Cruising to the Cocos (Keeling) Islands


There are 27 coral islands in the group. Captain William KEELING discovered the islands in 1609, but they remained uninhabited until the 19th century. Annexed by the UK in 1857, they were transferred to the Australian Government in 1955. The population on the two inhabited islands generally is split between the ethnic Europeans on West Island and the ethnic Malays on Home Island.


Location: Southeastern Asia, group of islands in the Indian Ocean, southwest of Indonesia, about halfway from Australia to Sri Lanka
Geographic coordinates: 12 30 S, 96 50 E
Map references: Southeast Asia
Area: total: 14 sq km; note: includes the two main islands of West Island and Home Island


26 km

Maritime claims

Territorial sea: 12 nm
Exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm


Tropical with high humidity, moderated by the southeast trade winds for about nine months of the year


Flat, low-lying coral atolls

Elevation extremes

Lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
Highest point: unnamed location 5 m


Grown throughout the islands, coconuts are the sole cash crop. Small local gardens and fishing contribute to the food supply, but additional food and most other necessities must be imported from Australia. There is a small tourist industry.


Airports: 1 (2005)
Airports - with paved runways: total: 1
Roadways: total: 15 km (2005)

Sailing Specifics: Ports and terminals

Port Refuge

Other Sailing Destinations in the Region

Bahrain - Christmas Islands - Cocos Keeling - Comoros - Djibouti - Eritrea - India - Jordan - Kenya - Kuwait - Madagascar - Maldives - Mauritius - Mayotte - Mozambique - Oman - Pakistan - Qatar - Reunion Island - Saudi Arabia - Seychelles - Somalia - Sri Lanka - Sudan - Tanzania - United Arab Emirates - Yemen

Further Reading

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