Sailing Guide

Guyane - French Guiana

Guyane - French Guiana



The coast of French Guiana between the Maroni River, the W boundary, and Fleuve Oyapock, the E boundary, is generally low and is seen as a dark line of mangroves. A number of hills rise in the background and can be seen for some distance offshore. The coast of French Guiana extends for about 170 miles and is affected by outflow from all its main rivers.

The coastal bank extends a considerable distance offshore. The coastal bank lies as far as 21 miles offshore. Vessels should proceed with caution as the coastal reef has been reported to extend from 1 to 9 miles farther offshore than charted.
On the north Atlantic coast of South America, It borders Brazil to the east and south, and Suriname to the west.
The coastal bank extends up to 25 miles offshore. There are no sheltered harbors for large ships. Ships of limited draft can proceed to Georgetown on the Demerara River and to New Amsterdam on the Berbice River, but must cross the bars of these rivers and engage pilots.
The capital Georgetown is a dirty, bustling port with no facilities for yachts. On the right bank of the river Demerara, the town has nineteenth century houses on stilts and boulevards built along disused Dutch canals. Seawalls and dykes protect the town, which is built on an alluvial flat area below the highwater mark. If electing to anchor in the Demerara River the yacht should not be left unattended.

As in many South American countries, armed robbery and violent crime does occur. The UK Foreign Office recommend exercising caution when travelling in Guyana, however most visits are trouble-free. The local authorities have been working hard over the last few years to improve the security situation for visiting yachts and are keen to develop yachting tourism.
Georgetown is notorious for petty street crime. Do not walk alone at night, or even during the day.

The climate is hot and humid, especially from August to October. The wet seasons are from April to August, and November to January. Guyana lies outside of the hurricane belt.
Tradewinds exist in the area practically all year. From January to April winds are predominately out of the northeast; from April to December east and southeast. The north equatorial current, with speeds between one and three knots, has maximum effect between 60 and 100 miles offshore. The tidal current, with a speed of around one-and-a-half knots, runs along the coast and is stronger in front of the river mouths.

Formalities on arrival are straightforward and free of charge. The official port of entry is Degrad de Cannes (4°51'N, 52°16'W) in the river Mahury. It is also possible to register with the authorities in Kourou. Valid passports and ship's papers are required.
Guyane - French Guiana
Guyane - French Guiana
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Sites around Guyane - French Guiana
Flying distances - Direct line

Îles du Salut (French Guiana)

Îles du Salut, 3 in number, are  located about 7 NM NE of Pointe Charlote.Ile du Diable, the northernmost, is 40m high. Ile Royale, 66m high, is the largest and westernmost, while Ile Saint-Joseph, only 30m high, is the southernmost.

On a clear day, the islands are visible ...
20 Jan 16

Ile Royal (French Guiana)

Anchorage can be taken in the bight formed by the S side of Ile Royale in depths of about 9m soft mud, good shelter from the swell, and good holding .ground.

Caution: Alouette Bank, covered with 4.8m of water, lies about 1.7 miles NNW of Ile Royale. Depths of 3.5 to 5.5m lie ...
20 Jan 16

Île Saint-Joseph (French Guiana)

Anchorage can be taken in the bight formed by the S side of Ile Royale and the W side of Ile Saint-Joseph.
20 Jan 16

Devil's Island

Île du Diable part of Salut islands is better known as Devil's Island. The total area is 0.62 km2 (62 hectares) The islands were used as a penal colony from 1852 onwards, earning them a reputation for harshness and brutality. This system was gradually phased out and has been completely ...
20 Jan 16

Port of Saint laurent du Maroni (French Guiana)

Port NW French Guiana, on the east bank of the Maroni River opposite Albina, Suriname. It was formerly headquarters of the country’s penal colonies and the site of the largest prison, closed in 1944. Apart from its port facilities, local economic activities include sawmilling, ...
21 Jan 16

Pointe Française ou Pointe des Hattes (French Guiana)

Pointe des Hattes marks the N limit of the French Guiana and the separation with Suriname country.
20 Jan 16

Cabo Orange (N Brazil)

Cabo Orange (cape Orange) is a cape on the N coast of Brazil, separated from the coast of French Guiana by a large bay watered by the estuary of the Oyapock River Cape Orange is the northernmost point of the Brazilian state of Amapá. It is located in an area of tidal marshland protected ...
10 Jan 16

Marina Waterland Resort

Marina opened in 2012 on the Surinam river offering 12 berths.
2 Jun 19

New Amsterdam (Guyana)

Ferry port .
8 May 11

Cabo Norte (Amapa Brazil)

Cabo Norte is the limit  of the estuary of the Amazon river. It is 19 NM from Ilha Jipioca.
The cape is low, wooded, and slightly higher than the neighboring coast.
11 Jan 16

Santarem harbor (Para Brazil)

Santarem harbor stands on the S side of the mouth of the Rio Tapajos, 1 NM S of Ponta Negra.

An L-shaped wharf lies 1.25 miles SW of Ponta Negra. Its outer face is 200m long, with a depth of about 10m alongside.
Small craft can berth on the 180m long inner section, which ...
11 Jan 16

Port of Cameta (Para Brazil)

Stands on the W bank of the rio Tocantins, about 90 NM from Belem. The town is built on the river bank and is an important trade center. The tidal range is about 3m; the current attains a rate of about 2.5 knots.
11 Jan 16
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