San Diego to Brisbane – South or North?

Published 15 years ago, updated 4 years ago

G’day Jimmy,

I am delivering a yacht from San Diego to Brisbane leaving late July, and I was hoping for a bit of advice on which route to take.

Half the people I talk to tell me to make the passage straight down to the Marquesas and then Tahiti and so on from there. The other half reckon I should go straight out to Hawaii then the Line Islands and Samoa and so on from there.

As it is a delivery I am also on a bit of a deadline and would like to make the trip quite quickly, but still, see as much of this beautiful area as I can.

I never sail anywhere without first checking it out on your site and greatly appreciate the amount of effort you put into it!




Both routes have their merits. The northern route may be affected by a typhoon once you are past the Marshalls, but this is quite unlikely. It is also simpler from the navigational point of view, as you have more direct offshore legs, although you must not go too far south, close to the equator, so as to have the better winds. Once past Kiribati you should plot a route towards your destination.

The southern route may be a bit longer, but it has more interesting stops en route (if you are planning to stop). You need not necessarily stop in the Marquesas but lay the best course SW, maybe even bypassing Tahiti. From there direct to Tonga, Fiji, New Caledonia, and Brisbane.

If you have not done the S. Pacific before, maybe you should go that way. If you are in a great hurry, take the northern route.

You failed to tell me the most important thing: what kind of boat?

By the way, my World Cruising Routes has details of all the routes mentioned above, and a lot more. The latest edition (6th) is now out.

Good luck,

Jimmy Cornell

Read and Post Related Comments

Related to following destinations: ,

Related to the following Cruising Resources: ,

You must Login or Register to submit comments.