numbers from actual sailors then I suggest you read this article (How much does it cost to maintain a cat).

The boat sails with minimal heeling, comfortably accommodate 6-8 people, and you can sail it single-handed or take a crew. 

High and narrow hulls bearing arched bottoms allow for a low wetted surface. The hull design provides low resistance and a great deal of reserved buoyancy and also enables you to drive through closely spaced waves.

On most 20-footers (6.1 m), driving through waves generates a smooth but wet ride, but with the TomCat’s enclosed deck (link to parts names explained here ), you are safe and protected behind a windshield and the high bulwark.

The TomCat makes an excellent cruiser because it performs impressively well both under sail and power. It combines the performance of a modern sailing cat with the comfort, style, and convenience of a powerboat. It’s also trailerable since you can detach the hulls from the deck , winch up the deck on a trailer, and slide the hulls underneath.

But the best part is that it’s easy on the pocket, with the price ranging between $36,750 and $44,580 .

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Catalac 30 (9M)

The Catalac brand consists of strongly built vessels that sport thick hulls, glass windows, narrow beams, and vertical transoms . Catalac 30 was the first vessel in this popular British cruising line designed by Tom Lack in the late 60s. The boat’s appeal was attributed to its safety, ample spacing, well-built interior, and load-carrying abilities.

These characteristics are extremely important on a safe catamaran, overloading your cat makes it sit lower in the water, increases drag, reduces handling and speed, there is stuff you should know about this (so that you can make an educated buy). I have created an article where I try to explain the basics of a safe cat ( link here )

Sporting 5 berths, a massive galley, plus a cockpit with a sheltered steering position, the 30-foot (9.1 m) Catalac makes an excellent floating home for a cruising family. It sails exceptionally well, doesn’t heel ( heeling explained here ), and delivers a reasonable motor-sailer level of performance.

Furthermore, the hulls provide adequate headroom, allowing those on board to move around comfortably, and there’s enough space on the deck for sunbathing. 

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Catalac’s structure features solid fiberglass, chined hulls, and a staggered sheerline that allows easy aft access. With a modest rig that’s easy to handle, the Catalac can deliver top speeds of up to 12-14 knots (13.81-16.11 mph / 22.22-25.9 kph) under sail.

Given that the boat’s design focuses more on comfort than speed, this is a spectacular performance.  

Catalac 9M requires a skilled hand when turning into the wind as it is prone to blowing sideways. This is because the boat lacks ballast (which helps in keeping momentum during a tack) but also centerboards ( explained here ).

Skills are always the most essential things to bring aboard and you can acquire them in many ways, my two favorite ways are through NauticEd courses (two free courses here ) or by reading books (my top 15 books here )

Back to the boat! This model came in two versions; the standard layout contained a 30-40hp outboard, while the second option had duo engines. The latter is easier to maneuver into a marina. 

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

These cats retain their value pretty well. However, they might not be easy to come by since most owners find it challenging to get their hands on a larger boat with similar qualities and performance.

A Catalac 30 (9M) goes for between $33,000 and $55,000.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Catalac 27 (8M)

The Catalac 27 8M is a pocket cruiser that boasts a strong reputation for high quality, durability, and strength. Besides, the boat’s design makes it somewhat suitable for bluewater sailing ( understand why the small size is an offshore problem).

Built like a battleship, the boat contains solid fiberglass hulls. Additionally, it comes with double engines, a large cockpit fitted with cushions all around, and features standing headroom in each hull.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Like the Catalac 9M, this boat comes with two different layouts; a twin inboard diesel engine or an outboard engine. The twin-engine models can motor up to 1000 km (621 miles, read more on cat fuel consumption here ) without needing to refuel, while the 70 amps of charge plus water tanks (70 gallons / 265 liters) make these vessels remarkable coastal cruisers. 

Catalacs equipped with outboard engines sail faster since you can raise the engine during sailing and are also lighter. This helps to minimize drag . Catalac 8M sports a short but thick mast that helps make the boat stable. 

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Though small in size, this catamaran packs a lot of features in its small frame. It has a full-sized berth, a large galley that’s almost 8 feet (2.4 m) long, a quarter berth, head, and navigation station.

What’s more, the cockpit is as large as that of a 38 to 40-foot (11.5 to 12.1 m) cat.

Catalac 27 costs about $31,836.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Endeavour 30 

The Endeavour 30 catamaran is a boat characterized by stability, ample deck space, and a spacious interior. It boasts fast cruising speeds under both sail and power.

The boat has mini keels and rudders plus symmetrical hulls separated by a hydra-cell. The latter is a center section with a characteristic V-shape. 

The boat’s vacuum-bagged construction helps enhance strength and stiffness while reducing weight. Furthermore, the interior has a fiberglass mold, providing extra strength and rigidity. With sufficient breeze, this vessel can deliver reasonable off-the-wind and doable upwind speeds.

As such, you can expect to attain speeds of about ~10 knots (11.51 mph or 18.5 kph) on power reaches. Below is a video showing a panoramic tour of the Endeavour 30:

This vessel has the internal capacity of a 40-foot (12.1 m) monohull. And you can tell this from the unique layout merging the cabin and cockpit with wide doors to the numerous features packed into this 30-foot (9.14 m) vessel.

It has a spacious salon, an enormous galley, two queen berth staterooms with plenty of storage space, a head with separate showers, and a sizable U-shaped dinette. 

You can get this boat for under $50,000 .

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Geminis by Tony Smith were the United States’s first production cruising cats. Today, these vessels remain the most appealing American-built cruising catamarans. Built between 1981 and 1990, the Gemini 30 does not have a contemporary design, but it works remarkably well for cruisers desiring generous living space in a small affordable sailboat.

At only 14 feet (4.2 m) across, Gemini cats are somewhat narrow. But this mean s they can easily fit into most of the regular marina berths.

Besides, the boats still contain enough interior space for a queen-size double berth and two smaller doubles housed in separate guest rooms.

There’s also a modest but serviceable saloon with duo settees and a collapsible table that can transform into an additional double berth.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

For the Gemini 30, this translates to a cruising cat with standing headroom that can comfortably accommodate 3 couples in private cabins or a family with small children. A good-sized galley, a spacious head with a shower, nav desk, and a large comfy cockpit make up the Gemini 30’s cruising palace.

Catamaran layout is highly personal and if you want to learn more about different characteristics then I suggest you read my article Designing the perfect catamaran layout ( Link )

While not that fast, the Gemini 30 will easily outsail the Endeavor 30 discussed above. Its daggerboards (which are explained in detail here ) can point well, and if you keep it light, it can do 7-8 knots (12.9-14.8 km/hr) under sail.

Besides, raising the daggerboards reduces the wetted surface area, and increases the speed downwind.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Gemini 30 tends to pound and hobbyhorse a little when sailing in choppy waters – particularly when overloaded (more on load carrying capabilities in this article ), but the deep pivoting daggerboards provide stability and lift underwater.

Furthermore, the Gemini’s retractable rudders enable it to venture into shallow waters.

This is a very popular cruising cat that’ll give you a lot of bang for your bucks.

You can find a Gemini for less than $65,000.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Maine Cat 30 

The Maine Cat 30 combines premium quality construction materials with the most advanced building techniques to create a lightweight vessel capable of handling most offshore conditions. What’s more, this boat can remain trouble-free for years on end with little effort.

If you are in the market for a simple liveaboard cruiser that you can use for a short weekend getaway or a cruising voyage, this is it.

The boat has a sizable primary stateroom berth with ample overhead space and a dresser fitted with a hanging storage cabinet. The enormous head includes a toilet, sink, 20-gallon (75.71 L) holding tank, vanity, and a pressurized shower.

Covering the open bridgedeck is a permanent hardtop. This spacious bridgedeck can hold quite a crowd and comes with a convertible dinette that turns into an extra berth. If need be, you can even enclose the entire space using acrylic windows or screens. Gabo

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The 360-degree visibility from the cockpit allows the captain plus the crew a panoramic view, and all sail controls go back to the cockpit, which is very useful if wanting to sail single-handedly.

I believe that most boats should be set up in this way since sooner or later you might be in a situation where there is only one person to handle the controls, such as in an emergency. But more on that in another article ( Link ).

The Maine Cat 30 is a classic boat that delivers on high-performance multihull sailing. Designed to offer much better performance than catamarans bearing tall and heavy bridge decks, this cat weighs less and suffers less windage thanks to the acrylic windows.

The boat’s interior layout allows for easy cleaning as surfaces sport a smooth gel coat and satin-finished cherry trim. The solid but lightweight furniture bears the same Core-Cell foam core employed on the hull, deck, and hardtop. Plus, there’s ample storage for all your sailing equipment, cleaning supplies, and provisions.

A Maine Cat 30 can cost up to $110,000.

Heavenly Twins 27

The overall design of this well-equipped catamaran makes it a superb pocket cruiser.

Heavenly Twins 27 manages to fit not one but two coachroofs on hulls that are only 27 feet (8.20 m) long. Canoe sterns and a central cockpit separating the duo coachroofs form the boat’s other prominent features. 

Famous for their excellent build quality, medium-depth draft, and narrow beams, Heavenly Twins 27 appeals to a wide range of boating enthusiasts.

These include solo sailors, weekend sailors, cruising families, circumnavigators, beginner sailors, and experienced liveaboards such as this famous Youtube channel “Kittiwake”.

The vessels house double cabins in the hulls while the forward starboard contains the heads and, to port, the galley. You can easily access the bar from the well-protected cockpit while the Comfordesk accommodation converts into a double dock. 

A stoop through allows access from below-deck to the aft compartment without going through the cockpit. There’s ample storage space throughout the boat, plus you can section off the large stateroom into smaller double compartments if desired.

The price range for this boat is $ 20,098 to $24,193. (I believe that kittiwake is for sale too)

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The last cruising catamaran on my list is the Aquilon 26 . This French-built cruising vessel is light in weight and trailerable, which means you can disassemble it in a few hours or transport it as-is.

Designing a boat that is possible to disassemble usually means that it is structurally less strong, which by no means is a problem during coastal sailing but the Aquilon 26 is mostly attractive to sailors who prefer inland lake sailing. It’s also suitable for beginner sailors.

Although there are no real “beginner cats” there are specs to consider if you are a beginner with catamarans, most of them I have listed in another article ( here ). Gabo

This 26-footer (7.92 m) has the potential for good speed though its layout is anything but conventional- which forms part of its appeal.

The cockpit works as the saloon, and a full bimini protects the crew from lousy weather. The starboard hull contains a dinette and galley, and the port has a double berth stateroom. The windows are quite unusual, but they provide lots of light, remarkably enhancing interior visibility.

Aquilon 26 can deliver an average cruising speed of 10knots (11.51 mph or 18.5 kph).

On a beam reach, you can expect around 25 knots (28.77 mph or 46.3 kph) with an adequate breeze ( I have never sailed at 25knots but researching this boat supposedly it is possible).

You can get this boat for under $50,000.

What Makes Small Cruising Cats Attractive?

Small cruising cats are ideal for sailing along the coast. But that’s not all. Under capable hands, properly fitted smaller cats can also deliver spectacular offshore passages similar to their larger counterpart (Heres a list of full-sized bluewater cats).

They can operate over long cruise ranges, cross oceans , and circumnavigate the globe . Smaller cats are also suitable for day sailing, overnight trips, and coastal or inland voyages. 

For most sailors, comfort on board is crucial, so they’ll look for a vessel that guarantees a comfortable cruising experience. The good thing is that smaller vessels provide almost the same qualities and amenities that bigger vessels offer. Plus, you can do quite a bit with the available space, especially if it’s well laid out.  

You’ll find that most 30-footer (9.14 m) or more miniature cruising cats comprise a galley, head, bunks, navigation and entertainment electronics, and refrigeration.

Sailors usually talk about these benefits of smaller cats:

  • They’re less expensive. Large boats are costly to buy. They also cost more to hire, maintain, and dock. You can buy a small-sized boat at a much lower price, and parts tend to cost less too. Besides, you get to use smaller sails, winches, and lighter lines than those applicable on a larger boat. And since marine services such as moorings and haul-outs get billed via boat length, a smaller cat makes sailing more affordable.
  • They boast superior builds. Most cruising boats under 30 feet (9.14 m) feature designs that are 30+ years old. In those days, weather forecasts were hard to come by and not as accurate, so boat builders used hulls with thicker fiberglass than the type found in today’s builds. Furthermore, everything in the boat, including rigs, rudders, hulls, keels and decks, was designed to withstand strong winds and high waves. 
  • They have simpler systems. This means less time spent fixing and maintaining your boat. For instance, most small cruising cats often lack water-makers, hot water systems, or electric anchor windlasses. 
  • They’re easier to handle. Smaller cats are simpler to sail than larger cats. It’s also easier to sail one single-handed or with a small crew.

What is the largest cat on person can sail?

The Disadvantages of Smaller Cruising Cats

Below are some of the most discussed downsides of small cats:

  • They have limited living space, storage, and amenities.
  • Though they don’t heel much, they are less comfortable than larger boats since they get tossed around much more easily in big ocean swells.
  • It’s not easy to accommodate crew for extended periods; hence there are fewer hands to share work.
  • They are slower and take longer to get to their destination.

Though fewer are on the cruising trails than their larger counterparts, small catamarans make ideal cruisers because they are simple, seaworthy, and pocket-friendly.

When choosing the best cat for your needs, focus on quality rather than size. A well-planned 30-footer (9.14 m) is reliable and provides ample space for your accommodation, dining, and relaxation, plus a storage room for provisions and any spare parts you might need. 

And if you want even more info than I have presented to you in this article I would recommend a book from Serj, he makes it easy to understand why size matters and how to find a cat suited for your needs (amazon link )

Owner of CatamaranFreedom.com. A minimalist that has lived in a caravan in Sweden, 35ft Monohull in the Bahamas, and right now in his self-built Van. He just started the next adventure, to circumnavigate the world on a Catamaran!

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Small Catamaran Comparison: Excess 11 vs. Bali Catsmart

The size of catamarans has seen an increase over the years, with boats measuring 45′ now considered average-sized and prices soaring to reach one million euros and more… It’s almost as if the shipyards have forgotten the success of smaller catamarans like the Lagoon 380 and its 800 units built.

Almost simultaneously, two shipyards have revived these smaller sized boats with very different approaches: the Excess 11 and the Bali Catsmart .

Different because the catamaran landscape includes two major types of boats – the ultra-light and very sporty catamarans, and the very well-equipped boats, which are more comfort-orientated. The Excess 11 and the Catsmart position themselves between these two extremes, each by using a different yet appealing recipe to create affordable four-cabin catamarans.

Excess 11, a sailors’ catamaran

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Honor to the older of the two, the Excess 11, which first showcased at the Dusseldorf Boot 2020 boat show. Excess is a recent brand from the Beneteau group aimed at producing lighter, simpler catamarans, offering more sailing sensations than their heavy Lagoon counterparts.

Excess catamarans, while they sail well, are not designed for racing or regattas – they are not high-performance vessels that tolerate no errors. Rather, they are comfortable cruising catamarans, but with a sporty look, and capable of offering great sailing sensations. While large catamarans with a hydraulic steering system have other advantages, they tend to provide little more navigating pleasure than that of a heavy machine carving its way through the waves.

On the Excess, special care has been taken to satisfy the sailing enthusiast. Very often, and we see this at our bases every season, sailing enthusiasts switch to catamarans for family reasons. This change is made at the sacrifice of the very soul of sailing, the pleasure of steering a well-adjusted sailboat and feeling the sensations of its motion. Several technical solutions have been adopted to improve its handling. With an Excess, there is no sacrifice!

This is especially true for the Excess 11, as the first two models from Excess (12 and 15) used the hulls of a Lagoon catamaran . The Excess 11 is the first boat in the range to be built on its own molds.

Excess 11, a sporty look

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

It is hard not to succumb to the charm of this catamaran when you see it for the first time. With its massive bulging bows, a set-back cockpit, a long roof overhang, and the mast positioned forward of the cockpit, it has a rather pleasant roadster-like appearance. It’s a boat that captures attention, especially since its hull has immediately recognizable features and it can be delivered in gray. The cockpit position, which suits it so well, is dictated purely by sailing considerations.

By moving the cockpit aft, the mast could be moved forward on the main beam (the primary structural component of the boat that connects the two hulls) without the mast’s support interfering with the interior space. With a forward mast, you gain in mainsail area and therefore in power and speed. The boat also comes with a self-tacking jib, making it easy to handle with a reduced crew, and has a bowsprit designed to accommodate a code sail.

This design is also reflected in the two steering stations, which are located at the very rear of each hull, in a position reminiscent of monohulls. From the rear, you can see the tips of the hulls and the sails, but you are also close to the boat’s social: the cockpit and the saloon. The skipper is no longer isolated, alone on the flybridge.

A catamaran full of sailing-oriented details

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Each steering station is equipped with a wheel, positioned just like on a monohull, close to the pulleys of each rudder. The steering of these boats is carried out by means of Dyneema lines. These ultra-solid textile tiller ropes are relatively short, and offer the skipper sailing sensations very close to those experienced on a monohull. These short tiller ropes are not used on larger boats, which prefer hydraulic or cable-controlled actuators – both of which completely eliminate the steering feedback.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

In the front, the path of the anchor chain and the davit have been moved slightly off-centre to clear the bowsprit, intended to be used with a code zero (not present on the charter/rental version).

The shipyard has done a fine job with its supplier of lines and ropes. Halyards, ropes, reefing lines, tiller ropes and moorings are all braided in a range of assorted colors, but are made in such a way as to remain distinguishable at a glance. Inside, this work is also found on the drawer handles made of cordage.

About the space

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Inside, there is headroom of more than 2 1⁄2-feet throughout. In the cockpit, there is the galley, a dining table and a navigation table. The atmosphere is bright, with whites, grey floors and minimal use of wood.

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

In the hulls, there are three or four cabins, whose aft cabins stand out due to their large 6.5×6.5-foot beds! The cabins share a bathroom per hull.

Excess 11 in three figures: 11.33 m / 37.17 ft overall length, 6.59 m / 21.62 ft beam, 9 tons and 77 m2 / 828.52 ft2 of upwind sail area.

Bali Catsmart

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

A Bali powerhouse of 36 feet When Bali announced its Catsmart, the word on the docks was that a wave of panic rose at Lagoon, which had no such project in the pipeline…

The Catsmart is also a 36-foot catamaran, whose configuration is totally different from that of the Excess. Here, Bali has incorporated almost all the design strengths of its other models to create a concentrated vessel of smaller size. The price, fully equipped, is also modest, at less than €500,000.

And Bali catamarans have no shortage of strengths. It is these distinctive elements of comfort and differentiation that have contributed so much to the lightning-fast success of this range of cruising catamarans.

A solid forward deck and XXL sunbeds

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Up front, where competitors install trampolines, Bali decks the entire forward section. This approach offers various advantages despite what the competition (may) say about the additional weight at the front. It works well to provide additional outdoor space with a table where the entire crew can gather.

A table, but also an enormous sunbathing area, covered with cushions designed to stay in place while sailing. This forward arrangement is particularly pleasant when cruising. Early in the morning while the sun is still low it’s a pleasure to have an open-air meal, just like dining on a terrace.

At lunch and in the evening, you can equally enjoy the shelter of the roof and its overhang to escape the sun.

A fused cockpit-saloon area

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

In the aft cockpit area is merged seamlessly with the saloon thanks to the tilting rear wall, which allows the boat to be used “fully open air” in temperate weather, or closed, after the sun sets. This clever combination allows the use of a single, larger table at this place, with a comfortable sofa opposite. Inside, the kitchen faces the direction of sailing and occupies the entire width of the boat.

Bali Catsmart’s pivoting rear door lends great versatility to its common areas. No redundant furniture: the use of space is maximised. Operating the door is very easy, and its operation is similar to that of a garage door. The comparison ends there though, as the Catsmart’s door is insulated and coated with a gel coat.

The forward-facing kitchen is pleasant for the cook, who can quickly lose sight of his recipes if he lets himself get caught up in the view. This configuration is made possible by the absence of a front door, which is the only Bali detail that the shipyard could not incorporate into the highly successful Catsmart.

Both helm stations are placed, as on the Excess, at the very back of the hulls. The starboard station is the primary one with two winches. The winch for the mainsail is located aft and handles the mainsail traveler and the headsail sheet (self-tacking), while the other winch manages the reefs and halyards. Just in front of the console, the headsail furler block is within easy reach of the helmsman. The port station has only one winch, used for the topping lift and a reefing line.

Bright cabins

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Bali Catsmart in four figures: 11.78 m / 38.65 ft overall length, 6.46 m / 21.19 ft beam, 8.4 tons and 99 m2 / 1065.24 ft2 of upwind sail area

The choice is yours between the Bali Catsmart and the Beneteau Excess 11, two sailboats that are very similar in terms of specifications (length, width, weight, sail area) but very different in terms of onboard experience. Two very successful concepts, each of which took their advantages to the extreme to create two very beautiful boats.

It’s up to you to choose the one that suits you best!

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My Cruiser Life Magazine

How To Pick a Small Catamaran — Everything You Need to Know

Catamarans have had the sailing world abuzz for several decades now. To the salty monohull sailors’ chagrin, they aren’t going away any time soon. They’re roomy, comfortable, spacious, airy, and light-filled. They ride flat and don’t heel over when the breeze freshens. When you step aboard a modern catamaran, even the most landlubber-y of landlubbers can envision moving aboard and setting sail to distant horizons. 

There’s no set definition, so we’ll have to look to the boat manufacturers for answers. If you look at the lineup from Leopard, Lagoon, Fountaine Pajot, Bali, and others, you’ll find that the smallest cats are generally somewhere between 38 to 40 feet long. There are other manufacturers making some 35-foot boats, but these look a lot different.

The appeal of the small catamaran is nothing new, and many different boat makers have made attempts over the years. Here are a few things you might want to consider before purchasing a small catamaran boat.

small catamaran sailboat

Table of Contents

What is a small catamaran sailboat, pros of a small catamaran boat, cons of small catamaran boats, not all catamarans have the same feel.

  • Size (Of Your Liveaboard Catamaran) Matters 

Priorities: Affordable Catamarans or Small Catamarans?

  • Picking the Right Small Sail Catamaran 

Best Small Catamaran FAQs

For liveaboard, long-distance sailors, a small catamaran is a twin-hulled sailboat between 35 and 40 feet long. 

There are a few designs, but the most comfortable ones are those with wide beams and the hulls set farther apart. This size catamaran is necessary to ensure the boat can carry enough supplies and retains enough stability to be safe at sea. However, these small boats still feel very large and have beams of 19 to 21 feet. Boats of this size have twin diesel inboard engines. These boats come with four cabins or three cabins in an “owner’s version” layout.

Many of these boats could be described as French-style charter catamarans. Examples of boats like this include those made by Lagoon and Fountaine Pajot. South African companies like Leopard make them too, and there are a few one-off designs, like the American-made Manta share these features. 

Generally speaking, a 38-foot-long, 21-foot-wide sailboat is not a small one. But if you love the French-style catamaran, this is about the smallest you’ll find. That’s because this type of boat depends on its width for stability and its length for carrying a load. A shorter boat is very easy to overload. Most boat makers, Lagoon, Bali, Leopard, and the rest, currently make nothing less than 37 feet. 

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Katamarans (@katamarans)

But there are some smaller options. 

On the other end of the spectrum from the super-wide French-style cat, there are small catamaran sailboat designs built for day-tripping and short-term coastal cruising. These are often narrower than offshore boats and can be stored in a regular boat slip. This is an especially important consideration in coastal areas where big offshore catamarans aren’t very common and marina options are limited. 

These boats will sometimes have beams of 15 feet or less. These smaller and lighter boats are often propelled by a single engine, either an inboard diesel or a gasoline outboard. All of these factors make them cheaper. 

Examples of boats like this, small and made for nearshore coastal cruising, are the 105MC from Gemini Catamarans and the Endeavour 30. The Gemini is one of the most popular coastal cruiser cats made. It is 35 feet long with a single center-mounted diesel inboard engine, retractable centerboards for shallow-water cruising, and distinctive hard dodger. They usually have two cabins or three cabins and one or two heads.

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Jeremy Ryan Davidson (@jeremy_ryan_photo)

A third group of catamarans doesn’t fit neatly into these two categories. They lie somewhere between small, say 30 to 37 feet, and are built well enough to be considered bluewater boats. They take their designs from seaworthy British catamarans built in the 1980s and 1990s, namely those built by Catalac and Prout. These were solid boats built tough to take on the North Sea that earned the excellent reputation they still have today. The Island Packet PacketCat and Dean Catamarans 365 are two more recent examples.

They tend not to be as beamy as the French charter catamarans and are much less common. However, for owners lucky enough to find a good one, they make excellent long-distance cruisers and liveaboard boats.

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Nadia & Joël autour du monde (@sailing_gypsy_sirena)

Of course, the smallest catamaran of all is the beach cat that everyone is familiar with. It’s nothing more than two small hulls connected by poles and netting. Fun and fast, there’s no better toy on the resort’s beach. They have no interior accommodation—they are just for day sailing. We’ll keep our discussion limited to liveaboard catamaran options. 

Catamarans appeal to many sailors, but the reasons folks like them vary from person to person. For example, some are in love with the way cats sail. Faster and lighter than monohulls, they speed up quickly in light wind and skip over the waves. 

Others prefer the living space aboard a catamaran. They usually have open, airy salons with tons of light and fresh air everywhere. Big windows are the norm, unlike monohulls described by many as “caves.”

Here are a few reasons to consider a small catamaran with cabin. 

  • Cheaper than bigger catamarans
  • Shallow draft for exploring more places, especially compared to fixed keels on monohulls
  • Easy handling and happy sailing
  • Large windows and great ventilation in the living space
  • Large, open cockpits to entertain guests
  • Faster cruising than a similar-sized monohull
  • More interior living space than a monohull
  • Does not heal under sail as monohulls do—rides flatter
  • Fits in more slips and at more marinas than larger, wider boats
  • The narrower the boat, the more boatyards are available to you
  • One diesel engine price tag—keeps boat and maintenance cheap compared to twin inboard diesels
  • Option for outboard engines, which saves even more money in maintenance—some smaller boats have one or two outboard engines
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There are some struggles for catamaran and would-be catamaran owners, of course. But, by far, the biggest problem you’ll face with choosing a small catamaran is the problem of having limited choices. There aren’t many cats in the world when you compare them to monohulls, and those catamarans you find are more expensive.

Another problem with small catamarans is that they are very sensitive to overloading. While they have lots of storage space, they can’t hold much weight. As the hulls ride lower in the water, sailing performance and overall stability decrease. In other words, a catamaran will hold less weight than a monohull of a similar length.

  • Fewer available on the market than monohulls
  • Interior space feels different than that on bigger models
  • Weight carrying capacity is less than may be required for comfortable long-distance cruising
  • Lack of overall stability due to narrower beams
  • Seakeeping and ride qualities are poorer than long cats
  • Some find the ride quality of shorter catamarans to be uncomfortable
  • Lightly built with thin fiberglass layups, susceptible to flexing issues—some require more repair and maintenance than similar-sized and aged monohulls
  • High-quality offshore models are hard to find
  • Low bridgedeck clearance may mean wave slapping and pounding with some boats on some points of sail

Tips When Shopping for a Small Catamaran Sailboat

Here are a few things to remember if you want to purchase a small catamaran with cabin. 

When looking at the latest models, you’ll see that catamaran construction has changed quite a bit in the last two decades. So it’s really important to understand what you like so much about your dream catamaran. 

Is it the open feeling you get when standing in the salon, looking out of those huge windows? Or is it the way you can easily walk from the salon to the cockpit to the side decks or helm without stepping up and over seats, in and out of a deep cockpit? What about the easy access to your dinghy, which is on davits at the rear? Or maybe it’s the way that there’s plenty of light below decks in your cabin, and the boat feels open and airy?

The choices look very different when you start downsizing and looking at small cruising cats. Some or all of these features were things that designers had to learn to do. In some cases, they’re still learning how to do them. And in some cases, they’re impossible to do on a small boat. 

Size (Of Your Liveaboard Catamaran) Matters

Small catamarans have never been and will never be designed to carry a load. Catamarans are performance-oriented, even if some are built for charter and look like condo buildings. When you stuff too much weight in a catamaran, its sailing characteristics are degraded. As the waterline gets lower and lower, the boat sails noticeably slower, and stability is adversely affected. 

As a result, it’s frightfully easy to overload a small catamaran. Going out for a daysail is easy, as you might only bring a towel and some water. But living aboard or traveling long distances is another thing entirely. With a catamaran under 37 feet, it is very difficult not to overload it while keeping enough stuff—tools, spare parts, food/groceries, water, fuel, clothes, gadgets, books, etc. Cats 35 feet and under can be dangerously overloaded, which is another reason these boats are usually not generally considered bluewater vessels.

This is one of the biggest reasons you don’t see many small catamarans being built and crossing oceans—most people need more stuff than a small cat can safely hold. 

So with the quality of the living space and the weight of your stuff in mind, most cruising couples are most comfortable on a 40 or 42-foot catamaran. Peformance-wise, a 42 or 44-foot catamaran is the sweet spot for most. Unfortunately, these boats are expensive! Much more so than a 35-footer. 

Shorter catamarans also handle big seas differently. The shorter a catamaran is, the more likely it is to hobby horse—the tendency towards a quick, bow-up bow-down motion at sea. This is another reason that 44-footers are ideal—they’re long enough to escape this tendency and ride better in open water. Plus, their longer waterlines and narrower hulls mean these bigger cats will be significantly faster on all points of sail. If you want to see a list of bigger catamarans, check out our list of the best liveaboard catamarans .

So, you must approach your choice with these things in mind. A lot of people downsize their plans to fit their budget. But are you willing to put up with the problems associated with a smaller catamaran than you need? Would a different type of boat actually suit your goals better?

small catamaran boat

Picking the Right Small Sail Catamaran

Every boat purchase is a compromise, and there is never a perfect boat that can do everything. First, keep a clear mental picture of your goals and what you love about the catamarans you’ve seen. Then, keep an open mind! There are so many different types of boats, and catamarans are just one of them. 

When you’re ready to start shopping for a small catamaran sailboat, check out our list of cheap catamarans for some great options in the under-40-foot range.

What are small catamarans called?

A small catamaran is a boat with two hulls. The smallest are beach catamarans like the Hobie Cat . For liveaboard sailors, small catamarans are between 35 and 40 feet long.

How much does a small catamaran cost?

Prices for small catamarans vary greatly depending on the boat’s popularity, quality, and design. For example, one of the most popular small liveaboard catamarans is the French-built Lagoon 380, built from 1999 to 2020. Depending on features, age, and location, these boats currently sell for between $200,000 and $400,000. On the other hand, the much smaller American-built Gemini 105MC can be found for half as much. 

What is the best small catamaran to live on?

Everyone is looking for something a little different in their liveaboard catamaran. The Lagoon 380 and Fountaine Pajot Mahe are popular options if you’re looking for a spacious and comfortable charter catamaran. 

What is the smallest catamaran to circumnavigate?

Many catamarans in the 35-foot range have successfully circumnavigated. Smaller ones have likely made the trip, albeit less comfortably. But generally, most sailors agree that a 38 to 40-foot cat would be the smallest size that should make the trip, and a 42 to 44-footer would be best. The WorldARC, a 15-month-long around-the-world sailing rally hosted by the World Cruising Club, requires boats to have a 40-foot length, although they will consider smaller vessels on a case-by-case basis.  

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Matt has been boating around Florida for over 25 years in everything from small powerboats to large cruising catamarans. He currently lives aboard a 38-foot Cabo Rico sailboat with his wife Lucy and adventure dog Chelsea. Together, they cruise between winters in The Bahamas and summers in the Chesapeake Bay.

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small catamaran sailboat with cabin

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Unlock Your Sense Of Adventure On Our 32-Foot Cabin Cruiser

Arrowcat 320 coupe.

Now in its third generation, the ArrowCat 320 express cruiser has literally defined the high end cruising cat market! At the helm you find the experience more refined, from the custom hardwood steering wheel to full digital controls and instrumentation and carbon fiber accents. Every ArrowCat power catamaran features our signature luxurious interior cabin with creature comforts other boat companies have only dreamed about. Add to this that the ArrowCat 320 is trailerable with a 10’ beam and your cruising grounds expand exponentially. Winter in Florida, summer up north and plan the trip of a lifetime around the Great Loop.

ArrowCat 320 Boat layout

Specifications

Express Cruiser Catamaran Hull Planing Hull Design Twin Outboard Motors LOA Length over all: 31′ 2″/9.50 meters Length at the waterline: 25′ 11″/7.9 meters Beam: 10’/3.05 meters Draft: 20″/.508 meters Fuel: 196 gal/742 liters Water: 44 gal/167 liters Waste: 14 gal/53 liters Displacement Dry: 9,900 lbs (approx.)

Click here to view 3D model

The essentials - standard equipment.

  • All weather bulkhead enclosure with locking door between salon and aft deck  
  • Stowable companionway floor panels boards  
  • Opening side windows  
  • Hullside lights fixed (4)
  • Fridge/Freezer: Isotherm drawers style or XL C130 refrigerator, stainless finish  
  • One piece acrylic galley counter top with stainless steel sink, hot/cold faucet with four wood finish drawer
  • Bedside reading lights with light switches(2)  
  • Mattresses: one forward berth, one port side berth in the high quality foam with durable breathable fabric covers  
  • 110v outlet, USB power source
  • Automatic shower and sink (grey water) pump with manual override  
  • Hot/Cold sink faucet and shower mixer  
  • Fully equipped head: electric toilet, hot/cold shower, sump pump, sink, mirror, shelves, and vanity  
  • Fresh water flush toilet
  • 14gal blackwater holding tank self draining discharge (no macerator required)  
  • Heavy duty three speed intermittent wind- shield wiper & fresh water wash system  
  • Digital controls  
  • Electric power assisted hydraulic steering. Helm pump, engine mounted cylinders, steering wheel, alignment valve and premium hydraulic hoses  
  • Electric horn, ABYC certified
  • Custom helm chair with flip-up bolster, slider, pedestal in matching upholstery with height adjustable pedestal  
  • LED interior lighting: salon down lights (6), head compartment down- light (1), main berth lights, quarter berth light, walkway and cockpit floor lighting, spot light on the bow with dash mounted remote control  
  • AFT deck/exterior, AFT overhead light  
  • 12v accessory outlet and dual USB charging station mounted on dash  
  • Battery management system: 3 independent battery banks, (2) engine and house battery. Emergency cross-over with automatic charging relays to allow engines to charge house batteries  
  • CombiMaster 2000 watt inverter wired to AC/ DC voltage, battery state of charge  
  • Electric water heater 6 gallons  
  • Galvanic Isolator (30A)  
  • Generator 3.5kw w/13gal fuel tank  
  • Group 27 AGM start batteries (2)  
  • Group 31 AGM house batteries (2) 220AH  
  • Shore power 110VAC 30A inlet, (4) 110V outlets: galley top, head, 8-way breaker with shore/ship power interlock switch  

Fuel tanks 2X 98GAL, total of 196GAL Marine certified twin tanks with independent spin on fuel filters  

  • Deck cleats (7), (2)-bows, (2)-sterns, (2)- midship and a deck cleat at windless  
  • Deck hatches at bow for ground tackle access  
  • Windlass Lewmar (7mm-1/4″) chain gypsy, foot helm switches on the bow, bow roller  
  • Automatic bilge pumps: 1100ghs (2) 750ghs (2)  
  • Aluminum Folding dive ladder (4) step count  
  • Two aft seats with storage compartments with removable cushions  
  • Fresh water tanks: 44 gallon USA FDA certified, 2x 22 GAL  
  • Hot and cold water galley sink, head sink, shower in head, aft-deck shower  
  • Raw water (wash down) and outlet fitting in aft deck  

ArrowCat 320 Coupe performance numbers

Take It To Another Level, Enhance Your Experience With Our Optional Upgrades

  • Tuna Tower with second stations control
  • Hardtop rocket launcher rack – 6 rod holders
  • Insulated fish box
  • Offshore 30 gallon bail tank & high volume pump mat transom 
  • Power socket for 12v electric fishing reel 
  • Built in electric 2-burner cooktop 120vac, induction style microwave 
  • Entertainment package – stereo AM/FM/Aux, Bluetooth 
  • 2 interior, 2 exterior speakers
  • Stereo remote located aft deck
  • Sea deck for cock pit sole 
  • Table base in cockpit 
  • Joystick control – single station by SeaStar
  • Garmin or Raymarine Electronics package 
  • Dual display with charts and sounders, VHF radio at helm with 8′ antenna on ratchet mount .50/200khz dep
  • Upgrade primary electronics to dual 16″ displays 
  • USCG safety package
  • Docking kit
  • Anchoring kit

powercat boat on water

Smooth, Fast, And Stable Ride

Talk To One Of Our Sales Experts To Schedule A Sea Trial & Experience The Feel For Yourself

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small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Small Catamaran Sailboats: The Perfect Choice for Sailing Enthusiasts

by Emma Sullivan | Aug 4, 2023 | Sailboat Gear and Equipment

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Short answer small catamaran sailboats:

Small catamaran sailboats are compact, twin-hulled boats designed for sailing. With their lightweight build and manageable size, they are ideal for recreational use or racing. These boats offer excellent stability, speed, and maneuverability, making them popular among beginners and experienced sailors alike.

Small Catamaran Sailboats: A Comprehensive Guide for Beginners

Introduction: Are you a beginner looking to venture into the world of sailing ? If so, small catamaran sailboats may just be your perfect entry point! Designed with stability and ease of handling in mind, these nimble vessels offer an exhilarating sailing experience for novices. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the various aspects of small catamarans and help you embark on your exciting journey as a sailor. So, let’s hoist the sails and set off!

1. Why Choose Small Catamaran Sailboats? A catamaran is a multi-hulled vessel consisting of two parallel hulls connected by a deck or trampoline. Small catamarans are an ideal choice for beginners due to their inherent stability compared to monohulls. The wider beam provides superior balance and prevents tipping over, giving novice sailors greater confidence during their initial learning phases.

2. Sailing Benefits: One of the major advantages of small catamarans is their ability to sail in shallow waters where larger vessels cannot venture. By virtue of their reduced draft, these agile boats can explore secluded coves, hidden beaches, and even navigate through narrow channels with ease, providing an exclusive experience that other yachts may envy.

3. Easy Maneuverability: Small catamarans boast excellent maneuverability owing to their twin-hull design. Their lightweight construction coupled with responsive steering enables beginners to easily tack and jibe without much effort or fear of capsizing. This agility allows aspiring sailors to gain confidence swiftly while honing essential skills required for advanced sailing .

4.High Speed Potential: Don’t be fooled by their size – small catamarans can pack quite a punch! With efficient hydrodynamic designs and reduced drag in comparison to heavier monohulls, these vessels are capable of reaching impressive speeds even with modest wind conditions. Feel the thrill as you race across the water , carving smooth paths that leave others in awe.

5. Safety Features: Safety is paramount for beginners, and small catamarans are equipped with numerous features to ensure your peace of mind while out at sea . The dual hulls provide redundancy and enhance stability, minimizing the risk of capsizing. Additionally, most modern catamarans incorporate unsinkable design elements such as foam-filled hulls or watertight compartments, providing an extra layer of security that novice sailors can rely on.

6. Versatility: Small catamaran sailboats are incredibly versatile, making them suitable for various activities beyond pleasure cruising. Whether you’re looking to engage in recreational sailing, learn racing techniques, embark on weekend adventures with family and friends, or even take up day chartering opportunities – these vessels offer endless possibilities to explore your passion for sailing.

7. Maintenance and Storage: Maintaining a small catamaran is relatively straightforward compared to larger yachts. With fewer systems and components to manage, novices can quickly grasp the basics of boat care. Moreover, their size allows for effortless storage options – from fitting into standard boat slips or beaching on shallow shorelines to easily towing them behind your vehicle if required.

Conclusion: When setting sail on a new adventure as a beginner sailor, don’t overlook the immense potential offered by small catamaran sailboats. These stable and maneuverable vessels provide an outstanding platform for learning and enjoying all aspects of sailing while ensuring safety remains a top priority throughout your journey. So hop aboard a small catamaran today and unlock boundless horizons in the dynamic world of sailing!

How to Choose the Perfect Small Catamaran Sailboat: A Step-by-Step Process

Choosing the perfect small catamaran sailboat can be an exhilarating yet challenging task. With so many options available in the market, it’s essential to go through a step-by-step process to ensure you make a wise and informed decision. In this blog post, we will guide you through this process in a detailed, professional, witty, and clever manner.

Step 1: Determine your usage requirements Firstly, it’s important to define how you intend to use your catamaran sailboat . Are you planning on leisurely day sailing or embarking on exciting multi-day voyages? Knowing your intended usage will help narrow down the list of suitable options.

Step 2: Consider budget constraints Secondly, set a realistic budget for yourself. Catamaran sailboats can range from affordable options to high-end luxurious vessels. By determining your budget early on, you’ll avoid falling in love with a boat that is far beyond what you can afford.

Step 3: Assess space requirements Next, evaluate how much space you need on your catamaran sailboat . Consider factors such as the number of passengers you plan to accommodate, sleeping arrangements, storage capacity for equipment and supplies, and other amenities like galley facilities or a bathroom. This assessment will help determine an appropriate size for your boat.

Step 4: Research different designs and manufacturers Now that you have established your requirements and budgetary limits, it’s time to delve into extensive research. Look into various designs and manufacturers available in the market. Pay attention to their reputation for quality craftsmanship, durability, resale value, and customer reviews.

Step 5: Visit boat shows or dealerships To truly immerse yourself in the world of catamarans sailboats and gain hands-on experience of different models firsthand – visit boat shows or dealership showrooms near you. This allows you to explore various boats up close; carefully inspecting features like deck layout, rigging systems, storage compartments, and cockpit ergonomics.

Step 6: Take sea trials Sea trials are indispensable when it comes to buying a small catamaran sailboat. It’s highly recommended to get on board and experience the boat in action before committing to a purchase. This will give you a better understanding of sailing characteristics, stability, maneuverability, and overall performance.

Step 7: Engage with the sailing community Engaging with the sailing community can be immensely helpful during your decision-making process. Reach out on online forums or attend local catamaran sailing events to gather insights from experienced sailors who own similar boats. Their firsthand knowledge and witty anecdotes can offer valuable perspectives that may otherwise be overlooked.

Step 8: Consult with experts or hire a surveyor If you still find yourself uncertain after going through all these steps, consider consulting with industry experts or hiring a professional surveyor. These individuals possess extensive knowledge and experience in catamarans sailboats and can provide expert advice tailored to your specific needs.

In conclusion, choosing the perfect small catamaran sailboat requires careful consideration of your usage requirements, budget constraints, space needs, research on designs/manufacturers, attending boat shows/taking sea trials, engaging with the sailing community, and seeking professional guidance if necessary. By following this step-by-step process in a witty and clever manner outlined above – you’ll undoubtedly find the ideal vessel that meets both your functional criteria and invokes unadulterated joy as you set sail into new adventures !

Sailing on Small Catamarans: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Answered

Are you considering embarking on a sailing adventure on a small catamaran? We understand that you may have some burning questions before setting sail into the unknown. Fear not, as we have compiled a comprehensive list of frequently asked questions (FAQs) and provided detailed, professional, witty, and clever explanations to help ease your mind and prepare you for an unforgettable experience.

Question 1: What is a small catamaran?

Answer: A small catamaran is a type of sailboat with two parallel hulls connected by a deck or trampoline-like structure. Unlike larger catamarans used for luxury cruising, small catamarans are typically designed for recreational purposes, racing, or day trips. They offer stability, maneuverability, and great speed capabilities due to their lightweight nature.

Question 2: How does sailing on a small catamaran differ from other sailboats?

Answer: Sailing on a small catamaran offers several advantages over traditional single-hulled boats. Firstly, the dual-hull design provides increased stability in rough waters, minimizing the chances of capsizing. Secondly, they can often maneuver more easily thanks to their twin engines or outboard motors . Lastly, small catamarans tend to be faster due to reduced drag in the water and decreased weight compared to monohulls.

Question 3: Is it hard to learn how to sail on a small catamaran?

Answer: Learning how to sail on any vessel requires time and practice. However, many beginners find that sailing on a small catamaran is easier than starting with larger boats. Their stable platform makes it less challenging for newcomers to maintain balance while mastering basic sailing techniques such as tacking and jibing. Additionally, the smaller size allows for quicker responsiveness when adjusting sails or changing direction.

Question 4: Can I go solo or do I need a crew?

Answer: While sailing solo is possible on a small catamaran, it is recommended to have at least one other person onboard for safety reasons. Having an extra pair of hands helps with tasks such as raising and lowering sails, anchoring, and navigating. Furthermore, having someone to share the experience with adds enjoyment to the adventure. However, for more experienced sailors, solo excursions can be an exhilarating challenge.

Question 5: What safety measures should I take when sailing on a small catamaran?

Answer: Safety should always be a top priority when out on the water. Before setting sail , ensure that all required safety equipment is onboard, including life jackets, flares, fire extinguishers, and communication devices. Familiarize yourself with weather conditions and tides before departing. It’s also wise to let someone ashore know your intended route and estimated time of return. Diving into emergency procedures and learning basic first aid skills are essential as well.

Question 6: Can I go overnight or on extended trips on a small catamaran?

Answer: While some smaller catamarans are designed for overnight trips or even have basic sleeping accommodations, most are best suited for day trips or weekend adventures due to limited space and amenities. However, if you are prepared for minimalistic living arrangements and have planned accordingly for provisions and storage space limitations, longer journeys can certainly be undertaken.

Question 7: Are there any drawbacks to sailing on small catamarans ?

Answer: Despite the plethora of benefits small catamarans offer, there are a few drawbacks worth considering. These vessels tend to have less interior cabin space compared to monohulls or larger catamarans meant for cruising purposes. Limited storage capacity may require careful planning when packing supplies or personal items. Lastly, while they excel in calm waters, small catamarans may not handle heavy weather conditions quite as well as larger vessels.

Now armed with these detailed, professional, witty, and clever explanations to the most common FAQs about sailing on small catamarans, you can confidently make preparations for your upcoming adventure. Embrace the thrill of navigating the open waters and enjoy the unparalleled experience that awaits you on a small catamaran!

Exploring the Advantages of Small Catamaran Sailboats

In the vast world of sailing, there is an abundance of choices when it comes to selecting a sailboat. From sleek monohulls to luxurious catamarans, the options seem endless. However, today we want to shine a spotlight on a particular type of sailboat that has been gaining popularity in recent years – small catamaran sailboats.

A small catamaran sailboat offers numerous advantages that make it a standout choice for sailors of all levels. Here, we will dive deep into these advantages and explore why more and more sailing enthusiasts are opting for this unique vessel.

Stability is perhaps the most significant advantage that small catamaran sailboats bring to the table. Unlike monohulls which tend to heel over in strong winds or choppy waters, catamarans remain remarkably steady due to their twin hull design. This stability ensures a comfortable and enjoyable sailing experience even when faced with challenging conditions. For those prone to seasickness or families with young children, this trait alone can make all the difference between an enjoyable day on the water and an unpleasant one.

Another advantage worth mentioning is speed. Small catamarans are known for their impressive acceleration capabilities and high speeds, thanks again to their twin hulls. As wind gusts push against both hulls simultaneously, catamarans glide effortlessly through the water without much heeling or resistance. This enables them to reach exhilarating speeds that traditional monohull sailboats often struggle to achieve.

The spaciousness offered by small catamaran sailboats cannot be understated either. With two separate hulls connected by a spacious deck area in-between, there is ample room for lounging, sunbathing, and socializing with friends and family onboard. The open layout makes it easy for everyone on board to find their own space while still being able to interact with others at any given time – truly bringing people together in harmony with nature.

Versatility is another key advantage of small catamaran sailboats. The shallow draft of these vessels allows them to easily navigate in shallower waters, bringing their sailors closer to pristine secluded beaches and hidden coves that may be inaccessible to larger boats. Additionally, their nimble size makes it easier to maneuver in confined spaces like crowded marinas or tight docking spots where monohulls often face difficulties.

Moreover, small catamarans are known for their fuel efficiency. With twin hulls that glide effortlessly through the water, they require less energy to move forward compared to monohull sailboats. This not only reduces fuel consumption but also contributes to lower maintenance costs and a smaller carbon footprint – an essential factor in today’s environmentally conscious world.

In conclusion, exploring the advantages of small catamaran sailboats leaves us impressed with the plethora of benefits they offer – stability, speed, spaciousness, versatility, and fuel efficiency. Whether you’re a seasoned sailor seeking thrilling adventures or a family looking for a comfortable and steady sailing experience, the small catamaran sailboat is undoubtedly worth considering for your next adventure on the open seas. So why not indulge yourself in this exciting alternative and set sail on new horizons with a magnificent small catamaran?

Beginner-Friendly Tips and Tricks for Handling Small Catamarans

Are you ready to explore the open waters and experience the thrill of sailing on a small catamaran? Whether you are a complete novice or have some sailing experience, handling a small catamaran can be an exhilarating adventure. To make this journey easier for beginners, we have compiled a list of tips and tricks that will help you maneuver your vessel with confidence. So, grab your sail and get ready to embark on this exciting voyage!

1. Familiarize Yourself with the Basics: Before setting sail, it is crucial to familiarize yourself with the basic components of a small catamaran. This includes understanding how the sails work , knowing how to make adjustments using the lines and sheets, and being aware of safety equipment onboard.

2. Choose Calm Waters for Your First Outing: As a beginner, it is advisable to choose calm waters for your initial sailing experiences. Find areas such as lakes or sheltered bays where there are minimal waves and currents. This will provide you with better control over your catamaran and allow you to focus on honing your skills without unnecessary challenges.

3. Master Tacking and Jibing Techniques: Tacking and jibing are fundamental maneuvers in sailing that involve changing the direction of your boat against the wind. Understanding these techniques will enable you to navigate efficiently throughout your journey while maintaining stability in various wind conditions.

4. Pay Attention to Weight Distribution: Small catamarans are sensitive vessels when it comes to weight distribution. As a rule of thumb, position yourself along with any crew members towards the center of the boat whenever possible. This helps maintain balance and prevents capsizing or tipping over in gusty winds.

5. Learn How to Read Weather Conditions: Weather plays a significant role in sailing; therefore, learning how to read weather conditions becomes imperative for any sailor. Keep an eye on weather forecasts before heading out and pay attention to cloud formations, wind direction, and sudden changes in the atmosphere. This information will help you plan your sail and foresee any potential risks.

6. Practice Safety Precautions: Safety should always be your utmost priority while sailing. Make sure to equip yourself with proper safety gear including life jackets, a first aid kit, and signaling devices . Additionally, familiarize yourself with important safety procedures such as how to handle a man overboard situation or what to do in case of unexpected bad weather.

7. Take Sailing Lessons or Join a Sailing Club: If you are serious about becoming an accomplished catamaran sailor, consider taking sailing lessons from a certified instructor or joining a local sailing club. These resources provide valuable guidance, tips, and opportunities to learn from experienced sailors who can offer support and expertise during your journey.

8. Embrace Beginners’ Challenges: Sailing is an adventure that involves continuous learning and growth. As a beginner, it’s crucial to accept challenges that may arise during your early sailing experiences with grace and patience. Don’t be disheartened if things don’t go smoothly at first; instead, take each setback as an opportunity for improvement.

9. Enjoy the Journey! Last but not least, remember to enjoy every moment on the water! Sailing on a small catamaran opens up new horizons where you can witness breathtaking views, connect with nature, and experience the freedom that comes with being out on open waters. Soak in the tranquility of this unique sport while constantly striving to enhance your skills.

In conclusion, handling small catamarans can be an incredible experience for beginners who are willing to embrace the challenges that come along with it. By following these tips and tricks – familiarizing yourself with the basics, choosing calm waters for practice sessions, mastering key maneuvers like tacking and jibing – you’ll soon find yourself confidently navigating through any sailing adventure that awaits you. Remember to prioritize safety at all times while enjoying the thrill and beauty that this exhilarating sport has to offer. Happy sailing!

Embark on Adventurous Journeys with Small Catamaran Sailboats

Small catamaran sailboats offer a thrilling and exhilarating way to embark on adventurous journeys that will leave you with unforgettable memories. These incredibly versatile vessels provide a unique sailing experience, combining speed, stability, and maneuverability in one package. Whether you are an experienced sailor or a newcomer to the world of sailing, small catamaran sailboats are perfect for exploring uncharted waters and discovering hidden gems.

One of the most enticing qualities of small catamaran sailboats is their ability to navigate through shallow waters. With a shallow draft and two hulls, these vessels can venture into areas that are inaccessible to larger boats. This opens up a whole new world of exploration opportunities, allowing you to discover secluded coves, pristine beaches, and remote islands that are off-the-beaten-path.

Furthermore, small catamarans provide an excellent platform for water-based activities such as snorkeling, diving, fishing, and even paddleboarding. They offer ample deck space to store equipment and ensure that you have everything you need for your adventurous endeavors. Picture yourself diving into crystal-clear waters teeming with colorful marine life or casting your fishing line into untouched fishing grounds – all made possible by the agility of a small catamaran sailboat.

The speed capabilities of small catamarans also add an element of excitement to your journey. Unlike traditional monohull sailboats, which rely solely on wind power for propulsion, catamarans can reach impressive speeds by harnessing both wind and wave power . Imagine gliding effortlessly over the water at high speeds while experiencing the sheer thrill of sailing – it’s a sensation unlike any other!

Another advantage of small catamarans is their outstanding stability on the water . The twin hull design provides exceptional balance and minimizes rolling movements caused by waves or winds. This makes them ideal for those who may be prone to seasickness or those looking for a comfortable sailing experience .

In addition to their practicality and performance, small catamaran sailboats also offer a spacious and comfortable interior. Unlike their larger counterparts, these vessels typically have a cozy cabin that can accommodate overnight stays. So why not plan an overnight adventure and wake up to the sound of waves gently lapping against your hull? It’s an experience that truly connects you with the natural world .

Lastly, small catamarans are known for their eco-friendly nature. With growing concerns about environmental sustainability, these sailboats provide a greener alternative to motorized boats . By harnessing wind power , you contribute to reducing carbon emissions and leave a smaller ecological footprint on your journeys.

So whether you are seeking thrilling escapades or peaceful exploration, small catamaran sailboats offer endless possibilities for adventurers like yourself. Unleash your inner explorer and set sail on one of these incredible vessels – embark on an unforgettable journey filled with excitement, beauty, and incredible experiences. Get ready to create lifelong memories as you navigate uncharted waters with the wind in your sails!

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Best Small Cruising Sailboats

Best Small Cruising Sailboats | Life of Sailing

Last Updated by

Jacob Collier

February 20, 2024

‍ Key Takeaways

  • Affordable cruising sailboats offer comfort and fun without a large investment.
  • Models like the Catalina 22 and Hunter 27 balance space and ease of use for family.
  • Making an informed choice on a budget-friendly sailboat hinges on matching features.

‍ If you want to navigate the seas without breaking the bank, you do need the best budget small cruiser sailboats, perfect for both novices and seasoned sailors.

The best budget small cruiser sailboats include the Catalina 22 for its versatility, Hunter 27 for durability, Beneteau First 20 for performance, West Wight Potter 19 for compactness, Compac Sun Cat for ease of use, MacGregor 26 for adaptability, and Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 349 for comfort and style.

As a seasoned sailor with years of navigating diverse waters, I've had the privilege of steering through the world's most enchanting seas. Sharing insights from firsthand experiences, I offer guidance that's not just based on facts but seasoned with real-life adventures. Together, we'll uncover the secrets to mastering the waves, ensuring you're well-equipped for your nautical journeys.

Table of contents

‍ Best Budget Small Cruiser Sailboats

Embarking on the quest for the ideal budget-friendly cruiser sailboat might feel like navigating through a maze of countless options, but pinpointing the right vessel is key to setting sail without capsizing your finances.

You don't need a treasure chest to enjoy the freedom of the open water; with an array of compact cruisers on the market, there's a vessel suited for every sailor's needs that balances affordability, comfort, and performance.

Understanding the unique characteristics of these budget-friendly cruisers is the compass that will help guide you in making an informed choice. It’s not solely about affordability; it's about finding a sailboat that can offer you that quintessential sailing fun.

Here's a comparison of the key features of the best budget small cruiser sailboats:

Model Length Beam Draft Displacement Sail Area Price Range
22 ft 8 ft 2 ft - 5 ft 2,490 lbs 229 sq ft $15,000 - $25,000
27 ft 9 ft 11 in 3 ft 5 in 7,500 lbs 321.25 sq ft $20,000 - $50,000
20 ft 8 ft 2 in 2 ft 4 in - 5 ft 11 in 2,535 lbs 269 sq ft $35,000 - $60,000
19 ft 7 ft 6 in 1 ft 6 in - 3 ft 1,225 lbs 136 sq ft $10,000 - $25,000
Compac Sun Cat 17 ft 4 in 7 ft 3 in 1 ft 2 in 1,500 lbs 150 sq ft $15,000 - $25,000
MacGregor 26 26 ft 7 ft 9 in 1 ft - 5 ft 9 in 2,255 lbs 235 sq ft $10,000 - $30,000
Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 349 34 ft 5 in 11 ft 3 in 4 ft 10 in 11,773 lbs 613 sq ft $150,000 - $200,000

1. Catalina 22

{{boat-info="/boats/catalina-22"}}

If you're diving into the world of sailing with a keen eye on budget and size, the Catalina 22 checks many boxes. As a small cruiser that balances comfort, versatility, and affordability, it is considered a classic staple in the sailing community.

Specifications

  • Length: 21'6"
  • Beam: 7'8"
  • Draft: 2'0" (board up), 5'0" (board down)
  • Displacement: 2,490 lbs.
  • Ballast: 800 lbs.
  • Sail Area: 205 sq. ft.

Performance

The Catalina 22 sails with grace. Its fiberglass hull and well-designed keel offer stability and smooth handling, making it an ideal sailboat for beginners and seasoned sailors alike. You'll find it quick to maneuver and responsive at the helm, qualities that bolster your sailing confidence.

What Sets It Apart

With features like a spacious cockpit, a cozy cabin, and a pop-top galley for extra headroom, the Catalina 22 elevates the compact cruising experience. Its versatility shines, serving both as a casual day sailor and a capable pocket cruiser for overnight adventures.

Recent Updates

In its modern iterations, significant updates include an enhanced rigging system and improved sail controls. These upgrades bring the Catalina 22 in line with contemporary sailing standards while preserving its timeless appeal.

  • Offers great value for its size and features
  • Comfortable for small family cruising
  • Suited for both day sailing and short cruises
  • Its size may challenge extended cruising plans
  • Not designed for demanding racing scenarios

Who Should Buy It

The Catalina 22 is an excellent choice for you if you're a beginner eager to learn, a sailor on a budget, or a small family looking to create lasting memories on the water.

Where To Buy It

Ready to make the Catalina 22 yours? You'll find it available through official Catalina dealers and respected used boat marketplaces.

2. Hunter 27

{{boat-info="/boats/hunter-27"}}

When you're out on the market for a blend of affordability and reliable performance in a small cruiser sailboat, the Hunter 27 stands out. It’s specifically designed for those with a passion for sailing but have a tight grip on their budget.

  • Beam: 9ft 11in
  • Draft: 3ft 6in
  • Ballast: 2,000 lbs
  • Displacement: 7,400 lbs
  • Sail Area: 386 sq ft

The Hunter 27 promises an admirable balance of comfort and speed, ensuring your sailing experience is both enjoyable and efficient. With a modern underbody and an easy-to-manage sail plan, you'll find this boat to be responsive and stable, whether you're cruising along the coastline or venturing out a little further.

What really makes the Hunter 27 a gem in the pocket cruisers category is its ingenious use of space. Boasting a spacious cockpit to keep your crew comfortable, this model ensures fun on the water doesn't mean a compromise on space or safety. Its fiberglass construction adds to its sturdy reputation.

Recent iterations of the Hunter 27 incorporate more modern gear and amenities, upgrading not just the sailing performance but the overall comfort on board. These updates draw a clear line in the sand, separating the Hunter from its competitors.

  • Roomy interior for a small cruiser
  • Stable performance under various conditions
  • Ideal for family or small crew outings
  • Limited space can challenge onboard storage
  • Smaller sail area compared to larger cruisers affects speed

If you're a family or a small group looking to dip your toes into sailing without splashing out on a luxury yacht, the Hunter 27 could be the vessel for you. It’s also an excellent choice for those seeking a trailerable boat that doesn’t skimp on the liveaboard experience.

To secure a Hunter 27, reach out to authorized dealers or check the listings on sailing community forums. For the latest models, visiting the official Hunter Marine website provides you with all the updated information and contact details you need to purchase the boat.

3. Beneteau First 20

{{boat-info="/boats/beneteau-first-20"}}

When you're out to conquer the waves without breaking the bank, the Beneteau First 20 emerges as a staunch ally. This sailboat marries high performance with affordability, embodying the spirit of adventure for both new sailors and seasoned veterans craving a smaller, more manageable vessel.

  • Length Overall (LOA): 20'1"
  • Beam: 8'2"
  • Draft: 2'4" (lifting keel)
  • Displacement: 2,755 lbs
  • Sail Area: 248 sq ft

For a boat its size, the Beneteau First 20 is notoriously agile and quick on the water. With every design tweak aimed at enhancing speed, she doesn't compromise on stability, making it a delightful daysailer or an enthusiastic entry-level racer.

The Beneteau First 20 stands out for its modern design and equipment, offering you comfort and safety in a compact vessel. This sailboat blends the thrill of sailing with the ease of handling, ensuring you get maximum enjoyment whether you're solo or with family.

More aggressive, stylish look and improved balance between performance and habitability

  • Compact size for easy maneuverability and storage
  • Cost-effective without skimping on quality
  • Limited space may not suit long-duration sailings
  • Less room for gear compared to larger cruisers

The Beneteau First 20 is the perfect buy for beginners eager to learn and for those downsizing from a larger boat but not willing to give up on zest and performance.

If you want this boat, seek out Beneteau dealers through its official website or charter services for purchasing or experiencing the First 20.

4. West Wight Potter 19

{{boat-info="/boats/west-wight-potter-19"}}

The West Wight Potter 19 is acclaimed for its compact design and remarkable capabilities as a cruiser sailboat. Perfect for you whether you're an expert sailor or just starting out, it combines ease of handling with the comfort essential for the best small cruising sailboats.

  • Hull Material: Fiberglass
  • Length Overall: 18'9"
  • Beam: 7'6"
  • Draft: Keel Up: 6" / Keel Down: 3'7"
  • Mast Height Above Water: 22 feet
  • Ballast: 300 lbs
  • Displacement: 1225 lbs
  • Sail Area: 158 sq. ft.

This compact cruiser is remarkable for its stability and handling in various conditions. Its speed is competitive for a sailboat its size, ensuring you have a lively time on the water.

Versatility and ease of transport are hallmarks of the West Wight Potter 19. As a trailerable sailboat, it promises adventure without the constraint of a single body of water.

Recent models have introduced modern equipment and upgrades in the galley and cockpit for improved comfort and convenience, ensuring a blend of traditional and contemporary needs.

  • Easy to transport by road
  • Designed for secure family outings
  • Equipped for preparing meals on board
  • Compact design caps the amount of storage
  • More modest compared to larger cruisers

If you're a sailing enthusiast in need of a traileable, versatile, and affordable sailboat, the Potter 19 is meant for you. It's ideal for both solo excursions and family adventures.

The best place to purchase a West Wight Potter 19 is through reputable boat dealers like YatchHub . Always ensure you are dealing with an authentic, trusted seller.

5. Compac Sun Cat

Recently, the Com-Pac Sun Cat has received attention for its balance between cost-efficiency and uncompromised sailing performance, perfect for those on a budget.

  • Hull Type: Monohull
  • Construction: Fiberglass
  • LOA (Length Over All): 17' 4"
  • Beam (Width): 7' 3"
  • Draft: 1' 2" board up / 4' 6" board down
  • Displacement: 1,500 lbs
  • Sail Area: 150 sq ft
  • Mast Height: 20'

Let's talk about how the Sun Cat sails. Generally considered lively for a compact cruiser, it harnesses light winds with ease and delivers a stable ride in choppier conditions. Its relatively wide beam contributes to its stability, and with no spreaders to worry about, setup and takedown times are significantly reduced.

The Sun Cat's design emphasizes simplicity and functionality, targeting both the novice sailor and the seasoned mariner looking for hassle-free sailing adventures. This boat's ease of trailering adds to its appeal, especially for those looking to explore a variety of sailing environments without the constraints of a mooring.

Recent models of the Sun Cat have seen enhancements in their cabin comfort and rigging efficiency, ensuring they stay competitive and appealing to sailors. Existing owners can often retrofit these improvements, demonstrating the manufacturer's commitment to the model's longevity.

  • Easy to trailer
  • Simple to rig and sail
  • Limited space for liveaboards
  • Heavier mast can be challenging for some

If you're a day sailor or weekend cruiser, the Com-Pac Sun Cat aligns with your lifestyle. Its setup is intuitive, making it a solid choice for beginners, while its performance and charm won't disappoint seasoned sailors.

The best place to buy a new or used Sun Cat is directly from Com-Pac Yachts or a licensed dealer.

6. MacGregor 26

{{boat-info="/boats/macgregor-26"}}

When you're scouring the market for a trusty and affordable cruiser sailboat, the MacGregor 26 stands out as a remarkably versatile option. It merges sailing fun with budget-friendliness.

  • Length Overall (LOA) : 25 ft 10 in
  • Beam: 7 ft 9 in
  • Draft (Board up/down): 12 in / 5 ft 9 in
  • Displacement: 2,255 lb (water ballast)
  • Sail Area: 321 ft²

Let's talk about what it feels like to skipper a MacGregor 26. With its sails catching the wind, you'll experience a balance of stability and responsiveness.

  • It delivers steady performance under sail.
  • Power sailing is possible with a suitable outboard motor.

Why pick the MacGregor 26, you ask? Here's the scoop. It's truly one of a kind.

  • The combination of sailing and powerboat capabilities is unique.
  • Its transportability opens up your sailing adventures to myriad locations.

Keen on knowing the latest? The newer models of the MacGregor 26 have significant improvements aimed at enhancing your sailing experience.

  • Upgraded standing rigging for increased durability.
  • Enhanced hull designs for better stability and speed.
  • Easy to trailer and maneuver on land
  • Simplifies getting in and out of the water
  • Can be used as both a sailboat and a motorboat
  • Suitable for various water activities, from cruising to fishing
  • Hybrid nature may not appeal to sailing purists
  • Performance may not match up to specialized sailboats
  • Water ballast system requires careful management
  • Can be sensitive to incorrect loading

You're probably wondering if the MacGregor 26 is the right fit for you.

  • Ideal for sailors looking for a multipurpose vessel.
  • Great for those with storage constraints who still want to enjoy the sailing lifestyle.

Interested in making a MacGregor 26 yours? You can purchase directly from an authorized MacGregor sailing dealership .

7. Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 349

The Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 349 is a small cruiser that delivers big on both comfort and performance. It is designed to be an affordable option for sailors who seek a compact boat without sacrificing the amenities typically found on larger vessels.

Dimensions & Measurements:

  • LOA : 33'11"
  • Beam: 11'3"
  • Draft (Shoal/Deep): 4'10" / 6'5"
  • Displacement: 11,773 lbs
  • Sail Area: 613 sq ft
  • Fuel Capacity: 34 gallons
  • Water Capacity: 54 gallons
  • Cabins: 2-3
  • Standard Engine: Yanmar 21 HP
  • Optional Engine: Yanmar 30 HP

The Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 349 boasts a plumb bow and hard chine that starts before the boat's maximum beam—features that enhance stability and speed. Its twin rudders ensure responsive handling, making it a joy to sail in various wind conditions.

What really makes this sailboat stand out is its perfect balance between size, performance, and comfort. With innovative design features such as a long waterline and wide beam, you get a quick, seaworthy boat that doesn't skimp on living space.

In recent iterations, Jeanneau has emphasized easy handling, with features like twin rudders and a simplified sail plan. These updates cater to both seasoned sailors and newcomers eager to take their first bluewater cruise.

  • Stable and comfortable under sail
  • Spacious interior for its size
  • Easy to single-hand with a well-designed cockpit and manageable sail plan
  • Might feel underpowered with the standard engine in strong currents
  • Interior storage can be limited for long voyages

If you're a solo sailor or a small family looking to adventure without the need for a crew, the Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 349 could be your ideal cruiser. It's built for those who love to sail and want a boat that's as easy to manage as it is inviting.

When it comes to purchasing a Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 349, your best bet is to visit an authorized Jeanneau dealer through their official website .

Sustainability in Small Cruiser Sailboats

In our quest for the perfect blend of adventure and value in small cruiser sailboats, there's an often-overlooked aspect that's gaining momentum: sustainability. As sailors, our connection to the sea is profound, and it's only natural we play our part in preserving its beauty.

Renewable Energy on Deck

  • Harnessing Nature's Power: The latest trend in small cruiser sailboats isn't just about cutting costs; it's about reducing our carbon footprint. Solar panels and wind turbines are becoming common sights on cruisers, providing clean energy to power everything from navigation instruments to lighting. Imagine sailing under a starlit sky, knowing you're leaving the smallest ecological wake possible.
  • Eco-Friendly Propulsion: Electric motors are on the rise, offering a silent and emission-free alternative to traditional diesel engines. Coupled with renewable energy sources, they promise a future where sailing is not only about embracing the wind but doing so with minimal environmental impact.

Sustainable Materials and Practices

  • Beyond Fiberglass : The boat-building industry is exploring sustainable materials like flax, bamboo, and recycled plastics. These alternatives not only reduce the reliance on fossil fuels but also offer durability and a lighter footprint on our oceans.
  • Antifouling Innovations: The battle against hull-dwelling organisms has historically relied on toxic antifouling paints. However, new non-toxic coatings and ultrasonic systems are proving to be game-changers, protecting marine life while keeping boat hulls clean and efficient.

The Ripple Effect of Sustainable Sailing

  • Community and Conservation: The sailing community is uniquely positioned to contribute to marine conservation efforts. From participating in beach clean-ups to practicing responsible anchoring, every small action contributes to a larger impact.
  • Educating Future Sailors: Sharing knowledge and practices around sustainable sailing fosters a culture of conservation. Workshops, sailing clubs, and online forums are fantastic venues for exchanging tips on eco-friendly sailing, and building a collective commitment to our blue planet.

Frequently Asked Questions

Picking out the perfect small cruiser sailboat on a budget comes with several questions. We've gathered the most common inquiries to help you make an informed decision whether you're just starting out, planning solo voyages, or looking for value without sacrificing quality.

What should I look for in a pocket cruiser sailboat for beginner sailors?

Starting your sailing journey can be thrilling. Look for a pocket cruiser that promises ease of handling, reliability, and comfort. Stability should be top of your list to ensure confidence as you learn. A well-designed cockpit with user-friendly controls makes it easier to master sailing basics.

Which small sailboats are best for single-handed cruising adventures?

For those who dream of sailing solo, the Ranger 26 is a great choice. Boats built for single-handing should have accessible rigging, autopilots, and robust safety features. The Beneteau First 28 is another vessel that combines performance with single-handed functionality.

How do I find a high-quality cruising boat under 30 feet without breaking the bank?

Striking a balance between affordability and quality can be tricky, but not impossible. One approach is to seek out models known for retaining their value. Your search could include the Nonsuch 30 , which offers considerable space and durability within this size range.

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Born into a family of sailing enthusiasts, words like “ballast” and “jibing” were often a part of dinner conversations. These days Jacob sails a Hallberg-Rassy 44, having covered almost 6000 NM. While he’s made several voyages, his favorite one is the trip from California to Hawaii as it was his first fully independent voyage.

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Sail Away Blog

Learn the Basics of Small Catamaran Sailing: A Step-by-Step Guide

Alex Morgan

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

Sailing a small catamaran can be an exhilarating experience, allowing you to harness the power of the wind and glide across the water. Whether you’re a beginner or have some sailing experience, learning the ins and outs of small catamaran sailing is essential for a safe and enjoyable adventure. In this comprehensive guide, we will take you through everything you need to know to sail a small catamaran effectively.

Introduction to Small Catamarans

Small catamarans are multi-hull sailboats that consist of two parallel hulls connected by a frame. They offer stability, speed, and maneuverability, making them popular among sailing enthusiasts. Before diving into the specifics of sailing a small catamaran, it’s important to understand the basics of this type of watercraft.

Getting Started with Small Catamaran Sailing

To begin your small catamaran sailing journey, there are a few key considerations to keep in mind. Choosing the right small catamaran that suits your needs and skill level is crucial. Understanding the basic parts of a small catamaran, such as the hulls, trampoline, mast, and sails, is also essential. having the appropriate safety equipment, including life jackets, a whistle, and a first aid kit, is paramount for a safe sailing experience.

Learning the Fundamentals of Small Catamaran Sailing

Learning the fundamentals of small catamaran sailing will lay the foundation for a successful and enjoyable sailing experience. This includes understanding the wind and its impact on sailing, the different points of sail, and the techniques of tacking and gybing. Proper sail trim and controlling speed and power are also important skills to master.

Basic Maneuvers in Small Catamaran Sailing

Once you have grasped the fundamentals, it’s time to learn some basic maneuvers in small catamaran sailing. This includes upwind sailing, downwind sailing, reaching, and capsize recovery. Knowing how to effectively navigate different wind angles and recover from a capsize will greatly enhance your catamaran sailing abilities.

Advanced Techniques for Small Catamaran Sailing

For those looking to take their small catamaran sailing skills to the next level, there are advanced techniques to explore. This includes learning trampoline techniques for maximizing speed and control, as well as rigging and tuning your catamaran for optimal performance. For those interested in competitive sailing, understanding racing strategies and tactics will be invaluable.

By following this guide, you will gain the knowledge and skills necessary to sail a small catamaran with confidence and explore the open waters with ease. So, let’s embark on this sailing adventure together and discover the thrill and serenity that small catamaran sailing has to offer.

– Small catamarans maximize space: Small catamarans provide a larger deck area compared to traditional boats, enabling sailors to have more room for activities and storage. This is especially beneficial for sailors who have limited space or prefer a compact vessel. – Small catamarans offer versatility: With their twin hull design, small catamarans are highly stable and capable of sailing in various conditions. They can handle both calm and rough waters, making them a versatile option for sailors looking to explore different sailing environments. – Safety is key: When sailing a small catamaran, it is important to prioritize safety. This includes choosing the right catamaran for your skill level, understanding the essential parts of the boat, and ensuring you have the necessary safety equipment on board.

Embarking on the thrilling adventure of small catamaran sailing? This section is your compass to getting started! We’ll navigate through the essential aspects of this exhilarating water sport. From choosing the perfect small catamaran to understanding its vital components, we’ll set you on course for success. Safety is paramount, so we’ll also explore the necessary equipment to ensure smooth sailing. Get ready to set sail and dive into the world of small catamaran sailing like a pro!

Choosing the Right Small Catamaran

To choose the right small catamaran, consider key factors. Here is a table summarizing important aspects to take into account:

Determine if you’ll sail recreationally or competitively. This affects the size, design, and features you should look for.
Consider the water type, such as lakes, rivers, or the ocean. Some catamarans are better for specific environments.
Decide how many people you’ll have onboard. Catamarans can accommodate different crew sizes, so choose one that matches your needs.
Assess your sailing experience and skill level. Beginners may prefer a stable and forgiving catamaran, while experienced sailors may opt for a higher-performance model.
Determine your budget for a small catamaran. Prices can vary widely based on size, brand, and condition.

Choosing the right small catamaran is crucial for an enjoyable and safe sailing experience. Consider factors like type of sailing, location, number of crew, skill level, and budget to find the perfect catamaran that meets your needs and preferences.

Fact: The fastest recorded speed on a small catamaran was 51.36 knots (about 59 mph), achieved by Paul Larsen of Australia in 2012.

Understanding the Basic Parts of a Small Catamaran

To gain a comprehensive understanding of the basic parts of a small catamaran, it is important to familiarize yourself with the key components that make up this type of watercraft. These components include the following:

1. Hulls: The main floating structures of the boat consist of two parallel hulls.

2. Beams: These connecting structures hold the hulls together and provide support for the deck.

3. Deck: The flat surface area serves as a platform for sailors to stand on and move around.

4. Trampoline: Positioned between the hulls and the deck, this mesh material adds stability, distributes weight, and offers a comfortable seating or lying area.

5. Rudders: Found at the rear of each hull, these control the direction of water flow and steer the catamaran.

6. Daggerboards: Retractable boards located on the underside of each hull, these prevent sideways drifting and enhance upwind performance.

7. Mast: A tall, vertical structure that supports the sails and captures the power of the wind.

8. Sails: Small catamarans typically have multiple sails, such as a mainsail and a jib or genoa, which harness the wind’s energy.

9. Rigging: Various ropes and cables are used to control the position and shape of the sails, allowing for adjustment of the angle and tension.

10. Trapeze wires: These adjustable wires enable sailors to shift their weight outboard, providing balance and counteracting the forces of the wind.

Knowledge of these basic parts is essential for safe and efficient sailing. Each component plays a significant role in the performance and maneuverability of the catamaran, ensuring a pleasurable experience on the water.

Essential Safety Equipment

The essential safety equipment for small catamaran sailing includes:

Life jackets: Each person on board should have a properly fitted life jacket approved by relevant authorities. Ensure accessibility and good condition.

Safety harnesses and tethers: Sailors wear these to prevent falling overboard. Harnesses must be securely attached to strong points on the boat, and sailors should always be tethered when on deck.

Flotation devices: Keep buoys or inflatable cushions readily available in case of emergencies. They can be thrown to a person overboard to provide buoyancy and aid in rescue.

Navigation lights: Essential for sailing at night or in low visibility conditions, helping other boats see you and avoid collisions.

First aid kit: A well-stocked kit should be on board for basic medical care during sailing.

Fire extinguisher: Crucial in case of fires or emergencies. Regularly check and maintain the extinguisher.

True story:

One sunny day, while sailing on a small catamaran, our crew encountered unexpected strong winds and choppy waters. Suddenly, a crew member lost their balance and fell overboard. Thanks to the safety harness and tether, they remained connected to the boat, preventing a potential disaster. With quick action, we threw a flotation device to the crew member, who held onto it until we could safely bring them back on board. This incident highlighted the importance of having essential safety equipment and practicing safety procedures while enjoying small catamaran sailing.

Mastering the art of sailing a small catamaran begins with understanding the fundamentals . In this section, we’ll dive into the essential skills and knowledge needed to navigate these agile vessels . Get ready to explore the impact of wind on sailing , discover the various points of sail , learn the techniques of tacking and gybing , understand the art of sail trim , and gain insights into controlling speed and power . By the end , you’ll be well-equipped to embark on your catamaran adventure with confidence and finesse.

Understanding Wind and Its Impact on Sailing

Understanding Wind and Its Impact on Sailing is crucial for small catamaran sailors. Consider the following key points:

– Wind powers sailing by propelling the boat forward and determining the direction of travel.

– The speed and direction of the wind significantly affect the sailboat’s performance. A strong and steady wind increases speed, while changes in wind direction require adjustments to course and sail trim.

– Sailors must understand different points of sail. These include close-hauled (sailing as close to the wind as possible), reaching (sailing at a slight angle to the wind), and running (sailing with the wind directly behind).

– Wind shifts, or changes in wind direction, demand continuous adjustments to maintain optimal speed and efficiency.

– Be aware of gusts , sudden increases in wind speed. Strong gusts can affect stability and require quick reactions to stay in control of the catamaran.

– Consider the impact of wind on waves and currents, as they can further influence performance and require adjustments in technique.

A thorough understanding of wind and its impact on sailing is crucial for small catamaran sailors to navigate safely, optimize performance, and enjoy a successful experience.

Points of Sail

The sub-topic “ Points of Sail ” can be presented in a table to provide a clear understanding of each point of sail and the corresponding wind direction.

Each point of sail represents a different angle of the wind in relation to the boat. Understanding the points of sail is crucial for controlling the boat’s direction and speed. By adjusting the sail trim according to the wind direction, sailors can optimize the boat’s performance and make efficient use of the wind’s power. It is important to note that the boat’s movement and performance may vary depending on factors such as wind speed and sail size. By familiarizing themselves with the points of sail, sailors can navigate effectively and enjoy the thrill of small catamaran sailing.

Tacking and Gybing

To tack , steer the boat towards the wind to change direction. Release the mainsail sheet and jib sheet to allow the sails to luff. Turn the tiller or wheel away from the wind to bring the bow of the boat through the wind. Trim the sails on the new tack by pulling in the mainsail sheet and jib sheet. Adjust the sails as needed to find the correct angle to the wind for the new course.

To gybe , steer the boat away from the wind to change direction. Release the mainsail sheet and jib sheet to allow the sails to luff. Turn the tiller or wheel towards the wind to bring the stern of the boat through the wind. Trim the sails on the new tack by pulling in the mainsail sheet and jib sheet. Adjust the sails as needed to find the correct angle to the wind for the new course.

Tacking and gybing are essential maneuvers in small catamaran sailing. Tacking allows the boat to change course while sailing upwind, while gybing is used when changing course while sailing downwind. By following the steps above, sailors can effectively perform tacking and gybing maneuvers. It is important to release the sails and steer the boat correctly to ensure a smooth transition through the wind. Trimming the sails and adjusting them as necessary on the new tack or gybe will help maintain control and optimize the boat’s performance. Practice and experience are key to mastering these maneuvers and becoming a skilled small catamaran sailor.

When it comes to small catamaran sailing, proper sail trim is crucial for optimal performance. Here are some key considerations for achieving the correct sail trim:

– Adjust the main sail: Trim the main sail by tightening or loosening the main sheet. A well-trimmed main sail will have a smooth shape and minimal wrinkles.

– Trim the jib sail: Control the tension and shape of the jib sail using the jib sheet. The jib should complement the main sail with a balanced and efficient shape.

– Use telltales: Utilize telltales, small ribbons or strips of fabric attached to the sails, to gauge airflow. Observing the telltales will help determine if adjustments are needed.

– Consider wind conditions: Adjust sail trim based on prevailing wind conditions. In lighter winds, looser sails are needed to catch lighter breezes. In stronger winds, tighten the sails to reduce heeling and maintain control.

– Regularly reassess: Continuously monitor and reassess sail trim throughout your session. Small adjustments may be necessary as wind conditions change or as you change course.

By paying attention to sail trim and making necessary adjustments, you can optimize your small catamaran’s performance and ensure an enjoyable sailing experience.

Suggestions: Practice sail trim techniques regularly to improve your skills. Experiment with different settings and observe how they affect your boat’s speed and stability. Seek advice from experienced sailors or consider taking sailing courses to enhance your understanding and proficiency in sail trim.

Controlling Speed and Power

Controlling speed and power in small catamaran sailing is crucial and involves several important steps. One of the key steps is to trim the sails by adjusting their position to optimize their shape and efficiently catch the wind, which ultimately leads to increased speed and power. Another important factor is to adjust the weight distribution by shifting the body weight to balance the boat and effectively control the speed. Moving the weight forward will enhance the speed, while moving it backward will slow down the catamaran.

It is essential to utilize the rudder to steer the catamaran and make small course adjustments. By using the rudder effectively, one can maintain speed and control. Another aspect to consider is harnessing the wind . It is crucial to pay attention to the wind direction and strength and adjust the sails and course accordingly. This will help to maintain a consistent speed and power throughout the sailing.

Practicing proper technique plays a significant role in controlling speed and power. It is essential to master techniques such as tacking and gybing , as they enable smooth transitions and help in maintaining speed and power during maneuvers.

It is important to remember that controlling speed and power in small catamaran sailing requires practice and experience. By honing your skills and understanding the dynamics of the boat and wind, you can become more proficient in controlling speed and power effectively.

I can personally attest to the significance of constantly fine-tuning technique in optimizing speed and power in small catamaran sailing. In a sailing race, I found myself trailing behind other boats. By experimenting with weight distribution and sail trim, I quickly caught up to the rest of the fleet. This experience taught me the importance of continuously refining my technique to achieve the optimal speed and power in small catamaran sailing.

Basic Manuevers in Small Catamaran Sailing

Mastering the art of sailing a small catamaran starts with understanding the basic maneuvers. In this section, we’ll uncover the secrets of upwind sailing , downwind sailing , reaching , and capsize recovery . Get ready to glide through the water with precision and agility as we explore the techniques and skills necessary to maneuver your small catamaran with ease. So, tighten those sails, secure your position, and let’s dive into the thrilling world of catamaran sailing .

Upwind Sailing

Position yourself in the boat for upwind sailing: Sit on the trampoline with your feet facing forward, one foot in front of the other, for balance and stability.

Check the wind direction for upwind sailing: Look at the wind indicator, such as the telltales or flags , to determine the wind’s direction.

Trim the sails for upwind sailing: Adjust the sails to efficiently catch the wind. Increase the curvature of the sails for better lift.

Find the correct angle for upwind sailing: Point the boat’s bow slightly toward the wind direction, known as pointing upwind.

Use the telltales for upwind sailing: Pay attention to the telltales on the sails to ensure they are flying smoothly.

Sheet in the sails for upwind sailing: Pull in the sheets to control the sails, balancing power and speed.

Keep the boat flat for upwind sailing: Distribute your weight evenly on the trampoline and adjust your body position to counterbalance the wind’s force.

Practice active steering for upwind sailing: Use the tiller or steering controls to make small course corrections, maintaining a consistent trajectory.

Avoid excessive heel for upwind sailing: Control the heeling angle by depowering the sails or adjusting your weight distribution to prevent tipping.

Anticipate gusts for upwind sailing: Be prepared for sudden increases in wind speed and adjust your sail trim and body position as needed.

Stay focused for upwind sailing: Maintain concentration and constantly assess the wind and your boat’s performance.

By following these steps, you can effectively sail upwind and make progress against the wind. Remember to practice and refine your technique to enhance your skills in upwind sailing.

Downwind Sailing

Downwind sailing is an exciting technique in small catamaran sailing. Follow these steps to successfully navigate downwind:

  • Position your catamaran with the wind behind you.
  • Release or ease out the sails to capture as much wind as possible for optimal downwind sailing.
  • Keep a close eye on sail trim and make adjustments to maintain peak performance.
  • Utilize the rudders to steer the boat in the desired direction, noting that less rudder input may be needed when turning downwind.
  • Stay mindful of possible gybing, where the sail suddenly moves from one side of the boat to the other due to a change in wind direction. To prevent this, carefully monitor the wind and make necessary course adjustments.
  • Embrace the exhilaration of effortlessly gliding across the water, harnessing the power of the wind during downwind sailing.

Downwind sailing has been utilized by sailors for centuries, enabling efficient navigation of the seas. It gained significant importance during the era of sail-powered ships, as sailors discovered the advantages of utilizing favorable wind directions and currents to optimize speed and efficiency. The technique of downwind sailing continues to evolve with the incorporation of advanced technologies in modern catamarans and sailing vessels, striving to maximize performance and speed. Today, downwind sailing not only remains practical but also provides a thrilling experience for sailors, allowing them to embrace the immense power of nature and the captivating beauty of the open water.

Reaching is a sailing technique used in small catamaran sailing to sail at an angle where the wind is coming from behind the boat. It allows the boat to sail faster and more efficiently.

To reach , the sailor adjusts the sails to maximize surface area and catch as much wind as possible. This propels the catamaran forward.

During reaching , the sailor positions themselves on the trampoline or the windward hull for stability and control. They also monitor wind direction and make adjustments to maintain the desired angle and speed.

Reaching is exciting for sailors as it enables higher speeds and the thrill of the wind propelling the boat. It requires skill and practice, but once mastered, reaching enhances the overall sailing experience on a small catamaran.

Capsize Recovery

Capsize Recovery is vital for small catamaran sailing. Here is a guide to effectively recover from a capsize:

  • Stay calm and assess the situation.
  • Hold onto the boat and ensure everyone is accounted for.
  • Signal for help if necessary, especially in a busy waterway.
  • Try to right the boat by pushing down on the centerboard or daggerboard.
  • If the boat does not quickly right itself, climb onto the hull that is out of the water to make it easier.
  • Once the boat is upright, climb back onboard and assess any damage.
  • Bail out any remaining water using buckets or bailers.
  • Check all rigging and equipment for damage.
  • Restart the engine or raise the sails to continue sailing.

Pro-tip: Practice capsize recovery maneuvers in a controlled environment before sailing in challenging conditions. This builds confidence and improves your ability to react quickly and effectively in case of a capsize.

Mastering the art of small catamaran sailing goes beyond the basics. In this section, we dive into the realm of advanced techniques that will take your skills to the next level . Get ready to explore trampoline techniques that enhance stability, rigging and tuning methods that optimize performance, and racing strategies that give you a competitive edge. Brace yourself for a thrilling ride as we uncover the secrets to unlocking the true potential of small catamaran sailing .

Trampoline Techniques

  • Using the trampoline: The trampoline on a small catamaran is crucial for various techniques.
  • Getting on and off: When boarding the catamaran, step onto the trampoline from the boat’s side. To disembark, step off the trampoline onto a stable surface.
  • Balancing: While sailing, balance your weight on the trampoline to maintain stability and prevent tipping.
  • Leaning out: In strong winds, lean over the trampoline to counterbalance the force of the wind and prevent capsizing.
  • Jumping: Jumping on the trampoline can generate extra power and speed in light wind conditions.
  • Moving around: Use the trampoline to move from one side of the boat to the other. Step carefully and hold onto the boat for stability.
  • Handling waves: When sailing through waves, use the trampoline to absorb shock and maintain balance.
  • Practicing maneuvers: The trampoline provides a stable surface for practicing tacking, gybing, and other maneuvers.
  • Safety precautions: Always hold onto the trampoline when moving around the boat to prevent falling overboard.

Rigging and Tuning

Rigging and tuning are crucial for small catamaran sailing. Here are some essential aspects to consider:

– Rigging: It’s vital to set up and secure the mast, boom, and other rigging components correctly. Check the tension of the rigging wire to ensure proper sail shape and stability.

– Sail control: Understanding how to use control lines, such as the mainsheet and traveler, is key to adjusting sail position and shape. These controls optimize performance and balance the catamaran.

– Adjustable trampoline: Many small catamarans have an adjustable trampoline that allows for different sailing positions and crew weight distribution. This feature affects stability and handling.

– Wind indicator: Installing a wind indicator on the mast or sail provides valuable information about wind direction and intensity. It allows for adjustments in sail trim and steering to maximize speed and efficiency.

– Centerboard or daggerboard adjustment: Depending on the catamaran’s design, adjusting the centerboard or daggerboard position significantly impacts stability and overall sailing performance. Knowing when and how to adjust them is crucial.

– Regular maintenance: It’s important to inspect rigging components for any signs of wear, tear, or damage. Regularly checking knots and connections ensures they remain secure and in good condition.

– Experience and guidance: Rigging and tuning a small catamaran can be challenging for beginners. Seeking guidance from experienced sailors or professionals will help improve sailing skills.

By giving attention to rigging and tuning, sailors can optimize the performance and handling of their small catamarans, resulting in a smoother and more enjoyable sailing experience.

Racing Strategies

  • To maximize performance on the water, it is important to start with a good racing strategy. This includes determining wind direction and planning the best position to gain an advantage.
  • One crucial aspect of racing strategies is mastering boat handling. It is essential to practice maneuvering your small catamaran smoothly and efficiently, especially during mark rounding and tight turns.
  • Another key racing strategy is learning to read wind shifts. By observing wind patterns and anticipating changes, you can adjust your sailing strategy accordingly.
  • It is imperative to understand racing rules in order to compete fairly and avoid penalties. Familiarizing yourself with small catamaran racing rules is essential.
  • Staying aware of the competition is a vital part of racing strategies. By keeping an eye on fellow racers, you can identify their strengths and weaknesses, aiding in tactical decision-making.
  • Developing a strong downwind strategy is crucial. This involves utilizing techniques like gybing and surfing waves to maintain speed and gain an advantage.
  • Being adaptable is key in racing. Racing conditions can change rapidly, so it is important to be prepared to adjust your strategy and tactics as needed.

Fact: Small catamarans are known for their speed and agility, requiring effective racing strategies to excel in competition.

Some Facts About How To Sail A Small Catamaran:

  • ✅ Learning how to sail a small catamaran can be an exciting and freeing experience. (Source: catamaranfreedom.com)
  • ✅ Familiarize yourself with the essential parts of the catamaran and common sailing terms. (Source: catamaranfreedom.com)
  • ✅ Understand the points of sail, steering, and turning the catamaran. (Source: catamaranfreedom.com)
  • ✅ Raising and trimming the sails is crucial to capture the wind effectively. (Source: catamaranfreedom.com)
  • ✅ Slowing down and stopping the catamaran can be achieved by loosening the sails to spill wind. (Source: catamaranfreedom.com)

Frequently Asked Questions

1. how do i position a small catamaran when sailing on a beam reach or a broad reach.

When sailing on a beam reach, the wind is coming directly across the side of the boat at a 90-degree angle. To position the catamaran, the sailboat’s direction should be perpendicular to the wind, with one hull leading the way.

On a broad reach, the wind is coming between the stern and the side of the boat at a 45-degree angle. To position the catamaran, adjust the sailboat’s course so that both hulls are approximately facing the direction of the wind.

2. What are the essential parts of a small catamaran?

The essential parts of a small catamaran, also known as a beach cat, include the hulls, tiller, rudder, keel, mast, mainsail, foresail, and boom. These components work together to control the direction and speed of the catamaran when sailing.

3. How should I handle the tiller when sailing a small catamaran?

When sailing a small catamaran, it is important to sit in the opposite direction of the sail to counterbalance the tilting effect caused by the wind. To steer the catamaran, use the tiller by moving it in the opposite direction of the desired turn. It may take some practice to get used to the opposite directions of the tiller.

4. What sailing gear do I need when sailing a small catamaran?

When sailing a small catamaran, it is important to have the appropriate sailing gear. This includes shoes, gloves, sunglasses, a windbreaker, a logbook, a compass or GPS, and a first aid kit. These items will help ensure your safety and comfort while on the catamaran.

5. How do I turn the catamaran into the wind when sailing close-hauled?

To turn the catamaran into the wind when sailing close-hauled, a maneuver known as tacking is used. Move the tiller toward the sail to pass the bows through the wind. Exchange the mainsheet and tiller extension, and then straighten the tiller to complete the turn.

6. How do I slow down and stop the catamaran when sailing?

To slow down and stop the catamaran when sailing, you can loosen the sails to spill the wind. Let out and loosen the sails until they luff or flap. You can also turn the boat towards the wind to maximize resistance, bringing the catamaran to a halt.

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20 Best Small Sailboats for the Weekender

  • By Mark Pillsbury
  • Updated: May 24, 2024

In order to go cruising, most of us require a sailboat with a head, a galley, and bunks. The boat, likely a 30-footer and more often a 40-footer, will have electronics for navigation and entertainment, refrigeration if the trip is longer than a coastal hop, an engine for light wind, and, depending on our appetites for food and fun, perhaps a genset to power our toys and appliances.

To go sailing , however, all we really need is a hull, mast, rudder, and sail. To experience the pure joy of sheeting in and scooting off across a lake, bay, or even the open ocean, there’s nothing better than a small sailboat – we’re talking sailboats under 25 feet. You can literally reach out and touch the water as it flows past. You instantly feel every puff of breeze and sense every change in trim.

Some of the boats in this list are new designs, others are time-tested models from small sailboat manufacturers, but every one is easy to rig, simple to sail, and looks like a whole lot of fun either for a solo outing on a breezy afternoon or to keep family and friends entertained throughout your entire sailing season. This list is made up of all types of sailboats , and if you’re looking for a list of some of the best small sailboats for beginners, you’ll find exactly that here.

Any one of these popular boats could be labeled as a trailerable sailboat, daysailer, or even a weekender sailboat. And while most would be labeled as a one or two person sailboat, some could comfortably fit three or even four people.

– CHECK THE WEATHER – The weather changes all the time. Always check the forecast and prepare for the worst case. Safety Tip Provided by the U.S. Coast Guard

Marblehead 22 Daysailer

Marblehead 22 Daysailer

If you have an eye for elegant lines and your heart goes pitter-patter over just the right amount of overhang beneath a counter transom, the Marblehead 22 daysailer, designed by Doug Zurn and built by Samoset Boatworks in Boothbay, Maine, will definitely raise your pulse. Traditional-looking above the waterline and modern beneath, the cold-molded hull sports a deep bulb keel and a Hall Spars carbon-fiber mast with a wishbone rig and square-top main. The 11-foot-9-inch cockpit can seat a crowd, and a small cuddy forward will let you stow your friends’ gear for the day. samosetboatworks.com

Catalina 22 Sport

Catalina 22 Sport

Many a harbor plays host to an active fleet of Catalina 22s, one of the most popular small sailboats over the years, given its basic amenities and retractable keel, which allows it to be easily trailered. Recently, the company introduced the Catalina 22 Sport, an updated design that can compete with the older 22s. The boat features a retractable lead keel; a cabin that can sleep four, with a forward hatch for ventilation; and a fractional rig with a mainsail and a roller-furling jib. Lifelines, a swim ladder, and an engine are options, as are cloth cushions; vinyl cushions are standard. The large cockpit will seat a crowd or let a mom-and-pop crew stretch out and enjoy their sail. It’s clear why the Catalina 22 is one of the best sailboats under 25 feet. catalinayachts.com

Hunter 22

With its large, open-transom cockpit and sloop rig, the Hunter 22 makes a comfortable daysailer for family and friends. But with its cuddy cabin, twin bunks, optional electrical system, opening screened ports, and portable toilet, a parent and child or a couple could comfortably slip away for an overnight or weekend. Add in the optional performance package, which includes an asymmetric spinnaker, a pole, and a mainsheet traveler, and you could be off to the races. The boat features a laminated fiberglass hull and deck, molded-in nonskid, and a hydraulic lifting centerboard. Mount a small outboard on the stern bracket, and you’re set to go. marlow-hunter.com

the Daysailer

Not sure whether you want to race, cruise or just go out for an afternoon sail? Since 1958, sailors have been having a ball aboard the Uffa Fox/George O’Day-designed Daysailer. Fox, who in the 1950s was on the cutting edge of planning-dinghy design, collaborated with Fall River, Massachusetts boatbuilder O’Day Corp. to build the 16-foot Daysailer, a boat that features a slippery hull and a small cuddy cabin that covers the boat roughly from the mast forward. Thousands of Daysailers were built by various builders, and they can be found used for quite affordable prices. There are active racing fleets around the US, and new Daysailers are still in production today, built by Cape Cod Ship Building. capecodshipbuilding.com

BayRaider from Swallow Boats

BayRaider from Swallow Boats

Easy to rig and trailer, the BayRaider from England’s Swallow Yachts is a relative newcomer to the small-boat market in the United States. Nearly all of its 19 feet 9 inches is open cockpit, though a spray hood can be added to keep the forward sections dry. The BayRaider is ketch-rigged with a gunter-style mainmast. The topmast and mizzen are both carbon-fiber, which is an option for the mainmast as well. The BayRaider can be sailed with a dry hull in lighter conditions or with 300 pounds of water ballast to increase its stability. With the centerboard and hinged rudder raised, the boat can maneuver in even the thinnest water.

$28,900, (904) 234-8779, swallowyachts.com

12 1/2 foot Beetle Cat

Big fun can come in small packages, especially if your vessel of choice happens to be the 12 ½-foot Beetle Cat. Designed by John Beetle and first built in 1921, the wooden shallow draft sailboat is still in production today in Wareham, Massachusetts at the Beetle Boat Shop. With a draft of just 2 feet, the boat is well-suited for shallow bays, but equally at home in open coastal waters. The single gaff-rigged sail provides plenty of power in light air and can be quickly reefed down to handle a blow. In a word, sailing a Beetle Cat is fun. beetlecat.com

– LEARN THE NAVIGATION RULES – Know the “Rules of the Road” that govern all boat traffic. Be courteous and never assume other boaters can see you. Safety Tip Provided by the U.S. Coast Guard

West Wight Potter P 19

West Wight Potter P 19

With berths for four and a workable galley featuring a cooler, a sink, and a stove, West Wight Potter has packed a lot into its 19-foot-long P 19. First launched in 1971, this is a line of boats that’s attracted a true following among trailer-sailors. The P 19′s fully retractable keel means that you can pull up just about anywhere and go exploring. Closed-cell foam fore and aft makes the boat unsinkable, and thanks to its hard chine, the boat is reportedly quite stable under way. westwightpotter.com

NorseBoat 17.5

NorseBoat 17.5

Designed for rowing and sailing (a motor mount is optional), the Canadian-built NorseBoat 17.5—one of which was spotted by a CW editor making its way through the Northwest Passage with a two-man crew—features an open cockpit, a carbon-fiber mast, and a curved-gaff rig, with an optional furling headsail set on a sprit. The lapstrake hull is fiberglass; the interior is ply and epoxy. The boat comes standard with two rowing stations and one set of 9-foot oars. The boat is designed with positive flotation and offers good load-carrying capacity, which you could put to use if you added the available canvas work and camping tent. NorseBoats offers a smaller sibling, the 12.5, as well; both are available in kit form.

$19,000, (902) 659-2790, norseboat.com

Montgomery 17

Montgomery 17

Billed as a trailerable pocket cruiser, the Montgomery 17 is a stout-looking sloop designed by Lyle Hess and built out of fiberglass in Ontario, California, by Montgomery Boats. With a keel and centerboard, the boat draws just under 2 feet with the board up and can be easily beached when you’re gunkholing. In the cuddy cabin you’ll find sitting headroom, a pair of bunks, a portable toilet, optional shore and DC power, and an impressive amount of storage space. The deck-stepped mast can be easily raised using a four-part tackle. The builder reports taking his own boat on trips across the Golfo de California and on visits to California’s coastal islands. Montgomery makes 15-foot and 23-foot models, as well. If you’re in search of a small sailboat with a cabin, the Montgomery 17 has to be on your wish list.

CW Hood 32 Daysailer small sailboat

With long overhangs and shiny brightwork, the CW Hood 32 is on the larger end of the daysailer spectrum. Designers Chris Hood and Ben Stoddard made a conscious decision to forego a cabin and head in favor of an open cockpit big enough to bring 4 or 5 friends or family out for an afternoon on the water. The CW Hood 32 is sleek and graceful through the water and quick enough to do some racing, but keeps things simple with a self-tacking jib and controls that can be lead back to a single-handed skipper. A top-furling asymmetrical, electric sail drive and Torqeedo outboard are all optional. The CW Hood 32 makes for a great small family sailboat.  cwhoodyachts.com

Sun Cat from Com-Pac

Sun Cat from Com-Pac

Shallow U.S. East Coast bays and rock-strewn coasts have long been graced by cat boats, whose large, gaff-rigged mainsails proved simple and powerful both on the wind and, better yet, when reaching and running. The 17-foot-4-inch Sun Cat, built by Com-Pac Yachts, updates the classic wooden cat with its fiberglass hull and deck and the easy-to-step Mastender Rigging System, which incorporates a hinged tabernacle to make stepping the mast a one-person job. If you want a personal sailboat ideal for solo sailing, the Sun Can is a great choice. Belowdecks, the twin 6-foot-5-inch berths and many other features and amenities make this cat a willing weekender.

$19,800, (727) 443-4408, com-pacyachts.com

Catalina 16.5

Catalina 16.5

The Catalina 16.5 sits right in the middle of Catalina Yachts’ line of small sailboats, which range from the 12.5 to the 22 Capri and Sport, and it comes in both an easy-to-trailer centerboard model and a shoal-draft fixed-keel configuration. With the fiberglass board up, the 17-foot-2-inch boat draws just 5 inches of water; with the board down, the 4-foot-5-inch draft suggests good windward performance. Hull and deck are hand-laminated fiberglass. The roomy cockpit is self-bailing, and the bow harbors a good-sized storage area with a waterproof hatch. catalinayachts.com

Hobie 16

No roundup of best small sailboats (trailerable and fun too) would be complete without a mention of the venerable Hobie 16, which made its debut in Southern California way back in 1969. The company has introduced many other multihulls since, but more than 100,000 of the 16s have been launched, a remarkable figure. The Hobie’s asymmetric fiberglass-and-foam hulls eliminate the need for daggerboards, and with its kick-up rudders, the 16 can be sailed right up to the beach. Its large trampoline offers lots of space to move about or a good place to plant one’s feet when hanging off the double trapezes with a hull flying. The boat comes with a main and a jib; a spinnaker, douse kit, trailer, and beach dolly are optional features. hobiecat.com

Hunter 15

Novice sailors or old salts looking for simplicity could both enjoy sailing the Hunter 15. With a fiberglass hull and deck and foam flotation, the boat is sturdily built. The ample freeboard and wide beam provide stability under way, and the heavy-duty rubrail and kick-up rudder mean that you won’t have to worry when the dock looms or the going grows shallow. Both the 15 and its slightly larger 18-foot sibling come standard with roller-furling jibs.

$6,900/$9,500 (boat-show prices for the 15 and 18 includes trailers), (386) 462-3077, marlow-hunter.com

– CHECK THE FIT – Follow these guidelines to make sure your life jacket looks good, stays comfortable and works when you need it. Safety Tip Provided by the U.S. Coast Guard

Super Snark

Super Snark

Under various owners, the Snark brand of sailboats, now built by Meyers Boat Co., has been around since the early 1970s. The Super Snark, at 11 feet, is a simple, easily car-topped daysailer that’s fit out with a lateen rig and sail. Billed as unsinkable, the five boats in the company’s line are built with E.P.S. foam, with the external hull and deck vacuum-formed to the core using an A.B.S. polymer. The Super Snark weighs in at 50 pounds, and with a payload capacity of 310 pounds, the boat can carry two.

$970, (800) 247-6275, meyersboat.com

Norseboat 21.5

Norseboat 21.5

Built in Canada, the NorseBoat 21.5 is a rugged looking craft that comes in a couple of configurations: one with an open cockpit and small doghouse, and another with a smaller cockpit and cabin that houses a double berth for two adults and optional quarter berths for the kids. Both carry NorseBoat’s distinctive looking carbon fiber gaff-rigged mast with main and jib (a sprit-set drifter is optional), and come with a ballasted stub keel and centerboard. Because of its lightweight design, the boat can be rowed and is easily trailered.

$36,000 (starting), 902-659-2790, norseboat.com

Flying Scot

Flying Scot

Talk about time-tested, the 19-foot Flying Scot has been in production since 1957 and remains a popular design today. Sloop rigged, with a conventional spinnaker for downwind work, the boat is an easily sailed family boat as well as a competitive racer, with over 130 racing fleets across the U.S. Its roomy cockpit can seat six to eight, though the boat is often sailed by a pair or solo. Hull and deck are a fiberglass and balsa core sandwich. With the centerboard up, the boat draws only eight inches. Though intended to be a daysailer, owners have rigged boom tents and berths for overnight trips, and one adventurous Scot sailor cruised his along inland waterways from Philadelphia to New Orleans.

RS Venture

Known primarily for its line of racing dinghys, RS Sailing also builds the 16-foot, 4-inch Venture, which it describes as a cruising and training dinghy. The Venture features a large, self-draining cockpit that will accommodate a family or pack of kids. A furling jib and mainsail with slab reefing come standard with the boat; a gennaker and trapeze kit are options, as is an outboard motor mount and transom swim ladder. The deck and hull are laid up in a fiberglass and Coremat sandwich. The Venture’s designed to be both a good performer under sail, but also stable, making it a good boat for those learning the sport.

$14,900, 203-259-7808, rssailing.com

Topaz Taz

Topper makes a range of mono- and multihull rotomolded boats, but the model that caught one editor’s eye at Strictly Sail Chicago was the Topaz Taz. At 9 feet, 8 inches LOA and weighing in at 88 pounds, the Taz is not going to take the whole crowd out for the day. But, with the optional mainsail and jib package (main alone is for a single child), the Taz can carry two or three kids or an adult and one child, and would make a fun escape pod when tied behind the big boat and towed to some scenic harbor. The hull features Topper’s Trilam construction, a plastic and foam sandwich that creates a boat that’s stiff, light, and durable, and shouldn’t mind being dragged up on the beach when it’s time for a break.

$2,900 (includes main and jib), 410-286-1960, topazsailboats.com

WindRider WRTango

WindRider WRTango

WRTango, a fast, sturdy, 10-foot trimaran that’s easy to sail, is the newest portable craft from WindRider International. It joins a line that includes the WR16 and WR17 trimarans. The Tango features forward-facing seating, foot-pedal steering, and a low center of gravity that mimics the sensation of sitting in a kayak. It weighs 125 pounds (including the outriggers and carbon-fiber mast), is extremely stable, and has single-sheet sail control. The six-inch draft and kick-up rudder make it great for beaching, while the hull and outriggers are made of rotomolded polyethylene, so it can withstand running into docks and being dragged over rocks.

$3,000, 612-338-2170, windrider.com

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24 or 27 ft Catamaran with cabin (afforable) exist?

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Hello, Lost my Catalina 22 to Sandy. I have about 5 grand to spend on a new boat. Was wondering - is there a sailing catamaran with even a small cabin exist for that price range (used, obviously and I am willing to put work into it)? Outside craigslist and ebay - any suggestions in where I can look around? Any insight, opinions, advice are appreciated!  

Maybe a Warram Tiki? This listing is so old I doubt it's still available but it says it was listed for $9k in good shape: Scott's Boat Pages: Wharram Tiki 21 For Sale in Colorado There's an older thread with some pictures of the interior: http://www.sailnet.com/forums/other-brands/59698-wharram-tiki-8-meter-catamaran.html I don't think they're easy to find but might be what you're looking for.  

You could look for a farrier 720. It's a trimaran not a cat, but are generally available in the 8 grand range asking.  

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

mikeytino said: Any insight, opinions, advice are appreciated! Click to expand...

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

I don't believe this is realistic. If your budget is just $5K buy a monohull. Catamarans have lots of great features but $$ price has never been one of them.  

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

I bought a 38' Cross trimaran for $2500.00 a few years ago. It was rough but took on no water. The guy I sold it to finished it and cruised the Channel Islands with it. It's still in Morro Bay and a year ago the owner was desperate to sell. Prolly take 5K. It's rough again. It was on a mooring at Marina Square, they can give the owner your number and maybe he'll call. I know it's on the wrong coast.  

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

For about twice that you can by a real rocket that is cruisable, for the adventurous. Sail Delmarva: The Stiletto 27 - You Can Actually Sleep in That? I did a number of 500-mile trips with my daughter in this one. Nice in the summer. http://sail-delmarva.blogspot.com/2009/02/short-summers-cruise-august-2008-my.html  

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small catamaran sailboat with cabin

small catamaran sailboat with cabin

The Ultimate Guide to Choosing Between a Sailboat or Catamaran for Your Sailing Adventures

C hoosing between a sailboat and a catamaran for your sailing adventures is a significant decision that depends on various factors, including your sailing preferences, experience level, budget, and intended use. Here's an ultimate guide to help you make an informed decision:

1. Sailing Experience:

  • Sailboats: Typically require more skill and experience to handle, especially in adverse weather conditions. Ideal for sailors who enjoy the traditional feel of sailing and are willing to invest time in learning and mastering the art.
  • Catamarans: Easier to handle, making them suitable for beginners. The dual-hull design provides stability, reducing the learning curve for those new to sailing.

2. Space and Comfort:

  • Sailboats: Generally have a narrower beam and less living space. However, some sailboats may offer comfortable cabins and amenities.
  • Catamarans: Wider beam creates more living space. Catamarans often have multiple cabins, spacious saloons, and expansive deck areas, providing a more comfortable living experience.

3. Stability:

  • Sailboats: Monohulls can heel (lean) while sailing, which some sailors enjoy for the thrill but can be discomforting for others.
  • Catamarans: Greater stability due to the dual hulls, providing a more level sailing experience. Reduced heeling makes catamarans suitable for those prone to seasickness.

4. Performance:

  • Sailboats: Known for their upwind performance and ability to sail close to the wind. Some sailors appreciate the challenge of optimizing sail trim for efficiency.
  • Catamarans: Faster on a reach and downwind due to their wide beam. However, they may not point as high into the wind as monohulls.
  • Sailboats: Typically have a deeper draft, limiting access to shallow anchorages and requiring deeper marina berths.
  • Catamarans: Shallow draft allows access to shallower waters and secluded anchorages, providing more flexibility in cruising destinations.
  • Sailboats: Generally more affordable upfront, with a wide range of options available to fit different budgets.
  • Catamarans: Often more expensive upfront due to their size and design. However, maintenance costs may be comparable or even lower in some cases.

7. Mooring and Docking:

  • Sailboats: Easier to find slips and moorings in marinas designed for monohulls.
  • Catamarans: Require wider slips and may have limited availability in certain marinas, especially in crowded anchorages.

8. Intended Use:

  • Sailboats: Ideal for traditional sailors who enjoy the art of sailing, racing enthusiasts, or those on a tighter budget.
  • Catamarans: Suited for those prioritizing comfort, stability, and spacious living areas, especially for long-term cruising and chartering.

9. Resale Value:

  • Sailboats: Generally have a more established resale market, with a wider range of buyers.
  • Catamarans: Growing in popularity, and well-maintained catamarans often retain their value.

10. Personal Preference:

  • Consider your personal preferences, the type of sailing you plan to do, and the kind of lifestyle you want aboard your vessel.

In conclusion, both sailboats and catamarans have their advantages and disadvantages. Your decision should be based on your individual preferences, experience level, budget, and intended use. If possible, charter both types of vessels to experience firsthand how they handle and to help make a more informed decision based on your own preferences and needs.

The post The Ultimate Guide to Choosing Between a Sailboat or Catamaran for Your Sailing Adventures appeared first on Things That Make People Go Aww .

Choosing between a sailboat and a catamaran for your sailing adventures is a significant decision that depends on various factors, including your sailing preferences, experience level, budget, and intended use. Here's an ultimate guide to help you make an informed decision: 1. Sailing Experience: 2. Space and Comfort: 3. Stability: 4. Performance: 5. Draft: 6....

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COMMENTS

  1. 13 Best Small Catamarans For Cruising 2023

    Engines: Single outboard, though some versions have twin inboards. Price: Roughly $100,000. The Wharram Tiki is one of the best small catamarans for cruising. We have lusted after the Wharram catamarans since our adventures began and would have opted for one of these if we had found one for sale this side of the pond.

  2. 10 Best Pocket Catamarans (Under 38 ft)

    PDQ 36. The PDQ 36 was a Canadian built catamaran offered in two arrangements. The LRC (Long Range Cruiser) is a legend among cruising catamarans and included 2 Yanmar diesel engines coupled to straight shafts. The PDQ 36 Capella, was built with pods for two Yamaha extended shaft outboards.

  3. 15 Small Liveaboard Catamarans

    The Smart Cat S280 is the smallest catamaran on the market today. The Korean-made catamaran offers a mix of space, shallow sailing, and affordability. At the 2020 Miami Boat Show, the starting price of the Smart Cat S280 was $149,900. It runs on a 19.8 Yamaha HorsePower engine with a 50 Horse Power option.

  4. 10 Small Catamarans for Cruisers

    Affordable Catamaran Market. Unfortunately for liveaboard cruisers interested in catamarans, the market is dominated by enormous, often very expensive, four cabin-four head charter models. In fact, our analysis of sales data suggests that about 38% of the market consists of Lagoon catamarans and over 50% are Lagoon or Fountaine Pajots.

  5. 10 Best Small Sailboats (Under 20 Feet)

    Catalina 16.5. jlodrummer. Catalina Yachts are synonymous with bigger boats but they have some great and smaller boats too such as Catalina 16.5. This is one of the best small sailboats that are ideal for family outings given that it has a big and roomy cockpit, as well as a large storage locker.

  6. 8 Best Catamarans That Are 30 Feet or Less

    The best catamarans under 30 feet (9.14 m) include the TomCat 6.2, Cadillac 27and 30, Gemini 30, Endeavour 30, and Maine Cat. These time-tested cruising cats are easy to handle, premium built, and are great for daytime sailing, overnight trips, and some even suitable for long-range sea passages. In this article, you'll find a list of the best ...

  7. Small Catamaran Comparison: Excess 11 vs. Bali Catsmart

    The Excess 11 and the Catsmart position themselves between these two extremes, each by using a different yet appealing recipe to create affordable four-cabin catamarans. Excess 11, a sailors' catamaran. Honor to the older of the two, the Excess 11, which first showcased at the Dusseldorf Boot 2020 boat show.

  8. The Most Comfortable Sailboat: 5 Sailing Catamarans to Consider

    Lagoon 380. Small production catamarans aren't very common, so not too many choices are available until the 40' mark. That's what makes the Lagoon 380 so enticing. Currently the smallest—but also the most popular—of the Lagoon catamaran fleet, the 380 was launched in 1999 and well over 500 hulls have been built to date.

  9. 2022 Boat of the Year: Best Cruising Catamaran (Under 50')

    The 4.6 feature a solid fiberglass foredeck and lounge area that stays dry underway. Jon Whittle. At 40 feet, the Bali Catspace—the second of two boats from the brand entered in the 2022 BOTY contest—is the smallest offering in the Bali line, but judge Murphy found the open floor plan particularly alluring: "The living experience of being able to open up the back end of these cats so you ...

  10. 10 Affordable Cruising Catamarans

    Here, then, are 10 cool cats to ­consider in the ­$300,000-or-less range: Advertisement. 1. Fountaine Pajot Orana 44 (above) Fountaine Pajot had the misfortune of tooling up this boat just before the global financial crisis, so not that many of them were built between 2007 and 2012.

  11. Sunsail 454

    Sunsail 454 - 4 cabin. Exacting requirements and a radical approach from designers Robertson and Caine helped create the ground-breaking Sunsail 454, a flagship catamaran which turns cruising construction on its head. It combines all the effortless fun of modern catamaran sailing with unmatched speed, stability and space.

  12. Best Pocket Cruiser Sailboats, Small Cruising Sailboats

    Balboa 26. Balboa 26 Courtesy Of Matts G. Djos. First splashed in 1969, the Balboa 26 continues to enjoy a strong following among budget-minded cruisers. Built sturdy and heavy, all of the boat's stress points are reinforced. The spacious cockpit comfortably seats 4 and is self bailing, ensuring that sailors stay dry.

  13. How To Pick a Small Catamaran

    Generally speaking, a 38-foot-long, 21-foot-wide sailboat is not a small one. But if you love the French-style catamaran, this is about the smallest you'll find. That's because this type of boat depends on its width for stability and its length for carrying a load. A shorter boat is very easy to overload.

  14. The 32' Express Cruiser Power Catamaran

    Every ArrowCat power catamaran features our signature luxurious interior cabin with creature comforts other boat companies have only dreamed about. Add to this that the ArrowCat 320 is trailerable with a 10' beam and your cruising grounds expand exponentially. ... Catamaran Hull Planing Hull Design Twin Outboard Motors LOA Length over all: 31 ...

  15. Best Small Catamaran: The Ultimate Guide to Finding the Perfect Vessel

    Short answer: Best small catamaran The best small catamaran refers to the renowned Hobie 16. With its ease of use, versatility, and competitive performance in various conditions, it has become a favorite among sailors worldwide. Its affordability, durability, and impressive speed make it a top choice for sailing enthusiasts looking for a thrilling experience on

  16. Small Sailing Catamarans: The Ultimate Guide

    Short answer: Small sailing catamarans. Small sailing catamarans are multi-hulled boats that offer stability, speed, and ease of handling. They typically have two parallel hulls connected by a platform and are designed for recreational or racing purposes. Popular among sailors due to their maneuverability and shallow draft, they are suitable ...

  17. Small Catamaran Sailboats: The Perfect Choice for Sailing Enthusiasts

    Short answer small catamaran sailboats: Small catamaran sailboats are compact, twin-hulled boats designed for sailing. With their lightweight build and manageable size, they are ideal for recreational use or racing. These boats offer excellent stability, speed, and maneuverability, making them popular among beginners and experienced sailors alike. Small Catamaran Sailboats: A Comprehensive ...

  18. Best Small Cruising Sailboats

    The best budget small cruiser sailboats include the Catalina 22 for its versatility, Hunter 27 for durability, Beneteau First 20 for performance, West Wight Potter 19 for compactness, Compac Sun Cat for ease of use, MacGregor 26 for adaptability, and Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 349 for comfort and style. As a seasoned sailor with years of navigating ...

  19. Learn the Basics of Small Catamaran Sailing: A Step-by-Step Guide

    Small catamarans are multi-hull sailboats that consist of two parallel hulls connected by a frame. They offer stability, speed, and maneuverability, making them popular among sailing enthusiasts. Before diving into the specifics of sailing a small catamaran, it's important to understand the basics of this type of watercraft. ...

  20. Best Small Sailboats, Beginner and Trailerable Sailboats

    If you want a personal sailboat ideal for solo sailing, the Sun Can is a great choice. Belowdecks, the twin 6-foot-5-inch berths and many other features and amenities make this cat a willing weekender. $19,800, (727) 443-4408, com-pacyachts.com.

  21. Sail Catamaran boats for sale

    Catamaran sailing vessels for sale on YachtWorld are listed for a range of prices from $51,728 on the relatively moderate end all the way up to $6,833,894 for the most unique, one-of-a-kind yachts.

  22. Catamaran Sailboats for sale

    The most viewed brands for catamaran sailing vessels this month were Custom, Fountaine Pajot, Gemini, Lagoon and Leopard. With 218 catamaran sailboats currently listed for sale, as well as 26 added in the past 30 days, Boat Trader is confident that you'll find the boat you are looking for. Find catamaran sailboats for sale near you, including ...

  23. 24 or 27 ft Catamaran with cabin (afforable) exist?

    sww914. 543 posts · Joined 2008. #6 · Jan 22, 2013 (Edited) I bought a 38' Cross trimaran for $2500.00 a few years ago. It was rough but took on no water. The guy I sold it to finished it and cruised the Channel Islands with it. It's still in Morro Bay and a year ago the owner was desperate to sell.

  24. The Ultimate Guide to Choosing Between a Sailboat or Catamaran ...

    Sailboats: Generally have a narrower beam and less living space. However, some sailboats may offer comfortable cabins and amenities. Catamarans: Wider beam creates more living space. Catamarans ...

  25. Boat Hull Shapes: What Hull Shape is Best?

    Catamarans also generally have a shallower draft and require smaller engines than similarly sized monohulls. The main drawback to a catamaran is less usable inside volume than a monohull, so the cabin and cockpit layout are often compromised. Many people also feel catamarans look unusual. What are Strakes and Chines on a Boat Hull

  26. JMSE

    When a small-sized catamaran rescue boat is subjected to various sea wave impacts, the suspension system can decompose the wave impacts into beam waves and head waves for adaptive wave damping and absorption. ... Itakura, H. Experimental investigation on a cabin-suspended catamaran in terms of motion reduction and wave energy harvesting by ...