How to Choose a Sailing Dinghy (For Beginners)

Sailing is considered a competitive and therapeutic hobby.

If you’re a beginner and in search of the perfect dinghy, then you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ll discuss basic information that you must know before purchasing your own boat.


People in a sailing dinghy

Sailing Dinghies are small open sailing boats used for either racing or recreation. There are different models of sailing dinghies, their lightweight feature is typically between 3-5 meters long that can occupy one or two people.


Types of sailing dinghies

Classic Dinghies 

If you are into an old-school but sophisticated aesthetic, the classic dinghies are the right one for you. This type showcases its beauty and versatility over the boat performance.

They used to make this type completely out of wood for that rustic touch but with modernization, they became completely made of fiberglass and wood is just for design purposes. Might be an excuse for increasing its value but a hull made of fiberglass makes it easier to maintain and avoids issues with wood materials such as erosion and tarnish. 

Cruising Dinghies 

Cruising dinghies are perfect for relaxed sailing. This type is a lot more stable than the others which makes it the best for a beginner like you.

The ropes are much easier to handle especially if you are just getting the hang of it. Usually, not for racing, these dinghies are more on the leisure aspect of sailing as it comes with features suitable for calmer waters. It is has a less rounded hull which means more of the boat is submerged in water and makes it sturdier for cruising. 

Racing Dinghies

Racing dinghies are preferred for competitive sailing as their flat bottom makes planning- rising out of the hull to reduce impact from the water easily. It comes with towering sails and a smaller hull making it faster and lighter under harsh winds. 

High-performance Dinghies 

High-performance dinghies are also suitable for racing as it’s featured to be fast and powerful and best used for worldwide platforms of sailing competitions.

This type comes with a spinnaker- sail specially designed for up winds and a trapeze that supports the crew against upwind which makes planning effortless.


Two people checking their sailing dinghy for safety

Now, before hopping into your sailing dinghies, make sure that you have these sailing safety gear:

  • Life jackets
  • Sailing knife
  • Sailing sunglasses
  • Sailing headwear

Maintenance of dinghies cannot be learned overnight but here are the 3 holy grails you need to develop: (1) patching a sail, (2) finding leaks, (3) fixing scratches and chips in the gel coat.

Prevention is definitely better than having problems that could have been avoided but once you are out there on the water, the most important thing is to be able to think on your feet and come up with a solution.


Sailing dinghies may look complicated but knowing that it will give you so much pleasure, will make every search (and penny) worth it.

Do you own a sailing dinghy? Share us your most memorable experience and comment below.

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