Posted on: 2 June 2016Share
The Australian weather and the outdoor living that it affords is the envy of much of the world. While the residents of many countries around the world are trapped inside for much of the year, you can easily take advantage of the great outdoors almost all year round. The oceans, lakes, and waterways of Australia really need to be taken advantage of. If you've never been a boat person, it's time to look at three of the easiest (and best) ways to take to the water.
Be Your Own Skipper
If the idea of a leisurely boat cruise doesn't much appeal to you, what about taking command of your own vessel? There are a number of options when it comes to self-drive boat hire, and you can opt for a yacht or even a small motor cruiser (and everything inbetween). This allows you to plot your own course for the duration of the hire, provided you operate the vessel within permitted areas. If you do not have a marine or boating licence, this does not mean that you cannot hire your own boat. You will simply need to be accompanied by a duly licensed person from the boat hire company. Having a licensed supervisor on board the vessel still allows you to freely operate the boat, and the idea is that the licensed supervisor will be able to take control in the unlikely event of an emergency. Being your own skipper is infinitely more exciting that being a passive passenger. If there is a large group of you, you can even take turns being the skipper.
Get a group of friends together with everyone paying a share, and you can easily hire a fairly luxurious houseboat. You wouldn't necessarily want to go cruising, but it can be more fun to moor the boat somewhere on a lake and have an unforgettable water-based party. Be mindful of drinking alcohol when operating a vessel, so it's best to have an overnight hire. You can enjoy yourselves all you want, and can then safely (and legally) return the vessel the following day. Do not rent a houseboat that is only offered on an accommodation website, as these are often permanently moored, and you will not be able to move it to your preferred location. A member of your party will need to have a marine or boating licence.
This is the easiest option for boat-based fun. There are a huge number of party cruises operating on the rivers and harbours of major Australian cities, so you have a number to choose from. Some of them offer a more refined evening, such as the glorious old paddle steamer that hosts a dinner buffet as it cruises up and down the Brisbane River. There are many more "party" choices though, and some of these cruises are like a nightclub on the water. It's something that needs to be experienced at least once, just to contrast the party atmosphere below decks with the ability to sit on the deck and enjoy the remarkable view.
When living in Australia, it would almost be silly to not take advantage of all the boating activities on offer. Fortunately there are many to choose from, even for those who don't have much experience on the water.