Is the 50K to buy, buy/outfit or buy/outfit/cruise? Figure on $20K-30K outfitting depending on what the boat comes with and condition.
A fair number of the major cruising writers seem to reccomend smaller boats (30' to 35') for couples. Their arguements tend to be along the lines of:
1- easier to maintain, cheaper to maintain,
2- more likely to go for daysails since boat easier to handle,
3- more likely to move boat in questionable circumstances because easier to handle,
4- easier to handle boat in heavy conditions can sometimes manhandle situations rather than having to finesse everything due to high load.
Consider the layout of the boat you buy. Many cruising couples like having the galley
right by the companionway
for ventilation. However since you don't sound like you will be involved with your partner you might prefer a boat with 2 quarterberths so you each have your own space and don't have to hotbunk underway. Quarterberths are a nice way to get permanant berths without costing lots of cabin
space. Also I feel they are in the most comfortable location motionwise.
With this in mind you might take a look at a Cal 29
33, Cascade 29. If you really want to go bigger Cascade 37, Ranger
37 or my dream boat a Cal
A smaller, cheaper boat lets you more reasonably forego insurance
, a significant running expense, especially offshore
, though this may have changed since the last time I looked into it.