Sailing Guide

Gulf of Cambay (W India)

Gulf of Cambay (W India)



The Gulf of Cambay is about 30 miles wide at its entrance between Gopnath Point and Suvali Point.

Malacca Banks, with deep channels to the W and E, lie in the fairway of the approach.
Grant Channel and Sutherland Channel are safer to use than the channels between the banks, as the mariner is able to accurately fix his position from the objects on the coast; Sutherland Channel should be used only by those with local knowledge.

The S part of the gulf is deep, but the N part is encumbered with sand banks, which frequently change because of the force of the bores and freshets from the rivers.

Deep-draft vessels can proceed up the gulf as far as Piram Island, about 28 miles NNE of Gopnath Point. Local knowledge is necessary for vessels navigating above Gogha, about 6 miles NW of Piram Island.


Considerable shoaling is reported in the entrance of the Gulf of Cambay and mariners should navigate with caution in this vicinity.

The sand and banks in the upper part of the gulf are subject to great alterations. Any directions for navigating this area must be considered as general only; local knowledge is necessary.

Malacca Banks is the general name for four long narrow shoals lying in and obstructing the entrance of the Gulf of Cambay, between the parallels of 20°20'N and 21°20'N. These shoals, named in order from W, are Western Bank, Narbada Bank, Breaker Bank, and Eastern Bank.

Deep channels are between these shoals, but they are narrow at their N ends, and it is inadvisable to use them.

Western Bank dries in places.

Grant Channel, between Western Bank and the coast NW, is steep-to on both sides, with general depths of 11.3 to 27m. bottom is sand toward the bank and mud toward the Channel off the N end of Western Bank.

Depths in Grant Channel between Gopnath Point and Western Bank, 6 miles SSE of Gopnath Point, were reported (2002) to be 1 to 1.5m less than charted.

Narbada Bank has a large area of drying sand near its center.

Breaker Bank has a long sand bank near its center, which may be seen a long distance from the masthead when the sun shines on it at high water neaps, but it is submerged at high water springs. Depths of 2.7 to 3.3m lie at the N end of Breaker Bank, about 16 miles ENE of Gopnath Point; a drying patch was reported (1954) in this vicinity. A dangerous wreck lies about 5 miles SW of Breaker Bank.

Eastern Bank has several shoal patches, some of which dry.
Because the depths are deep within 0.2 mile of these shoal patches in many places, soundings give little warning of the approach to these dangers.

Sutherland Channel, between Eastern Bank and the coast E, is about 2.5 miles wide at its narrowest part, WNW of Suvali Point. Two  lighterage areas, one for general cargo and one for chemical and LPG cargo, which are best seen on the chart, are located about 5 miles W of Suvali Point.


Shoaling, including a drying patch about 300m wide, has been reported (2003, 2006) in an area extending from 2 to 3 miles SW of the SW corner of the charted General Lighterage Area.

The coast of the W side of the head of the gulf from Johnston Point to the entrance of the Bhadar River, about 26 miles NNE, is composed chiefly of mangrove jungle, extending several miles inland. The sand bank fronting this coast dries and extends from 1 mile to 4 miles offshore.

Mal Bank, the S end of which lies about 7.5 miles E of Johnston Point, is a large sand bank lying in the middle of the head of the gulf, and extends about 4 miles N.
There are channels on the either side of Mal Bank, each about 1 mile wide in the fairway, but local knowledge is necessary.
Malcolm Channel is the W channel.
Khambhat Channel leads NE into the estuary of the Mahi River from the N end of Mal Bank. Khambhat, the chief town in the area, lies on the N side of the estuary of the Mahi River.

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Sites around Gulf of Cambay (W India)
Flying distances - Direct line

E gulf of Cumbay (W India)

mv saga frontier
27 Dec 14

Piram island (W Cambay gulf - India)

Piram Island, 11m high and composed of sand, lies with its N end about 2.8 miles SE of Kuda Point. At the S end of the island there are a few trees and a little cultivation; the NE side is fringed by a few mangrove trees.
The lighthouse is conspicuous near the middle of the island; ...
1 Mar 12

Luhara Point (E Cumbay - W India)

The coast between the entrance of the Sena River and Luhara Point, about 18 miles N, is low and marshy. It is intersected by several streams and rivers, and is flooded at spring tides from 1 to 4 miles inland.The Narmada River flows into the Gulf of Cambay, S of Luhara Point, through ...
1 Mar 12

Kuda point (W Cambay - India)

The coast between Gopnath Point and Kuda Point, about 28 miles NNE, is low and covered with sandhills for about 18 miles to Mitivirdi; then it is comparatively high, with several ravines close to the coast.
The country is flat and cultivated,with many scattered villages mostly ...
1 Mar 12

Dani point (E Cumbay - W India)

Dani Point Light is shown from a steel framework structure, 26m high, about 2.5 miles SE of the entrance to the Sena River.
Gulwala Bank, with depths of less than 11m, extends about 6.3 miles S from a position about 3.5 miles W of the S entrance point of the Kim River. There is ...
1 Mar 12

Suvali Point (E Cumbay - W India)

Suvali Point, the E entrance point of the Gulf of Cambay, is fringed by the drying coastal reef which extends about 1 mile W of the point.
Tapti Light is shown from a white circular stone column, 27m high, on the point; a tomb lies close SE of the light structure.
The coast ...
1 Mar 12

Gopnath Point (W Cambay - India)

Gopnath Point, the W entrance point of the Gulf of Cambay, is moderately high, with a conspicuous light structure and bungalow on it. A temple, 23m high, lies near the coast, about 0.8 mile N of the point.A reef, which dries 2.7m, extends about 1.5 miles ENE from Gopnath Point.Gopnath ...
1 Mar 12

Magdalla port (W India)

Magdalla, an official point of entry, includes the Hazira port complex comprised an Hazira Offshore Terminal, the Hazira LNG Terminal, and a bulk/container terminal presently under construction.
The actual port of Magdalla is located about 5 miles upstream on the S bank of the ...
1 Mar 12

Kotada Bluff (W India)

Kotada Bluff is 26m high and conspicuous.
During W winds, boats can land on the NE side of the bluff.
29 Feb 12

Piparav Bandar port (W India)

Pipavav Bandar, the principal port for Dongar, about 6 miles N, is the principal town on this part of the coast.Pipavav Bandar lies on the NW shore of the West Channel. It is an all season port offering container, bulk, break bulk and liquid cargo handling services. It imports and ...
29 Feb 12

Daman Point (W India)

Between Suvali Point and Daman, is an alluvial belt through which the Tapti River forms a deep and fertile delta.
Along the S part of this coast are small hillocks of drifted sand; the coastin some parts is watered by springs and covered with a thick growth of creepers and date ...
1 Mar 12
Local Area

West coast of India

Between Diu Head (from N) and Cape Rama (to S), there is the gulf of Cambay and the largest sea-port on the W coast of India, the port of Mumbai (Bombay), the largest seaport on the W coast of India.
An extensive offshore area is being developed for oil production.
Numerous ...
20 Mar 12

Arabian Sea

Arabian Sea
The Arabian Sea is a northwestern extension of the Indian Ocean, positioned between India, Oman, Pakistan and Yemen, and Cape Guardafui in far northeastern Somalia. The sea connects with the Persian Gulf through the Gulf of Oman and the Strait of Hormuz. In the southwest, ...
23 Dec 07

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

St George's Islands (W India)

St George’s Islands consists of three islands between 1.5 and 2.5 miles SSW of Marmagao Head.
Grandi Island is the collective name of the two S islands of the group, which are connected by a narrow reef of rock and shingle.
The W of the two islands, 76m high and conical, is ...
4 Mar 12

Karwar Bay (W India)

Karwar Bay is entered between Dayamada Point, the N entrance point of Kalinadi Creek, and Badchidhar Point, the NW extremity of Karwar Head, about 2.8 miles SSW. Karwar Head, with an elevation of 207m, is covered with dense jungle.
The entrance leading to Kalinadi Creek is much ...
5 Mar 12

Binge Bay (W India)

Binge Bay lies between Binaga Point and Arge Cape, 2.5 miles SE.
A restricted area, into which entry is prohibited, extends from a position about 0.5 mile SE of Karwar Head to Kwada Point.
A major naval base, which includes shipbuilding and repairs facilities, is located on ...
6 Mar 12
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