River Activities

Australia’s longest river, the mighty Murray River, offers endless activities. Cast a line and try and hook a Murray cod, paddle a canoe, try waterskiing or hop on a paddle steamer for a riverboat tour. Whether you’re looking for an adrenalin rush, or a relaxing afternoon on the river, you’ll find it on the Murray.

Murray River Houseboats

One of the best ways to experience the Murray River is by hiring a houseboat. By day, admire the ever-changing landscapes as you sail along the river, and then moor up for the evening and enjoy dinner on the deck before falling asleep under the stars.

No license is required to drive a houseboat, and you will receive a full briefing on how to safely operate the boat before you depart. Houseboat hire is available from riverside towns such as WentworthMilduraDeniliquin and the twin towns of Echuca Moama and Yarrawonga-Mulwala.

The Murray River, Bundalong


Try your hand at catching a Murray cod - the largest exclusively freshwater fish in Australia, and one of the largest in the world. There are great fishing spots all over The Murray region, including the Five Rivers Fishing Trail, which encompasses the Murrumbidgee, Lachlan, Wakool, Edward and Murray rivers.

More fishing can be found on the Edward River near Deniliquin, Lake Hume near Albury and Lake Mulwala. Check out the events calendar for river festivals and fishing competitions such as the annual Yamaha Cod Classic in Lake Mulwala, Australia’s richest freshwater fishing tournament.

Scenic sunset over Lake Mulwala, Mulwala in the Murray region


Watersports fans will love the Murray, with a plethora of activities on offer. The river is a fantastic place to try waterskiing and wakeboarding, and lessons and hire gear are available. If you prefer to watch, the Southern 80, Robinvale 80 and Mildura 100 pro waterskiing events take place each year.

For something gentler, head out on a canoe or kayak. Canoe the Murray in Albury and Moontongue Eco Adventures at Wentworth both offer tours. The Ramsar-listed wetlands of the Murray Valley and Barmah national parks, where the world’s largest river red gum forests sit, are also spectacular paddling sites. Traverse the Edward River canoe and kayak trail or join Kingfisher Cruises in the Barmah wetlands, which are brimming with birdlife.

Paddlesteamer Emmylou cruising along the Murray River near Echuca-Moama, The Murray

Ride a paddle steamer

The twin towns of Echuca and Moama, found on either side of the Murray River are known as Australia’s paddle-steamer capital, and are the perfect place to experience a paddle steamer. Join a relaxing lunch cruise on the PS Emmylou, the star of the TV series All the Rivers Run. You can also take a steam-driven riverboat tour in Mulwala on the Cumberoona. Please note that boats depart from the Victorian side of the river.

NSW Swimming safety

Swimming safety information 

NSW has a wide range of wonderful swimming options including beaches, ocean pools, harbourside pools, lakes, rivers, and swimming holes at the bottom of waterfalls. However to ensure maximum safety and enjoyment, swimmers should follow this general advice:

Look for patrolled beaches (this is where lifesavers are on duty; you will see red and yellow flags that indicate this). You should always swim between the red and yellow flags as they mark the safest place to swim.

Never swim alone at night, or under the influence of alcohol, or directly after a meal.

Always check water depth, as rocks or trees could be submerged, and never run and dive into the water from a beach, riverbank or other surface.

Check for signs regarding advice on water conditions at your chosen swimming spot and at any natural swimming hole. Always proceed with caution as surfaces could be slippery and water conditions may not be immediately apparent; particularly if the area has recently experienced heavy rain or flooding.

Pay attention to the advice of the lifesavers and safety signs. Visit SharkSmart to understand any potential risks in the area you are swimming. 

Great River Activities Experiences in the Murray