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Understanding Boating Lingo When Chartering A Boat In Newport Beach

Updated: Nov 18, 2023

Boat Charter Newport Beach

Embarking on a boat charter with a captain in scenic Newport Beach is an exhilarating experience that promises unforgettable moments on the water. However, to fully immerse yourself in the world of boating, it's essential to understand the unique language and terminology that accompanies this exhilarating activity. In this blog, we will explore some common boating lingo to ensure you're well-prepared for your Newport Beach boat charter adventure.

Bow and Stern:

Let's start with the basics: the terms bow and stern. The bow refers to the front of the boat, while the stern indicates the rear. Understanding these terms will help you navigate the boat and communicate effectively with your captain or crew.

Port and Starboard:

When facing the bow, the left-hand side of the boat is known as port, and the right-hand side is starboard. These terms are used to give precise instructions about specific sides of the boat. For example, if the captain asks you to move something to the port side, you'll know to place it on the left.

Aft and Forward:

To describe the location of something on the boat, the terms aft and forward are commonly used. Aft refers to the back or rear of the boat, while forward means towards the front.


Cleats are mooring or docking points found on the deck of a boat. They are used to secure lines and ropes, ensuring the boat stays in place when necessary. Knowing where the cleats are located and how to tie knots will come in handy during your boat charter.


The helm refers to the steering mechanism of the boat, typically located at the captain's position. As a guest on a boat charter, you may not be at the helm, but it's useful to know the term when communicating with the captain.


A wake is the water disturbance created by a moving boat. It forms two distinct waves that trail behind the vessel. It's essential to be mindful of your wake and its impact on other boats and people in the water, especially in speed-restricted zones.


A knot is a unit of speed that represents one nautical mile per hour. It is often used to measure a boat's speed or the strength of currents. Being familiar with this measurement will help you understand the speed at which your boat is traveling.


The term draft refers to the vertical distance between the waterline and the lowest point of the boat's hull. Understanding the draft is crucial when navigating shallow waters, as it determines the boat's ability to maneuver in certain areas.


The beam of a boat refers to its width at its widest point, usually measured at the boat's widest point along its hull. It is commonly referred to as the boat's breadth. The beam is an essential measurement as it determines the stability and interior space of the vessel.


The head of a boat refers to the bathroom or toilet area on board. It is a crucial part of the vessel's interior, providing facilities for personal hygiene and waste disposal while out on the water. The head is often a small enclosed space designed for privacy and functionality.

Cockpit and Cabin:

The cockpit of a boat is the open area located towards the rear or center of the vessel. It is typically situated on a lower level compared to the bow or forward section of the boat. The cockpit serves as a functional and social space where the captain and passengers can gather, control the boat, and enjoy the surrounding views. The cabin of a boat refers to the enclosed living space on board, typically located below the deck level. It serves as a sheltered area where passengers can relax, sleep, and find refuge from the elements.

By familiarizing yourself with these common boating terms and lingo, you'll be better prepared to communicate effectively and understand instructions during your Newport Beach boat charter adventure. Whether it's navigating the bow, recognizing port from starboard, or tying knots on the cleats, this knowledge will enhance your overall boating experience. So, sit back, relax, and let the ocean breeze guide you as you venture out on your Newport Beach boat charter, now equipped with the language of the sea.

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