It was about 0500 this morning when I thought I smelled a whiff of smoke; perhaps via the slightly open balcony door? Sliding out of bed to check it out I discovered we had entered the Suez and that was the end of sleep for me. Most of my photos were taken early before the haze and pollution became evident which also provided the opportunity to see the sun rise.
Over the hours ( the ships don’t exactly move rapidly) I watched both sides go from desert to heavily populated and green and back more than once. The total distance is almost 200 land miles and took from ~0500-1600. Power lines, gardens, guard buildings, small boats, tankers, sand dunes, small fishing vessels, cities, groves; it was a constantly changing vista and never matching between the two sides of the ship. Sometime there seemed to be similar on both sides of the bank but most often the port and starboard were in stark contrast with the port side being by far less developed.
At the bow there was only the one escort vessel visible while behind us I could see a line of cargo vessels.
In those places which were wider the two convoy lines could pass each other. At other areas, similar to the Panama Canal, vessels were on hold until the south bound (us) convoy was past. We were told that there were nine vessels in our group and 20 cargo in the passing northbound convoy. From the amount of shouts, whistles and waves we received from the Egyptian side, one received the impression that cruise ships are not all that frequent. Or perhaps it was the “ladies” in their bikinis on the pool deck….
The pictures are in chronological order of taking (which also means from start through to the end of the Canal). This post is picture heavy – have patience! I am loading these as galleries to not overwhelm. As always – click to embiggen