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What Is The Best Size Cruising Yacht?

By Robert Bowman | Posted On Mar 25, 2024
Updated On Apr 16, 2024

Making the right decision when it comes to choosing what cruising yacht to buy can mean the difference between the trip of a lifetime or the quick realization that you should have gone bigger. Of course, everything depends on the various ways you plan to use your boat through the span of your ownership experience. This is truly where having an honest discussion with a reputable, professional yacht broker can save you the heartache of making the wrong choice.

Here are some things to consider when choosing the best size cruising yacht:

  1. What are the most common sizes of cruising yachts?
  2. What are the top cruising yacht builders?
  3. What are some examples of available cruising yachts for sale?

If you have dreams of exploring the Bahamas, completing the Great Loop, or just want to be able to entertain friends on the water, a boat designed for cruising might be the best type to consider. Cruising boats often have particular characteristics for comfort purposes so that the owner and their guests can enjoy their trip with many of the same amenities as home. Comfort features like larger water tanks, air-conditioners in each cabin, an extra generator, and additional storage are all examples of attributes of a boat that are generally important for this type of owner.

To determine what the best size cruising yacht is, there are a number of questions you must consider such as how many guests you plan to invite on board at one time, how many nights do you see yourself staying on board, how far you plan to cruise, and what amenities from home are most important to you. For example, a full sized refrigerator and galley appliances may be necessary should you plan to stay at sea for weeks at a time. Cruising to Alaska may mean you need a more fuel-efficient yacht with larger fuel tanks. This is where an in-depth conversation with your broker can make a difference.

(Below: Fleming Yachts are often called 'The Ultimate Cruising Yacht'.)


1. What Are The Most Common Sizes Of Cruising Yachts?

It's easier to break down the various sies of yachts in groups of 10-feet. Unless there is a drastic difference in the layout of the boat, there isn't much noticeable difference between a boat that has a 2 or 3 foot difference in length overall.

  • 35 to 39-feet: Considered a smaller cruising boat, this length of vessel is capable of comfortable overnight trips, coastal cruising, generally has lower overall fuel costs, and normally is equipped with some kind of small cabin with a convertible berth for sleeping. An example of a boat in this range could be a downeast style.

example of downeast cruising boat


  • 40 to 49-feet: This is an excellent size range for a first time cruising yacht owner. With today's joystick and docking technology, a 40-foot plus size cruising boat can offer more of a seating area, a higher range, and normally has 2 cabins with a shared head.

example of 49 foot cruising boat


  • 50 to 59-feet: A popular range for experienced cruisers, at under 60-feet this is still ideal for the owner/operator who wants to cruise without a captain. This begins the small motor yacht range where vessels can have up to 3 staterooms if desired. Owners of cruising boats in this range can stay on board for a greater amount of time.

example of 56 foot cruising yacht


  • 60 to 69-feet: For some, a captain might be needed in this range if you haven't had the previous ownership experience of a similar-sized vessel. Getting insurance in this range can also depend on your overall experience level. Cruising boats in this range can have up to 3 or 4 cabins and accommodate up to 8 guests. There are also modest crew cabins available in this size range.

example of 68 foot cruising yacht



2. What Are The Top Cruising Yacht Builders?

Trying to select the best cruising yacht builder is similar to choosing what auto manufacturer you like the best or home builder. Everyone has their own unique style and taste and many builders are quite similar in quality. If you've hired a yacht broker to assist you in your search, their experience and knowledge regarding certain builders or particular models can be invaluable.

One method of due diligence in choosing the right cruising yacht is to look at some of the more prestigious awards that are given in the industry. For example, you can easily search the Boat Builder Awards, the World Yacht Trophies, and the European Powerboat Awards to see what builders won in their category.

Many of the industry magazines, such as Power & Motor Yacht and Yachting Magazine, continually post reviews of boats, as does While it's rare to see many negative remarks about any of the tested boats, the editors adhere to a strict ethical code of providing truthful and objective opinions about each boat. Other factors to consider are what brand of engine and equipment are chosen by the builder. No matter what cruising boat you decide to purchase, it won't be long before it needs to be serviced. Popular engine and equipment manufacturers are easier on warranty claims, receiving replacement parts, and serviced in general.

Here are some of the top cruising boat builders according to number of boats on the market:

There are more cruising yacht builders than what is listed above, some are still producing new boats and some aren't, but still have boats on the brokerage market. Search all boat brands here.


3. What Are Some Examples Of Good Cruising Yachts Currently Available For Sale?

Below are 15 examples of available cruising yachts for sale on the brokerage market today, in order by size. Each one is listed with a United Yacht Sales broker, so please contact us today if you see one that interests you. Not sure where to start? Call our main office at (772) 463-3131 and we'll connect you with a professional agent that can answer all of your questions.



hampton endurance cruising yacht for sale

"THREE OF A KIND" is a head turner in any harbor. The spacious interior of the 70’ Hampton Endurance is perfect for long-distance cruising and entertaining guests. Whether you’re a cruising couple or wish to put the yacht in charter and utilize the aft crew quarters, the possibilities are endless. She features a power frequency converter allowing her to be plugged into shore power anywhere in the world!



sunseeker cruising yacht for sale

As powerful as it is graceful, the 68 Sport Yacht is a classic example of Sunseeker innovation. The streamlined shape. The 36 knot top speed. The unmistakable style. They’re all Sunseeker trademarks. In fact, everything about this remarkable Sport Yacht is the result of years of dedication and an unwavering desire to produce the best. Inside, the main saloon has everything you could wish for; state-of-the-art entertainment systems, high quality fabrics and plenty of natural light. It’s the perfect entertainment space.



hatteras 63 cruising yacht for sale

From the Power Boat Guide, “Introduced in 2000, the sleek styling of the Hatteras 63 Pilothouse reflected the growing popularity of European motor yachts in the American market first seen in the mid-1990’s. Built on a modified-v hull with a wide 18’3” beam, prop pockets, and a relatively deep keel, the 63 is no lightweight compared with other yachts her size. While many Eurostyle pilothouse yachts have both the galley and dinette on the pilothouse level, the galley in the 63 is forward on the main deck level.



azimut 62 flybridge cruising yacht

The Azimut 62 Evolution, as her name states, was the evolution of the very popular 58FLY she was designed to replace in 2004. The 62E was in fact more popular and sold more than twice the number of units than the 58FLY in the five-year run for the model. She is well suited for both entertaining and family style cruising.



prestige 590 yacht for cruising

This lightly used Prestige 590 is the best value on the market. She has less than 150 original hours on her Cummins 600 Zeus Motors and maintained with an open check book. Three staterooms plus the optional air conditioned crew quarters, Seakeeper Gyro Stabilizer, Teak Cockpit and Platform, Full Raymarine Electronic Package plus KVH Tracvision Sat TV, U/W Lights, and more.



sea ray sundancer cruising yacht

The Sea Ray 580 produced from 2008 to 2014, was a radical departure for Sea Ray from its previous more conservative styling to a new level of elegant sophistication in response to European luxury motoryacht trends. The 580 Sundancer's sinuous curves and flowing lines make this sport cruiser a definite head-turner.



princess yachts 56 fly for cruising

The Princess 56 Flybridge Yacht is a luxurious and spacious yacht that provides the perfect combination of performance, comfort and elegance for anyone wishing to spend some quality time on the water. The interior of the Princess 56 is beautifully designed with high-quality materials and finishes to complement the panoramic views.



fairline targa 52 cruising boat

With spacious accommodations, an enormously accommodating cockpit area for relaxing and entertaining in style…and up to 31 exhilarating knots on tap, the Targa 52 is a luxury long-range sports cruiser guaranteed to turn heads as you power effortlessly past. This cruising boat features a 3-stateroom layout, cockpit air conditioning, and even a convertible roof.



This is one of the few Sea Ray 510 Sundancers that doesn’t have Zeus Drives. She has just completed her annual full regiment of services and she is ready for her new owner and new home. The Sea Ray Sundancer has a long history of being a popular options for the boat owner that wants to cruise for several nights at a time.



carver 506 motor yacht for cruising

COBB-N-CRUZER is most likely the finest example of a Carver 506 Motor Yacht on the market that has been well cared for from Day One. Only 2 owners who used the boat primarily in Fresh Water. When not in use in Orange Beach, the boat was always in a covered slip or full warehouse storage heated. Less than 800 original hours with the majority of hours used in the past 10 years. Recent services to engines completed and boat fully detailed this Carver Motor Yacht is turnkey ready to cruise by her next owner.



silverton 48 convertible yacht

This 48 Silverton Convertible is not only a great looking flybridge motoryacht, she has incredible accommodations inside with 3 total staterooms including 2 double staterooms with a walk around bed in the master. The salon is large and open and bright and an easy step down to the huge cockpit, (16’4” beam), leading to the molded in steps to the air conditioned flybridge.



beneteau swift trawler yacht for cruising

The Beneteau 44 Swift Trawler is a yacht that is specifically designed for cruising. This particular boat has less than 1,000 hours on the engines and all services are up to date. Seaworthy thanks to its hulls design, it is also powered with Volvo Penta D4 engines making it fuel efficient as well. If you're considering offshore cruising and want a stable boat with plenty of storage, look no further than the Swift Trawler.



hinckley downeast yacht for cruising

The 2018 Hinckley Picnic Boat 37 MKIII features the modern conveniences, functionality, and performance expected of a beautiful, iconic yacht. Hinckley’s signature woodwork adds elegance and rich tradition throughout the yacht. Features such as the reliable, simple to operate jet propulsion system (no props or shafts to damage or injure marine life), patented JetStick II joystick controls for Hover Lock virtual anchoring and precise docking, efficient composite hull make her easy to handle and maneuver for a great owner experience.


United Yacht Sales has the world's largest network of boat buyers and sellers in the industry, thanks to our team of over 250 yacht brokers in 104 different locations. Whether buying a luxury boat or selling one, we have the right expert on staff to assist you in navigating the brokerage market for your type of yacht. If you're looking at selling a boat, there is no quicker way to get activity than listing it with United. Our entire team is immediately notified every time a listing agreement is made with United Yacht Sales and many boats are sold before they ever even make it online. Our support team is among the best in the industry at marketing your yacht. 100% of our marketing budget goes towards advertising our clients' listings, a claim not many other firms can make. To get started listing your yacht, fill out our online form What's My Yacht Worth?


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