Yachting & Cruising Information
- Last Updated on Wednesday, 13 February 2013 22:17
Kiribati is the perfect place to shelter your vessel during the southern cyclone season. The islands of Kiribati lie within a 5 degree range of the equator making it safe haven.
Customs and Immigration
All visitors arriving in Kiribati by yacht must register with customs and immigration. Designated entry points for Kiribati are Fanning & Kiritimati Islands (Line Group), Kanton Island (Phoenix Group) and Tarawa (Gilbert Island Group).
If arriving into Tarawa on arrival call “Radio Tarawa” on Channel 16 when within VHF range. If you do not get a response please proceed straight to customs to begin the process. Customs and Quarantine will need to search your vessel prior to you clearing to go to immigration. Immigration is located in Bariki (click here... to see our maps page) below map. A bus can take you there for approximately eighty cents. You will need a NIL document, declaring your vessel has no plants, animals, or firearms.
Tarawa – Anchorage and Waypoints
Tarawa’s anchorage is west of the Pier, amid anchored ships. It is in 15-25 ft of water with a sand bottom and good holding. The anchorage has the potential to be choppy. Do not get to close to the atoll or the wrecks on the beach as the tide shallows quickly. The following are the way points for Tarawa Atoll channel. The way points are a guide and caution should be advised.
Waypoints for Tarawa Channel
|N01.25.100||E172.54.345||Outside the Channel|
|N01.24.744||E172.55.152||north of a flat rusted can with a short stake on top inside the channel|
|N01.24.448||E172.55.857||Next is a buoy with a green post on top with an up arrow, pass north off starboard|
|N01.23.550||E172.56.268||A red nun, take to port. You will see 2 more rusted cans in a line toward the wharf, pass to port|
|N01.22.160||E172.56.017||Off the end of the Jetty|
Touring and Accommodation – visit the tourism office a block from the wharf for a comprehensive guide to Tarawa and the Outer Islands (available soon online).
Water – water can be in short supply, however is generally available. Drinking water should be boiled Gasoline and Diesel – both are available. There is a fuel station a short walk from the wharf.
Provisions – there is a relatively good assortment of canned goods and fish is freely available. Fruit and vegetables are in limited supply - however bananas, watermelon, pumpkin, cucumber, coconuts and breadfruit are readily available.
Outer Gilbert Islands
The KNTO recommends travelling to either Abaiang atoll or Butaritari Atoll within the Gilbert Island Group. Both atolls offer different perspectives of I-Kiribati life. Butaritari also has a plentiful supply of fruit and vegetables grown on the island that can be purchased by visiting travellers. More information on each island can be provided by downloading the factsheets for Abaiang Atoll (click here...) and Butaritari Atoll (click here...).
Channel and Lagoon - Way Points
|N01.44.90||E172.57.92||Outside the channel|
|N01.45.30||E172.58.26||Entrance to channel|
|N01.45.78||E172.58.75||Just past midpoint in channel|
|N01.45.90||E172.58.85||Edge of Lagoon on inside|
|N01.49.10||E173.00.80||Anchorage off radio tower where town council and Police office are|
|N03.05.78||E172.44.00||Deep water, approach to pass|
|N03.06.04||E172.44.47||Channel Entrance, passing "Ramanaba" to the North. 110 feet of water. "Ramanaba" not visible on approach.|
|N03.06.20||E172.44.80||In Pass, shoal to Port. 120 feet of water|
|N03.06.63||E172.45.38||In Pass, shoal to Port. 70 feet of water.|
|N03.06.95||E172.45.82||Buoy at end of Channel. Steel "house" shaped can with short stake. Turn to South East and head to radio tower.|
- Good light and careful conning is advised from Buoy to the anchorage in the area of the radio tower.
- If conditions are good with proper light and visibility you can see the Buoy from the deep water approach. It is a straight shot in on a course of 40 degrees magnetic (not all compasses are created equal).
- The channel is wide with a minimum depth of 60 feet.
- Pass can be choppy with strong current.
- There is no mark on Ramanaba.
- Only mark is inside pass and indicates it is safe to head Southeast towards Radio Tower/Kings Pier. There are many shoals on this track.
- The wharf is "L" shaped and constructed of sandbags, is overgrown with a small dilapidated shack towards its end. It blends very well with shore.
- Anchorage is in about 20 feet or less of water in the area of the Wharf.
- As of December 2008 there was a flashing light on the South West Point of Butaritari. 4 seconds, white, visible at 12 miles.