Catamarans and monohull yachts are very different beasts on the water. Let’s look at them and help you choose what to sail with us at Europe Yachts Charter Group this summer.
Comfort and space
From a comfort perspective, catamarans win by any mean.
Monohulls have less space and that’s a fact. On one of our 12 metre Beneteau Oceanis 40 (roughly the same length as the Catamaran Bali 4.0) you will find three cabins and two heads where the Catamaran Bali 4.0 will have four cabins and four heads that are also much larger. They heel in most wind conditions and from a pure comfort aspect, are not as nice to be aboard as a catamaran in any bigger winds. Monohulls will often bury their bows into the waves when beating into the wind and you really only should hang out in the cockpit while at sea for safety reasons.
Catamarans are much more spacious aboard and are much more comfortable under sail. A Catamaran 40ft will have almost double the space of an equivalent monohull yacht length. You will find that they have very comfortable living arrangements with a large saloon, decent galley and even en suite heads in the four sleeping cabins. Our brand new Catamarans Bali 4.0 have four heads plus two small for the crew aboard where typically the whole crew will share two heads in a monohull. It is very rare that you will find the catatamaran leaning over (‘heeling’) under sail unlike a monohull so there are no issues around cooking in the kitchen or even using the heads at a 45 degree angle. The sail plans of many of our catamarans allow for people to sunbathe on the foredeck even under sail so you can enjoy the sun all day.
Monohulls tend to be better into the wind and can be a lot more fun for sailing purists and funs.
Cruising catamarans are a different breed to the racing multihulls that you see smashing world speed records and racing around the Great Sound in Bermuda. Catamarans are built for a luxury relaxed sailing experience and will never behave the same way as racing catamarans. When under sail and a gust hits you on a cat, you should turn the helm downwind (in a monohull you would head into the wind slightly). This is because catamarans have a love for apparent coming wind and in turning the bow to windward will only make the cat accelerate hard and could lead to an accident.
Catamaranss are much faster downwind. You may even find yourself on our catamaran planing like a dinghy in some wind conditions. Catamarans achieve stability by having their hulls wide apart so they are much more stable, as you might place your feet wide for stability on a rolling deck. Catamarans don’t have much hull under the water and as a result they tend to skid sideways. On a beat in lively conditions it is better to leave the sails alone and motor.
For the monohull sailor, beating can be fun. Sailing yachts can sail as close as 60 degrees to the wind with really minimal leeway and will put a lovely grin on your face as you race over and through the waves like you newer touch can. As long as there is strong wind during your charter time afloat with Europe Yachts Charter, you may only shot down the engines on for entering and leaving ports and anchorages. While much less comfortable than a cat they are the better sailing machine in the opinion of many a sailor. It is largely down to what you want from your time sailing.
Inshore and close manoeuvring
A skipper that is skilled should be able to rotate a monohull in a very small space in a marina. The catamaran will be able to turn within its own length by putting one engine into forward gear and the other into reverse. You will need a bigger spot in a marina owing to the catamarans beam but should be able to get into one without touching anyone else.
Cats are also good for mooring closer to the beach. They will only draw a few feet under water and this means you might moor up at wading depth off the beach. Monohulls need a little more water and should you run aground could end up leaning on your side as the tide retreats.
One of the biggest differences between two equivalent length boats is the cost. The Bali 4.0 will cost € 5.850,00 a week in peak/high season while the Beneteau Oceanis 40 will set you back € 3.000,00 at the same time of the year. You will also need to pay a little more for the mooring fees while aboard the catamaran as they are so much wider so its like two monohulls.
In the experience of Europe Yachts Charter , the customers that wants to charter a catamaran are not afraid to spend a little bit more for comfort, while the monohull charter sailors will come for more adventurous sailing and more affordable for everyone.