One of my favorite areas in Minecraft is right by a body of water. Whether it’s an undulating river or a sparkling ocean, building a dock may be one of the best ideas to make the most out of Minecraft. At the same time, it goes beyond simply knowing how to build a dock. If you’ve only ever built a small, simple dock, you may be as impressed as I am when we start exploring some of the most impressive dock designs.
In this guide, I’ll provide tips for using docks in Minecraft and the basics of how to build a dock. I’m also sharing my favorite blueprints and designs for docks. These include simple fishing docks and trading docks, but also unique Pirate, Japanese, and many other styles. So let’s get planning and building.
Bottom Line Up Front Summary:
If I had to select just one dock to build in Minecraft, it would be this Simple Fishing Dock. It’s by no means the most elaborate or fancy dock design– but it’s highly versatile. Useful for Minecraft players of all levels of experience, this fishing dock allows you to gather resources more efficiently. If you’re in a crunch during Survival Mode, you can build it and start using it quickly. You can also use it as a template and add your dock decorations, attach to a house, or switch up the design.
My Top Design Ideas
- Castle Dock: Best Historical Dock
- Fishing Dock: Best Simple Dock
- Japanese Dock: Best Cultural Dock
- Medieval Dock: Best Village Dock
- Modern Dock: Best Contemporary Dock
- Pirate Dock: Best Trading Dock
- Viking Dock: Best Unique Dock
How to Use a Dock in Minecraft
A dock in Minecraft is by no means just there for aesthetic reasons. In Survival Mode, a dock is quite helpful for a variety of gameplay functions. I think a lot of players focus understandably on crafting and gathering weapons and shoring up defenses– only to neglect clever ways to harvest resources and travel more quickly across bodies of water. Here’s why you should consider building a dock in Minecraft.
A fishing dock is quite helpful in Minecraft. Fishing docks are equipped with a walkway that reaches the water, as well as a crane to improve fishing efficiency. The trick to fishing in Minecraft is to have a systemic system, access, and know when to fish. Fishing on a dock while raining is your best bet. Rain in Minecraft reduces the time it takes to catch a fish by 20 percent. Of course, you can get many things by fishing– not just fish. You might reel in books, saddles, and even fishing rods.
Docking A Boat or Ship
Of course, the main purpose of a dock is to keep your rowboat or ship from floating away. You’ll need to tie ships to your dock to take full advantage of your dock.
Of course, if you’re docking a boat or ship, you’re ensuring a means of efficient transportation. Boats may be taken on nearly any body of water–rivers, oceans, and lakes– as long as there’s sufficient space. Traveling by boat is much quicker than swimming and you are unlikely to drown. You can even place villagers in boats. However, most limit you to one villager in a boat, and this can slow travel.
How to Build/ Make a Dock in Minecraft
Building a basic dock isn’t difficult, even for new players. Maybe it’s just how I think, but I like to have a plan in mind so I can make the building as smooth and efficient as possible. I do this by first gathering all the materials I’ll need, selecting a great place to build, and then getting to work on the basic frame.
Of course, your required materials depend on the type of dock you’re building. Fancier dock designs will require more materials. You also need to remember extras, like dock lights and dock decorations. Basic materials include wood planks, red stones, wooden pillars, and a body of water to build on. Of course, you’ll need to harvest wood either by finding planks or using an ax. Any wood will do– though I’d try to stick to one or two types of wood. Spruce wood is an excellent and popular choice for building a dock in Minecraft.
Where to Build
There’s a basic requirement for where to build a dock. It needs to be situated on a body of water. While you can build a dock on lakes and even rivers, there must be enough room to freely navigate. An ocean, of course, is ideal. Level terrain will be far easier to work with.
Basic Dock Frame
I’ll share an idea for a basic fishing dock below, but the idea for any dock is relatively simple. You should set pillars, beginning at your shore, and space them evenly across. Each post will be covered with wood slabs. You can leave gaps on the side or fill them with something like firelogs and fences for the main posts. The posts should sit above the water.
Minecraft Dock Design Ideas
Now that I’ve covered why you should build a dock in Minecraft, how you should use it, and the basic materials, here are some great dock ideas you can design in your own Minecraft game. These designs were selected by their easy-to-follow blueprints, their practical use, and their either versatile or unique designs. I’ve included some ideas for more elaborate designs, like a pirate dock, but also included many timeless styles, such as a modern dock. The great thing about all of these Minecraft dock designs is that they can be altered to suit your building style, your skills, and your needs.
If you’ve already taken on the grand project of building a castle in Minecraft, you might as well make the most of it and construct a dock. The dock should be attached to a drawbridge, and it expands the ambiance of the castle. There’s something impressive about a castle set right on the water. The idea is to extend the style of the castle. In my favorite blueprint, the castle is set on top of a hill, the bottom of which sits upon a river. There’s a dock to mimic the classic castle style, complete with a region for boats. While the dock itself for a castle is fairly simple, the entire project is for an expert builder. You’ll merge the stone and brick used for the castle with wooden slabs for a more earthy look. Raise the dock by around one block above the water, lining the entire dock with a fence. Watch the Dock Tutorial Here (after completing Parts 1-6 of the project, link above).
- Wooden Slabs, Your Choice
- Stone Slabs
- Wood Fence
- 10 to 30 minutes (dock only)
- 10-minute tutorial
If you’re going to build any dock, build a basic fishing dock. Fishing docks in Minecraft come in countless forms. They can be quite simple or elaborate. The goal is to make them functional first and foremost, especially if you’re playing in Survival Mode. A fishing dock should include a crane for efficiency, plenty of lighting, and an overhang shelter. My favorite blueprint also allows a small alcove for docking a boat or two. Rather than going for the most simple dock or the most elaborate, I like to build something versatile. For this type of fishing dock, you’ll build a straight plank on pillars that jut just above the water. From there, create alcoves with overhangs that are lit by lanterns. Chests and a boat rack make up the main fishing dock. Watch the Tutorial Here.
- Wooden Slabs
- Wooden Pillars
- Wood Fences
- 15 to 30 minutes
- 13-minute tutorial
While I appreciate a practical and simple dock, my favorite design is a Japanese dock. A Japanese dock in Minecraft is distinguished by a clean, crisp aesthetic. The dock itself is quite flat in appearance and accentuates the house which sits on the dock. Unlike most docks in Minecraft, a Japanese dock nixes the fences or other railing and is an open-air dock. While I love this from an aesthetic standpoint, it also has the advantage of being the most simple dock you can construct. The downside is that it has less functionality for Survival Mode, and leaves you more vulnerable to attacks. The dock can be constructed using wood- perhaps bamboo–slabs. Add pillars just tall enough so the dock sits on top of the water. It should have a flat, simple appearance, which may be adorned with a series of lanterns. The key is to build it with a Japanese boathouse. The boathouse is distinct with a series of many pillars, hanging lanterns, and a concave roof. Watch the Tutorial Here.
- Stone Slabs
- Wooden Slabs (Multiple Types)
- 10 to 15 minutes (dock)
- 10-minute tutorial
Another one of my favorite dock designs is a medieval dock. A medieval dock is distinguished by a cobblestone and wood platform and cobblestone archways adorned with lanterns. This dock is simple enough to make but is impressive, especially when paired with a medieval castle build. While not too complex to build, this dock does take time and patience. For the full effect, building on a hill is going to provide the grandeur this dock deserves. Find a hill set on an ocean or lake- even better if it’s situated on its peninsula. Polished andesite and cobblestone are added for more texture and dimension. For the best results, begin by laying pillars, evenly dispersed and connected with logs and polished andesite. The result is well worth the time it takes to create. You’ll also be creating stairways that lead down to your main dock area. This type of dock is best suited for simple boating. Watch the Tutorial Here.
- Polished Andesite
- Stone Bricks, Slabs, and Stairs
- Chiseled Stone Bricks
- Spruce and Oaks Planks
- Cobblestone or Gravel to Fill
- 1 hour 15 minutes to 2 hours
- 1-hour tutorial
Modern Boat/ Ship Dock
What I love about Minecraft is how customizable it is. As much as you can commit yourself to build a medieval village, you can also construct futuristic or modern buildings. A modern shipping dock is hard to go wrong with. You can make it simple as you like and it won’t look out of place. A big modern ship dock is perfect for keeping boats, trade, and even transporting villagers. This type of shipping dock is right at home when sitting at the edge of an ocean. What matters most is building an accessible, simple foundation. Along with your basic dock platform, you should include the main bridge, boat dispenser, boat receiver, and boat storage. Start with a dock meant to accommodate one boat or ship, then expand the design from there as you see fit. This is a highly customizable Minecraft dock template. For an even more updated feel, you can replace wood planks with polished andesite. Watch the Tutorial Here.
- Polished Andesite/ Wood Slabs
- Wooden Fences
- 10 minutes to 30 minutes
- 6-minute tutorial
Create your pirate cove with iconic dock designs. I like this Minecraft design most when situated near cliffs or a dramatic cove. A key to capturing this look is not only about building the dock. The surrounding buildings are important, as is the landscaping. The more lush the landscaping, the more dramatic this build will be. I also recommend building a pirate ship to go along with your pirate dock (though this is a very challenging build). This dock requires an understanding of working with multiple levels and textures. Laying out and marking the dimensions of your pirate dock first is also important. A long, dramatic dock with ample trapdoors, lanterns, chests and a great view are all essential. While I like a hilly cove, the area you build the dock should ideally be set on fairly flat sand. To make the most out of your pirate dock, add a farming district so you can use this port for trading. Add fencing but leave two or three open areas. Two piers should be sufficient for docking boats. Adding cranes allows you to load materials efficiently. Watch the Tutorial Here.
- Stripped Spruce
- 25 to 50 minutes
- 26-minute tutorial
This dock design has a lot in common with a pirate dock but differs slightly in its aesthetics. If you want to build a unique dock in Minecraft but don’t want to commit to a long project, this could be a good template for you. You can build a dock and connected Viking home in 30 minutes. Start a Viking harbor By connecting 7 pillars out and about 4 to 5 pillars wide, jutting a few levels above the body of water. The dock should be kept simple, with a wood plank of your choice and an open slat style. Erect a sign in the middle of your dock and include dock decorations for a more authentic look. Adding a small platform or balcony connected to the Viking hut is great for observing if any enemies are near. Watch the Tutorial Here.
- Wood Pillars
- Wood Planks- Your Choice
- Emerald Green Blocks
- 20 to 30 minutes
- 17-minute tutorial
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: What happened to dock in Minecraft?
Answer: Dock refers to Hayden Scott-Baron, a game developer who worked on notable projects, including Minecraft. He was one of the first on the original team for Mojang Studios. Mojang Studios is known for developing Minecraft. While it started as an independent game company, Microsoft acquired it in 2014. Reddit Threads are discussing what Dock is up to now, but for now, they are only rumors, and Dock (Scott-Baron) hasn’t made a public statement.
Question: How do you make a rowboat in Minecraft?
Answer: Of course, if you’re building docks, it’s to perfect time to build a rowboat too. You can select any type of wood you like– I recommend birch, spruce, or oak as all of these are abundant. However, you may also use dark oak, jungle planks, and Acadia planks. The key is to use three planks of the same material. Using a craft table, place three wood planks on the bottom row. In the middle row, place a plank in the left-most space and one in the right-most space. Bedrock players will also need a shovel, placed in the center slot of your grid. While this isn’t a big or fancy rowboat, it’ll do the trick.
Question: Do boats float away Minecraft?
Answer: Boats in Minecraft are incredibly helpful for traveling across oceans, rivers, and lakes. The problem is that boats can both float away and break. Avoid using boats on lava, which will always destroy boats. Keep your boat tethered to a dock when not in use. Having wood planks on hand to make repairs or construct a new boat is also wise.
Question: How do you build a simple pirate ship in Minecraft?
Answer: There are countless step-by-step tutorials on how to build impressive ships in Minecraft, but sometimes modest and simple is best. A simple pirate ship takes only a few material types and is helpful for Survival Mode. The main materials include oak wood slabs, oak wood planks, oak wood stairs, black wool, wood trapdoor, and glass. Click Here for a 12 Minute Tutorial.
Building a dock in Minecraft isn’t difficult. It’s also incredibly useful. A dock in Minecraft can be used for fishing, trading, transportation, and docking boats. Whether you’re building a huge or relatively small dock, it’ll be a great asset to your town, village, or world. You can use any wood you like to construct docks, and adding in some dock decor can go a long way to help distinguish your build and design. Start with a simple dock, then work your way up to other designs. I think that a dock, especially in Survival Mode, is an underrated asset that you’re unlikely to regret spending your time building. Better yet, a simple dock can take under 15 minutes to construct from start to finish.
Final Building Recommendation: Fishing Hut/ House with Dock
If you’re building docks, why not build a fishing hut or house attached to a dock? This enhances your fishing experience and makes it more practical. A fishing hut is a modest, easy build even for beginners. The trickiest part is building the stilts, on which the foundation will sit. A small sea shanty with lanterns and stairs leading up to it is all you need. You’ll need wood planks, rails, chests, and things to decorate the home inside (such as beds, cobwebs, and chests). You can build a simple fishing hut in under half an hour following a step-by-step tutorial. Make sure you have a clear, friendly body of water to work with, and Watch This Fishing Hut Tutorial start building.
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