good houseboating locales in NSW

May 29th, 2002, 02:32 PM
  #1  
Katie
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good houseboating locales in NSW

aloha! we will be making our 3rd trip to Oz (NSW)this December and want to take in a houseboat trip this time. I've checked into a few sites (Hawksbury River), but was hoping someone out there can steer us to the cleanest river or lake with the most amenities, like beautiful scenery and good waterfront pubs to tie up to (hey, we're on vacation!). also best houseboat hire companies. thanks in advance!
 
May 29th, 2002, 02:35 PM
  #2  
Katie
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me again: I forgot to mention that we'd be open to locales in Vic as well(for houseboat adventure) as we will also be there and Tasmania. We also have a 9 year old daughter, so hoping for beautiful spot with recreation and wildlife........thanks so much!
 
May 30th, 2002, 08:37 AM
  #3  
Paul S
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Hi Katie,

I am not sure if your going to be in the vicinity of Port Stephens but I can thoroughly recommend houseboating in this very beautiful location. Good pubs to visit like the one at Tea Gardens on your way up to the Myall Lakes National Park. Lots of wildlife and a great place for kids.

A word of caution on bookings, Port Stephens is a very popular destination at this time of year and you would be well advised to book ahead.

The link is:

http://www.houseboatsonportstephens.com.au/brochure/pmenu.htm

There is so much to do in Port Stephens you will be amazed, below is a link for the local tourism organisation and a couple of Port Stephens sites of interest:

http://www.portstephens-multimedia.com.au/

http://www.portstephens.org.au/

http://www.cruisein.com.au

If you get a chance, I can personally recommend the Sand Safari Quad Bike Tours. This was a brilliant adventure tour on the sand dunes of Stockton Beach.

Hope this helps
 
May 31st, 2002, 03:16 AM
  #4  
John
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NSW Hawkesbury/Pittwater
Port Stephens
Myall Lakes National Park

Vic Lakes Entrance/Metung
Lake Eildon
Murray River
 
May 31st, 2002, 10:46 PM
  #5  
Aussie
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I have been on houseboats along the Murray River (N.S.W./Vic. ) & Lakes Entrance/Metung/Paynesville....which are known as the Gippsland Lakes.
I have visited the house boats at Eildon.(vic.)
As for the best of the above ?????
The Murray river has some great places to stop & do walks through the bush,good towns to stop at depending on where you catch your houseboat. The Murray runs down to South Australia, I have been from Echuca which is a lovely tourist town.
Gippsland Lakes is a very large lake system,pubs in every town that yoiu can walk to from the mooring, to us it was like being at sea, very easy to get around from town to town & very good instructions from the boat hirers.The boats here are like boats up to 12. birth... the ones on the Murray & Eildon are what we call house boats....square boxes on pontoons..sorry I'm being a bit harsh there but I don't quite know the way to discribe them.
Eildon would be the last on my list of 3 in Victoria.
If you are here before xmas okay but after you may have trouble booking anything. Good luck.
 
Jun 7th, 2002, 11:59 AM
  #6  
Katie
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Thank you to all who replied to my posting; Paul S., your info was very valuable and I've contacted the companies you recommended; I also saw your vacation itinerary on another posting for the Port Stephens area and my husband just wants to copy it! you obviously know how to make the most of your vacation! I, on the other hand am still conflicted whether to go to NSW or to VIC, but we did camp our way down on a previous trip and did go to Lakes Entrance and was told by some locals that the lake was polluted....??? true? anybody have any thoughts on the most pristine lake to houseboat on? I'm more of an ocean and river swimmer myself, so hoping for clear, clean water. The Murray looks very muddy from pictures. Anybody have any thoughts on this? thanks for all your help.
 
Jun 8th, 2002, 04:38 AM
  #7  
Aussie
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Hi Katie,
Lakes Entrance has been know to get a Blue green algie from time to time, this poisons the fish & can be very very stincky, however I have been on houseboats 3 times in this area & lucky to have lovely waters.
As you are coming in December & it is the start of summer this could be a problem.
The most cleanest waters are in Tasmania Franklin River beautiful but I don't think there are any boats for hire there... I stand to be corrected on this though.
 
Jun 8th, 2002, 03:09 PM
  #8  
Katie
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Dear Aussie,
Thank you for the info. We are going to Tasmania this trip and did a search for houseboating there but only turned up two boats,by private party, no official boat hire co. and they weren't really houseboats....must be too chilly to swim down there? anyway, we have reservations for both Christmas and March-April and are still trying to pick the best time....we know Christmas time will be crowded and almost double the prices, but have never spent Christmas in another country and think it would be beautiful. anyway thanks again for your help. aloha
 
Jun 8th, 2002, 04:17 PM
  #9  
Paul S
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Hi Katie,

I too am an ocean swimmer, I don't care for swimming in fresh water lakes and rivers. They can be fairly muddy in my opinion especially the Murray, you would not catch me swimming in the Murray.

You will find the Myall Lakes are tidal and the waters of Port Stephens are very clean, if you are into diving there is a nice marine reserve just off Little Beach that has been mapped out with little underwater signs informing the diver of what there is to see in the vicinity of the sign.

I honestly believe you will not be disappointed with Port Stephens as a vacation location.

I have recommended house boating in this location to many people who have gone and cannot wait to go back to do it again. My wife and I love the area so much we bought a holiday house there.

I hope where ever you end up going that you have a wonderful holiday.

Cheers

Paul
 
Jun 10th, 2002, 10:26 PM
  #10  
Katie
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Dear Paul S.,
Again, thanks Paul for your info. Of course, Myall lakes are tidal, I should've figured that out, in any case you just made our minds up for us and that is where we will houseboat. many thanks! One last question: have you been there during the Christmas/New Year's season? Is it too hot and muggy and crazily crowded with boats or is it pleasant? I think I remember from another posting of yours that you live in Alice Springs....so I imagine any place seems cooler..? would you recommend going in March? is the water warm enuf in March to swim in? sorry for so many questions, but we live in Hawaii and are rather spoiled by the warm ocean and my wimpy hubby thinks it too cold to swim in March....??? thanks in advance for any advice. aloha, Katie
 
Jun 14th, 2002, 03:25 AM
  #11  
Paul S
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Hi Katie,

Sorry it has taken me so long to reply but my wife is about to have our first child and she is down in Adelaide so I have been commuting every 4 days back and forth to Adelaide from Alice Springs by car.

Anyway to answer your questions:

Yes I have been in Port Stephens at every time of the year. At Xmas you will find the population of the area triples and very hard to find accommodation unless booked in advance. The waterways are twice as big as Sydney harbour and much less boat traffic so you will not be crowded out except for maybe a couple of places like Fame Cove which is a pretty little sheltered bay that is very popular with overnight boaties. The Moonshadow cruises used to go into Fame Cove on their dinner cruise but now they have a much larger vessel they can no longer go into it.

How about a compromise on your dates and start your holiday on the 1st of February. That way your assured of warm weather and good swimming but the school holdays have finished so the people numbers will be lower. The water will still be warm.

A bonus for you is that your houseboat hire should be cheaper after the school holidays have finished.

I may be living in Alice Springs but I grew up in Port Stephens and I know the waterways there like the back of my hand. I am sure you will have a great time.

However if you decide that you want to go in say the 1st March then you will be in the middle of the Interclub Game Fishing competion which is held each year for two weeks. What does that have to do with anything I hear you say, well it means that this is the time of year that the warm water comes closest to the coast and brings with it the big game fish.

Along with the Game Fishing tournament there is also the annual Prawn Festival
held at Tea Gardens which is on the Myall River on the way up to the Myall Lakes.

You wont find it as humid as Hawaii or for that matter anywhere on the Queensland coast at Xmas time but it can get up to the mid thirties celcius and on rare occasions into the low forties but the nights are generally quite pleasant around the mid twenties.

If you have any more specific questions or indeed need help with anything at Port Stephens then please feel free to e-mail me direct.

I have to say I love being in Port Stephens at Xmas the place is just alive if you know what I mean? I also like the New Years fireworks over the bay and from our house you can see all the towns letting off their fireworks at midnight.

Cheers

Paul
 
Jun 19th, 2002, 10:01 PM
  #12  
Katie
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Aloha Paul,
Congratulations on your baby! Get ready for the deepest love you've ever experienced! I can't believe you took the time to answer my post, but thank you very much for doing so. My husband is pulling for the Xmas holiday, so thats when we'll go and Im sure it will be the best ever! thanks for all of your help! cheers, Katie
 
Jun 21st, 2002, 05:10 AM
  #13  
Paul S
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Hi Katie,

Only to pleased to be of service to you and your hubby. Hope you both have a great time, make sure you book now so as not to be disappointed. I am not kidding about the population tripling in number.

We wont be there this Xmas due to using up to much vacation time when our little one to be arrives on the scene. We are hoping to get there around April for the Easter holidays.

If you get a chance I can vouch for the Sand Safari Quad Bike adventure tour, it is a real blast. No license is needed and they give you a 30 min instructional lesson on how to go up and down the sand dunes. Our friends and ourselves thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

Cheers

Paul
 
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