Sailing Guide

Male commercial harbour (Kaafu)

Male commercial harbour (Kaafu)



Male, the principal port, is centrally situated at NW corner of Male. Male' Commercial Harbour is situated on the NW side of Male' island.
All cargo vessels are handled at Alongside and as well as at anchorage using Barge operation. Most of the container ships are handled at Alongside Berth.

The port handles all types of cargo except dry bulk, liquefied petroleum and gases.
The harbour area also incorporates a marina.

Except in very heavy rain the S.W monsoon, the visibility is good. And landfall can be made easily. The  TV tower, south of Male’ in position : Lat 04 10.2N Long. 73 30.9 E. is visible at a distance of 30 miles. The dome of the Islamic centre  in position : Lat 04 10.7 N. Long 73 30.85 E. and the minaret of Grand Mosque (Islamic Centre) in position : Lat 04 10.69 N. Long 73 30.83 E. are  also visible for approaching vessels.

Vessels approaching Male port should contact Harbour control on VHF channel 10 two hours prior to arrival pilot boarding ground (Lat 04 10.0 N Log. 073.32.0 E)


Gaadhoo Koa,(Male Passage) the passage between the reefs fringing Male and Hulhule, is about 4 cables wide  at its outer end and  has a depth of 35m in the fairway. At its inner end the passage divides, passing each side of Funadhoo with deep water in both channels. The North Channel is recommended. The Gaadhoo Koa is the recommended approach   to the anchorage North of Male for all vessels at safe speed. Bodukalhi, (Kanduoiygiri Passage) is 8 cables wide at its outer end and has a depth of 40m in the fairway. Male Viligili passage is another safe passage safe entrance to Male anchorage. Mariners should exercise caution when using this channel as a shoal of 5.0m lies in the centre of the channel.
Gaadhoo Koa Channel Lights:
Navigational Lights have been installed to mark Gaadhoo Koa Channel. Please refer BA chart 3323
3 Head line to shore Bollard 70t and 2 Astern Line to shore Bollard 70 t
Cruise Vessels:
Passenger vessels are handled at anchorage. Number of berths available:  None
Specialised Cargo Facilities:
No Ro-Ro berths. Containers and conventional cargo are handled at Berth and at Anchorage.
Tanker Facilities:
Tanker terminal is available at Funadhoo and Thilafushi Island. Vessels below 15000 tons displacement and draft of 8.0m can be handled at these berths. Tankers are also handled at anchorage, and ship-to-ship transfer is possible. Two mooring buoys are fitted near Hulhule Island (Male International Airport).
LPG/LNG Facilities:
Gas Tankers (LPG) terminal is available at Thilafushi Island two terminal one STO PLC Terminal and one Vila gas terminal. Vessels length 130m draft 8meters can be berthed in these two terminals.
International connection can be used.

Cargo Operations:
Vessels are handled on first come first serve basis.

The Maldives Ports Limited is the sole stevedoring company. Average load/discharge rate is 2,500 f/t per day, depending on type of commodities, ship’s gear and port situation. Overtime is possible, Saturday to Wednesday for 2 hours after midnight, if the vessel is expected to complete its loading or unloading within 2 hours and on Thursday from 2400-0800 hrs. if the vessel can complete within the additional 8 hours.

Fresh Water
Fresh water is available on request in any quantity. Average supply rate 15 m/t per hour.
MGO/available at berths by bunker barges and small Tanker ships at anchorage.

Ship supply service can be arranged through ship’s Agent.

Radar/Gyro and communications equipment repairs possible from Maldives Electronic Service Company (MESCO) Tel: +960 -332 3536. Fax: +960 3316741

Workshops are available for mechanical repairs. Limited fabrication/steel work is available.
Opening / Closing Hatches:
Normally done by ships crew. However port stevedores can open and close hatches on request.

Shore Leave:
Possible after inward clearance is granted.
Facilities exist for effecting crew changes and arranging necessary repatriation.

Identification Cards:
Seaman’s book/Passport. Or ship ID card can be use while leaving and entering gates.

Ship Stores :
Loading of ship store Customs permission required.
Male commercial harbour (Kaafu)
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Sites around Male commercial harbour (Kaafu)
Flying distances - Direct line

Funadhoo island (Kaafu)

Funadhoo (Funidu) lies about 0.3 mile N of the E end of Male, and is surrounded by a reef which dries in places.
A small tank farm, with three large and about six smaller tanks,stands on the island.
17 Nov 11

Hulhule island (Kaafu)

Hulule, about 0.6 mile E of Funadhoo, bears some tall coconut palms; an airstrip runs the full length of the island and joins it to an islet close S. Airport buildings and a small village lie along the central part of the W side of Hulule.
The Malé International Airport is located ...
17 Nov 11

Malé island (Kaafu)

Malé is the capital of the Republic of Maldives located at the southern edge of North Male' Atoll Kaafu.
Traditionally it was the King's Island from where the ancient Maldive Royal dynasties ruled and where the palace was located. Formerly it was a walled city surrounded by fortifications ...
16 Nov 11

Malé Inter island Harbour (Kaafu)

South West Harbor is protected by a rough breakwater of heaped coral extending 0.15 mile from the SW extremity of Male.
The harbor is used by inter-island trading boats, cargo lighters, and deep-draft vessels at anchor.
The Custom House lies on the main quay facing the main ...
13 Nov 11

Malé harbour Sawmill Pt (kaafu)

The Maldives group of Islands extends in a N/S direction from 00 41.48 S to approx 08 00N, to the SW of the Indian subcontinent. Male' the principal port, is centrally situated on the E side of the group. The inner harbor is used by small local craft and has depths of 1.8 to 3m. ...
19 Nov 11

Viligili island (N Kaafu)

Viligili (Wilingili), a low wooded islet used as a tourist village, lies 1 mile W of Male. It is surrounded by steep-to foul ground extending up to 0.3 mile offshore.
The light on the islet is reported to be a good landmark.
The channel between Viligili and Male has a 5.5m shoal ...
17 Nov 11

Surfing in Malé (Kaafu)

Eastern reef of Male’, Southern tip of North Male’ Atoll: A couple of shifting peaks, popular with locals, riding surfboards and boogie boards. The reef picks up plenty of swell. Best in W winds. Accessible from the shore.
17 Nov 11

Bandos island (N Kaafu)

The island of Bandos is 2 km² aera. It was open at tourist in 1972.
The turquoise of the lagoon, the lush green vegetation, the pearl white beaches are very beautifull.
19 Nov 11

Gaadhoo Koa (Malé passage) (Kaafu)

Gaadhoo Koa (Gaadiinoo Koa) Gaadhoo Koa (Male Passage), the channel close E of Male, is the recommended channel.
The fairway is about 0.4 mile wide between the reefs extending SE of Maleand S of Hulule airstrip.
Caution is necessary as strong cross sets of up to 6 knots caused ...
18 Nov 11

Dhoonidhoo island (Kaafu)

Dhoonidhoo, a wooded islet, lies about 0.8 mile NW of Funadhoo.
A large silver tankstands on the E central part of the island; a breakwater extends about 25m N on the N side of the island. Small vessels, during the Southwest Monsoon, can moor on the E side of the circular reef ...
17 Nov 11

Feydhoofinolhu island (N Kaafu)

Feydhoofinolhu, a bare sandy islet, surrounded by a steep-to reef which dries in places, lies 2.3 miles N of Viligili.
Breakwaters extend from the islet.Galu Falhu, a circular reef about 1 mile SE of Feydhoofinolhu, appears to contain deep water.
17 Nov 11

Himmafushi and Lankanfinolhu islands (Kaafu)

Himmafushi, inhabited, and Lankanfinolhu (Lankanfushifinolhu), about 1.8 miles SW, lie on the same reef, with a low islet about midway between.
Himmafushi is a fishing village.Lankanfinolhu houses Paradise island resort. On the outer reef, southeast of the island, there are two ...
12 Nov 11
Local Area

Malé island (Kaafu)

Malé is the capital of the Republic of Maldives located at the southern edge of North Male' Atoll Kaafu.
Traditionally it was the King's Island from where the ancient Maldive Royal dynasties ruled and where the palace was located. Formerly it was a walled city surrounded by fortifications ...
16 Nov 11

Difuri Malé (N Kaafu)

Between Difuri (Diffushi) and Male, 20 miles SW, a chain of islands lies upon the reef which is sharply marked by change of water color or, in swell conditions, by breakers upon it.
13 Nov 11

North Malé (Kaafu) Atoll

N Male Atoll is the main atoll of the Maldives. It stretches 69 km S of N and 39 km E of W.
There are 8 islands of fishermen and 26 resort islands.
A number of islands surrounding the capital used in industry.
Divers will find many sites that have made the country's reputation.
9 Nov 11

Kaafu atoll

Malé Atoll consist of two separate atolls: Nort Malé Atoll and South Malé Atoll.Together with Kaashidhoo Island and Gaafaru, Malé Atoll forms the administrative division known as Kaafu Atoll. Kaafu is the administrative name of the largest atoll of the Maldives, both economic ...
6 Jul 12


The Republic of Maldives is a SW Asian country. The population of the Islamic Republic is about 300 000 inhabitants. The capital is Male. The language "Devehi" comes in part from an ancient form of Sri Lancans mixed with Hindi, Arabic and English. English is the ...
16 Nov 11

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
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