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Great lessons to be learned in the January 2017 issue of Cruising Helmsman.

Whether you enjoy our destination articles or the more practical ones, each story comes with good lessons we can all remember. From travelling in unsafe waters to looking at hulls and how they work.

We test the Dufour 460 this month and find that the belief that all new production yachts are beginning to look the same is, in fact, a bit of a fallacy. The latest Dufour is a good case in point.

In an ongoing series of looking at different aspects of hulls and all its attachments, we take detailed looks at three parts of a yacht that are important: keels, engines and the reasoning behind the rapid rise of chines in design. All help to make anyone looking at buying a yacht a bit more expert.

Another useful article discusses how one cruising yacht, sailing alone in what it considered safe South East Asian waters, found out that some fishermen may become opportunistic pirates and it pays to be both prepared and vigilant in deterring such exploratory incursions.

Two articles from marine experts make good reading in how to keep an eye out for crocodiles during the northern Australian cruising season and just what is making those weird noises you hear late at night in your bunk. Hint: it is not from last night's curry.

On the destination side we take an interesting look at the west coast. But it is not the west coast you are thinking of, or probably haven't even thought of.

We also take useful looks at two other wonderful destinations, Mackay and just a little east of that is New Caledonia.

In another article we find that Sri Lanka is now a peaceful destination and actively encouraging cruising yachts to pay an extended visit.

There is so much more of course in every issue of Cruising Helmsman so get yours now and subscribe to get every issue.

It's the holidays - take me away!

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