El Cordero's voyage from Thailand to Greece
Routes, anchorages, special information
January through May 2007
El Cordero is an Allegro 331 registered in Skanör, Sweden, and crewed by Kenneth and Vidya Pettersson. They arrived to Skanör September 2007 after seven atlantic crossings and one circumnavigation totalling 67500 nm.
Thailand to Cochin, India - anchored position 09.58.16 N and 076.15.42 ELeft Yacht Haven Marina in Phuket on January 14th and arrived in Cochin on January 26th, 1492 miles - 12 days
Arrived on India's National Day Holiday so clearing in took 4 days but it was okay, we were anchored outside Taj Malabar Hotel so we took trips around the area, especially Fort Cochin Town. We then we moved over to Bolgatty Anchorage, position 09.59.15 N and 076.16.18 E on January 30th. You can get water at the Bolgatty Hotel and it was very cheap. We had a wonderful time in India, enjoying the different cuisine, friendly, colorfully dressed people and we also took a River boat tour with other cruisers. We can highly recommend a gentleman named Nazar who comes to you when you are anchored and can fix diesel, laundry etc. We were invited to his home for lunch one day and had a lovely meal together with his family and other invited cruisers.
Cochin, India to Aden, Yemen - anchored position 12.47.49 N and 044.58.68 ELeft Cochin, India on February 15th and arrived in Aden, Yemen on March 9th, 1914 miles - 22 days
Started off from India together with 3 other boats but soon was alone as they were sailing/motoring to Salalah in Oman to be part of a convoy to Aden and we did not think that was necessary. Had a great slow sailing as we did not much winds and not sufficient diesel to drive all the way to Aden, had fishing boats come close to us to ask for water in exchange for fish or just was curious about us, one of the boats was from Iran, a beautifully painted and well maintained boat just wanted to say hello. Had no incidents about pirates only heard on the vhf about a small craft following a Motor vessel, a call was made and after a few minutes the small craft left, that was all concerning pirates. Arrived on a Friday but clearing in was a breeze, immigration asked for a present but was informed about this by another cruiser so we told him we had no money but give him a pack of cigarettes instead which he took reluctantly. Enjoyed Aden very much, had a guide named Hamzah who gave us a personal tour of Aden, his home and his favorites places together with the normal tourist spots but he was very special to us and we also invited him on board our boat for dinner, we had to get special permission from the Harbour Master to take him on board as it was not allowed and we further wrote a letter to let the authorities letting them know how much the cruisers enjoy meeting people and that is the reason for them cruising so we hope in future more allowances would be given to the people to be able to visit the boats.
Aden, Yemen to Suakin, Sudan - anchored position 19.06.44 N and 037.20.33 ELeft Aden Yemen on March 20th and arrived at Suakin on March 27th 672 miles - 7 days
Wonderful sailing kept on the Saudi Arabia side and had southerly winds all the time while others sailed on the Eritrea side had northerly winds. Nice little town, calm anchorage, clean surroundings, great bread, fresh vegetables and friendly people. Mohammed did the clearing in very smoothly. Stayed for 3 days and took the bus into Port Sudan and took in the sites. We liked Suakin very much and wished we could have stayed longer but we had to push on.
Suakin, Sudan to Khor Shinab, Sudan - anchored position 21.21.13 N and 037.00.73 ELeft Suakin on March 31st and arrived at Khor Shinab on April 2nd 163 miles - 2 days
Little winds in the beginning and then lots of northerly so decided to stop here. Very interesting anchorage in a well protected bay, you feel as if you are really in the desert as you are surrounded by beautiful desert colours. We stayed for 2 days as it was blowing over 30 k from the North.
Khor Shinab, Sudan to Port Ghalib, EgyptLeft Khor Shinab on April 4th and arrived at Port Ghalib on April 8th - 344 miles - 4 days
As we approached the Marina we were called up on the vhf and given the necessary instructions. Arrived at 16.45 and tied up at the clearance dock and proceeded to clear in and the final paperwork was completed at midnight, we were awoken 3 times in the night. The marina is still incomplete so we had to jerry can water from a pipe 100 meters away. Our final clearance took 3 days as it was the Easter holidays and they had some problems with our boat certificate as there was no expiry date, the same for boat registered in Australia. Nice marina even though incomplete and was told that even though it is Port of Entry yachts like ours would not be able to afford to come here when it is finally completed as it would be catering for other clientele like Saudi Arabian.
Port Ghalib to Hurghada - anchored position 27.11.55 N and 033.50.50 ELeft Port Ghalib on April 12th and arrived at Hurghada on April 13th - Trip 115 miles - 1 1/2 day
Blown into Hurghada so we decided to anchor and rest, had a great view of the town and all the diving activities. Did not go ashore but if we did we would have gone to the new marina in the heart if Hurghada, give the marina info to other boats who did stop and had a wonderful stay and even left the boat for inland travel.
Hurghada to South Qeisum - anchored position 27.40.26 N and 033.44.36 E Trip 35 milesApril 15th - Nice sailing, passed Endeavour Harbour but decided to continue, winds died as the evening came so we opted to anchor in South Qeisum for the night, very nice stop, only 2 other boats in the other bay.
South Qeisum to El Tor - anchored position 28.13.99 N and 033.36.61 E Trip 35 milesApril 16th - From South Qeisum crossed over to the Sinai side and had a nice sailing to El Tor and anchored just in front of the Russian Dive School. The view of the mountains was spectacular and we later learned from a friend from Hurghada that "Jabal El Tor (El Tor mountain) gave name to the city, and that it is claimed that this is the mountain where Moses received the tablets from God." so it was very special to have been there even though it was for one night.
El Tor to Marsa Thelemet - anchored position 29.03.61 N and 032.38.28 E Trip 92 milesApril 17th - Left El Tor and had a good morning, then winds from the south and we were making great speed, more southerly winds and then we heard from another boat that the winds was going to change later in the night to strong northerlies so we decided to stop and find a good anchorage, the problem was that it was blowing so hard from the south that the anchorages on the Sinai side was not safe from southerly winds so we had to cross over again and sail slowly to Marsa Thelemet as it was already dark and we did not want to make a night approach, so we slowed down, heaved too and waited for light to make our approach, we anchored in 5 m and it was blowing very hard but we stood firm. In the middle of the day the winds died but was again blowing in the middle of the night up to 50 kn.
Marsa Thelemet to Ras Sudr - anchored position 29.35.04 N and 032.42.20 E Trip 37 milesApril 19th - Left Marsa Thelemet in mild winds and then when we got out of the anchorage it was blowing over 25 k NNW but we continued and crossed over to the Sinai side and the winds got much better, 2 other boats that left with us turned back but we felt that it was the corner that had an acceleration of winds so we crossed and had a nice sailing to Ras Sudr, we could have continued but we decided to stop as we had only 23 miles left to the Suez Yacht Club. Very nice anchorage with all the local fishing boats.
Ras Sudr to Suez Yacht Club - mooring position 29.56.89 N and 032.34.42 E Trip 23 milesApril 20th - Nice sailing thru the anchored ships and arrived at the Yacht Club at 12.30 LT, called the Felix Agency who came and helped us with the mooring lines together with the Yacht Club attendant, took our boat papers to start the process for the transit. Got diesel from the Club attendant who was very friendly and helpful. Next day the measurer came and measured our boat and before he left he requested a souvenir from us, something electrical like a digital camera, computer, telephone etc, we told him we only had for our use and he told us to look around and he was sure he would find something, he would wait, I found a cheap, barely working electric shaver and gave it to him and then he left, we found his behaviour very unbecoming so we wrote a letter to the canal authority via the Felix Agency, we trust something would be done! We paid our fees for the transit etc and was given no Invoices or Receipts.
Suez Yacht Club to Ismailia - Trip 45 milesWe transited the first half of the Suez Canal on April 22nd and had a nice passage, we had a pilot who was asking well begging for money for his work as pilot but we gave him a Caribbean shirt and a pack of cigarettes instead and told him that was what we had, arrived at Ismailia at about 17.30 and after we tied up we had strong southerly winds so we were glad that we arrived in time so that we could tie up securely. Ismailia was very nice, the marina manager was very friendly and helpful, very nice walk into town after you were cleared, checked and inspected by the guards of the check point so you always had to have your passports on you. Good supermarket called Metro, cheap diesel which we had to jerry can via a taxi to the service station but at that cost, no problem, very big local vegetable and meat market just on the outskirts of the town, could not believe the low cost so stocked up as best as we could.
Ismailia to Port Said - Trip 44 milesOne week later we transited the other half of the canal after waiting for 4 days but was delayed as war ships was transiting. Had a very nice pilot who did 99% of the steering and we did gave him a nice monetary present, he never asked for anything but he sort of saved Egypt in our eyes as we had too many bad experiences. As we approached Port Said the winds got much stronger and stronger so we just let off the very nice pilot and waved the loud pilot boat attendants who was asking for stuff off and made our way into the Med. The first couple of hours was rough but the sea soon died down and we had a nice sailing.
Port Said to Methoni, Greece - anchored position 36.48.91 N and 021.42.49 E Trip 695 miles 7 daysWe had lots of mixed wind sailing to Methoni, Greece which was our first landfall after the Suez Canal and it was so very nice to see green trees and beautiful flowers.
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