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This article is about the unit in Age of Empires III. For the similar unit in Age of Empires II, see Caravel (Age of Empires II).

Caravel. Good at exploring, fishing or transport.
—In-game description

The Caravel is a military naval vessel in Age of Empires III that can be trained at the Dock once the Commerce Age is reached. It can transport land units and gather from fishes and whales.

Caravels are available to European civilizations except the Ottomans (who have Galleys instead), and the Indians.


The Caravel is one of the first military ships available in the game other than the Galleon or Fluyt. Although it is one of the weakest warships in the game in terms of survivability, it is fast, versatile, relatively cheap and yet has surprisingly heavy firepower and high DPS for its cost and small size. It costs only 300 wood and 100 coin and can be built in a short amount of time. The Caravel is very useful at exploring uncharted waters because it is not big as other large ships so it can move faster and can store troops inside it and transport them faster. It can also be used to clear out weak coastal enemy positions at beaches as well as harassing enemy Fishing Boats. However, it is most effective combined with the heavier Galleons and Frigates to take the heat while the Caravels exploit their high DPS. Moreover, care should be taken when near Outposts and Town Centers that can easily destroy one in just a few shots. The Caravel is also one of the only warships that can harvest from fish and Whales just like Fishing Boats, with a gather rate of 0.67 and 0.5.

Caravels are one of the easier ships to repair at a Dock due to their low hit points, this means a player can withdraw a damaged vessel and have it back in the fight in a relatively short period of time.

The Spanish may want to use Galleons and Privateers instead, due to the "Spanish Galleons" and "TEAM Inquisition" cards.

Most civilizations can ship Privateers during the Commerce Age. Though they lack a Caravel's speed and ability to gather resources, they are tougher and possess greater line of sight than most ships in that Age.

Special ability[]

  • Broadside attack.png Broadside Attack: Fires a volley of five cannon shots at an enemy ship within attack range, with each shot doing 100 siege damage. 60 seconds cooldown.

In the Definitive Edition, Broadside Attack is now a charged ability that is automatically activated when attacking.

Civilization differences[]

Further statistics[]

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Ships, infantry close to shore
Weak vs. Artillery especially Culverins, defensive structures
Hit points Armor Plating.png Armor Plating (+50%)
Attack Carronade.png Carronade (+25%)
Percussion Lock.png Percussion Lock (+50% Broadside Attack damage)
Sight Town Watch.png Town Watch (+2)
Speed Apache Endurance.png Apache Endurance (+5%)
Gather rate Gill Nets.png Gill Nets (+15%)
Long Lines.png Long Lines (+30%)
Excessive Taxation.png Excessive Taxation (+50% from whales)
Huron Fish Wedding.png Huron Fish Wedding (+20%)
Navajo Craftsmanship.png Navajo Craftsmanship (+20% from whales)
Train cost Mapuche Ad-mapu.png Mapuche Ad-mapu (-10% coin cost)
Penalties Coffee Trade.png Coffee Trade (-10% speed, Dutch only)
High Crusade.png High Crusade (-5% hit points, Knights of St. John only)

Home City Cards[]


  • The Caravel uses a low-pitch version of the voice clips of the Musketeer (depending on their language).
  • The model for the Caravel is actually based on a carrack. The real caravel doesn't have a forecastle, and the caravel's sails are triangular lateen sails.
  • The Spanish Caravel may have the random names of Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria, making reference to the Christopher Columbus's ships of his first voyage to the Americas.


Caravels were developed by Portuguese shipwrights in the fourteenth century, and were initially used to explore the coast of Africa. They had two masts with square sails and one forward triangular, or lateen, sail. They were relatively small ships and wide for their length, giving them a shallow draft and the ability to sail safely in shallow waters. These two factors made them extremely popular with explorers until the Spanish Galleon took over about 200 years later.

Approximate weight: 80 tons. Length: 50 feet.


See also[]