Get out on the water: boating in Brisbane
Winter isn’t coming. It never truly does in Brisbane, so make the most of Brisbane’s 283 sunny days per year and soak up the great outdoors. Take in beautiful scenery, sip on a glass of champagne, cook up a storm, throw a line in and just sit back and relax or even learn a new skill on a day out on the water while sailing, cruising or fishing.
Learn to sail
Ever wanted to learn to sail? Here’s your chance. There are a number of sailing schools around Brisbane including Queensland Cruising Yacht Club, Set2Sail Sailing School, Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron, Southern Cross Yachting and South Brisbane Sailing Club. You’ll be navigating the stormy seas before you know it.
Hire a sail boat
For the experienced sailors, hire a boat from South Brisbane Sailing Club and take to the water for a day on the Brisbane River. Out on Brisbane’s Bayside, there’s WAGS (not WAGs as we know it, but rather Wednesday Afternoon Go Sailing) for the enthusiastic yachters. It’s free. If you don’t have a boat or aren’t keen to commit, sailors can join a crew three times before having to register. In Shorncliffe, the Queensland Cruising Yacht Club’s sailing club meets on the first and third Saturday of each month to take to the seas.
Let someone else hoist the sails
If you’re more of the "sit back with a glass of champagne in hand while someone steers the boat for you" type, there are plenty of options for you. Cruise the beautiful Moreton Bay Marine Park with Robinson Cruises, Sail Away Yacht Charter or Southern Cross Yachting. Set sail from Cleveland aboard the Aristocrat with Brisbane Yacht Charters and see if you can spot dolphins, turtles or dugongs swimming past.
Explore the River City on one of the many cruises on offer. Jump on board and see the sights of Brisbane on River City Cruises, Brisbane Cruises, Mirimar Cruises, Brisbane Star Cruises or the Kookaburra Queen paddle steamer. Further north, discover the beautiful Moreton Bay and its abundance of marine life with Aria Cruises or See Moreton.
No boat? No worries. Hire a BBQ boat and spend the day out on the water with just about everything you need: shade, a barbecue, toilet and a dedicated captain’s chair. The best part? You don’t need a licence to hire one. Cruise through the waters of Pumicestone Passage thanks to Bribie Passage Kiosk & Boat Hire, or hire from Coochie Boat Hire and explore the island. If you’re just looking to do a spot of fishing Coochie Boat Hire also hire out tinnies, as do Lake Moogerah Caravan Park.
If you’re keen to take your boat out on the water, there’s a few key ramps you can unload at. For a full list, visit the Brisbane City Council website, but key boat ramps near Brisbane include Greene Park at Wynnum, Curlew Park at Sandgate, Jindalee Boat Ramp Park and the Graceville Riverside Parklands.
If you’re heading to Lake Somerset, Atkinson or Wivenhoe, it’s worth planning ahead and checking the boating rules and restrictions so you don’t get caught out. There’s a few boat ramps to choose from if you’re going to Lake Somerset, including The Spit, Lake Somerset Holiday Park and Camp Somerset. Just be mindful that you will require a boating permit. If you’re heading to Lake Atkinson, boating permits are not required and you can unload at Atkinson Dam Waterfront Caravan Park or the Lake Atkinson Day Use Area. At Lake Wivenhoe, unload the boat at Hamon Cove Day Use Area or Logan’s Inlet Day Use Area between 6am and 6pm. A boating permit is required if you’re planning to go out on Wivenhoe.
Hire a fishing vessel
For the keen fishermen, pack up your esky and head out on to the water. Hire a fishing boat from Boab Boat Hire at Redcliffe or Bribie Island, Bribie Island Boat Charters, Bribie Island Boat Hire, Bribie Passage and Kiosk Hire, Coochie Boat Hire, Lake Moogerah Caravan Park or Moreton Bay Hire Boats.
Fishing boats are allowed on Lake Atkinson and fishing from the shore is permitted. Permits aren’t required here. At Lake Wivenhoe and Lake Somerset, fishing boats are allowed but permits are required and shoreline fishing is limited. Fishing options at Lake Samsonvale are limited to designated areas onshore, and fishing on the water is only allowed with permits obtained from the local council.
Charter boat. What charter boat?
Let someone else do the driving and go out on a fishing charter. There’s loads to choose from in the Brisbane area, including Incredible Charters, Outlaw Charters, Big Cat & Tom Cat Charters, Frenzy Charters Offshore Fishing and Phantom Charters.
Check protected marine zones
If you are going out fishing, just be sure to check the fishing laws before you throw the line in. You can find them here.