Few activities match the adventure of bluewater traveling on a sailboat when it comes to the attraction of the open sea. It is a dream for many because of the ability to explore far-off horizons and the enduring connection to wind and waves. However, size matters in the world of bluewater sailing. With their distinctive combination of maneuverability, affordability, and seaworthiness, Blue Water Sailboats Under 40 feet are a popular option for people setting off on lengthy offshore cruising.

But picking the ideal bluewater sailboat isn’t something you should do hastily. It requires an intricate balancing act of variables, from the design and building of the boat to individual tastes and financial limits. Choosing a bluewater sailboat under 40 feet can be challenging. In this tutorial, we’ll help you through the process by examining the important aspects to take into account as you make this important decision.


Factors to Consider When Choosing

Sailboat data and specs are important, but choosing the best Blue Water Sailboats Under 40 feet also involves making a very personal choice. Budget, intended usage, and personal tastes are all factors to consider. We will walk you through the considerations required to match your pick with your sailing objectives, whether you are looking for a tough cruiser, a quick racer, or a liveaboard home.

A thorough inspection is necessary to fully comprehend a sailboat’s capability for bluewater voyages. Sea trials provide you the chance to observe the vessel’s performance and handling up close. We’ll offer tips on what to consider during these inspections so that your chosen sailboat matches your needs and can confidently handle the rigors of bluewater cruising.

Selecting the ideal sailboat before setting off on a bluewater voyage is similar to choosing a reliable travel companion for your sea voyage. With this manual in your hands, you’ll have the information and self-assurance to make a wise choice, charting a road for life-changing ocean adventures.


Top Bluewater Sailboats Under 40 Feet

The first step toward an unforgettable journey in the realm of bluewater sailing is selecting the appropriate boat. Here, we offer a carefully chosen assortment of sailboat types hailed for their outstanding bluewater performance. These vessels have proven themselves in the most trying circumstances, making them the preferred options for sailors who yearn for open ocean exploration.

Westsail 32

The 32-foot Westsail 32 is a boat that embodies traditional elegance. The “Wetsnail 32” is a boat that is often mocked for its languid approach to the water, but this does not mean that it is inadequate. The Westsail 32 is well known for its robust construction and unfailing dependability and has earned the faith of many sailors setting out on long-distance voyages and circumnavigations.

A notable circumnavigation was completed by Tania Aebi, the youngest American woman to sail alone around the globe, on the Westsail 32 “Varuna.”

Hunter e33

The Hunter e33 is a monument to the superiority of tiny cruisers, measuring 33 feet in length. This sailing marvel, which Cruising World named the finest tiny cruiser of 2012, represents a significant advancement over its forebears and is a great option for navigating choppy waters. The Hunter e33 is well-suited for single-handed sailing with a focus on safety and toughness, making it a trusted companion for lone adventures.

Sven Yrvind, a Swedish sailor famed for his solo adventures, made a remarkable voyage in his specially designed Hunter e33.

Tayana 37

The Tayana 37, created by the illustrious Bob Perry, is a traditional beauty with a long keel and a moderate displacement. This 37-foot yacht is a popular choice for sailors looking for a bigger boat with roomy guest accommodations since it maintains a compromise between traditional aesthetics and a demand for speed. The Tayana 37 excels at offshore cruising and has plenty of capacity and storage for lengthy voyages.

An interesting circumnavigation was made by the well-known cruising pair Lin and Larry Pardey on their Tayana 37 “Taleisin.”

Najad 355

The Najad 355 is hailed as one of the best bluewater sailboats under 40 feet and measures 35.5 feet. It has established a solid reputation as a seaworthy ship that can handle a variety of ocean conditions. This vessel stands out due to its opulent appearance, which provides sailors with safety and luxury while they travel over wide-open seas. The Najad 355 has plenty of headroom below deck and is as capable as it is beautiful.

The Najad 355 has shown itself time and time again via the brave circumnavigations of her sailors.

Hans Christian 38T

The Hans Christian 38T is the perfect example of a bluewater sailboat’s classic appearance. It provides a distinctive sailing experience because of a heavy displacement that somewhat exceeds that of other boats its size. This vessel is renowned for having a full keel, which offers remarkable stability even in rough seas. The Hans Christian 38T is a monument to its dependability on lengthy voyages, boasting multiple circumnavigation stories.

The Hans Christian 38T has completed numerous circumnavigations, solidifying its reputation as a reliable ship for bluewater journeys.

Hanse 388

The Hanse 388, a liveaboard bluewater sailboat that is just under 40 feet long, has swiftly established a reputation as one of the best. With its 2017 release, it opened a new era in sailing by providing more stability without sacrificing agility. Even while sailing alone, it’s simple to control with a self-tacking jib mechanism. The Hanse 388 has already demonstrated its durability in a variety of situations despite being very new.

Sailors looking for both comfortable liveaboard experiences and bluewater excursions have been drawn to the Hanse 388 due to its agility and performance.

Island Packet 380

The Island Packet 380 is a tough boat with a length of almost 40 feet that was built to handle difficult sailing conditions. It stands out for having roomy below-deck quarters that make it ideal for a small family eager to enjoy the wide sea. This boat has traveled many long distances with confidence because of its stability and safety features.

The Island Packet 380 has taken part in noteworthy circumnavigations, demonstrating its prowess at protracted offshore sailing.

Catalina 38

Another masterpiece from Sparksman & Stephens, the Catalina 38 combines dependability and affordability. This 38-foot sailboat has plenty of storage room, making it perfect for trips that last a while. The Catalina 38 has traveled on notable bluewater voyages, proving its dependability without breaking the bank, although perhaps not as well-known as some of its competitors.

The Catalina 38 has the potential for long-distance cruising, as evidenced by the sailors who have set off on bluewater adventures, including circumnavigations.

Ingrid 38

The Ingrid 38 was originally envisioned as a wooden boat design in the 1930s, and since then, it has had a colorful history. Later, it was “remastered” and transformed into a powerful fiberglass vessel. It offers the ideal combination of bluewater capabilities and cruising comfort because of its full keel and hefty displacement.

The Ingrid 38 is still a timeless option despite its age. The Ingrid 38 has participated in numerous circumnavigations, attesting to its durability and seaworthiness.


The J/122e qualifies as a top racing bluewater sailboat due to its length of just under 40 feet. It costs more money to have its speed and agility. It is lighter than many boats in its class despite being smaller, making it a competitor for agility. The J/122e has successfully delved into bluewater sailing despite being primarily designed for racing, demonstrating its ability to tackle the open ocean. Notable circumnavigation: Although less frequent, some daring sailors have taken the J/122e on difficult bluewater voyages, showcasing its potential outside of the racetrack.

Adventurers looking for bluewater adventure have a variety of options with these sailboats under 40 feet in length.


The Criteria for Bluewater Capability

A bluewater voyage is an extraordinary event that offers life-changing adventures and the rush of unrestricted water. Your naval adventure, however, may be made or broken by the vessel you select. It’s crucial to appreciate the minute features that set Blue Water Sailboats Under 40 feet different from the competition in order to guarantee that your adventure is thrilling but also safe. Let’s look at the qualities that a sailboat needs to be genuinely bluewater capable, especially ones that are under 40 feet long.

Rig Type

The type of rig a sailboat has a major impact on how seaworthy it is. Although there are many other rig types, the cutter rig and the ketch rig stand out in the realm of bluewater cruising. Although this isn’t to say that other rig types can’t do the job, cutters perform best in low winds and stormy weather because they have the adaptability required for a variety of situations. On the other side, ketch rigs are more frequently found in larger boats and offer exceptional versatility, making them perfect for coping with erratic weather changes.

Type of Keel

A sailboat’s stability is greatly influenced by the design of the keel, and older boats frequently have lengthy keels known for their ability to offer constant stability. Different keel forms that provide comparable safety and stability may be used in newer boats. Fin keels, for example, even while they do not equal the robustness of a full keel, offer good lateral resistance, making them suited for a variety of circumstances.

Differences in Rudders

The spade rudder is the most popular type of rudder among the many different types. Under the boat, the spade rudders function as wings, allowing the boat to glide through the water smoothly without severely slowing it down. As an alternative, some sailors prefer rudders that are linked to the keel or skeg. While these might provide more protection from land and debris, they typically offer less performance support.

How Much Displacement?

A crucial issue is whether to use heavy or moderate displacement. Heavy displacement boats have been preferred by many offshore sailors and circumnavigators. These ships are adept in operating in adverse situations and are equipped to overcome almost any maritime barrier. Boats with intermediate displacement, on the other hand, may appeal to individuals wanting somewhat faster progress and the capacity to avoid approaching storms because they provide better agility.

Reputation of Boat Builder

In the world of bluewater sailing, a boat builder’s reputation matters a lot. Reputable shipyards like Island Packet and Hunter have garnered praise for their remarkable quality, dependability, and durability. Consulting seasoned sailors who have traveled to open waters while examining sailboats can provide insightful information about which sailboat manufacturers have withstood the test of time.

Boat Ratings

Ratings and certifications for boats offer important details regarding a boat’s seaworthiness. Organizations that evaluate a sailboat’s suitability for offshore cruising include CE grading and ISO standards. Understanding these ratings is essential when assessing a possible bluewater cruiser because they represent a variety of elements that affect the boat’s performance at sea.

Storage and Fuel

Storage space and fuel capacity must be carefully considered when preparing for a bluewater cruise. Longer excursions call for enough of space for storing dry items and supplies, as well as sufficient fuel and water supplies. To ensure self-sufficiency during protracted periods at sea, it may occasionally be necessary to strategically position additional tanks on board.

Length of Boat

A sailboat’s length is essential that is why Blue Water Sailboats Under 40 feet are popular. Safety frequently requires choosing a boat with a hull length greater than 20 feet, while some exceptional sailors have sailed into deep bluewater on smaller craft. A minimum length of 25 feet is desirable since it offers plenty of storage and the stability needed to handle the difficulties of the open ocean.


The selection of Blue Water Sailboats Under 40 feet must take your budget into account. Prices for ships equipped for bluewater travel can range widely, from $25,000 to well over $1,000,000. The price is affected by things including the boat brand and condition. A safe and fulfilling cruise depends on striking a balance between your sailing aspirations and budgetary reality.

Maintenance and Care for Bluewater Boat Under 40 Feet

After you’ve started your bluewater trip, maintenance, and upkeep must be taken carefully. Neglecting your Blue Water Sailboats Under 40 feet can result in disastrous events. A safe and enjoyable voyage on the open sea depends on meticulous maintenance and routine inspections to protect your investment.

Visit our sailing locations page for some incredible ideas and places to explore if you’re feeling motivated to organize your sailing holiday. Start preparing for your upcoming sailing excursion right away with Ocean Wave Sail!
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