There are a variety of anchorages for vessels destined for Cowes:
Vessels 61 metres LOA and above - Western and Eastern Solent:
from the west – Western Solent, in the vicinity of Saltmead Buoy.
from the east – St Helen’s Roads.
Please note: If the above anchorages are unsuitable owing to weather conditions, then vessels of 48 metres to 150 metres LOA may embark a Cowes Pilot and proceed to anchor in Cowes Roads (Triangle) to await entry into Cowes Harbour.
Vessels less than 150 metres LOA:
C1 anchorage (see diagram above), 1.15 cables (0.115 nautical miles) southeast of Prince Consort Buoy.
Please note: Vessels should avoid anchoring within 150 metres of the Trinity House mooring buoy (Fl.Y.5secs) owing to ground tackle extending up to 125m east and west of the buoy.
Vessels less than 75 metre LOA:
C2 anchorage (see diagram above), subject to fair weather, (0.17 nautical miles) northwest of the Shrape Beacon.
Vessels over 150 metres LOA:
See cruise ship Anchorage and Passenger Landing Points page.
Nature of seabed:
Sand/shingle – moderate holding ground.
Vessels are cautioned to keep clear of the ‘No Anchorage’ area, as charted, to the north of Old Castle Point.
Strong tides may be experience in Cowes Roads with rates up to 3.5 knots on a spring ebb tide.
Anchorages at Cowes. Download a PDF of diagram.