Clarence Cruising - a mariner's guide to the Clarence River

We acknowledge the Bundjalung, Gumbaynggirr and Yaegl people, past and present. We honour and respect their unique connection to this waterway.

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Ahoy! Casting Off - What you'll find inside 

First things first! This guide does not provide visiting mariners with detailed navigation of the Clarence River, and we highly recommend you get your hands on the appropriate electronic charts, or Chart No. 222 of the Clarence River and Approaches, for accurate depths of the river system.

This guide is a more expansive affair – combining practical information on marinas, jetties, pontoons, provisioning, hazards, bridges and the like – with some general recommendations about places you may wish to step ashore and explore, as you make your way up this glorious river.

We’ll resist the temptation to bang on about how epic the Clarence River is, and what it has to offer, because it’s this guide’s job to facilitate that discovery for yourself. Simply put, the broad waters of the lower river are ideal for sailing, boating or fishing, and the upper reaches and the many tributaries offer excellent canoeing, kayaking and fishing opportunities.

We hope you find this guide helpful and enjoyable, and welcome to the Clarence River, we’re thrilled you’re here!

If you want a hardcopy of the Cruising Guide delivered to your house or boat door. Send us your name and address and we'll get one in the mail.

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Stepping ashore …. get to know more about our river towns

Iluka

Iluka is the quieter, more tucked-away of these two seaside sentinels, with a population about a third of Yamba’s. And it is this relative quietude that makes Iluka unique and special in many ways.

Yamba

This may sound odd, but Yamba is one of those weirdly magical places that fills you with a sense of nostalgia and homecoming – even if it’s your first time here.

Harwood

Who says the Clarence Valley doesn’t have a Hilton?! Bring on the refreshments.

Maclean

As you may notice about 30 seconds after stepping ashore, Maclean is proudly Scottish but this charming, much-loved town is also defined by something else unique and special.

Lawrence

Many of us choose the life aquatic as a way to escape the hustle and bustle, in which case, you will find the riverside village of Lawrence

Brushgrove

May we introduce you to Brushgrove! With a population nudging the 200 mark, Brushgrove is as friendly and delightful as it gets.

Ulmarra

Geographically speaking, Ulmarra might be quite a compact river town, but it’s not uncommon for visitors to lose their bearings and become untethered from life’s usual concerns when immersed in Ulmarra’s quaint galleries and stores

Grafton

Few regional cities are more elegant than Grafton. Its broad avenues are home to historic buildings, an abundance of trees, classic country pubs and a glorious floral festival.

BEYOND ...

The Clarence Canoe & Kayak Trail is the longest whitewater trail in Australia.

For more information about spending time navigating the Clarence's river head to ... Maritime.nsw.gov.au

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Part of me wants to keep it a secret, part of me wants to tell everyone I know, the Clarence Valley is paradise.

ADRIANNA BUTLER