Incorporating the Andaman Sea, Gulf of Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia… and more

Southeast Asia Pilot by Bill O’Leary & Andy Dowden
Racer MarinaSailing Yacht AsiaIMAGE asia

Across the Singapore Straits on the Indonesian island of Batam (about 12 miles), there are two marinas, which are often used by cruising yachts as a cheaper alternative to Singapore. Regular ferry services operate between Batam and Singapore from Harbour Front and Tanah Merah Ferry Terminals.

A RAFFLES MARINA 23 miles from Sisters Islands

RAFFLES MARINA. 1°20.643N, 103°38.081E

Famous ‘Raffles’, named after Sir Stanford, is a modern marina of international standard situated on the western tip of Singapore a half mile from the Tuas 2nd Link Bridge overpass. Raffles Marina at Tuas has 170 wet berths, haul-out facilities up to 70 tons and some provision for mega-yacht berthing. There is a clubhouse, restaurant, bars and reasonable hotel facilities ashore.

Approach through the western Johor Straits,leaving Merambong Island, Tanjong Pelepas and Forest City islands to port. Look for the masts and round to starboard at the breakwater lighthouse. Contact the marina office on VHF Ch.77 to be directed to a berth.

The marina is approximately 25 kilometres from the city with reasonable public transport connections.

www.rafflesmarina.com.sg

B PUTERI HARBOUR 28 miles from Sisters Islands

PUTERI HARBOUR. 01°25.132N, 103°39.517E

Malaysia’s newest marina, Puteri Harbour Iskandar, lies five miles northeast of the Second Link Bridge in the Straits of Johor. Part of a 688‑acre UEM Land Government Linked Company (GLC) residential and commercial real estate development, the three marinas will offer 300 berths, including space for 20 superyachts, when finished. At the time of going to print, 76 berths were operational, as well as the clubhouse, restaurants and full marina services for visiting yachts.

The 3,000-passengers-a-day CIQ ferry terminal is outside in the channel at the entrance and will offer daily fast ferry links to Batam, Indonesia.

The new Hotel Jen and a huge family theme park, including Puteri Harbour, Hello Kitty, Bob the Builder, Barney the Dinosaur and Thomas the Tank Engine opened to the public in 2014. Nearby Legoland opened in 2013 and has become the most visited theme park in Southeast Asia.

VHF Ch. 18, call ‘Puteri Harbour’ after passing Second Link Bridge. +607 530 2122. www.puteriharbour.com.my

Raffles Marina Singapore - Photo by Bill O’Leary
Raffles Marina Singapore - Photo by Bill O’Leary

C COUNTRY GARDEN DEVELOPMENT 32 miles from Sisters Islands

COUNTRY GARDEN DEVELOPMENT 01°27.859N, 103°43.483E

This new dozen-berth marina is near The Causeway end of the navigable Johor Strait, five miles northeast of Puteri Harbour entrance. From Puteri Harbour, follow the channel markers favouring the north (Malaysian) side passage, keeping Pulau Sarimbun, Heralu Rocks and Horseshoe Reef well to starboard.

At the time of writing there is a single 12-berth marina arm attached to the development’s all-tide sand beach. Possibly more for marketing and show than a real marina, we nevertheless saw international visiting yachts alongside. Ashore is the multi-high-rise development very close to JB town.

www.countrygardendangabay.com.my

D SENIBONG COVE 33 miles from Sisters Islands

SENIBONG COVE. 01°29.056N, 103°49.931E

The 50-berth Senibong Cove Marina is a feature of the Senibong Cove luxury waterfront residential development. It has been carved out of the mouth of the Lunchoo River.

The marina can accommodate boats up to 26 metres and has an average depth of 3 metres at LAT. From Pulau Ubin, motor to waypoint 1°28.681N, 103°49.742E to see the Sembahwang Shipyard on the Singapore side. On starboard past the floating mussel farms, follow the lateral red and green painted drums past the floating white fishing hut. Keep an eye out for the yacht masts to get your bearings. The breakwater is on port as is the small marina this side of the bridge. VHF Ch. 09. Marina office +607-382 0022 www.senibongcove.my

Puteri Harbour - photo by Bill O’Leary
Puteri Harbour - photo by Bill O’Leary

E MARINA COUNTRY CLUB 28 miles from Sisters Islands

MARINA COUNTRY CLUB. 01º24.937N, 103º 53.891E

Further up the Johor Straits, passing to the south of Pulau Ubin is the Punggol River, branching into the main island of Singapore. The marina is on the east bank of the river. There are 35 berths, maximum 20 metres, and full marina facilities including a travel lift. VHF Ch. 77. www.marinacountryclub.com.sg

G TANJONG BELUNGKOR 25 miles from Sisters Islands

TANJONG BELUNGKOR. 01°26.642N, 104°03.706E

North of Pulau Tekong, and eight miles from Changi Village, is the antiquated roll-on roll-off (RoRo) car ferry terminal with a small marina at Tanjong Belungkor. Daily ferry services run to and from the Malaysian-leased Changi Ferry Terminal on Singapore.

Both ferry terminals were built in the ‘80s and are equipped with hydraulic link-span bridges for RoRo ferry access. Touted as the eastern “3rd Link” connecting Singapore to Johor, Tanjong Belungkor is a full ISPS port with CIQ facilities and a few marina berths for yachts clearing in or out of Malaysia.

In the ‘90s Desaru Coast tourism developments stalled due to the Asian financial crisis. Coupled with the opening of Marina Bay Sands Casino, Belungkor’s ‘Cruise to Nowhere’ casino ships went out of business and the ferry service declined to just a few passengers per day.

Now, since the government’s recent development of theme parks, golf courses, luxury hotels and convention centres at Desaru Coast, there is renewed interest in the entire region. One of Desaru Coast’s main gateways will be Tanjong Belungkor’s RoRo Ferry service. Call on VHF Ch. 16 on arrival and stay on board your vessel until an official arrives at the dock.

H SEBANA COVE MARINA 26 miles from Sisters Islands

SEBANA COVE MARINA. 01°24.762N, 104°09.806E

The river entrance is past the Malaysian Naval Base and east of Pulau Tekong at 1°24.248N, 104°06.694E. The marina is nestled five miles up the shallow and not particularly well-buoyed Santi River. On the approach to the river mouth there is a sand bar extending from the north entrance. The mangrove channel has a minimum depth of approximately 2.2 metres at LAT.

The mangrove river itself has port and starboard buoys right up to the marina entrance. There are 100 berths and all the usual amenities of a modern marina, residential low-rise waterfront apartments and a golf course. VHF Ch. 71. +607 826 6688

www.sebanacoveresort.com

Sebana Cove Marina and Golf Club is poised to return to former glory as the Desaru Coast Government Linked Company projects come on line over the next two decades. There is currently a shuttle service to Tanjong Belungkor for the twice-daily ferry service to Singapore arriving at Changi Ferry Terminal.

Connectivity will continue to grow between Changi Ferry Pier and Tanjong Belungkor as services increase to cater for the mega-tourism projects on Desaru Coast and the oil refinery (RAPID), currently being constructed over 10 square kilometres of reclaimed land east of Pengarang.

I PENGILEHFERRYTERMINAL 19 miles from Sisters Islands

PENGILEH FERRY TERMINAL. 01°22.205N, 104°05.303E

This small government-run CIQ facility and ferry terminal is located near the navy training base in Pengerang district. Singapore’s extensive land reclamation south and west on Pulau Tekong adds five more miles to the well-worn Bumboat passage from Changi Village, making it a total of 10 miles.

From the southern point and cardinal mark lights of Pulau Tekong reclamation wall, head directly north for three miles into the Tanjong Pengelih marina facility, just south of the well-signed Malaysian Navy nase.

This is a popular entry point for Indonesian ferries from Batam and Bintang and for lower budget Singaporeans visiting Pengerang and Desaru Coast from Changi Village by Bumboat.

Immigration, Customs, Quarantine and Marine departments are open during office hours and private yachts are welcome at the tight 25-berth marina inside the covered ferry jetty. Call on entry VHF Ch. 16. Ashore is a small shop, taxis and – close behind the car park – are historical WWII Japanese gun turret sites cut into the base of the hill.

J ONE°15 MARINA CLUB 2 miles from Sisters Islands

ONE°15 MARINA CLUB. 01°14.637N, 103°50.446E

On the southeast of Sentosa Island and close to the Central Business District, ONE°15 Marina Club is within the integrated luxury residential development, Sentosa Cove. This multi-million dollar development has oceanfront properties and private berthing facilities.

The 204-berth ONE°15 Marina Club has full facilities. There is also provision for 10 purpose-built Mediterranean-mooring berths for visiting mega-yachts. There are many themed attractions such as Universal Studio and Resorts World on the island and Marina Bay Sands and Orchard Road are close.

This marina is only two miles south of the mandatory visiting yachts Western Immigration checkpoint at The Sisters islands. The narrow entrance in the breakwater can be tricky due to strong currents running across your approach course, especially at spring tides. VHF Ch. 77. www.one15marina.com

K MARINA AT KEPPEL BAY 3.5 miles from Sisters Islands

MARINA AT KEPPEL BAY. 01°15.905N, 103°48.661E

This marina on reclaimed Keppel Island is part of a multi-million dollar residential and leisure complex part funded by government. Its dogleg entrance is situated past the huge concrete breakwaters on the Singapore side just north of the western end of Sentosa Island.

Round the west end of Sentosa, keeping a good eye out for the fast ferries in and out of Harbour Front, before heading directly north into the entrance. The skyline is dominated by the architecturally significant ‘Reflections’ high-rise development looking like so many bent shards of upright crystal.

The marina is accessed from the mainland via a spectacular suspension bridge that changes colours every few minutes at night. This 150-berth city marina is home for many yachts belonging to the owners of the nearby luxury condos. There are no haul-out facilities, although visiting yachts are welcome. There are two world-class restaurants and a nightclub in the main building. It’s very close to Orchard Road and downtown Singapore. VHF Ch. 77. www.marinakeppelbay.com

RAPID at Pengarang

Departing east from Pengileh, keep well clear of the dredging hardware associated with the new refinery reclamation works. At the time of writing the Malaysian oil and gas company, Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas) has completed the first stage of land reclamation here for the Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development project (RAPID). The Pengerang Integrated Petroleum Complex (PIPC) is about 20,000 acres and will house oil refineries, naphtha crackers, petrochemical plants, a liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal and a regasification plant. When completed it will produce 14 million tons of petroleum and petrochemical products annually. No need to ask which industry drives growth in the Johor region...

L REPUBLIC OF SINGAPORE YACHT CLUB 7.5 miles from Sisters Islands

REPUBLIC OF SINGAPORE YACHT CLUB 01°17.651N, 103°45.672E

This marina lies in the Jurong Fairway inside Pulau Selayar. The entrance is just east of Pasir Panjang port terminal; the channel is busy and well buoyed. There are 168 standard berths ranging from 35ft to 70ft, 135 dry berths and a 140-metre-long outer wharf for larger yachts. The traffic in and out of Jurong Port can create uncomfortable rocking and rolling on the outer berths.

Call the marina on VHF Ch. 77 or call +65-6768 9233 at least six hours before arrival in order to complete marina formalities. Await confirmation that your berth is clear before proceeding to the berth. The marina is a popular club and has a pool, restaurants and accommodation with taxi links to the city and other parts of the island. www.rsyc.org.sg

Funtasy Island

01°07.807N, 103°52.789E

Funtasy Island is another new multi-island residential development north of Batam, and just 10 miles south of Harbour Front Singapore. The CIQ Ferry Terminal linking direct to Singapore is planned to open late in 2016 with a 140-berth world-class marina due in 2018.

Envisioned to be the world’s largest eco-theme park, Funtasy Island is spread over 328 hectares on six islets and will be multi-phased over the next 10 years. Amongst the many residential options will be elevated nature trails, aquaculture, shopping, dining and entertainment for everyone in the Wave Promenade. There’s a lot of references to playing with semi-captive dolphins in their marketing... www.funtasyisland.com

M TEE KAY MARINA 10.5 miles from Sisters Islands

TEE KAY MARINA. 01° 04.967N, 103° 56.132E

This marina is close to the Harris Hotel in the southwest of Sekupang Bay. It has 16 shoddy berths with many taken by local vessels. Four visitors’ berths are usually available short term with some very basic marina services. No power or running water here and a 20-minute ‘bemo’ ride to the main town on Batam.

N NONGSA POINT MARINA 16 miles from Sisters Islands

NONGSA POINT MARINA. 01°11.804N, 104°05.862E

This marina is on the northeastern tip of Batam and has 178 berths with full facilities. The Riau Yacht Club is based at the resort.

The Customs, Immigration and Sailing Permit application offices are a short ‘bemo’ ride away at the CIQ Nongsapura Ferry Terminal in the adjacent creek. Regular ferries run to and from Tanah Merah and the club has a restaurant, pool and some accommodations. VHF Ch. 6. www.nongsapointmarina.com

While every effort has been made to ensure that the information contained in this book is accurate, the charts of anchorages are based on personal experience and satellite imagery and are intended as a guide only. They should not be used for navigation. Please refer to Official Hydrographic Charts of the respective countries.

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