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Hamble, River

Your Comments: 9 Read or add your comments

Courtesy Flag

Flag, Red Ensign


Hamble Point S.Cardinal Buoy 50:50'.15N 001:18'.66W


Admiralty 2022, SC5600

Rules & Regulations

6 Knts Speed Limit, No Spinnakers, No Anchoring till Under the Bridges


Very Busy with Small Craft, Tricky manouvering in cross tides within marinas.

Tidal Data Times & Range

Double HW, First Approx Dover -0020 MHWS 4.5m MHWN 3.8m MLWN 1.9m MLWS 0.8m Tide tables:   (links)

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General Description

The Hamble River is a yachting mecca in particular for racing types.

It offers an interesting little village, Hamble le Rice, with various pubs and attractions for the visiting yachtsman, and mooring options as far as the eye can see.

 Although on first sight it might appear that the Hamble River is nothing more than a giant parking lot for yachts and small craft, it is quite attractive in its own right..... especially if you have a boat without a mast as you can escape the crowds by making your way under the fixed bridges into a different world.

The 80s TV series Howards Way was based around here and made the Jolly Sailor pub famous.

There is plenty of deep water for average size boats, and just about every Marine requirements can be met here, with five marinas (including three offerings from MDL), a couple of boatyards with moorings, and the harbour authority moorings themselves. In spite of the number of berths available it may still be difficult to secure somewhere in the height of season as resident boats fill up the vast majority of the 3000+ berths

Small-scale provisioning available in Hamble le Rice, and Tesco's at Bursledon for a major stock up.

This is not really a cruising area as the River consists of a narrow navigable channel leading through the numerous moorings and marinas as far as Bursledon Bridge. Anchoring is not allowed anywhere in the River (up to the bridges) and neither is flying spinnakers. Its attraction mainly lies in its central location and proximity to the cruising (and racing) grounds of the Solent and beyond.
... read more


From the Solent, the Hamble River is approached via Southampton Water, which has already been described in a separate article.

If approaching from the Southampton direction it is inadvisable to cut the corner and aim for the Easterly Cardinal beacon instead of starting your track as described in the following pilotage directions:

After locating and identifying the Hamble Point southerly Cardinal buoy (Q(6)+LFl.15s) and passing it close to port a generally northerly course is steered leaving the green beacons to starboard and the Easterly Cardinal post followed by red beacons to port. The narrow white section of the sectored light on the shore near Hamble Point (Dir.Oc(2).WRG.12s) shows the way in, and all the posts are lit. In the region of the green post number seven and the red post number six the channel swings slightly to the NNE, and the beacons and posts continue to show the way. A further sectored light on the shore at Warsash (Dir.Iso.WRG.6s) now shows the way with its narrow white sector. ... read more

Berthing, Mooring & Anchoring

Mooring opportunities abound for the visiting yachtsman or motorboater... even so at the height of the season it may be difficult to obtain a berth. ... read more

Your Ratings & Comments

Update March 2022
Written by Don Thomson 3 | 24th Mar 2022
I reviewed these notes in March 2022. The info re the Port Hamble fuel booking has been added to the text. A new raster chat of Swanwick Marina has been uploaded as has been an new image in the Gallery. Swanwick rejuvenation is now almost complete shore side and you can find out all about their improvements on their website.
1 of 1 people found this helpful
Port Hamble fuelling pontoon
Written by Tyro Sailor | 12th Sep 2021
Since the advent of the dreaded lurgy they're operating an appointment system, presumably to reduce crowding on the pontoon. Call them on channel 80 before you arrive and they'll fit you in. Since the river tends to be crowded it'd probably be best to do this well in advance.

Cheap it ain't.
Written by Don Thomson 3 | 10th Mar 2020
These notes were reviewed in March 2020. There are major changes to the layout of Swanwick Marina and water taxi is no longer under the purview of the Pink Ferry company. Prices have changed across the board and we have uploaded this year's UKHO chart.
2 of 2 people found this helpful
Written by Don Thomson | 19th Mar 2018
These notes were reviewed by Don in March of 2018. I have updated the prices and, where known, the facilities available. The charts have been updated for this year.
3 of 3 people found this helpful
Update Spring 2016
Written by dononshytalk | 9th Mar 2016
These notes were reviewed by Don in March 2016. Not much change and where known the prices have been updated for the 2016 season
1 of 1 people found this helpful
Eastlands Boatyard
Written by Offshore57 | 11th Aug 2015
This doesnt mention Eastlands Boat yard which is beyond the M27 bridge and out in the countryside....lovely serviced pontoons...good facilities and quiet.....thats where we are...beautiful spot....and .no masts...... :-)
2 of 2 people found this helpful
Warsash Sailing Club
Written by Bryant | 27th Jun 2014
"Hi Steve having just been in the Hamble, I found Warsash sailing club to be most hospitable ,having signed in the Commodore sought us out and we had a long friendly chat. We had showers there and food could be had at the club. Opening times are on their website."

2 of 2 people found this helpful
Update March 2014
Written by dononshytalk | 31st Mar 2014
These notes were updated in March 2014. As far as we can tell there have been no major changes from last year; some facilities have held their prices but most have gone up a touch.
2 of 2 people found this helpful
Update January 2013
Written by dononshytalk | 11th Jan 2013
The Hamble River Notes were updated by Don T on 11th January 2013. There have been no major changes here; The prices for the use of the visitors pontoons operated by the Harbour remain unchanged for 2013 whilst all the marinas have upped their prices a bit (pence per metre)
2 of 2 people found this helpful
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