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Old 23-11-2008, 22:04   #1
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pirate Sailing thru the Suez Canal - any difficulties?

Blessing to everyone, My first time here. We are buying a 50 ft ketch and are planning circumnavigation in 1 1/2 yrs. My Husband Keith and our son Ben.Looking forward to the adventure on a live aboard. My husband is very worried about going between Egypt and Libiya. Any advise would be appreciated. thanks Jet
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Old 23-11-2008, 23:05   #2
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Originally Posted by ESutton View Post
Blessing to everyone, My first time here. We are buying a 50 ft ketch and are planning circumnavigation in 1 1/2 yrs. My Husband Keith and our son Ben.Looking forward to the adventure on a live aboard. My husband is very worried about going between Egypt and Libiya. Any advise would be appreciated. thanks Jet
Welcome to the Forum, Admiral ESutton, and to Captain Keith and first mate Ben, as well.

Your profile offers no information, so specific advice is impossible to offer, but a few thoughts come to mind. The actual countries abutting the Suez and the Red Sea should not be a concern, presently. Those are: Egypt, Sudan, Eritrea, Djibouti, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Of course, the southern end of the Red Sea brings one in proximity to Somalia.

I suspect that that is your husband's real concern, given the burgeoning pirate activity in the area of the Horn of Africa.

As far as those countries that comprise North Africa are concerned (Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco), it is possible to cruise the Med for years and never make port in any of them. I don't believe that one needs to be concerned for one's physical safety there any more than in any other country, however.

May I ask, are you, perhaps, Israeli citizens? Otherwise, I can't think of a reason why your husband is apprehensive about Egypt and Libya, specifically.

Because we don't know from where you will be starting your circumnavigation, nor whether you plan to take the usual route (west about) or go against the grain (east about), it is impossible to even guess when your voyage will bring you into those dangerous waters near Somalia. And, given how quickly the geo-political situation can change, it is possible that your nationality will be unwelcome in some or all of the countries listed above by the time you get there. Not likely, perhaps, but possible.

If you are European, for example, and intend to first sail the Med, then cross the Atlantic, cruise the Caribbean for a time, then go through the Ditch into the Pacific, it could literally be years before you would even reach, say, Australia. From there, many cruisers head to Thailand through Indonesian waters, then sail to Sri Lanka and India en route to the Red Sea and the Suez Canal. As I stated, it could be a long, long time before you ever reach the area of your husband's concern if it's the current piracy there that is worrying him, and the present activity there is unlikely to be allowed to prevail for very much longer, in any event.

The possibility exists, of course, for one to bypass those dangerous waters altogether by opting for the long route around the Cape of Good Hope, then up the west side of the African continent and back through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Med.

All of the foregoing is a long way of stating that if you and your family are concerned enough about the areas abutting the Suez and the Red Sea, or North Africa, you can cruise for years and never go there.

Whatever you decide to do, have a wonderful, adventurous cruise. It will probably be the hardest, yet most satisfying, thing you ever undertake.

TaoJones
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Old 24-11-2008, 02:53   #3
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Greetings, and WELCOME aboard Jet (et al).
Your husbandís concerns about transiting between Egypt & Libya are well founded, considering the paucity of water in the Sahara Desert (between Libya & Egypt).
(Sorry, I just can't help myself, sometimes)
As TaoJones indicated, a little more information would allow more serious advice.
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Old 24-11-2008, 12:31   #4
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Aloha and Welcome aboard! Just now there is so much piracy in the Gulf of Aden that it would not be a good idea due to that and the political situation. However, when you're ready assess the situation and make your decision at that time. Things change quickly but it hasn't been the safest place to transit even since Tristan Jones wrote about it in his books years ago.
Good luck in your decision and just leave that area a blank until you are ready to go.
Kind regards,
JohnL
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