Best time: Tropical storms: Charts:
Cruising guides: Waypoints:
December to February
May to June, October to November
Red Sea Pilot.
Destination Distance (M)
IN311 Cochin W 9e55'N, 76'12'E
IN311 Cochin W
IN311 Cochin W
IN312 Nine N
IN312 Nine N iN314 Socotra S 11'30'N. 53'40'E IN315
1N312 Nine N IN313 Socotra NE
IN316 Tadjoura He40'N, 43°13'E
IN317 Yemen SE 12'44'N, 45'00'E
A direct route to the Red Sea can be sailed from anywhere on the west coast of India at the height of the NE monsoon, from December to the beginning of March. After the middle of March the winds are less constant and there is a higher percentage of calms in the Arabian Sea. Towards the end of the NE monsoon choosing the best route through this area becomes crucial as there is an increased chance of contrary winds close to Socotra Island. In April it is advisable to steer for a point 50 miles south of Socotra so as to be able to clear the Horn of Africa comfortably as the current is also setting north towards Socotra at this time.
From WP IN311, outside Cochin Harbour, the route runs due west through the Nine Degree Channel staying south of Kalpeni and Suheli Par. Occasionally boats have been able to stop briefly in the latter, which is an atoll with a well protected lagoon. From WP IN312 a course can be set for IN313,30 miles NE of Socotra Island. After the middle of March, if SW winds are experienced near the island, it may be necessary to pass south of Socotra and between it and the African coast. In such a case, from WP IN312 a course should be set for WP IN314 south of Socotra. Having sailed past Cape
Guardafui, at WP IN315 the northern route is rejoined for the port of destination, as described below.
From WP IN313, if the intention is to sail to Djibouti, course should be set for WP IN316, in the Gulf of Tadjoura. The route goes south of the Musha Islands and then turns SW towards the port of Djibouti. The recommended anchorage is off the Djibouti Yacht Club whose facilities may be used by visiting boats. Entry formalities are completed in the nearby commercial harbour.
From WP IN313, boats bound for Aden should sail for WP IN317, at the entrance into the port of Aden. A marked channel leads into the Inner Harbour, where yachts anchor off the customs dock. Boats are normally met on arrival by a port control launch and directed to the anchorage.
A direct passage across the North Indian Ocean is virtually impossible during the SW monsoon, from May to September, when the only alternative is to make a long detour south of the equator via the Chagos Archipelago. This route passes NE of the Seychelles and recrosses the equator in about longitude 53 WE. See also route IT16 (page 388):
Was this article helpful?