The bowrider is one of the smallest types of powerboat – from 15 feet (5 metres) to 24 feet (8 metres) (speedboats are often considered to be smaller). The bow (front)of the boat has an open area where passengers can sit, usually in a ‘V’ formation.You can lay facing forward, with a great view, or sit upright, with space for more people.

They are very open boats, and their small size means that they are only suitable for lakes or very calm coastal trips. Extended coastal trips with uncertain weather are not recommended.

They can be fun boats, and are often used for water-sports, such as towing skiers. Usually low in costs – both to buy and to run.

If you are out on one of these, be prepared either to get wet or to get very wet!

If you have too many people in the bow, this may make it difficult to get up on the plane in order to achieve faster speeds. Distribute your passengers around the boat, so as to make the boat handle well and to give a better ride.

They are often powered by a single engine, either an outboard or a small inboard. Their small size means that they do not need a bow thruster or twin engines to help with maneuvering.

One detail you need to consider is the hull shape. A very flat-bottomed boat would only be suitable for calm waters on a lake. The more usual ‘V’ shaped hull is needed for coastal waters.

Typical makes are Bayliner, Searay, Rinker, Maxum, Jeanneau, Chapparal, Glastron, Quicksilver, Four Winns, Fletcher, Larson, Crownline and Finmaster . Most of these manufacturers also produce larger or much larger boats. Exceptions include Glastron and Fletcher who are better known for their smaller boats, including speedboats.