Massawa, Dahlak Islands: No Longer Open to Foreign Yachts

Jacques Royer of Sailing Yacht Miss Cat has spent the last 8 Winters in Massawa and the Dahlak Islands.

Published 11 years ago, updated 6 years ago

This year I went again to Massawa, no problem to get the visa (one month still 50$), the only new thing is it is now made by a computer in a place far away from the port: in Adaga 3km.

I have been to the Dahlak Islands 2 times this year with a very complicated and expensive paperwork. The steps are as follows:

1)      Go to the tourist office in Adaga to get the travel permit for Asmara (the capital) – where the permit for the Dahlak Islands can be obtained.

2)      Go to the security department in Talud island to get a stamp on this travel permit.

3)      Go to Asmara by bus or taxi (3H) to the tourist department to get a travel permit for Dahlak island (Not available in Massawa). You must apply before 09H to get it at 04H30PM.

4)      Go back to Massawa to the tourist department to pay for the cruising permit (50$ + 20$ per person!).

5)      New step in 2012 – give a copy of the travel permit for Dahlak to the Navy office …

I succeeded twice with this hurdle race!! And the third time the Navy commander told me: “New law, no foreign yacht is allowed to go to Dahlak Island ….only alternative go back to your country”.

So please beware as it is no longer possible to go to the Dahlak Islands, and by the way, I don’t recommend to stop in Massawa till they

clarify exactly the law …You never know here how they will react !!!

So I am going back to Sudan where the formalities are very simple …

Hope to be useful for yachtees…

Jacques Royer

SY Miss Cat

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