I bought a 36' Mainship as my first "big" boat 10 years ago. It took a few months to get the hang of docking
, (and a few more to train my family
to handle the forward and aft lines). I found powerboating, (aside from a few snide comments from diehard sailers), to be a rewarding and educational experience. I have explored most of the waterways in my area without regard for the wind
direction, or temperature extremes. Being able to sip an ice cold mimosa on the fly bridge with air conditioning
, and an ice maker nearby is a convenience few sailboats share. The two cabins, (I have slept in both just for variety), are both roomy and comfortable with plenty of privacy.
Due to higher gas prices I've had to tone down the distance and speed of my trips, but still have the option of burying the throttle and making speeds of up to 20 kts, (no matter which direction, or how much wind).
(by the way did I mention my boat is now for sale
Where are you? what waterways are you planning to cruise
? Where do you want to go?
I would stay under 40 ft to shorten the learning
curve, (and the number of crew needed)...Singlehanding docking
a 40 footer is a good jog from the fly bridge.
IN the 30 to 40 ft range you can get all the comforts of home on the water
, I have a full sized fridge, shower, two heads, two cabins, salon
, (big enough for two people at the same time), dining area, enclosed aft deck
, swim platform, 8.5kw generator
that provides ac power to outlets all over the boat, two air conditioners, full sized electric
stove, built in microwave, and regular 100watt bulb lighting
throughout the boat, (yes she can run the blow dryer, if you don't have everything else running at once).
This was my first cabin
cruiser, and gave us years of enjoyment, (my first boat was an 18ft runabout).
There are a number of my dockmates with 30ft Searays, they are very happy with them, (1 cabin only, but a large rear seating area).
Good luck with what you decide. Take a power squadron boating
class, that will help you learn to use it safely.