The Gippsland Lakes waterways are some of the state’s most beautiful and accessible for boaties of all levels. Covering 420 square kilometres from Sale to Lakes Entrance, the jewel-like waters are mostly clear and calm.
The lakes system has numerous secluded inlets and waterways to explore either by boat, kayak or canoe. It includes Lake Wellington, Lake Victoria and Lake King, and also the lower reaches of the Latrobe, Nicholson, Mitchell and Tambo rivers. And the man made ocean access at Lakes Entrance provides safe passage to Bass Strait and ocean going pursuits.
While many towns sit alongside the Gippsland Lakes, affording quick and easy access, large parts of the system are accessible only by boat. What better way to enjoy the secluded parts of the lakes than by boat – a wonderful way to truly get away.
A great place to start planning your boating holiday is to visit the Gippsland Ports website. There you will find a large amount of information about boat ramps, jetties, public facilities, conditions and safety. There are also maps and guides available online:
Located at the western end of the lakes system, Sale is Melbourne’s gateway to the Gippsland Lakes. Sitting on the banks of the Thomson River and including the Sale Common Wetlands, the recently redeveloped Port of Sale boasts extensive berthing facilities, boardwalks and promenade, picnic and BBQ areas, boat ramp, mooring and fishing platforms. The marina precinct showcases Victoria’s newest Performing Arts Centre, restaurants, the Gippsland Regional Art Gallery – Sale, and nearby facilities include accommodation, museums, retail and more. The perfect place to start your boating adventure.
Paynesville is known as the boating capital of Victoria and is surrounded by the largest lakes system in the southern hemisphere. For boating enthusiasts of all levels it is a must-visit destination. Most times of the year Paynesville is quiet and peaceful, and the queues to the boat ramps are short. There is plenty of parking for trailers and boats at the Paynesville foreshore.
Nearby is sleepy Raymond Island – a quick jaunt by ferry, or take a dingy across the calm waters. The great thing about Paynesville is you can moor your boat at a jetty in the heart of town, just metres from the town’s cafes and shops.
If Paynesville is the boating capital of the Gippsland Lakes then Captain’s Cove is the place to stay for boating fans. The lovely apartments have their own jetties and direct waterfront access.
You can also enjoy the facilities at the resort including a swimming pool and tennis court.
If you don’t have your own vessel you can hire one from Captain’s Cove and discover the lakes either by boat or kayak.
Beautifully appointed apartments snake their way around the waters edge to give you the ultimate coastal holiday with the best access to the beautiful Gippsland Lakes.
Bairnsdale is at the heart of the Gippsland Lakes – an ideal location for exploring the lakes and rivers of the region. Spanning the Mitchell River, Bairnsdale is a large town offering a plethora of accommodation, shops and boating facilities. While most people will choose to stay at one of the close coastal towns, Bairnsdale is the central hub.
Nicholson & Swan Reach
Nicholson and Swan Reach sit in the Twin Rivers region of the Gippsland Lakes. While these towns are smaller than their coastal counterparts, of Paynesville or Metung, they are also quieter and make the perfect place to hire, or launch a boat to explore the Nicholson and Tambo rivers or to do a spot of fishing.
Metung and nearby Nungurner are also great launch spots for your boating odyssey. If you’ve ever been to Metung and sat on the foreshore and watched the boats come in around dinner time you can be fairly certain they are heading to the popular Metung Hotel. Many parts of the Gippsland Lakes system are only accessible by boat. About 1100 people call Metung home with the population swelling during the warmer months. The best boat launching ramp is at Shaving Point which has deep-water entry and a finger jetty alongside it. Visit the website for more information including a guide to fishing in the area.
The Moorings at Metung is right in the centre of the small village overlooking Bancroft Bay, and provides waterfront access for boating enthusiasts. The Moorings has its own marina with access for a variety of vessels. Step out of our luxurious apartment and be in your boat within moments – you won’t want to explore the lakes any other way.
Situated at the end of Ninety Mile Beach, where the Gippsland Lakes meets the ocean, Lakes Entrance has it all. One of Victoria’s premier holiday destinations, Lakes Entrance offers an abundance of accommodation venues, services and facilities, not to mention the variety of water sports.