Wherever Bruce and Linda Mackenzie have travelled or stopped off on their way from Port Stephens to the Gold Coast, people have been curious about the unusual ‘vessel’ they are towing.
Linda says it’s been a bit of a “show and tell tour” for the prototype they are taking for test run.
The couple are friends of the manufacturers, CaraBoat, who have been developing the concept for the past four years.
“It’s not built like a caravan, essentially it is a boat,” says Bruce, however, it works just like a caravan, too – with entry at the ‘stern’ instead of the side.
Bruce and Linda have taken the opportunity to test the CaraBoat while their storm-damaged yacht, which is also their home, is being repaired.
“It won the 2015 Excellence in Product Design category at the 2015 Hunter Manufacturing Awards,” says Linda.
“Unlike houseboats, it can do 17knots and only draws 200 millimetres in the water,” says Bruce. “You can nudge it right up to a beach and step ashore.”
The prototype sleeps four people and “tows just like a caravan and floats off the trailer like a boat”, says Greg.
The CaraBoat website says “models feature a ‘hidden helm’ which, when in caravan mode, the boat’s steering and engine controls are not required – they can conveniently disappear into a cupboard”.