AT Canary Islands to Brazil

Bis] 'iimv: Tropical storms: Charts:


Waypoints: Departure

September to February None

US: 121,124,140,143

Intermediate landfall


Distance (M)

AT140 Las Palmas 28"07'N, 15'24'W

AT140 Las Palmas

AT140 Las Palmas

AT141 CanariaS 27°25'N, 15'30'W AT 142

20'00'N, 26'00'W AT143 NoronhaN 3'40'S, 32"28'W

AT 141 CanariaS AT 142

AT 143 NoronhaN

AT141 CanariaS AT 142

AT 143 NoronhaN

AN 144 Bahia

AN 145 Rio

Rio de Janeiro




The timing of this passage is dictated primarily by the preferred time of arrival in Brazil, rather than by sailing conditions expected en route. The majority of those who make this passage attempt to be in Brazil for Carnival, which means arriving in Salvador (Bahia) or Rio de Janiero before the beginning of February.

The passage across the doldrums presents a major dilemma, with opinions divided over the best place to cross the equator. The first decision, however, is whether to sail inside or outside the Cape Verde Islands after leaving the Canaries. If a stop in either the Cape Verde Islands or in West Africa is not being considered, it is probably better to keep slightly to the west of the Cape Verde Islands (WP AT142). Depending on the time of year, the NE trades will be lost somewhere between 10 TSJ (September) and 4°N (December). As the Atlantic doldrum belt narrows towards the west, it is more logical to try and cross it nearer the Brazilian coast. Boats crossing the doldrums near the African coast normally have to go much farther in search of the SE trade winds than those which cross further west.

The width of the doldrums fluctuates greatly according to season and longitude, being anything from 100 to 400 miles wide. Southbound vessels normally find the SE trade winds between the equator (July) and latitude 3°S (January), although winds with a southerly component may be encountered anywhere south of 10°N.

A popular stop for boats en route to Brazil is Fernando de Noronha, a small island off the coast of Brazil. Those intending to stop there can iriake landfall NE of the island at WP AT143, whifh has been listed as an intermediate waypoint. Although not an official port of entry, boats are allowed to make a short stop there. A convenient port of entry into Brazil, just south of the equator/is Fortaleza. Other landfalls and possible destinations listed are Salvador and Rio de Janeiro. It should be pointed out that between October and February NE winds prevail along the Brazilian coast between Cape Sao Roque and Cape Frio, making southbound passages easy, also helped by the SW setting current. Sailors are reminded that most foreign nationals visiting Brazil must arrive with a valid visa.

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