What Are the Waterways From the Black Sea to the Indian Ocean?

The route from the Black Sea to the Indian Ocean takes you through famous waterways.
The route from the Black Sea to the Indian Ocean takes you through famous waterways. (Image: Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images)

Sailing is a fantastic way to see the world and allows you to see much more than air travel. Sailing from the Black Sea to the Indian Ocean take you past parts of Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. You travel through a range of waterways that lead from the Black Sea to the Aegean Sea and then through to the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea before you reach the Indian Ocean.

Black Sea to Aegean Sea

The Black Sea is exited through the Bosphorus, which is a strait forming a boundary between Europe and Asia. It is also known as the Istanbul Strait and is 17 nautical miles long. It leads to the inland Sea of Marmara. This sea is connected to the Aegean Sea by the Dardanelles, which is a narrow strait in northwestern Turkey that separates the European peninsula of Gallipoli from the mainland of Asia. It is 38 miles long.

Aegean Sea to Mediterranean Sea

The Aegean Sea lies between Turkey and Greece and is about 380 miles long and 200 miles wide. It contains around 3,000 islands of various sizes, including the famous Greek islands of Crete, Rhodes, Mykonos and Santorini. This is a popular region for sailing because of the large number of gulfs and bays and the crystal-clear waters. The island of Crete represents the southern end of the Aegean Sea, which then flows into the Mediterranean Sea.

Mediterranean Sea to Red Sea

At the southeast end of the Mediterranean Sea is the entrance to the man-made Suez Canal, which connects the Mediterranean to the Red Sea. The Suez Canal was opened in November 1869 to allow ships to trade between Europe and Asia without having to navigate around Africa. It was originally 102 miles long but has been enlarged so it is now 120 miles long. The northern end of the Suez Canal is Port Said, and the southern terminus is Port Tawfik in the city of Suez.

Red Sea to Indian Ocean

The Red Sea lies between Africa and the Asia, and it is also known as the Arabian Gulf. It is about 1,400 miles long and 220 miles across at the widest point. It is highly saline and is the northernmost tropical sea in the world. The southern end is presently considered a risky place to sail because of pirates from Somalia. At the southern end is a strait known as the “Gate of Tears,” which connects the Red Sea to the Gulf of Aden. It is about 20 miles across. The Gulf of Aden lies between Yemen and Somalia and opens into the Arabian Sea in the Indian Ocean. The area is a risk for pirate activity.

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