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What Boat? Interested In The Greater Experience Of Members


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We have owned our first boat for a year, we have improved her and it's fair to say we love her to bits. But I'm sure those of you with many years experience won't be surprised to know that as fully addicted broads boaters we are now thinking whether something else would suit us even better!

So we have a Hampton Safari Mk3 with bow thruster and a few years old Nanni replacement engine, also a favourable survey carried out the summer. Nothing in life is guaranteed but clearly she should be saleable.

We are thinking about what would be slightly larger, a little more modern in interior modelling, yet still an easy to manage, all on one level (due to the odd stiff joint) boat.

There is no rush for us to make a decision or even start looking but I'd like to really weigh up and properly consider the alternatives.

Definitely would want inboard diesel, front steering is OK as long as it is a helm position that can be opened up in good weather, but stern helm position would be welcome. A double berth bunk with access both sides (or the room to fit same) would be ideal. Larger than a two berth boat but only for the space as only two berths will ever be required.

Budget - up to, but no more than £40k.

I've come to really respect the depth of knowledge of the members here and how freely and friendly it is shared... so, if you have a moment I'd love to hear your thoughts please.

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That sounds like a very familiar tale. We bought our first boat, a 3 year old viking 24 in August 2017 and had a really good first year as boat owners on the Broads. The weather helped a lot but we were hooked.
It didn't take us too long to realise that we wanted this that and the other from a boat, most of which weren't on a viking 24!
We started looking about 4 months ago and looked at anything that had a very similar set of requirements to yours.
We picked an Alpha 35, 2 berth with lots of living space. We are picking her up next weekend, hope we got it right this time

Sent from the Norfolk Broads Network mobile app

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As Mr Morgan says sticking with what you have is always an option as you know her, what condition she's in etc but on the other hand there is nothing wrong with wanting something a bit newer either.

Perhaps look at Dawncraft DC 30 or Bounty 30 maybe. They would offer you the extra space though may not be much more "modern" than your Hampton. The Alpha 34 is a nice boat and a mid 90's example should be well within your budget. They crop up on the marine brokers sites from time to time but don't seem to hang around long. NYA have one but it says sale agreed.


The Bounty /  Alpha 35's are very spacious but not single level with their raised centre cockpit. 

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That looks a nice boat,

I started off with a cruisers international 224 on the Medway,  lovely little boat to start with but we found we outgrew it after a couple of years

.  We changed to a Calypso 28, and have had that for 7 years,  again on the Medway. I looked at a Hampton safari but found it too small,  perfectly formed,  just too small.

6 years ago we missed the Broads so got a 32 foot Topliner to use in Norfolk. The difference in size and feeling of space for an extra 4 feet length and 18 inches width is amazing.

The Calypso looks like it has sold, but we will replace it next year,  ideally I would love another Topliner but they are not available as only 3 were made in the two cabin style.  I would probably go for the open plan type that Barnes have if they sold one off and remodel it.

The Alpha 34 could be a contender,  I need headroom and space,  as well as a proper sized bed. 


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Lots of good thoughts and ideas, thank you folks.

The Bounty 30 seems a good option also the Calypso. Love the Alpha 35, not sure if it's quite what we need though I certainly wouldn't rule it out as it's the sort of boat I used to hire and enjoy very much!

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