The Park’s Perimeter


 New Caledonia owns a vast maritime space which begins 12 nautical miles beyond the barrier reef and extends for as much as 200 nautical miles, or 1.3 million km2, the equivalent of three times the surface area covered by the waters bordering France. 

This perimeter is defined by the governmental decree which created the Natural Park of The Coral Sea on 23 April 2014.

Why This Specific Perimeter ?

The Perimeter was determined according to the objectives defined by New Caledonia.

Therefore, the deciding factor behind the decision was the taking into account of various kinds of elements:

  • physical (The surface area covered by New Caledonia’s maritime space),
  • biologic (preserve ecosystems, habitats, species),
  • social (participate in regional and international dynamics ),
  • economic (participate in the sustainable development of existing and future economic activities to meet tomorrow’s challenges.


The Natural Park’s borders are delimited :

to the West and South by Australia, to the North by the Salomon Islands, to the East by Vanuatu and Fiji.


Le navire Amborelle, Pierre Bachy, SCO
Amborella boat, Pierre Bachy, SCO.


Ile Surprise, Entrecasteaux, Pierre Bachy, SCO
Surprise IsIand, Entrecasteaux atolls, Pierre Bachy, SCO.

From Noumea, It would take two days to reach The Chesterfield Plateau by boat and one to reach Surprise Island, located on the d'Entrecasteaux reefs, with a boat similar to Amborella, whose average speed is 12 nots.


The Natural Park includes New Caledonia’s maritime space as well as inhabited islands (Entrecasteaux, Chesterfield, Walpole, Matthew, Hunter). Underneath this huge body of water, varied kinds of reliefs can be found: high-sea areas, a deep-sea trench, sea mounts, volcanic islands, probably some hydrothermal vents, coral reefs (including the Pristine reefs, some of the few which remain intact today).

Le Parc naturel d'est en ouest (profil bathymétrique), image des fonds sous marins - (c) Catherine Geoffray, Lionel Gardes - Agence des aires maritimes protégées.

Latest News

Surveying a reef in the Coral sea Marine Park ©Daniela Ceccarelli
15 May 2019

In April 2018, Parks Australia and James Cook University scientists began a three year program to monitor the health of some of Australia’s remotest and most pristine coral reefs in the Coral Sea Marine Park.

Entrecasteaux îlot Huon ©DAM-NC SPE
15 March 2019
Science environnement




A new five-year action plan for the Entrecasteaux Atolls, linked to the 2018-2022 natural park of the Coral sea management plan, replaces the existing management plan which concluded at the end of 2018.

Récif corallien, ©Francesca Benzoni IRD-Projet POST BLANCO
18 September 2018
Évènement environnement

The natural park of the Coral Sea now has 28,000 square kilometres (10,810 square miles) of reserves. Three decrees adopted Tuesday, august 14 by the government of New Caledonia define very precisely the outlines.