Kiel Canal : Two Way Traffic

Trish Meyer

Denhams Beach, Australia

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A virtual traffic jam on the Kiel Canal which links the North Sea at Brunsbüttel to the Baltic Sea at Kiel-Holtenau,
which saves an average of 250 nautical miles (460 km) instead of going around the Jutland Peninsula

In some places, the canal is too narrow for larger ships to pass safely, so traffic in one direction comes to an almost
complete standstill as ships from the opposite direction pass. Larger ships are required to take on a Pilot and may be
required at times to moor temporarily at bollards provided at intervals along the canal,

The Kiel Canal is approximately 99 km long, with a general width of 162 m (in places only 102.5 m) at the waterline, a
general width of 90 m (in some places only 44 m) at the bottom, and a depth of 11 m. It is the most traveled artificial
waterway in the world, catering for cargo vessels, cruise ships (other than the giant ones) as well as many small
pleasure craft. There are also a number of regular ferry crossings at various points along the canal and it is
fascinating to watch the almost split second timing of the ferries as they cross between large vessels!

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