AT Canary Islands to South Africa

the South African coast, care must be taken not to be swept northward by the strong current. Ideally Cape Town should be approached from the SW.

Occasionally the SE trades extend further south and make it difficult to make sufficient easting above latitude 30°S. In such a case the route might have to take a more southerly dip and pass close to Tristan da Cunha. A stop in this remote and windswept island is well worth a small detour and the warm welcome from its lonely inhabitants will make up for the rough anchorage. As the main anchorage is exposed, it must be left if the weather deteriorates. See also routes AS21, AS22, and AS23 (pages 188,189 and 190).

Best time; Tropical storms:


Waypoi Departí

October to January


BA: 2127

US: 121,123.140,143

Intermediate landfall

Destination Distance (M)

AT120 Las Paimas 28'07'N, 15'24'W

AT121 CanariaS 27a25'N, 15°30'W

Cape Town 33'55% 18'26'E


As the route from Europe to Cape Town passes close to the Canaries, most boats which are not actually racing stop in these islands on their way south. Such a stop allows a departure from Europe during the autumn and the subsequent passage to South Africa can be made when the time is right. For those who are already underway, a stop in either the Canaries or the Cape Verdes is not always justified, particularly in winter when it is better to cross the equator further west. See also routes AN52 and AN53 if planning to stop in either the Cape Verdes or West Africa (pages 74 and 75).

On leaving the Canaries the direct route runs

SSW and passes close to the NW of the Cape Verde Islands. This route to the west of the Cape Verdes is to be preferred between October and January, when steadier winds are found west of those islands. Directions concerning the longitudes in which the equator should be crossed are given in AT10. South of the equator similar directions apply as for route AT11.

Although the route crosses a potential breeding ground for hurricanes to the west of the Cape Verde Islands, these storms rarely reach hurricane force while they are still developing, so the passage,can be made at any time of the year. /

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