Always Buy Upwind

Always Buy Upwind

DSC_5283Increasingly Australians are looking to purchase multihulls internationally.  From experience, we can tell you that this is no longer a difficult exercise.  It is a path well trod and now accessible to the average aspiring blue water sailor looking for cruising catamarans for sale.

Just Multihulls international expert Rod Waterhouse has some good news for the multihull sailors wanting to expand their horizons.  Read more as Rod shares his inside information on purchasing a boat abroad here

There are 2 distinct options…

One is to purchase a boat in an overseas location and use the boat in that region.  Sell after you’ve had your fun.

Historically and currently, we have customers onto their 3rd season cruising the Mediteranean and season number 5 sailing the Caribbean.

The other and more popular option is to purchase your boat at the top of the upwind course and sail downwind, home to Australia .

Sounds simplistic…well it is.  It’s downwind to Australia from Europe. Just strap yourself in, hit the buttons and have fun.

The big decision is do you buy your cruising catamaran in the Caribbean or in Europe.  Really it is only a 4 week difference in sailing time between the two.

The answer if people ask advice on this?  If you have the time, buy in Europe.

Usually, the European option involves purchasing at the end of the Europe winter around March – April.  You spend the summer in the Med, exiting past Gibraltar to the Canaries by November.

I recommend joining the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (ARC) in December.  The ARC takes you cruising from the Canaries to the Caribbean through Panama by March, across the Pacific to arrive in Australia by November.  In total 18-20 months.

If  you are time poor, start in the Caribbean.  Average comfortable time from there to Australia is 9-12 months.

Catamaran Cruising Destinations


Europe is lots of fun for the cruiser, more of a cultural pilgrimage.

You tend to spend alot of your  time on town docks and marinas.  You will also be mainly amongst charter boats so allowances have to be made for this.

It’s then an amazing and distinct transition from the Europe sector to the life of white sandy beach anchorages, palm trees and sipping margaritas as you do in the Carribean and South Pacific.

One thing you will notice in the cruising lifestyle is that most of your neighbors are now fellow cruisers.  Lots of things in common and a fantastic traveling community.

So how hard is it to sail home to Australia?

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We can say to you that it is now easy… almost too easy.  In a few years I fear it will become just too popular and the chance of doing something quite unique will become too common, so lets go!

Weather information is so readily available that there is very little excuse now to experience dangerous conditions.  Avoiding bad weather used to be a bigger dilemma however modern technology has changed that.

Simple rule of thumb… outside hurricane season nothing happens between 20 North and 20 South, very rarely anyhow.

Last time I did the Atlantic crossing, I was dodging a dozen row boats who were doing the same leg.  Incredibly, they all made it from North Africa to the Caribbean!

New to Bluewater


Experience wise…I find that it is 90% common sense and preparation when cruising.  You do not have to be an experienced blue water cruiser to attempt this.

Other than a basic understanding of sailing, below are some suggestions. 

  • For newbies, charter boats for a while to learn the ropes.
  • Do the navigation courses – first aid, radio and safety. 
  • Very important – spend time learning your new boat in the first few weeks of ownership.  Time on the water is invaluable.
  • Read books and blogs of your peers.
  • Cruising multihull are now well proven and designed.  You are virtually a passenger being carried to the port you choose on the electronic chart.  Your boat is on autopilot ALL the time except docking.

I have the best job here as co-owner of Just Multihulls and DBY Boat Sales.   A huge amount of  my time and work goes into assisting people into the cruising world and lifestyle.

I thrive on encouraging people to experience what cruising around the world has given my family.

I invite anyone remotely interested in living the dream to buy me a cup of coffee and I can make your dream come true.

Buy me lunch and I will probably sell you the perfect boat!