Murray Princess 7 Night Murraylands & Wildlife Cruise - Friday Departures (Outside Cabin)
Discover the dramatic South Australian outback on a cruise along Australia’s great inland highway. This seven night cruise is a unique historic and nature based adventure through ancient gorges and red gum forests, past towering sandstone cliffs and exploring historic ports, local vineyards and nature trails. Enjoy leisurely cruising 320 kilometres of the heart of the great Murray River between Blanchetown and Murray Bridge and take in the breath-taking Riverland. This cruise also includes a complimentary coach tour to the famous Barossa and its wineries.
DURATION/OPERATES: 8 days / 7 nights, departs selected Fridays
DEPARTS: Day 1: Selected Fridays - Cruise Departs Mannum at 4:30pm (Boarding from 2:30pm)
Complimentary Coach Transfers depart Adelaide CBD from 1:20pm
RETURNS: Day 8: The following Friday – Cruise returns to Mannum at 9.00am
Complimentary Coach Transfers arrive back in Adelaide at approx. 11am – 11:30am or Adelaide Airport 12pm.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Please phone Murray Princess reservations on 1300 729 938 to reconfirm your pick up and drop off locations 48 hours prior to travelling.
7 NIGHT MURRAYLANDS & WILDLIFE CRUISE HIGHLIGHTS:
- Depart historic Mannum
- Free time to explore the township of Murray Bridge or take a tour of the historic Roundhouse
- Optional Monarto Zoo Wildlife Tour on Saturday departing Murray Bridge (additional cost)
- Guided nature walk at Salt Bush Flat & see big river gorges & towering sandstone cliffs
- Riverland food & wine tasting (A tasting of 2 Reds & 2 White wines & local produce)
- Get up close to the river birdlife on board the ‘Dragon-Fly’ flat-bottomed boat
- Complimentary Barossa Wine & Heritage tour
- Cruise through Lock #1 at Blanchetown
- Vineyard tour and cellar door tasting at Burk Salter Boutique Winery
- Guided walking tour of the Swan Reach township and visit the Swan Reach Museum (Gold coin donation at entry)
- Big Bend towering sandstone cliffs
- Sunnydale Woolshed Show and Native Wildlife Shelter
- Riverside Aussie Barbecue
- Optional Nocturnal Tour at Sunnydale in a comfortable purpose built cart (additional cost)
- Optional Bush Tucker Breakfast (additional cost)
- Ngaut Ngaut Aboriginal Reserve archaeological sites
- Scenic tender boat ride
- Spectacular Captain’s Buffet Dinner and Dance
SPECIAL EVENT CRUISES
CHRISTMAS IN JULY CRUISES (Departs 3, 10 24 July 2020)
BONUS INCLUSIONS: Christmas lunch & dinner, festivities and entertainment
SAMPLE ITINERARY: (7 Night Murraylands & Wildlife Cruise - departs selected Fridays)
Friday: Mid-afternoon the PS Murray Princess departs historic Mannum, birthplace of the Murray River trade and communication, and heads downriver while you enjoy pre-dinner drinks and a Welcome Dinner. As we cruise under floodlight to our overnight mooring at Mundurra you may see nocturnal wildlife on the riverbank. Watch for kangaroos, hairy-nosed wombats, tortoises, egrets and many other species. Our on-board entertainer provides music for the night owls.
Saturday: In 1879 the first bridge to span the Murray River was built at Edwards Crossing, which quickly became the bustling township of Murray Bridge. After a hearty breakfast, choose to join a guided tour of the town’s historic landmarks and local attractions or go on a wildlife tour at Monarto Zoo (additional cost).
Those who choose to experience Monarto Zoo will arrive back on board the Murray Princess in time for lunch then join us in the Sturt Dining Room for a special presentation on the bounty of food and wine produced in the Riverland.
This afternoon, we continue our journey upriver and tonight we moor at Salt Bush Flat. After dinner, enjoy being entertained by our talented crew.
Sunday: All ashore for the guided nature walk where your guide will share the secrets of the local flora and fauna. It’s a great way to get in a little exercise before Murray Princess departs and cruises downriver.
Near Fromms Landing, we turn and head downriver to River View Lodge (near Piggy Flat / Coolcha) where your discovery vessel awaits for a wildlife tour. Travelling in small, personalised groups, we explore the maze of the river and the birdlife is amazing. Watch for darters, herons and egrets feeding along the river’s muddy edges.
The afternoon offers a choice of bocce or fishing challenges before joining the Captain and Officers for pre-dinner drinks and the Captain's Dinner and Dance.
Monday: We head back to Mannum and after breakfast you may choose to discover Australia’s richest and best known wine making region – the Barossa. Depart Mannum by coach to the famous Barossa, the beautiful ‘valley of the vine’ and the source of about a quarter of Australia’s world-renowned wines. You will visit Jacob’s Creek Visitor Centre, Maggie Beer’s Farm Shop, enjoy a 2 course lunch at Lambert Estate & visit the beautiful Barossa Chateau before returning to the Murray Princess at Mannum. Those not wishing to join the Barossa tour have free time in the township in Mannum before a mid-afternoon departure for our overnight mooring at Caurnamont. Our on-board entertainer provides music for the night owls.
Tuesday: Daybreak and time for the keen photographers to be out to capture the special light and the morning movement of wildlife. Prolific birdlife includes pelicans, wrens and swans. Enjoy a leisurely morning and lunch cruising upriver to Blanchetown through one of 13 locks which maintain the flow and levels of water.
This afternoon we moor opposite to the township of Blanchetown for our overnight anchorage. As the last rays of the sun fade, we join a guided tour of Burk Salter vineyards and surrounding vineyard and enjoy wine tasting at the cellar door which is fitted out with beautiful red gum bars. After dinner, join us for all the fun and excitement, and participate in our “Murray River Cup”.
Wednesday: After breakfast cruise downriver to picturesque Swan Reach. The town was first settled in the 1850s and was originally the largest of five sheep and cattle stations in the area and is now home to native flower and fruit growers.
The original Swan Reach homestead is now the Swan Reach Hotel where you can enjoy an ale or cappuccino overlooking the Murray River (own expense). Join the guided walking tour and visit the Swan Reach Museum (gold coin donation at entry). Cruise downriver after lunch and take in the tranquillity as the landscape slides by or enjoy a lifestyle and info-cruising presentation.
When we arrive at Sunnydale, it’s all ashore for the Woolshed Show as we recreate typical Australian woolshed history. Later we visit the Native Wildlife Shelter where some of South Australia’s most interesting native animals are cared for. And then of course, there is the great Aussie Barbecue – cooked and served in a bush setting on the banks of the mighty Murray River. An optional Nocturnal tour (additional cost) in a comfortable purpose built cart is available after dinner where you may see kangaroos, wombats, foxes, bats and owls.
Thursday: After an optional Bush Tucker Breakfast (additional cost) or a bush walk with the Captain, we slowly cruise downriver past magnificent cliffs scoured by the river over millions of years. We reach Ngaut Ngaut Aboriginal Reserve, one of Australia’s most significant archaeological sites, for a step back in time – tens of thousands of years – for a guided boardwalk tour to view ancient rock carvings and to learn about aboriginal history in the area.
We return to the vessel to cruise downriver to Younghusband. Along the way, adventure seekers can also take a scenic tender boat ride. Tonight the Captain and his officers host a spectacular Farewell Captain’s Buffet Dinner. Dress up and dance, if you wish.
Friday: We leave Younghusband and head back to Mannum. After breakfast we reluctantly say farewell as we arrive at the Mannum Wharf.
PLEASE NOTE: This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change without notice.
OPTIONAL MONARTO ZOO WILDLIFE TOUR (additional cost):
On arrival at Murray Bridge on Saturday (from 9.00am), a coach will be waiting to transfer you to Monarto Zoo, one of the largest open-range zoos in the world spanning more than 1,500 hectares and home to more than 50 species of exotic and native mammals, birds and reptiles. You will travel through part of the zoo and your guide will show you many of the zoos inhabitants including Giraffe, Eland, Zebra, White Rhinoceros, Cheetah, Lions, Hyena and Wild Dogs. After the tour, you will return to Murray Bridge and re-board the Murray Princess in time for lunch at 11.25am.
OPTIONAL BAROSSA WINE & HERITAGE TOUR (complimentary):
Discover Australia’s richest and best known wine making region – the Barossa. Depart Mannum by coach to the famous Barossa, the beautiful ‘valley of the vine’ and the source of about a quarter of Australia’s world-renowned wines.
Depart Mannum, and travel into the famous Barossa, Australia’s richest and best known wine making region. Your first stop is at Jacob’s Creek Visitor Centre, where you will enjoy morning tea, followed by a structured tasting of five wines.
Next visit Maggie Beer’s Farm Shop, and learn about Maggie and her story, as well as the history behind the Farm. Enjoy a short cooking demonstration, and taste a range of her produce, including any new products that are in development.
Lunch is a two course gourmet feast at Lambert Estate, including a shared platter incorporating fresh regional produce available in season. Pair this with a glass of wine (own cost), and take in the magnificent outlook from the deck of this popular vineyard.
Your final stop is the stunningly beautiful Chateau Barossa, which houses what is considered to be one of Australia’s most significant collections of 19th Century porcelain. There’s time to tour the gallery or take a self- guided rose garden tour, and wine tasting is available for those interested, subject to time available.
Sit back, relax and enjoy the scenery as you travel back through the towns of Williamstown and Mt Pleasant. View the Murrayland flats from atop Palmer hill as you descend down into Mannum where you will reboard the Murray Princess.