Voyage of Traveler / Blog

October 21, 2008

Australia to Bali, Indonesia - October 2008 to December 2008

Filed under: Year 2: July08-June09 French Polynesia to Greece, Indian Ocean — mrlawlerjr @ 7:21 pm

Traveler Update October 11, 2008

We are on passage from Port Vila, Vanuatu to Mackay, Australia (near the WhitsundayIslands), and we’re having a blast.  The wind has picked up some, blowing 20to 25 knots, but it is behind us at 120 degrees apparent so it is a fast and funwind angle.  We’re doing 8 to 8.5 knots with reefed sails.  Yesterday we caughta 48-inch, 22-lbs mahi mahi and sailed 168 miles.

For the next four months, our expected itinerary is to sail about 7,000 miles fromAustralia to the Red Sea and is outlined below.  I’ve divided it up into fourlegs, each about a month long and about 1,750 miles of cruising (dates are estimatesand will likely change a little). If you want to join us, but cannot commit to awhole month, or leg, that’s okay, too.  One week, two weeks, or three weeks is okay, too, whatever you can do.  We’ll just keep you advised as to where we are and when we’re expected to be at a certain place, and you can join usfor as long as you can.

Cairns, Australia to Bali, Indonesia
October 25 to November 25
Stops and highlights: Sailing up the Great Barrier Reef and around Cape York,seeing the extreme 20 ft. tides of Darwin, going on a trek in search of the KomodoDragon on the island of Flores, and finishing with cocktails in the exotic port of Bali.

Bali to Phuket, Thailand
November 25 to December 21
Stops and highlights: Starting out with one of the most exotic places on the planet, Bali, then sailing up to Singapore, then up a little further to Bass Harborand Port Kelang (Western Malaysia) to visit Kuala Lumpur, and then up to Phuket,stopping at small islands along the way. Fly home from Bangkok.

Phuket to Mahe, Maldives
December 21 to January 21
Stops and highlights:  Phuket is one of the most popular destinations in SoutheastAsia, and the best way to see it is by yacht, don’t you think?  Of course, spendingChristmas and New Year’s Eve there will be quite memorable.  From Thailand, we sail west across the Andaman Sea to either Banda Aceh (place most devastated by the tsunami) or Nicobar before heading over to Galle, Sri Lanka to ride an elephantin the rain forest. Then we may stop at the tip of India at Trivandrum or Cochinto see some of the beauty of that great country, before ending the passage at oneof the most beautiful archipelagoes of the world, the Maldives, with spectaculardiving.

Maldives to Suez Canal
January 21 to February 28
Stops and highlights:  Starting the trip in the gorgeous Maldives, we sail westerlyacross the Arabian Sea and through the Gulf of Aden, stopping at Adan (Yemen), Djibouti,Massawa (Eritrea), Port Sudan and Hurghada, Egypt to ride camels and see the GreatPyramids and the Spinx. Then we cruise through the Suez Canal, which takes on average100 ships a day through its 85 miles (no locks).  Fly home from Cairo.  Note: Weplan on staying at least 150 to 200 nm off the coast of Somalia and will likely be buddy boating with one or two other cruisers and be in daily contact with theCoalition forces patrolling the Gulf of Aden to avoid pirates there. There are 100to 120 ships and boats a day that cruise through the Gulf of Aden and the reportedpirate attacks is averaging two a month, so the odds are good that the only pirateswe come across will be ourselves.  Arrrrrgh!

These are places you do not normally get invited to see or go cruising to.  Someof the most exciting places in the world.  Great cruising.  An adventure of a lifetime.

New to Traveler since you were on her last:
Clear plastic side curtains around the cockpit to roll down if rainy or too windy.Nice.
Solar panels and a wind generator, so we have lots of amps in the house bank to burn.
New sound system, with 1,000 songs on an iPod and dozens of CDs.
New engine: more horsepower and reliable.
Leaks are all fixed.
Autopilot works great, so watches are easy and comfortable!

Use up some of those frequent flier miles. Hope to see you soon.  Let us know,

Livin’ the Dream,

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