Sudan - Facts

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The UK Foreign Office advises against travel to Sudan due to the ongoing military conflict in Khartoum and other parts of Sudan.

  • Port Sudan, the country’s main port, is a convenient stop for yachts sailing up or down the Red Sea, although its facilities are poor and nothing has been done to improve them.
  • Boats coming from the south might find simpler formalities in Suakin, just south of Port Sudan.
  • Port Sudan’s position at the halfway point of the Red Sea marks the point where the winds change from prevailing southerlies to northerlies. Northbound yachts face an uphill beat all the way to the Suez Canal, while southbound boats usually have to fight contrary winds as far as Bab el Mandeb and even beyond.
  • If not in a great hurry, the best tactic for northbound boats is to cover as much ground as possible inside the reefs, which extend parallel to the shore along most of Sudan’s coastline. The reef anchorages offer perfect shelter and also great diving and fishing.
  • Note that a Sudan cruising permit is required for passage through the reefs (obtainable in Port Suakin). If you don’t have a Sudan cruising permit, try to stay outside the reefs especially near the Egyptian border, to avoid problems with the military.
  • Yachts have been allowed to anchor along the coast before clearing in, provided no one goes ashore.
  • Many countries have an embargo against Sudan which could make it difficult to get spare parts shipped to you there. Be aware also that accessing bank accounts via the internet in Sudan may result in the account being frozen.

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Sudan was last updated 9 months ago.

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  1. December 16, 2021 at 10:30 PM
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    sue-richards says:

    Reported by Kay Finley:
    Entry into Suakin was made so easy by working with Mohammed, the local Agent, who we had been in contact with, prior to arrival.
    On arrival, we got no response when we called Port Control on VHF channel 14, but we proceded to the anchorage.
    Mohammed came to see us on the boat with the health official for our PCR tests, took our passports, crew list and 2 passport photos.
    When he came back next day with our Sudan cruising passport, we were free to go ashore.
    He also brought a Sim card and some local currency to get us started.
    Amazing service and a lovely man who understands cruisers needs.The total cost for clearance was $250 which includes the Agent fee of $50, port fees, and the shore passes plus a sailing permit that allows you to stop in different anchorages heading north.After we checked out of Suakin, we had to come back in after a couple of weeks because of engine troubles, and we had to pay the $200 again, because we had already checked out.  But we found a good diesel mechanic here, through Mohammed, so it was worth it.There is no PCR test here. They accept the results of the previous port.While in Suakin, Mohammed brought Jerry cans of fuel out to the boat plus huge blocks of ice when our fridge broke down, at no extra cost. He also brought out a fridge specialist, who got our fridge working again.He is the best Agent we have come across by far. He is honest, a real gentleman and understands cruisers needs.We are still in Sudan, in Marsa Oseif, waiting for weather to continue heading north, and Mohammed is still helping us with our Sim card top ups.Sudan is such a bleak barren coastline, but we have found some really nice safe Marsas to anchor, on the way north.