The first ever houseboat holiday I went on was on a boat that when we danced too vigorously, felt like it would fall a part. But please don’t let that put you off spending your time on the Murray River in a floating caravan, it is one of the most unique ways to travel. It is just as unique to the Murray River as cruising in a pirate ship is to the Dalmatian Coast in Croatia, with similarly amazing sunsets, serenity and guaranteed great times- costumes optional.
I have spent the last seven New Years Eve weeks (bar one) soaking up the Vitamin D that my office denies me throughout the year on a house that is a boat. I have also spent a handful of weekends here and there floating up or downstream and when I step aboard any houseboat now, if definitely feels like home to me.
There is something magical about cruising along the River, watching the scenery change from dinosaur aged cliffs, lush River Red Gum forests to that cute cellar door tucked away up the bank that you would never see from the road.
And the sunsets….I am of the opinion (which is usually correct) that they are far more interesting, inspiring and forever unique than those of the small Greek Island, Santorini. Don’t get me wrong, Santorini’s sunsets are spectacular, but you will never see the same sunset twice on the River.
What I love most about houseboat holidays is that you can have them any time of the year
Although the peak of summer (like those experienced over the New Year period) is the best time to work on your wakeboarding skills and tan (15 minutes is all it takes), spending time on a houseboat is brilliant all year around. In winter it’s like camping but being able to take your house, heater and not as many layers of clothing with you. In spring and autumn you can avoid burning to a complete crisp like you would lying on scorching hot pool tiles in Granada and possibly fish all day without drinking the esky dry!
Through my extensive houseboating (yes it’s a real word, to me) I have perfected trip planning to a fine art and consider myself- Level Pro. We have all manner of creature comforts on board (cue coffee machine) and we eat and drink like Kings (and also play cards like “Kings”). It really is a form of glamping….but in my case, I still shower about the same amount as if I was camping…….
What I love most about houseboat holidays isn’t just the peace and tranquillity of listening to the whistling kites at dusk.
It’s a chance to completely relax and reconnect with yourself, friends and family. A time to get creative with the camera lens, paintbrush or invent new games like “Gettaball!”. Dinner time is spent eating together (getting ready for another round of cards!). And when the deck is 50ºC plus and you cannot sit outside
and you’re slightly hungover, together you create a luxury lounge room out of blankets and have OC and Housos marathons.
Ready to plan your houseboat holiday?
So far I have had the pleasure of hiring from the great people below
Green & Gold Houseboats– Waikerie
Golden Leisure Houseboats– Kingston on Murray
This link to Destination Riverland will help you find your floating home away from home