Looking forward to some retirement downtime and the chance to pursue new opportunities and hobbies? If you’re already thinking of travelling more now that you have the leisure time to do so, this may be the perfect time to consider boating rather than touring in a motor home or caravan. The ideal way to discover more of the country, boating is a popular pastime with people of all ages, including retirees. Even if you’ve never crewed or skippered a vessel before, you’ll be surprised by how straightforward it can be.
Take a look at which boats may be most appropriate for your initial venture into life on the water, as well as the skills you’ll need to get the most from your boating experience.
Plenty of choice when it comes to boats
For complete novices, a powerboat is often the best initial choice. Easy to operate and reassuringly reliable, a powerboat is ideal for fishing expeditions or other short trips. A small powerboat made from aluminium or GRP (glass-reinforced plastic), is a good first boat. Both materials are highly durable, with the aluminium boat having the edge when it comes to a lighter weight. There are three main types of engine: outboard, inboard or sterndrive. A smaller, starter boat usually has an outboard motor.
Smaller boats, in comparison, are easier to handle, are able to sail in shallower depths and are more economical to run than their larger counterparts. If you have no, or limited, boating experience, it’s probably best to start small and work your way up.
Go further afield with a larger boat
Powered by either petrol or diesel, larger powerboats are ideal for exploring the Australian coastline with its many reefs and islands. A boat is usually considered large when it measures 10m or more. Bigger boats have the advantage of more spacious accommodation and can be more resilient in high seas.
Plenty of boating training available
If you are concerned about taking to the water for the first time, there are plenty of boating and sailing courses available that can give your confidence a boost. In addition to teaching the basics of boat handling, they also provide novice skippers with information on matters such as: marine traffic regulations; navigation; marine first aid; boat maintenance; and plenty of tips and tricks to get the most from your maiden retirement boating voyage.
Sailing requires skill and can be expensive
Done right, sailing is an exhilarating way to travel. For newbie sailors, though, it can be confusing and difficult to master. We suggest crewing for a while first before buying a sailing vessel in order to, literally, learn the ropes! Remember that sailing vessels can be expensive to equip and maintenance heavy. Also, most of them have engines for situations when sailing isn’t going to be the best mode of transport: these use petrol or diesel in exactly the same way as a powerboat.
With so many exciting possibilities out there, boating in retirement presents a wealth of engaging experiences waiting to be enjoyed!
For more boating advice, reviews and recommendations, subscribe to OneAdventure today!