Christmas Island, a dot in the Indian Ocean, located 2600km north-west of Perth, Western Australia and 360km south of Java.

If you love nature, you will love Christmas Island! 63% is National Park containing species of flora & fauna found nowhere else in the world! It is estimated over 80,000 seabirds nest here annually.

But probably the most noticeable local is the Red Crab with over 60 million of these vivid red creatures living on the forest floor.

Exploring the waters surrounding the island is also an experience not to be missed.

Myriads of tropical fish swim by in only metres of water, while a short distance away, divers can cruise the drop-off which plunges dramatically into the abyss and swim with the visiting whalesharks in the season.



Christmas Island Sights

Christmas Island has many natural attractions that will suit visitors of all ages and levels of fitness. Here are just a sample of some of the beautiful places to visit on your Christmas Island Adventure, all within walking distance from the Cruise Ship disembarkation area.

Flying Fish Cove

Adjacent to the port area and the main mooring sites, the Flying Fish Cove is located at the base of the Settlement area and is home to the Kampong (Malay for village) and the Mosque. The Cove is suitable for both swimming and snorkelling, although it is advisable to wear reef shoes at all times to protect feet from sharp coral and stone fish.

It offers many great shore dives and has some of the best diversity and abundance of tropical fish anywhere. The Cove also provides some of the most protected ocean swimming on the island. There are picnic facilities, BBQ's (Halal and non-Halal), public toilets and showers. The island's main boat launching facility is also located here.

The "Cove" is also a great location to join the locals watching the sun setting and slow down to Christmas Island pace.

Tai Jin House

Located just up the hill beyond Flying Fish Cove, this is the original home of the Administrator of the Island - affectionately known locally as "Buck House". The expansive gardens are used for community events and provide excellent views overlooking Flying Fish Cove.

A little way past Tai Jin House is the naval installed 1941gun and buildings that were used to defend the Cove during the second World War.

Exploring A little further afield:

The Grotto

Track – suitable for 2WD

Approximately five minutes drive from Settlement located just before the golf course. A mini cave with mix of sea and fresh water pool that is refreshing on hot days or a romantic spot with candles at night. The wave motion through narrow openings provides interesting sound effects.

Margaret Knoll

Track – suitable for 2WD

Located approximately 20 minutes drive from Settlement, on the plateau beyond the airport. There are great views along the east coast of the island from the look out where you can watch the Frigatebirds, tropicbirds and pigeons gliding through the air or Brown Boobies. Also good for seeing fruit bats (flying foxes) at dusk.

The Dales

Track – 4WD needed

On the west coast and one of the few areas on the island having permanent flowing water and permanent wet areas. Permanent water provides a habitat for Blue crabs and there are populations readily observable. There are two marked trails one leading to Hugh Waterfall and the other to Anderson's Dale where access maybe made to the shoreline.

Hugh’s Waterfall

Track - 4WD needed

A medium walk (some uphill) with a boardwalk for most of the way, with interpretive signage offering information on the flora and fauna of the Island. It is well worth it to be greeted by the cool waters of Hugh’s waterfall at the end.

Martin Point

Track – 4WD needed

Approximately 30 minutes drive from Settlement, Martin Point is reached by a short walk from the carpark at the end of the track. A viewing platform on the edge of the Seacliff provides opportunity to photograph and view the extend on the western coast. A popular site to watch the sun set over the coast and waves breaking over the fringing reef and shore platforms. There is a shady gazebo with a picnic table on site. Robber Crabs are attracted by the smell of food and come out to investigate but don't worry they will not bite.


Track – 4WD needed

Approximately 45 minutes drive from Settlement, located on the western side of the island. A spectacular display of nature - the Blowholes are a series of rock formations that hiss and spurt water when it is forced through from the ocean swell. There is a viewing platform for your safety, however we cannot guarantee that you will not get wet!

South Point

Track – suitable for 2WD

Approximately 30 minute drive along straight mine haulage roads, South Point is the site of the major early settlement at the peak of the phosphate mining days. Little evidence remains of this, except for two Chinese temples and a derelict, overgrown railway station. The larger temple has impressive ocean views and is the focus of annual firewalking ceremonies, pictured on the walls.

Territory Day Park

Track – suitable for 2WD

An excellent picnic spot, with BBQ and playground equipment. The Nursery lookout, located in the park, is a great place from which to view Flying Fish Cove, the Kampong and Settlement and to watch boating and shipping operations in the port below. It is also an excellent site to watch seabirds flying past on air currents. A Nature Trail offers the opportunity to explore and learn about the unique Christmas Island rainforest. This short circuit walk has signs to inform you about the rainforest environment. Parks Australia's nursery, where plants for the Rainforest Rehabilitation Program are grown, is situated adjacent to the Park.

The Pink House

Track – suitable for 2WD

The Pink House is an Education and Research Station located in the middle of the plateau rainforest. It serves as a base for scientific researches and education programs. Visitors are welcome to use the grounds for picnics. The building was at one time housing for railway workers during the period the South Point railway was in operation. There are BBQ facilities, a Nature Trial with interpretive signs and planting's of representative island plant species in the grounds.

LB4 Lookout

Track – suitable for 2WD

A panoramic view over the north coast towards Settlement from an on-site gazebo. Surrounded by recent planting's in the Rainforest Rehabilitation Program. Abbott's Boobies may be sighted flying to and from nearby nest sites.



Working hours

Customs Officers

As required, daylight hours only

Australian Customs Service (ACS)

+61 8 9164 7228

+61 429 215 125

Quarantine Officials

As required, daylight hours only

Australian Quarantine & Inspection Service (AQIS)

+61 8 9164 7456

+61 439 215 456

Immigration Officials

As required, during daylight hours only.  The immigration function is carried out by the Australian Customs Service

Customs and immigration

Passenger Manifest

Required 96 hours prior to scheduled arrival of vessel

Embarking Passenger Manifest

Not applicable at this time

Crew Manifest

Required 96 hours prior to scheduled arrival of vessel

Stores List

Not applicable

Customs Declaration (Ship)

Required 96 hours prior to scheduled arrival of vessel

Customs Declaration (Crew)

Required 96 hours prior to scheduled arrival of vessel

Forms Comments

Please refer to the Australian Customs Service website @ for full requirements for cruise vessels

Customs Declaration (Passengers)

Required for all disembarking passengers for day trips at Christmas Island

Port health

Health Declaration

Medical Services are available through the Indian Ocean Territories Health Service (IOTHS) who offer a wide range of medical and ancillary health srvices.  The hospital is well equipped and offers outpatient GP service and 24 hour emergency car.  Contact the IOTHS on +61 8 9164 8333 or +61 8 9164 8338


Ground Operations

The following Ground Handlers are CDU members and supply superior ground handling services throughout Australia.

Port Approach


Arrival Departure Restrictions Cruise ship arrivals will only be allowed during daylight hours.  Departures are acceptable after dark.
Tidal Variation Negligible : approximately 1 metre
Prevailing Currents The weather and sea conditions are subject to rapid change, irrespective of season.  It is advisable to seek advice from the agent/Marine Pilot prior to arrival.
Prevailing Winds
Length of Channel n/a
Depth of Channel n/a
Comments The Port of Christmas Island is a natural coastal open roadstead port.  The island's coastline is surrounded by fringing coral reefs and has rapid shoaling as there is virtually no coastal shelf; the sea plummets to great depths from very close to the shorline.  From March to October there are prevailing SE Trade winds, vigorous at times; from October to March are NW monsoon winds and rough seas.

Depth and breadth of turning basin

Location of Turning Basin n/a
Diameter n/a
Depth n/a
Other points n/a


Pilotage Name Indian Ocean Stevedores (Captain Ray Dodkin)
Pilotage Address PO Box 125, Christmas Island, WA  6798
Pilotage Phone No +61 8 9164 7770
Pilotage Fax No +61 8 9164 7722
Is Pilotage Compulsory Yes, pilotage is mandatory for all vessels over 150 gross tonnage (GT)
Position of Pilot Pickup 1 nautical mile west of Smith Point
Distance from Berth < 1 nautical mile
Pilot VHF Channel VHF Ch 16 for initial calling thence VHF Ch 10
Description of Pilot Boat 2 x 11m mooring barges and 1 x 11m pilot/lines vessel
Pilot Hours As required, but during dalight hours only for arrivals
Pilotage Fees $1,100 inbound / $1,100 outbound


Port Services

Shipping agents

The following CDU members offer superior service throughout the region.

Port Operations/Service

Indian Ocean Stevedores
Address PO Box 125, Christmas Island, WA, 6798
Telephone n+61 8 9164 7770
24 hour contact Captain Ray Dodkin - Marine Pilot - +61 488 297 618
Fax +61 8 9164 7722
Website n/a
Services Pilotage; Agency; Stevedoring
Complete Stevedoring & Freight Services
Address PO Box 20, Christmas Island, WA, 6798
Telephone +61 8 9164 8454
24 hour contact Joseph Loh - Director - +61 439 215 082
Fax +61 8 9164 8456
Website n/a
Services Stevedoring; Agency
Information on other Shipping Agents can be obtained from the Port Authority (see Port Operator).


Are tugs available Two (2) x 11m mooring barges (6 tonne BP) and one (1) x 11m lines vessel (5 tonne BP)
Are tugs compulsory Yes
Tug operator`s name Complete Stevedoring & Freight Services
Tug operator`s fax +618 9164 8456
Ship or tug lines Ship lines
Tug working hours As required


Working hours As required

Port officials


David Robertson, Harbourmaster/Port Manager
+61 439 215 225
Neil McNeill, Maintenance Manager/Port Security Officer
+61 439 215 222

Working hours Port officials are on call 24/7
Overtime n/a



Stevedoring on Christmas Island is carried out by non-exclusive licence holders. 

Stevedoring Name Complete Stevedoring & Freight Services
Stevedoring Address PO Box 20, Christmas Island, WA, 6798
Stevedoring Telephone +61 8 9164 8454
Stevedoring Fax +61 8 9164 8456
Working Hours As required


Christmas Island is stored purely for local needs with limited quantities and range of supplies.  It would therefore only be in cases of extreme emergency that stores would be supplied to ships.  Contact the agent for a list of local providers.


Telephones n/a
How many n/a
Notice required n/a



Bunkering is NOT available at Christmas Island for cruise vessels

Fuel Grades n/a
Quay or barge n/a
Suppliers n/a



Fresh water is NOT available at Christmas Island for cruise vessels

Fresh Water n/a
Exquay or barge n/a
No of hoses n/a
Capacity per hose/hour n/a
Tonnes per hour guaranteed n/a
Type of connect n/a
Connect size in inches n/a

Dry garbage


Dry garbage disposal is NOT available at Christmas Island for cruise vessels

Dry garbage n/a
Barge alongside n/a
Containers available n/a
Size of containers n/a
Number available n/a
Incineration or dump n/a
Facilities to transport n/a

Wet garbage


Wet garbage and/or sludge disposal is/are NOT available at Christmas Island for cruise vessels

Wet garbage n/a
Ship or shore pump n/a
Sludge disposal n/a
Sludge details n/a


Port Charges n/a
Repair facilities

Nearest dry dock


Cirebon, West Java, Indonesia

Length Not known
Maximum Tonnage  
Divers Available Yes, local dive operators are available at Christmas Island.  Contact the agent for further information.
Engineering facilities Yes, limited local engineering facilities are available at Christmas Island.  Contact the agent for further information.


Dredging undertaken n/a
Dredging when n/a


Port Operator

Not applicable; there are no land backed quays, wharves, piers etc to accommodate commercial vessels in the Port of Christmas Island.

Port operator

Name Christmas Island Port
On behalf of the Department of Regional Australia, Regional Development and Local Government
Address PO Box 445, Christmas Island, WA, 6798
Telephone +61 8 9164 8434
Facsimile +61 8 9164 8435
Web Site Not applicable
Email Address

Berth (Mooring Set) details



The moorning set at Smith Point was designed to accommodate cruise vessels up to the following parameters:

Length (LOA) of Vessel : 223 metres

Beam of Vessel : 28.2 metres

Air Draft of Vessel : 30 metres

Maximum draft 7.5 metres
Tidal variation Negligible; approximately 1.0 metre
Berth length Not applicable
Guaranteed berthing for cruise ships No guarantee for berthing is given due to the vararies of the sea and weather conditions at Christmas Island.  Scheduled visits of cruise vessels to Christmas Island will generally be programmed around competing commercial vessels or vice versa
Are other ships able to dock Not applicable
Cargo ships at dock Not applicable
Security fences  

Nearest ports

Australia Dampier, Western Australia
Nearest Overseas Port Cilicap (Chilichap) Central Java, Indonesia



Terminal facilities

Terminal Building n/a
Meet and Greet Facilities n/a
Toilet Facilities n/a
Telephones n/a
Availability of Maps and/or Brochures n/a
Souvenir Shopping n/a
Money Exchange n/a
Is the US Dollar Accepted? n/a


Closest Airport to Pier n/a
Distance to Airport n/a
Transport to Airport n/a
Can Passengers Walk to Town n/a
Drive Time from Pier to Shuttle Stop n/a
Distance from Pier to Town Centre n/a
Are Shuttle Buses Necessary n/a
Suggested Shuttle Stop in Town n/a
Availability of Taxis at Pier n/a
Availability of Public Transport at Pier n/a
Other Forms of Transport at Pier n/a

Tour buses

Distance from Ship to Tour Buses n/a
What is the Normal Coach Capacity n/a
Are Tour Buses Air Conditioned n/a
Are Refreshments Provided on Buses n/a
Are Cold Towels Provided on Buses n/a
Are Step Stools Provided on Buses n/a



Tourism operators in Western Australia:

Tourism operators