Just like your boat, the type of dinghy you chose is completely up to personal preference. There are all types out there, but let me say, “I like em big”!!!! HAHAHA
A dinghy is a major component in your sailing adventure, and something that should not be overlooked when you are buying your dream boat.
Anticipate 3-7k to get something workable. That may seem like a large expense, and it is, but it is a necessary one if you want to enjoy yourself to the fullest.
The most standard setup we have seen for Caribbean cruisers out on the water is a 10ft dinghy with a 15hp outboard. From there you have lots of leeway to see if you feel your next dinghy should be larger or smaller.
After our 6 years on the water, and trying a few different types of dinghies, we have definitely found what works for us. If you are in the process of trying to chose your next “ocean car” here are some important questions you should ask yourself before investing the big bucks.
What are your hopes for your dinghy?
Will you always be anchoring a large distance from shore? Do you plan on doing any type of excursions on the water? Will you be spear fishing? Do you plan on hauling groceries and water over longer distances?
If you answered NO to the above questions then a rowing or sailing dinghy may work for you.
However, if you had hopes of doing any of the above and don’t want to make the to-and-from part of it an extreme workout, then you may want to get yourself an outboard engine.
Even if you are a “purist sailor” at heart, you don’t necessarily want to miss out on any events because the distance is too much to handle in your wind-powered dink.
We sometimes like anchoring off on our own, or sometimes just have any other option.
We like going on adventures, like a 7 mile dinghy ride to find flamingos, we like that Eben can dinghy out a distance into the ocean and spear our supper. And yes, we have hauled both water and groceries over long distances.
For our family, a rowing dinghy would not have been enjoyable. And I honestly don’t think I would’ve had the patience to do it with my two kids in the boat with me. So outboard it is.