Sailing Guide

Islas Columbretes (Castellon)

Islas Columbretes (Castellon)



The Columbretes Islands are a group of small uninhabited islets of volcanic origin, 30 NM off Oropesa cape.

The main islets are Illa Grossa, La Ferrera, La Foradada and El Carallot. In the archipelago are many reefs.

These islands were known by Greeks and Romans from ancient times. Writers such as Strabo or Pliny the Elder cited the astonishing amount of snakes inhabiting them. The names Ophiusa and Colubraria by which they were named (meaning serpent in Greek and Latin, respectively) refer to that fact. The islands owe their present name to "Colubraria", the Latin word for "snake". 

They are located at depths of 80 meters and covers an area of three NM, representing a small archipelago of great ecological interest of the Mediterranean.

Since 1988 the archipelago has been declared a wildlife reserve. It hosts several endangered species and its funds are a fishing preserve of great importance that contributes to the reproduction of many fish species in the area.

At the same time, the Columbretes Islands are a prime goal of enthusiasts for diving from all walks of life.

The mooring anchor is not recommended but several mooring buoys (isla Grossa) allow recreational boats to spend the night. After call by VHF goalkeeper Park welcomes visitors to the small pier of the main island and accompanied the visit.
Islas Columbretes (Castellon)
Islas Columbretes (Castellon)
Les Îles Columbretes constituent un ensemble de quatre groupes d'îles volcaniques situées à trente milles marins à l'Est du Cap d'Oropesa. 

Ces groupes d'îles sont : la Columbrete Grande, La Ferrera, La Foradada et el Carallot. De plus existent dans l'archipel de nombreux écueils.

Le nom des îles vient des premiers navigants grecs et romains. Initialement on leur a donné le nom de Ophiusa ou Colubraria, à cause des nombreux serpents qui s'y trouvaient. Durant des siècles, elles ont servi de refuge aux pirates et aux contrebandiers.

Elles sont situées sur des fonds de 80 mètres de profondeur et couvrent une surface de trois milles marins, représentant un des petits archipels de très grand intérêt écologique de la Méditerranée.

Jusqu'à ce qu'elles soient protégées, elles servaient de champ de tir pour l'aviation et la marine, ce qui a détérioré de nombreux écueils qui s'y trouvent. À cela se sont ajoutées les visites incontrôlées et la pêche sauvage.

Actuellement, l'archipel est devenu un parc naturel qui accueille quelques espèces en danger d'extinction et ses fonds sont une réserve de pêche de grande importance qui contribue à la reproduction de nombreuses espèces de poissons de la zone.

En même temps, les Îles Columbretes constituent un but de premier ordre pour les passionnés de plongée sous-marine venus de tous les horizons.

Le mouillage sur ancre n'est pas recommandé mais plusieurs bouées de mouillage (Isla Grossa) permettent aux embarcations de plaisance d'y passer la nuit. Après appel par VHF le gardien du Parc accueille les visiteurs sur le petit embarcadère de l'île principale et accompagne la visite.

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Sites around Islas Columbretes (Castellon)
Flying distances - Direct line

Golfo de La Ampolla (Ebre)

In N Tortosa Cape, the low and swampy coast of the delta of the Ebro is oriented NW, and before its junction with the mainland, a peninsula of sand is detached forming bays of the Ampolla and del Fangal.Ampolla bay lies between ...
8 Jun 12

Banc de La Barra Alta (Castellon)

This isolated danger, small and rocky shoal, lies about 8 NM SW of the light on Columbrete Grande and has a least depth of 9.3m. It is formed by two neighboring heads covered from 11 to 14 m of water.
25 May 12

Bajo Punta La Llosa (C Valencia)

In front of Almenara, 1,5 NM from the coast, the roky patch Punta La Llosa ies with a least depth of 5,5 m.
25 May 12

Cabo de Oropesa (Castellon)

Cabo de Oropesa, located 9 miles NE of El Grao, is the low termination of Los Colls, a range of mountains with three conspicuous peaks. A light is shown from a tower with a dwelling, 13m high, standing on the cape. An old watch tower stands close to the light.Caution: Several ...
25 May 12

Puerto Oropesa del Mar (C. Castellon)

Located 0,7 NM to the SW of Cabo de Oropesa, this marina is sheltered to the E by a breakwater.Danger: In E remain well in the center of the entrance.T. 964 31 30 55
F. 964 31 00 00
668 b. (<20m) 168 dint visit. depth: 4 m
6 Jun 12

Puerto de Castellon (C. Castellon)

Just four kilometers from the center of town is El Grao, the port of Castellón, around which grew a major tourist area with recreational facilities and excellent hotel resources.
Grau is composed of a fishing port, a marina, Club Nautico and the commercial port with the third ...
25 May 12

Punta Peniscola (Castellon)

Peniscola is a peninsula where an headland 64 meters high, crowned by an old castle and a lighthouse are on the NE side.

The promontory is connected to the mainland by a sandy isthmus.

In the N coast of Peniscola is low.
6 Jun 12

Puerto de Peniscola (C. Castellon)

Puerto de Peniscola, a small craft harbor, lies SW of the peninsulaand is protected by a breakwater.
T. 96 448 94 36F. 96 448 94 36M. puertos.peñiscola@copud.m400.gva.es75 b. (<8 m)Depth: 4 m
6 Jun 12

Puerto Las Fuentes (C. Castellon)

Las Fuentes marina is located in Alcala de Chivert-Alcoceber town. It owes it name to the still water springs that abound at the shore, and even out to the sea. This magnificent base is suitable for visiting the Columbretes Nature Reserve.The marina is arranged in two distinct ...
6 Jun 12

Marina Burriana (C. Castellon)

The marina is located into the port of Burriana.
Burriana port is an extension of the marina, equipped for large yachts and other vessels.
There is also a shipyard, a sailing school.

T. 964 22 72 00
F. 964 58 56 55
335 b. (<30 m)
Depth: 3-6 m
19 May 12

Puerto de Benicarlo (C. Castellon)

Benicarlo harbour, 4,6 NM NE of Periscola, has a marina.
It is protected by two breakwaters, but is subject to silting.T. 964 46 23 30
F. 964 46 23 17
293 b. (<20m) incl. 30 visit.
Depth: 3,70 m à 4 m
25 May 12

Club nautico de Vinaros (C. Castellon)

It is the  most N port of Valencia.The mooring of the yacht club, located inside the fishing port, are divided into four jetties which admit vessels up to fifteen meters in length.

T. 964 45 17 05
F. 96 445 54 97
250 b. (<14 m)
6 Jun 12
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La Méditerranée est reliée à l'océan Atlantique par le détroit de Gibraltar à l'ouest, à la mer de Marmara et à la mer Noire par les Dardanelles et le Bosphore à l'est. Le canal de Suez au sud-est relie la Méditerranée à la mer Rouge.
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