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Old 26-03-2018, 14:59   #1
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Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

Hi everyone!

So excited to tell you all about our plan and get some opinions!

First of all, we is myself Cecile and my husband Yann. We are French divers that recently got into sailing, although we are really newbies, just learning at the moment.

Our plan: we have decided to take a 6months sabbatical (currently saving for it), buy a boat in Brisbane and sail from Australia to Indonesia. As mentioned, we are currently learning how to sail, but without the experience, there are a lot of things that become very difficult in the planning part! First on the list, the itinerary. That’s why we’d like to ask for some opinions! This is our idea below:

https://www.scribblemaps.com/maps/view/cec/_rN2psHG4_

1. 2. 3. We would start from the gold coast area in January 2019 and sail to the North of the Great Barrier Reef.
4. From there, we would like to hire an experienced skipper to reach the South of Papua New Guinea, towards mid February
5. 6. 7. We would then head toward Kai Ketjil, followed by Raja Ampat in March (which is supposedly the best time to be there)
8. Then back South to the Banda Arc in April
9. 10. En route for Sulawesi to reach Manado in May
11. 12. 13. 14. would be all around Sulawesi
15. then we are planning to go to Komodo in June
16. 17. 18. we would then sail East up to the Timor Sea to then head back to Australia.

So mostly, would be good to get people’s opinion on this itinerary with seasons. We know it’s probably not the best time for the part in Australia but this allows us to reach Indonesia at the best time. Did anyone sailed around East Australia at this time?
Additionally, we know that sailing in Indonesia might be difficult as there are not many ports/marinas to get everything we could need. Again, did anyone do it and could talk about their experience?

Sorry for the very long post! I hope you managed to get through it!

Looking forward to hearing from people!

Thanks all
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Old 26-03-2018, 15:49   #2
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

Bonjour!

That is an interesting plan.

And a voyage I would like to take too. I would be happy to go as crew, but I have not sailed that area yet, but hope to do so in the future, as crew.

If you are going to look for an experienced (delivery) captain, one of CF's members who I know has done some of that route is based in Brisbane (as I recall) and may be able to help you.

His name is Simon.

SIMONV on CF
https://svgoodonya.blogspot.com.au

Also, if I were you I would purchase a copy of Jimmy Cornell's Ocean Atlas (2018 edition) to study the route and consider his advice on prevailing winds and seasons.

Timing is everything. Weather is critical. Season important.

Australia has a very good meteorological service.
Queensland sees 4.7 cyclones per year on average.

Here is a page about the cyclone season.
http://www.bom.gov.au/cyclone/about/...-eastern.shtml

FYI: an experienced Australian skipper told me: Cyclone season Northern Australia) is November to April, with worst period January to March, with occasional cyclone in April.

Hope that helps.
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Old 26-03-2018, 17:04   #3
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDelRey View Post
Hi everyone!

So excited to tell you all about our plan and get some opinions!

First of all, we is myself Cecile and my husband Yann. We are French divers that recently got into sailing, although we are really newbies, just learning at the moment.

Our plan: we have decided to take a 6months sabbatical (currently saving for it), buy a boat in Brisbane and sail from Australia to Indonesia. As mentioned, we are currently learning how to sail, but without the experience, there are a lot of things that become very difficult in the planning part! First on the list, the itinerary. That’s why we’d like to ask for some opinions! This is our idea below:

https://www.scribblemaps.com/maps/view/cec/_rN2psHG4_

1. 2. 3. We would start from the gold coast area in January 2019 and sail to the North of the Great Barrier Reef.
4. From there, we would like to hire an experienced skipper to reach the South of Papua New Guinea, towards mid February
5. 6. 7. We would then head toward Kai Ketjil, followed by Raja Ampat in March (which is supposedly the best time to be there)
8. Then back South to the Banda Arc in April
9. 10. En route for Sulawesi to reach Manado in May
11. 12. 13. 14. would be all around Sulawesi
15. then we are planning to go to Komodo in June
16. 17. 18. we would then sail East up to the Timor Sea to then head back to Australia.

So mostly, would be good to get people’s opinion on this itinerary with seasons. We know it’s probably not the best time for the part in Australia but this allows us to reach Indonesia at the best time. Did anyone sailed around East Australia at this time?
Additionally, we know that sailing in Indonesia might be difficult as there are not many ports/marinas to get everything we could need. Again, did anyone do it and could talk about their experience?

Sorry for the very long post! I hope you managed to get through it!

Looking forward to hearing from people!

Thanks all

That's a lot of sea miles in 6 months. By my estimate it would be getting up towards 6000 NM.

Especially if your "buy a boat in Brisbane" is included in your sabbatical - that alone can take a long time to find a suitable boat, complete the purchase and prepare it for such a trip.

Your route around Australia appears to be all outside the GBR and doesn't appear to consider resupply, clearance to leave Australia etc (unless you are planning to clear out of Brisbane and not make landfall in Australia again.).

You'd be better off going inside all the way to TI and clearing out from there.

Suggest you buy a copy of Alan Lucas - Cruising the Coral Coast.

Be aware that you are doing the first part in the cyclone season and you will need to keep a careful eye on the weather. That said, I've done quite a few trips between Brisbane-Cairns-Port Moresby, Whitsundays -Cairns - Port Moresby and Cairns - Port Moresby in the November to April cyclone seasons over the last 16 years and never had a problem.
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Old 26-03-2018, 19:43   #4
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

Watch sailing catalpa on youtube
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Old 26-03-2018, 22:02   #5
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

Might be of use.
We'll probably join the first one.

Sail Indonesia

https://www.darwinambonrace.com.au
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Old 26-03-2018, 22:14   #6
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

Hi, I've sailed from the Gold Coast to most of the places you've mentioned, and also dived in many of those places, Raja Ampat and Komodo have the best diving I've ever seen.

I don't want to discourage a dream but six mths is a very hurried trip particularly if you want get back down the east Australian coast. I wouldnt plan on doing that return trip in six mths.

It's hurried even if everything goes right, which it dosent.
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Old 27-03-2018, 00:44   #7
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

Why not buy a boat in Thailand or Malaysia?.... I did....

Would appear a lot simpler to me....
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Old 27-03-2018, 00:53   #8
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

Thailand & Malaysia are a long way from where they intend to cruise. If they could pick up a boat in Darwin it would logistically make sense regarding a hop of point considering the time limits.
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Old 27-03-2018, 01:07   #9
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

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Originally Posted by daletournier View Post
Thailand & Malaysia are a long way from where they intend to cruise. If they could pick up a boat in Darwin it would logistically make sense regarding a hop of point considering the time limits.
Hmmm depends how you look at it ... Singapore - Sulawesi 1000 miles mas o minos. Brisbane Sulawesi 2,500 miles m o m....... Sulawesi seems to be the aim.

Cheaper tax free boats set up for cruising can be found in Phuket .. aka the white man's grave....
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Old 27-03-2018, 01:29   #10
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

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Hmmm depends how you look at it ... Singapore - Sulawesi 1000 miles mas o minos. Brisbane Sulawesi 2,500 miles m o m....... Sulawesi seems to be the aim.

Cheaper tax free boats set up for cruising can be found in Phuket .. aka the white man's grave....
Yes, your right, I should of expressed my self better. In miles it's further but in reality it's definitely not easier and shorter (time wise) . That was more my line of thought, the east coast of Australia and across the top is easy, more distance but easily done in a reasonably short amount of time. Coming down the coast is a different story.

Being divers they are going to want to get to Raja ampat and Komodo, we are talking eastern indo and then heading west. That's a big round trip with lots of motoring from Phuket or Langkawi which is most likely where you would buy the boat. Also you have the Sulu sea (not safe) in between you and there unless you motor south down the archepeligo, I've done it both ways.

I personally think it's a really hard gig to do that trip in that time frame and still enjoy it, particularly if your new to this.

I don't want to seem negative as my favourite part of Indonesia is the north eastern area, particularly places like Sangihe.
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Old 27-03-2018, 02:07   #11
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

You would not want to leave Brisbane till April as cyclones are still around (last year late March, this year only a few weeks ago). Certainly PNG area in February is very prone to cyclones. There have been at least four in the top area of Australia in the past two weeks!

As others have stated, this is a huge distance to cover in six months. We have twice done Sydney to Townsville/Cairns area and back and it has taken us six months. Yes, we spent a lot of time around the Whitsunday Islands each time (4 to 6 weeks), but even discounting this, I think it would be impossible to do what you plan. Better option would be to buy in Brisbane and sail to far North Queensland and then back to Brisbane.

You could also sail from Brisbane and sell overseas, or try to buy in Darwin and go to and from Indonesia.

I think you need to drastically rethink your plan. Good luck.
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Old 27-03-2018, 02:59   #12
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

i agree with the general opinion here. trying to squeeze a perfect itinerary in 6 months no matter what ,could be a big mistake...you must count on many factors when sailing outside of your home waters...especially in Indonesia...!!!the "pelan pelan" island time with any authorities could take everything a lot longer than planed and if you run out of time,leaving the boat where it is or changing visa etc is going to turn your dream into a nightmare very quickly...
sorry to sound alarmist,but i think that to really enjoy a trip like this,you should plan when you go carefully...then come back when you come back...
bonne chance ...
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Old 27-03-2018, 04:03   #13
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

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Originally Posted by clownfishsydney View Post
You would not want to leave Brisbane till April as cyclones are still around (last year late March, this year only a few weeks ago). Certainly PNG area in February is very prone to cyclones. There have been at least four in the top area of Australia in the past two weeks!

As others have stated, this is a huge distance to cover in six months. We have twice done Sydney to Townsville/Cairns area and back and it has taken us six months. Yes, we spent a lot of time around the Whitsunday Islands each time (4 to 6 weeks), but even discounting this, I think it would be impossible to do what you plan. Better option would be to buy in Brisbane and sail to far North Queensland and then back to Brisbane.

You could also sail from Brisbane and sell overseas, or try to buy in Darwin and go to and from Indonesia.

I think you need to drastically rethink your plan. Good luck.
There's another cyclone likely forming in the next couple of days.

Six months is too short for that itinerary. Why buy a boat in Australia, then hurry past some of the best of it?
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Old 27-03-2018, 09:11   #14
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

if it was me, Id sit on my helmet

I dont think you have considered how long it takes to prepare a boat and yourselves, and Im wondering why you dont visit some of the very beautiful relatively nearby French territory. I think imposed time constraints will work against you and the comfort of your party.

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Old 27-03-2018, 09:48   #15
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Re: Advise on Australia to Indonesia sailing plan

We made the voyage from Singapore past Bali and down to Fremantle in about 2 weeks then over to St John Mauritius and up to Mombasa and up to Iran ending in Male and back to the Philippines. Basically I was just a passenger on a large ship.
BUT a great voyage. The only way I got the wind in my hair was to open a door on the main deck.
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