Indian Food, Vegetables, Fruits, and Places
Indian Food, Vegetables, Fruits, and Places

St Mary’s Island

St. Mary’s Islands

St. Mary’s Islands

St. Mary’s Island, also known as Coconut Island and Thonespar island, is a group of four small islands in the Arabian sea at a distance of 6km from Malpe beach in Udupi District in the Karnataka state of India, can be reached by the only by boats. They are known for their distinctive geological formation of columnar basaltic lava.

a Motor boat riding towards st. Mary's island
a Motorboat riding towards st. Mary’s island

Scientific studies indicate that the basalt of Saint Marys was formed by a sub-aerial subvolcanic activity because at that time Madagascar( now an independent Country) was attached to India. The rifting of Madagascar took place around 88 million years ago. ( this information is a reference to, relative fall in sea level in parts of south Karnataka Coast by Mr. K. R. Subramanya).

Quickly Jump to:

» Key Information for Reaching St. Mary’s Island.
» St. Mary’s Island Geology.
» St. Mary’s Island’s Name Legend.
» St. Mary’s Island Topography and Geography.
» St. Mary’s Island and its role in Geotourism in India.
» How to reach St. Mary’s Island, Malpe beach, Udupi.

Key Information for Reaching St. Mary’s Island.

  1. Boats from Malpe Fishing Harbor, as well as Gandhi Square beach, starts from morning 8:00 am and closes by 3:00 pm.
  2. The last boat from St. Mary’s Island for return closes by 5:00 pm.
  3. Visitors not allowed between 1st June to 30th September every year because of Monsoons hide tide. and also during Cyclones.
  4. Entry to St. Mary’s island is free.
  5. The boating charge to Visit St. Mary’s island is Rs 300 per person.
Entrance of St. Mary's Island, Malpe
The entrance of St. Mary’s Island, Malpe

St. Mary’s Island Geology:

The Columnar Basaltic Lava Rocks form usually between 5 to 8 sided columns, popularly called laminar, and its height varies from 3 feet to 20 feet. In the year 2001 CE this was considered by the Geological Survey of India and classified these islands into National Geological Monument. These rocks at St. Mary’s formed in laminar lava are having an acid composition revealed only after the scientific studies.

columnar Basaltic Lava Rocks at St.Mary's Island
columnar Basaltic Lava Rocks at St.Mary’s Island

St. Mary’s Island’s Name Legend.

As per Folklore in the year 1498 CE, the Vasco da Gama a famous sailor accredited for the discovery of Sea Route to India had halted at st. mary’s islands on his journey from Portugal (now a country in Europe), had fixed a Jesus cross on this island and named it “O Padrão de Santa Maria” (dedicated to the Mother Mary) before continuing his journey further down towards the sea. Hence the name st. mary’s island is derived from the Portuguese word “O Padrão de Santa Maria”.

St. Mary’s Island Topography and Geography.

The Northernmost island of the four islands at St. Mary’s island has basaltic rock formation in a hexagonal form, unique in India, these islands cover an area around 500 meters in length and width of 100 meters. Because of the small size of these islands, there is no habitation but there are few shops opens in the morning and closes by evening. These four islands of st. marys are parallel to the coast at Malpe gives a hint about the formation of the west coast of India.

Largest Island at St. Mary's
Largest Island at St. Mary’s

St. Mary’s Island and its role in Geo tourism in India.

The island of St. Mary’s is one of the four Geological monuments in the State of Karnataka and one among the 26 Geological Monuments in Entire India, and it is one of the most important sites for “Geo Tourism” in India.

Coconut lagoon a hotel at St. Mary's Island
Coconut lagoon a hotel at St. Mary’s Island

How to reach St. Mary’s Island, Malpe beach, Udupi.

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Video Malpe Beach boat ride to St. Mary’s island and back to Malpe Beach by boat watch here.

 

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