New Caledonia Ports of Entry and Customs Clearance
New Caledonia Ports of Entry
Yachts arriving from overseas or departing New Caledonia can only enter in Noumea and may not stop anywhere else within the territorial waters of New Caledonia before clearing into Noumea.
Clearance is only possible at the Visitors Wharf of Port Moselle Marina or Port Sud Marina.
You must fly the yellow Quarantine flag and the French courtesy flag on entering New Caledonia waters. The yellow flag must stay aloft until after you have finished all formalities.
Quarantine regulations are similar to New Zealand or Australia. A list of items that may be imported without special permission may be downloaded from New Caledonia quarantine here. Dogs and Cats are a MAJOR hassle aboard yachts. They require quarantine ashore and must have a veterinary health certificate from the last country visited and an application for importation submitted to quarantine before the yacht arrives. If a yacht with a pet aboard has been in a country that has rabies within the past 6 months it will not be allowed to enter. The yacht will have the same issues in Australia and New Zealand. To see why you do not want a pet aboard here is a link to the offical requirements (in both French and English).
Note: You can clear in with your yacht at anchor but you will need to go by dinghy into Port Moselle Marina to arrange to bring the port officials out to your yacht.
Superyachts should coordinate entry and clearances with Super Yacht Agent Noumea Ocean Services
Port Moselle, Noumea -
entry to Noumea Harbour 22° 17.111S 166° 25.350E
P.O. Box 2960 - 98846 Nouméa
Tel. (687) 27 71 97
Fax : (687) 27 71 29
website (French and some English)
Call Port Moselle Control on VHF channel 67 on approach to Noumea. Give them the name of your boat, the estimated time of arrival, and the overall length of the boat. Five minutes before arriving at the entrance to the marina call again to confirm your arrival.
The Port Moselle radio operator speaks English and is available from 07:00 to 18:00 every day. The business hours of the marina office (the Capitainerie) are:
- 08:00 to 12:00 13:30 to 17:15 Monday to Friday
- 08:00 to 12:00 Saturday
- 08:00 to 10:00 Sunday and holidays
The marina will assign your yacht a berth on the Visitors wharf which is the last wharf to starboard as you enter the marina. It is marked with a yellow cross at the end. Even numbered slips are on the west side of the wharf. A staff member will come to the end of the wharf and guide you to your berth.
The captain is expected to immediately go to the Marina's office with the boat's offical papers, including the clearance from your previous port, fill out the arrival declaration papers and then return to the boat. All crew and guests must stay aboard until clearance formalities are completed.
The marina office will fax the documents to the appropriate officals. Officials from immigration, customs and quarantine will board your vessel. The captain should check with the marina office after two hours if no officer has arrived.
If you arrive in Noumea at night you can anchor within the proper anchorage areas in Baie de Moselle outside the breakwater to the marina - take care on approach as there are many yachts without lights anchored in the bay.
Departure is only possible from Noumea. Before departure from Noumea the captain must go to the customs office with the documents received on arrival and notify Customs of the time of departure. The captain will then go to the harbour master's office to clear with immigration and the harbour master.
Departing from one of the other ports must be approved by Customs and Immigration at least 15 days before leaving Noumea. Permission may be granted to stop for one day at Maré, Lifou, or Ouvea if you apply at Customs and Immigration 15 days before departure (see below for direct quote from the customs website). The problem is that Customs and Immigration must both agree and this is sometimes difficult to achieve.
Foreign yachts are not allowed to stop anywhere after they have cleared out and must depart the territorial waters directly.
Any questions should be addressed to the:
Direction Regionale des Douanes de Nouvelle Caledonie
1 rue de la Republique
98845 NOUMEA CEDWX
Prior to departure from New Caledonia, Customs clearance is required. The vessel must leave French territorial waters, as soon as the departure formalities have been carried out. Therefore, stopovers during the journey to foreign destinations are strictly forbidden.
Exceptionally, stops at one of the Loyalties islands (Maré, Lifou or Ouvea) or the Isle of Pines can be authorized for the following destination : Vanuatu, Fiji, or Wallis and Futuna. To benefit from this authorization, an application form must be filled out at least fifteen days (15 days) before the date of departure with the Customs Subdivision department - (phone : 26 53 15). The stop at one of the above islands should not exceed 24 hours and is also subject to the agreement of immigration authorities.
Failure to comply with of one of the above mentioned provisions is subject to severe penalties. Reporting is required by law and non-compliance is an offence.
The free movement of vessels in the territorial waters does not have the effect of sparing them from other Customs controls, especially regarding the right of access to vessels provided by articles 41 and 42 of the Customs Code of New Caledonia.