Re: Boat recommendations for a Newbe
Personally, I find it interesting and a bit puzzling that people want to buy a sailboat to "learn" to sail on. Have you sailed on other boats at all? Have you taken a course?
I concur with what HardTAC says ... think about trying to get out on other people's boats, sailing on different designs, and determining what you do and don't want is helpful. Racing with others on thieir boats, is very helpful in accomplishing this .
Untill you have sailed a bit, you won`t really know enough to determine what you want and need in your own sail boat. Be prepared that it will most likely depreciate in value rather quickly after you buy it, so if you find that sailing is not what you enjoy or expect, that you need to be prepared to resell your boat at a loss.
Or adversely if you find you really enjoy it, you will likely likely be upgrading within seven years.
With very little info re: prize range ... a C & C 27, or a Catalina 27 are pretty forgiving, in a reasonable price range, are good basics boats for day and weekend sailing, and would likely meet most of your needs.
If you can`t sail with others on varioius designs - shop around, come up with three boats that you think meet your needs and price range, then come back here. It will be easier to narrow down the pros and cons of the designs.
Good luck in your search