Recreational boats fall into several categories
Including dinghies (generally under 16 feet powered by sail, small engines, or muscle power), daysailers (14–25-foot sailboats, frequently with a small auxiliary engine), cruisers (25–65′ powerboats with cabins), and cruising sailboats (25–65-foot sailboats with auxiliary engines).
- Canoes are popular on lakes and rivers due to their carrying capacity and efficiency on the water. They are also easy to portage, or carry overland around obstructions like rapids, or just down to the water from a car or cabin.
- Kayaks can be found on calm inland waters, whitewater rivers, and along the coasts in the oceans. Known for their maneuverability and seaworthiness, kayaks take many shapes depending on their desired use. Rowing craft are also popular for fishing, as a tender to a larger vessel, or as a competitive sport.
- Row boats or dinghies are oar powered, and generally restricted to protected waters. Rowboats are generally heavy craft compared to has.
- Small sailboats are commonly made from fiberglass, and will have wood, aluminum, or carbon-fiber spars, and generally a sloop rig (two sails: a mainsail and a jib, commonly include 3rd sail the spinnaker for going downwind).
- Daysailers tend to be wider across the beam and have greater accommodation space at the expense of speed.
- Cruising sailboats have more width, but performance climbs as they tend to be much longer starting Length Over All of at least 25 feet (six metres) re-balancing the dynamic ratio between length of waterline (aiding speed) and beam width (adding cargo and people space).
- waterskiing and parasailing.
- Variations on the jumpable” wake.
- Cruising boats applies to both power and sailboats, and refers to trips from local weekend passages to lengthy voyages, and is a lifestyle. While faster “express cruisers” can be used for multiple day trips, long voyages generally require a slower displacement boat (trawler) with diesel power and greater stability and efficiency. Cruising sailboats range from 20′ to 70′ and more, and have easily managed sailplans to allow relatively small crews to sail them long distances. Some cruising sailboats will have two masts (ketch, yawl, or schooner rigs) to further reduce the size of individual sails and make it possible for a couple to handle larger boats. Diesel- (now sometimes electric-) powered Narrowboats are a very popular mode of travel (and accommodation) on the inland waterways of England.
Anchoring – Anchoring a boat is essential to recreational boaters by giving them the ability to park their boat in the water. Anchoring is helpful to boaters who fish or swim off of their boat and provides a stable and established site to achieve whatever activity is being done. Anchoring a boat is also critical in emergency situations and is a good safety measure whenever a vessel becomes disabled. There are three types of anchors, the Plow-style, the Fluke-style, and the Mushroom anchor.
- Plow-style is the most effective for most boats especially larger boats (over 26 feet). It receives its holding power by plowing into the bottom sediments using the boats mass to drag it underneath the soil.
- Fluke-style or Danforth anchor is similar to the plow feet but is very effective by using its pointed flukes to bury into the sediment below.
- Mushroom anchors are designed for situations which require a permanent anchor with strong holding power. The weight of a mushroom anchor causes it to be slowly buried under soft sediment, giving significant holding power and are typically used for moorings, buoys, and other permanent anchoring needs. Mushroom anchors are not carried on a boat for use as a temporary or short term anchor. Initially there is no holding power due to the significant amount of time required for the anchor to settle and bury itself in the sediment.
A rope anchor line should be at least seven times longer than the depth of the water in the anchorage. A seven to eight foot chain should also be attached between the rope and the anchor in order to reduce the angle of the pull on the anchor facilitated by the chain sinking and lying on the bottom. This is important because in order for the anchor to be effective, the hold allowing the anchor to be raised in order to leave the anchorage.
The anchor should never be dragged behind a boat or dropped at the stern. This could result in the boat being swamped or filled with water. Tie off the anchor to a bow cleat and pull on it to make sure that the knot is secure. After that make sure the vessel is down wind or down current of the anchor. After anchoring it is important to check visual sightings and onshore objects or buoys to let the driver know if his boat is secure by the anchor.
Licensing – Depending on the country, boating on coastal waters and inland waters may require a license. Usually, a length of 20 meters), or when passenger ships, ferries or tugboats are steered. Boating on international waters does not require any license, due to the absence of any laws or restrictions in this area.