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Western And Eastern Coastal Plains of India

Coastal plains are a crucial topic of geography in UPSC preparation. In today’s article, we will discuss about The Coastal Plains of India (the western and eastern coastal plains) in detail. It includes the features of coastal plains, geographical location, and the difference between them. The Coastal Plains of India is not only important from the exam point of view but is also essential to understanding the geographical structure of India. In this article, all the important information related to coastal plains has been presented in a simple and concise form, so that you can understand and remember it easily.

What is The Coastal Plains?

Before knowing about the coastal plains of India, it is important for us to know what a coastal plain is? Coastal plains are flat, low-lying areas near the sea, known as coastal plains. Coastal plains are separated from the rest of the interior by surrounding landforms such as mountains. They are formed by the deposition of sediments carried by rivers and streams as they empty into the sea, and these plains generally extend inland to varying distances from the coastline.

Coastal Plains of India Map

Using a map is extremely helpful in understanding the Southern Coastal Plains of India. However, it can be explained without a map as well. The coastal plains of India are divided into two main parts: the Western Coastal Plains and the Eastern Coastal Plains.

Western Coastal Plains

  • Kutch Coast: It starts from the Kutch region of Gujarat.
  • Kathiawar Coast: Moving south from Kutch, this coast extends to Kathiawar.
  • Konkan Coast: Covers the region from Mumbai to Goa.
  • Goa Coast: Covers the Goa region.
  • Malabar Coast: Starting from Karnataka and extends to Kanyakumari in Kerala.



Eastern Coastal Plains

  • Utkal Coast: It starts from the region of Odisha.
  • Andhra Coast: Moving south from Odisha, this coast extends to Andhra Pradesh.
  • Coromandel Coast: Covers the coastal region of Tamil Nadu and extends to the southern part of Andhra Pradesh.


Coastal Plains of India

India is a peninsular country which means it is surrounded by land on three sides. The main coastal plains in India extend to 7516.6 km in the west and east, India’s coastline touches 13 states and union territories. There are two types of coastal plains in India:

  • The Western Coastal Plains of India
  • The Eastern Coastal Plains of India

Western Coastal Plains of India

The Western Coastal Plain is located in many major cities of India such as it is spread from Gujarat, Karnataka, Goa and Maharashtra in the north to Kerala in the south. The Western Coastal Plain is spread from Rann of Kutch (Gujarat) in the north to Kanyakumari (Kerala) in the south. The length of the Western Coastal Plain extends from north to south to 1500 kilometers and its width is from 10 to 25 kilometers. Parts of the western coastal plain are divided into different regions, such as Kutch and Kathiawar coast in Gujarat, Konkan coast in Maharashtra, Goan coast and Malabar coast in Karnataka and Kerala respectively.

Kachchh and Kathiawar coast in Gujarat

The coasts of Kachchh and Kathiawar were shaped by the sediment deposits carried by the Indus River. During the monsoon season, Kachchh transforms into a region partly submerged under shallow water. It’s divided into the Great Rann to the north and the Little Rann to the east.

Konkan coast in Maharashtra

The Konkan coast stretches from Daman in the north to Goa in the south. This region is known for its cultivation of rice and cashew, which are the primary agricultural crops grown here.

Goan coast in Karnataka

The Kannada coast, extending from Marmagaon to Mangalore, spans a significant stretch along the western coastline of India. It is approximately 225km long.

Malabar coast in Karnataka and Kerala

The Malabar Coast, stretching from Mangalore to Kanyakumari, is relatively broad. This region includes parallel lagoons along the coastline of southern Kerala. It spans approximately 500 kilometers between Mangalore and Kanyakumari.

Eastern Coastal Plains of India

The Eastern Coastal Plain stretches from West Bengal in the north to Tamil Nadu in the south, passing through Andhra Pradesh and Odisha. This vast area encompasses the deltas of major rivers like Mahanadi, Krishna, Godavari and Kaveri. Parts of the Eastern Coastal Plain are divided into different regions, such as the Utkal coast in Odisha, Andhra coast in Andhra Pradesh, and Coromandel coast in Tamil Nadu respectively.

Utkal Coast in Odisha

The Utkal Plain covers the coastal region of Odisha, including the vast Mahanadi delta. The region is also home to the famous Chilika Lake.

Andhra coast in Andhra Pradesh

The Andhra Plain lies south of the Utkal Plain and stretches along the Andhra coast between Kolleru Lake and Pulicat Lake. It forms a basin area for the Krishna and Godavari rivers.

Coromandel coast in Tamil Nadu

The Coromandel Coast stretches for a distance of about 675 km between Pulicat Lake and Kanyakumari in Tamil Nadu. The most important feature of this plain is the Cauvery Delta where the plain is 130 km wide.

Significance of Coastal Plains of India

The importance of India’s coastal plains lies in several aspects. These regions are not only the hubs of trade and commerce but also hold a variety of economic and environmental significance. Taking together all these points, it is clear that the coastal plains of India are not only economically important but are also extremely important from the environmental and social point of view. Let’s take a look at the various aspects of these regions:

Trade and Employment

  • Ports and Trade: There are several major and minor ports located along the Indian coastlines, which are the main hubs of trade. These ports not only promote international trade but also provide employment opportunities to the locals.
  • Fishing: Fishing is an important occupation in coastal areas. It is not only a major source of employment for the locals but also plays a vital role in India’s food security.

Agriculture and Land Fertility

  • Fertile Land: The land in the coastal plains is extremely fertile, making them ideal for farming. The fertile land here is suitable for cultivating a variety of crops.

Environment and Ecosystem

  • Rich Ecosystem: A variety of ecosystems are found in the coastal plains, including mangroves, coral reefs, estuaries, and lagoons. These ecosystems play an important role in preserving biodiversity.
  • Mineral Resources: Mineral resources such as salt, monazite, mineral oil and gas are found in coastal areas. These areas are also likely to have large reserves of mineral oil, which can be important in meeting the energy needs of the country.

Community Life

  • Marine Life: The lives of communities living in coastal areas depend mainly on the sea. Occupations such as fishing, seaweed collection and tourism are an integral part of their lives.

Difference Between Eastern and Western Coastal Plains

The western and eastern coastal plains of India, sharing coastlines with the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal respectively, exhibit unique variations in geography, climate and agriculture. Due to the marked difference in the location and direction of the two coastal plains, their conditions are also contrasting. Following are the main differences between the two and how these can be useful in the exam.

Feature Western Coastal Plains Eastern Coastal Plains
Geographical Extent Stretching from Gujarat to Kerala along the Arabian Sea Extends from Odisha to Tamil Nadu along the Bay of Bengal
Topography Narrower compared to the Eastern Coastal Plains Wider compared to the Western Coastal Plains
Water Bodies Rivers form estuaries along this coast Rivers form wide deltas in this region
Rainfall Receives a high amount of rain predominantly from the southwest monsoons Receives rains from both northeast and southwest monsoons
Terrain Features Intersected by mountain ridges Generally a level surface, conducive to agriculture except for the Malabar Coast

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Which is the longest coastal plains of India?

Gujarat has the longest coastline in India.

How many coastal plains are there in India?

There are two types of coastal plains in India: Eastern Coastal Plains of India. Western Coastal Plains of India.

What are the 9 coastlines of India?

The 9 coastlines of India are Gujarat, Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and West Bengal.

Which is the shortest coastal in India?

the shortest coastal in India is Goa.

Which is the largest coastal plain in India?

The Bombay Coast has largest are coastal plains.

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