Sailing Guide

Chidambaranar (Tuticorin) Port (E India)

Chidambaranar (Tuticorin) Port (E India)



Tuticorin (Tuttukuddi) is the largest commercial town on the W side of the Gulf of Mannar.

Chidambaranar Port is an artificial deep-sea harbour formed with rubble mound type parallel breakwaters projecting into the sea for about 4 km. (Length of North breakwater is 4098.66 m, length of South breakwater is 3873.37 m and the distance between the breakwaters is 1275m).The port (Chidambaranar) is an open roadstead, well-protected by the land to the W from the Southwest Monsoon; it is available in all seasons.

The all-weather harbor of New Tuticorin, about 0.5 mile S of Tuticorin, handles the majority of cargo for the port. The port is protected on its N side by North Breakwater, which is 2.3 miles long, and on its S side by South Breakwater and Eastern Breakwater.
The rocky sea bottom, making dredging closer inshore impossible, necessitates these long breakwaters.
Natural depths of 11m become available only at a distance of approximately 2 miles from shore.
The entrance to the harbor lies 3 miles SE of Pandyan Tivu Light.

Tuticorin also has a passenger terminal for ferry services between the port and Colombo, Sri Lanka.


The tidal rise at Tuticorin is 1m at MHWS and 0.7m at near HWN.

The currents along the coast, outside the islands near Tuticorin, generally set with the wind, varying in strength from 1 to 2 knots. They are weak and variable at the change of the monsoons.
When there is a lull in the monsoon, there is a tendency for current to set into, instead of across, the Gulf of Mannar.

The tidal currents at Tuticorin set in a N direction with the flood tide and in a S direction with the ebb.


The approach channel, which is 2,400m long and 183m wide, is dredged to a depth of 12.5m.

The turning basin, which is just inside the breakwaters has a depth of 11.9m and is 500m in diameter.

A drying reef extends up to 0.5 mile E of Pandyan Island.
Orripar, a rock shoal with a least depth of 0.9m, lies about 0.3 mile N of Pandyan Island.
Kariapar, a rocky pinnacle with a depth of 1.5m, lies about 0.8 mile NE of the NE extremity of Pandyan Island. Rocky pinnacles, each with a depth of 1.5m, lie about 0.2 mile E and 0.5 mile ENE, respectively, of Kariapar.

Van Tivu, about 2.8 miles NNE of Pandyan Tivy, lies on a reef which extends about 0.5 mile NE and 0.4 mile SE from it.
A beacon, 10m high, lies on the S extremity of Van Tivu.

A boat channel, about 137m wide, marked by lighted buoys and a lighted range, leads to the old piers at Tuticorin from a position about 1.8 miles NE of the N end of Pandyan Island.
The least depth alongside the piers and wharves at Tuticorin is 2.4m.


Tel: (0461) 2352290
Fax: (0461) 2352301


The vessel’s ETA should be sent, via the agent, 72 hours and 24 hours in advance and confirmed or amended no less than 6 hours in advance.

The ETA messages should contain the following information:

1. Vessel’s name, nationality, and call sign.
2. Length, draft, and gross tonnage.
3. Last port of call and cargo.
4. Port of origina/destination of cargo.
5. Last port of call/next port of call.

4.6 Vessels must contact the signal station 1 hour prior to arrival and upon arrival on VHF channel 12 or 16.


A signal station, with a flagstaff 29m high, lies on the N end of Pandiyan Island. This station, manned day and night, is connected to the mainland by telephone. Communication is by International Code of Signals.

Storm signals are displayed from the signal station; the General System is used.


Several wrecks and foul ground lie between 1.5 and 2.3 miles E and ESE of Pandiyan Island Light.

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Sites around Chidambaranar (Tuticorin) Port (E India)
Flying distances - Direct line

Kariya Shuli and Vilangu Shuli islets (Pattanamarudur-E India)

The town of Pattanamarudur, with some large trees visible up to 10 miles offshore, lies at thehead of this bight, about 7 miles N of Tuticorin.
The bight is filled by a flat, with depths of less than 5.5m, extending up to about 4.5 miles offshore. Kariya Shuli and Vilangu Shuli, ...
20 Mar 12


Port protected by a breakwater.
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Punnaikkayal (E India)

Punnaikkayal, about 1 mile inland, can be identified by the ruins of a church and by a group of palmyra trees on the beach.
A 4.6m patch lies about 3 miles E of the village.Anchorage in 7.3m, can be found off Punnaikkayal, about 1.5 miles offshore, with the clump of trees bearing ...
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Tiruchendur Point (Tamil Nadu-E India)

Tiruchendur Point is a low, rocky bluff headland, with a prominent dark-colored temple, 54m high, at its extremity. This pagoda is a useful mark and can be seen for a distance of about 15 miles.
A conspicuous chimney, 28m high, painted in red and white bands and emitting a flame, ...
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Manappad Point (SE India)

Manappad Point is a high sandy promontory with a rock base. A light is shown from a white, round concrete tower with red diagonal stripes.
The village of Manappad lies 0.8 mile W of the point.
Manappad Outer Shoal, with a least depth of 6.4m, lies about 8 miles SE of Manappad ...
20 Mar 12

Valinokkam Point (E India)

Caution.—Vessels, other than small coasting vessels, should not approach the coast between Tuticorin and Valinokkam Point, about 37 miles NE, closer than 6 or 7 miles due to the many off-lying shoals.The coast between Valinokkam Point and Ramen Point, about 32 miles ENE, is fronted ...
20 Mar 12

East Cape (E India)

East Cape is prominent, and the coastal reef, with depths of 5.5m, extends about 1 mile offshore near the cape.AnchorageShelter from W winds can be found in the bight between Cape Comorin and East Cape, but during the Southwest Monsoon landing by ship’s boats should not be attempted ...
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Kanyakumari Port (S India)

Kanyakumari is a town that is at the tip of the Indian Peninsula and faces the Indian Ocean.The port is a minor port primarily for ferry traffic.
Depths in the boat basin and alongside the pier are 2.3m or less.
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Vivekananda rock - Thiruvalluvar Statue

Vivekananda Rock Memorial is a sacred monument and popular tourist attraction in Kanyakumari, India.
The memorial stands on one of two rocks located about 500 meters off mainland India's southernmost tip. It was built in 1970 by the Vivekananda Rock Memorial Committee in honour ...
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Comorin Lighthouse (S India)

Cape Comorin Light is shown from a square white tower, 34m high, and painted in red bands, about 0.3 mile NW of the cape. A church, 54m high, lies in a village about 0.5 mile N of the cape.
Good radar returns have been reported from Cape Comorin at 23 miles.
19 Mar 12

Comorin Cape (S India)

Cape Comorin, the S extremity of India, is low and sandy, with a small white pagoda on its extremity.
This pagoda is surrounded by a high wall, above which the top of the pagoda may be seen. A bungalow lies NW of the pagoda. A conspicuous memorial, 37m high, lies close W of the ...
19 Mar 12

Ramen Point ( Tamil Nadu-E India)

Ramen Point is the E extremity of a narrow tongue of land projecting E from the coast.
A  temple in ruins lies about 183m W of the point; a coconut plantation lies about 183m farther W.
The coast from Ramen Point to Devipattanam, about 21 miles NW, is generally low and ...
23 Mar 12
Local Area

Gulf of Mannar (SE India)

The Gulf of Mannar lies between the SE coast of the Indian Peninsula and the W coast of Sri Lanka. Its S boundary lies between Cape Comorin, the S extremity of India, and Point de Galle, the SW point of Sri Lanka. The gulf is bounded N by Adam’s Bridge, a chain of islets and rocks ...
20 Mar 12

Coromandel coast (E India)

The Coromandel Coast is the name given to the southeastern coast of the Indian Subcontinent between Cape Comorin and False Divi Point.
It may also include the southeastern coast of the island of Sri Lanka.
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East Coast of India

India, or the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south and the Bay of Bengal on the south-east, it shares land borders with China, Nepal, and Bhutan to the north-east; and Burma and Bangladesh to the east.
In the Indian Ocean, India ...
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Bay of Bengal

The Bay of Bengal (largest bay in the world,) forms the northeastern part of the Indian Ocean. It is bordered mostly by the Eastern Coast of India, southern coast of Bangladesh and Sri Lanka to the west and Burma (Myanmar) and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands (part of India) to the ...
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Indian Ocean

The Indian Ocean is the third largest of the world's oceanic divisions, covering about 20% of the Earth's water surface. It is bounded on the north by Asia (including the Indian subcontinent, after which it is named); on the west by Africa; on the east by Indochina, the Sunda Islands, ...
6 Apr 12

Kariya Shuli and Vilangu Shuli islets (Pattanamarudur-E India)

The town of Pattanamarudur, with some large trees visible up to 10 miles offshore, lies at thehead of this bight, about 7 miles N of Tuticorin.
The bight is filled by a flat, with depths of less than 5.5m, extending up to about 4.5 miles offshore. Kariya Shuli and Vilangu Shuli, ...
20 Mar 12
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