Time seems in short supply for many of us these days, which is why daysailers and weekenders are a great choice for maximizing your time on the water. (They’re also ideal for kids and adults who want to learn the basics of sailing.)
Many of the boats we’ve corralled here are new ones, designed to be easy to get to the water and launch, or are models that can be trailered to expand your cruising range. We’ve also included a few recently built traditional daysailers and weekenders just because we can’t resist their sweet lines.
Your biggest problem this summer may be figuring out when to get those weekend chores done, now that you have better plans.
Alerion Express 30
Alerion Yachts built its reputation on designing and constructing sleek, elegant sailing yachts that provide exhilerating performance.The Alerion Express 30 has a teak-trimmed interior for weekending or getting out of the weather when it’s foul outside. There’s a forward V-berth with a portable head hidden beneath it. Abaft that is a saloon with port and starboard settees. Just inside the companionway is a galley with a one-burner cooktop and a cooler.
In the cockpit are sail controls and wide-diameter wheel steering. The deck is trimmed with varnished teak. The sailplan includes a roller-furling jib and gennaker with a loose-footed, fully battened main.
LOA: 30 feet, 1 inch • BEAM: 8 feet, 9 inches • WEIGHT: 6,424 pounds • DRAFT: 5 feet • POWER: 12-hp Volvo Penta inboard diesel • PRICE: $249,000 • CONTACT: Alerion Yachts, Warren, Rhode Island, (401) 247-3000. alerionyachts.com
Morris’ M29X is a turbocharged version of the builder’s M29 daysailer. Go-fast features include a taller Hall carbon fiber rig, North Sails 3Di sails, a carbon fiber wheel and bowsprit, a carbon/Kevlar epoxy hull and slick racing bottom paint.
The M29X’s long, deep cockpit provides a safe and secure feeling underway. Sail controls — halyards, vang, outhaul, jib sheets, etc. — are all led aft and are easy at hand , making single-handing stress-free. There are no winches aboard, thanks to engineering that reduces sheet loads. Teak decking and varnished teak toerails, dorade boxes, handrails, eyebrow and coaming trim give the carbon-filled M29X the look of a traditional yacht.
Below is a simple, cozy cabin designed more for afternoon naps than overnighters, but that is done in the luxurious and good-looking style Morris is known for. The M29X has utility space forward in the bow, as well as room for a portable head and cooler in her finished cabin space.
LOA: 29 feet, 2 inches • BEAM: 7 feet, 4 inches • WEIGHT: 5,594 pounds • DRAFT: 6 feet, 6 inches • POWER: 14-hp Yanmar 2YM15C inboard with Saildrive • PRICE: $338,000 • CONTACT: Morris Yachts, Northeast Harbor, Maine, (207) 667-2499. morrisyachts.com
It can be difficult to find a trailerable pocket cruiser that also is comfortable, fun to sail and affordable. With a starting price of just under $20,000, the sporty-looking Malbec 18 has a dynamic, performance-oriented sailing attitude with room below for short weekend cruises. She’s also beachable, opening up opportunities for island camping and exploring ashore.
The Malbec 18 was designed in Argentina and is built in Oxnard, California. She has a 6-foot cockpit. Belowdecks are a pair of settee berths, an optional pullout galley and a portable head. Her hull is made of solid fiberglass. A sharp forward entry, hard chines and a high-aspect rig provide predictable, stable sailing. Up to a 9.9-hp kicker can be added for when the wind dies down, and for close-quarters maneuvering.
LOA: 18 feet • BEAM: 7 feet, 2 inches • WEIGHT: 1,500 pounds • DRAFT: 3 feet, 6 inches (board down) • PRICE: $19,795 • CONTACT: Ventura Sport Boats, Marina del Ray, California, (646) 533-7166. venturasportboats.com
Corsair’s foldable, trailerable trimarans have a reputation for their speed. Add an “R” to the standard 760 model name and you get a daysailer built for folks with a need for extra speed. The 760R swaps the standard 760’s sleeping accommodations for a full-length cockpit with room for 10 people.
Though some might use her for competitive racing (the “R” stands for “regatta,” after all), the 760R’s foldable, trailerable aspects also make her a great platform for families who just want to get out on the water for a day of speed-enhanced fun. Onboard is premium sailing hardware including self-tailing winches, a rotating mast with synthetic stays, and a retractable bowsprit. Up to an 8-hp outboard can be added as an auxiliary.
LOA: 24 feet, 3 inches • BEAM: 17 feet, 11 inches • WEIGHT: 2,094 pounds • DRAFT: 5 feet, 3 inches (board down) • PRICE: $69,990 • CONTACT: Corsair, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, +84 8 3873 6320. corsairmarine.com
Built on the company’s fast and powerful 28R model, the Fareast 19R is a smaller entry from the China-based company that’s earned a reputation for building high-performance sailboats with an eye toward value. Starting at just under $24,000, the Fareast 19R has performance-minded elements including a backstay-less mast with a square-top main, Harken hardware, a retractable bowsprit, a carbon fiber rudder and a retractable, carbon fiber T-shaped keel with lead bulb. There’s room for four in the cockpit and you can trailer and easily rig the whole package onsite at your next regatta or weekend sailing venue.
LOA: 19 feet, 5 inches • BEAM: 7 feet, 3 inches • WEIGHT: 1,433 pounds • DRAFT: 3 feet, 11 inches • PRICE: $23,995 • CONTACT: Sturgis Boat Works, West Yarmouth, Massachusetts, (508) 778-9187. sturgisboatworks.com
Dragonfly 28 Performance
Though the Scandinavian-built Dragonfly 28 has been around for a while, the builder’s Performance model is relatively new, with wave-piercing amas that are almost 2 feet longer and that have 20 percent more volume. The amas enhance performance over 14 knots.
Below, all the way forward, is a V-berth. An open head and sink are abaft it, as is a starboard stowage locker. A flip-up table with two settees splits the saloon on centerline. The galley borders either side of the companionway and has a two-burner stove, stowage cabinetry and a sink.
The open-transom cockpit has room for four to six crew, with trampoline nets between the main hull and the amas (for placing extra folks out to windward). All sheets and sail controls are lead neatly aft and are within reach of the cockpit crew. A 9.9-hp 4-stroke kicker is an option.
LOA: 28 feet, 8 inches • BEAM: 21 feet, 4 inches • WEIGHT: 4,299 pounds • DRAFT: 5 feet, 7 inches (board down) • PRICE: $205,000 • CONTACT: Quorning Boats APS, Fredericia, Denmark, +45 7556 2626. dragonfly.dk
Wahine Lifestyle 26
The Wahine Lifestyle 26 is a sporty racer/weekender that packs a ton of functionality into a small package. Outside, she has the look of a premium racer/cruiser with accommodations to suit a family of four on long weekends and short cruising vacations.
The open transom has a drop-down swim platform. The cockpit, side decks and foredeck are covered in a grippy, gray-and-white decking material, and blue LEDs light the deck spaces. Blacked-out railing around the perimeter and a carbon fiber bowsprit give the Lifestyle 26 a sporty look.
Inside is an L-shaped galley with cooktop, sink and microwave. Farther forward is a V-shaped dinette that converts to a berth with drop-in cushions. A sprawling quarter berth is abaft the galley near the enclosed head/shower, which is to port of the companionway. Folks without kids can use the area for dogs or stowage. There’s plenty of room for both.
LOA: 26 feet • BEAM: 9 feet, 7 inches • WEIGHT: 5,071 pounds • DRAFT: 5 feet • POWER: Yanmar 2YM15 w/Sail-Drive • PRICE: $98,250 • CONTACT: Wahine Yachts, North Palm Beach, Florida, (561) 313-2703. wahine-yachts.com
The Seascape 24 looks like most other modern racing sailboats, but adds accommodations for couples and families aboard this super-modern, super-sleek sailboat. Four people can sleep below, and there’s room to stow equipment such as camping gear, a cooler, a portable head and more.
The boat has a sharp forward entry, hard-edged chines, an open transom, twin rudders, a carbon fiber rig and a cockpit with plenty of room for racing crew or family and friends. Her ballasted swing keel can stow all the way up, and the rudders are retractable for easy beaching. The Seascape 24 is trailerable and can be rigged and launched in as little as a half hour.
LOA: 23 feet, 11 inches • BEAM: 8 feet, 2 inches • DRAFT: 6 feet, 3 inches (keel down) • WEIGHT: 1,962 pounds • PRICE: $72,495 • CONTACT: Seascape USA, Eliot, Maine, (207) 703-0307. seascapeusa.com
Buzzards Bay 15/Watch Hill 15
One of the most easily recognized designs from the drafting table of Nathanael G. Herreshoff is the Buzzards Bay 15 — and Watch Hill 15, a later incarnation with a Marconi rig. Both are now available as replicas from Artisan Boatworks in Rockport, Maine. The boats are highly customizable and available as full keel or centerboard models, with gaff or Marconi rig.
These boats weigh 2,500 pounds or less, depending on the model, and have 350 square feet of sail. Each can be built using wood (cedar over oak) or with epoxy-composite materials.
Wood spars, a gaff rig, bronze sailing hardware, buff-colored decks and varnished teak and mahogany trim make these boats look beautiful. Simple rigging leads to a secure-feeling cockpit for single-handed sailing.
LOA: 24 feet, 6 inches • BEAM: 6 feet, 8 inches • WEIGHT: 2,200 pounds • DRAFT: 2 feet, 6 inches • PRICE: $196,980 • CONTACT: Artisan Boatworks, Rockport, Maine, (207) 236-4231. artisanboatworks.com
Hobie’s Getaway is a rotomolded catamaran with redesigned hulls that are 6 inches longer than previous models. Other changes include an accent chine, new graphics and a built-in carrying handle aft.
The Getaway can hold six crew on its nets and optional wing seats, and has a roller-furling jib, boomless mainsail and running rigging. The hulls have kick-up rudders and tough, integrated keels that make beaching a snap. A double-roller trailer with spar stand and beach wheels is an option.
LOA: 17 feet • BEAM: 7 feet, 8 inches • WEIGHT: 390 pounds • DRAFT: 10 inches (rudder up) • PRICE: $8,399 • CONTACT: Hobie Cat Co., Oceanside, California, (760) 758-9100. hobie.com
C.W. Hood 32
The C.W. Hood 32 makes no apologies for being a true daysailer. With 12 feet of overhangs and an above-decks design that is all cockpit and deck with no cabin, this 32-footer is one sharp-looking boat. The hull is built using vinylester resin, biaxial fiberglass cloth, carbon fiber in high-stress areas and Corecell foam sandwiching. Her shoal keel draws 4 feet and has just over 1,300 pounds of lead ballast. The spade rudder is made of carbon fiber, as is the tiller.
The high-aspect, fractional sailplan consists of a fully battened main and a self-tacking, roller-furling jib that total 285 square feet. The mast is carbon fiber, and there are no winches. Everything can be controlled by hand — great news for single-handers. When the wind pipes down, or when maneuvering in close quarters, a Torqeedo electric pod drive takes over.
LOA: 32 feet, 5 inches • BEAM: 6 feet, 11 inches • WEIGHT: 2,825 pounds • DRAFT: 4 feet • POWER: Torqeedo electric pod drive • PRICE: $114,000 • CONTACT: C.W. Hood Yachts, Marblehead, Massachusetts, (781) 631-0192. cwhoodyachts.com
Foiling sailboats aren’t anything new — folks have been fiddling around with one type of foiling device or another on sailboats since at least the 1950s. But these craft can be a challenge to sail, leaving a substantial chunk of hopeful foiling sailors on the dock. Fulcrum Speedworks’ Foiling UFO aims to change that. It’s 10 feet long, and its hull weighs 70 pounds, which means it can fly in as little as 8 knots of wind. Things can get hairy above those speeds, however, and sailors aboard traditional foiling sailboats have come into contact with some portion of the boat when things came crashing down. The Foiling UFO is designed to avoid all of that, keeping a clear splashdown area forward of the skipper.
The whole package is car-toppable. Fulcrum Speedworks says most folks are able to “fly” the UFO their first time out.
LOA: 10 feet • BEAM: 5 feet, 7 inches • WEIGHT: 110 pounds • DRAFT: 4 feet, 1 inch • PRICE: $7,600 • CONTACT: Fulcrum Speedworks, Bristol, Rhode Island, (401) 524-3953. fulcrumspeedworks.com
This article originally appeared in the June 2018 issue.