I keep Shiva in LIS and use it on the weekends and do a few longer crusises. I don't race, but like all sailors try to get there as fast as I can.
I have also done the Marion Bermuda race and sailed many times to the Caribbean and even to Brazil all on the boat I bought when I was almost 40 some 22 years ago.
Most important to me was that the boat could be singled handed and set up to do this EASILY. I do not want to rely on crew for ANYTHING including docking for things like fuel and water fill ups.
Since I intended and DO live aboard at times I want a comfy boat with a large cockpit we can lounge about in... eat and work the boat. A large galley is important as well if you intend to cruise.
You will want a decent auxiliary as well and a boat that behaves well under power, sail and at anchor.
I would avoid the full on racers and the real heavy offshore boats and look for a racer cruiser which meets the above criteria.
I lucked into the Contest 36 which is perfectly suited to MY requirements as noted above. I see many pretty boats on the outside, not as many with as good a cockpit (with the above criteria) and am unfamiliar with the accommodation plans of most boats as I don't go below or visit boat shows these days. I have no opinion on how these many attractive yachts perform.
I can only tell you that if your criteria align with mine you should consider a Contest 36 is you can find and afford one.
BTW cruising up to ME will require more than two weeks to even touch her beauty. It take almost 6 or more days to get there and back unless you sail non stop.
Last edited by SanderO; 09-15-2007 at 10:58 AM.