River Murray Reserve

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River Murray Reserve

The Murray River is part of an Aboriginal cultural landscape. Parks Victoria respects the deep and continuing connection that Traditional Owners have to these lands and waters, and we recognise their ongoing role in caring for Country. 

Parks and reserves along the majestic Murray River protect significant Aboriginal cultural heritage, towering river red gums, sandy beaches, colourful red cliffs, diverse permanent and seasonal wetlands and a rich array of wildlife.  

From its source in the Australian Alps, the Murray River twists and turns through alpine grasslands, rugged mountains, and rolling farmland before flowing into Lake Hume. On its way, it passes Burrowa-Pine Mountain National Park, Mount Lawson and Mount Granya State Parks and the River Murray Reserve, changing from a clear mountain stream with gravel bars to the iconic Murray River of the floodplains.  

Below Lake Hume, the Murray meanders down through gentle hills and on to extensive floodplains supporting River Red Gum forests and countless lakes and wetlands. The Barmah and Gunbower Forests, Kerang Lakes, and Hattah Lakes, are internationally significant RAMSAR wetlands, renowned for their waterbirds and other wildlife. 

The river becomes wider and shallower as it passes through Mallee bushland, providing an oasis for plants and wildlife in this semi-arid landscape. As it approaches Mildura, it cuts through dramatic red cliffs before spilling out into the wetlands of Kings Billabong and Merbein Common. Finally, it winds through Walpolla, Mulcra and Lindsay Islands, part of Murray-Sunset National Park – a remote landscape of starry nights and wide horizons – before reaching the border with South Australia. 

From bushwalking and birdwatching, to fishing and watersports, the Murray River offers something for everyone. Its sandy beaches are very popular over the summer and Easter holidays, but there are many secluded riverside camping and picnic sites. Most have few facilities other than occasional picnic tables, fireplaces and boat ramps.

See below to learn more about the different parks, reserves and experiences along each reach of the river, and which visitor sites may be open or closed. 

A narrow section of the Murray River surrounded by trees

South Australia border to Piangil

Meandering through the dry Mallee, the Murray River is an oasis in an otherwise arid landscape. Its wetlands provide a haven for wildlife and visitors alike. Spend peaceful nights camping under star-filled skies. Swim, fish, paddle or relax on a sandy beach, or explore the natural and cultural history of Nyah Vinifera, Kings Billabong and Merbein Common.

Need to know

River Murray Reserve

Change of Conditions

Nature being nature, sometimes conditions can change at short notice. It’s a good idea to check this page ahead of your visit for any updates.

  • Notices Affecting Multiple Sites

    Wallpolla Island Closed

    Wallpolla Island is closed due to riverine flood damage affecting both access and visitor safety.

    Limited vehicle access and camping at Barmah Island

    There will be limited vehicle and camping access at Barmah Island through to the 31 May 2024. Camping and vehicle access will only be available in the top Northeast corner. Visitors are asked to enter (and exit) via Moira Lakes Rd (near Rice’s Bridge) and turning left onto River Rd. Please note that access on foot to the whole of Barmah Island is permitted.

    Alternative areas for camping where dogs/pets are permitted include: The Ranch Camping Area, Barmah (Proposed Murray River Park), Carter’s Beach Camping Area (Ulupna Island), Stewart’s Bridge Rd – various (dogs not permitted in some sections which are National Park), Shepparton Regional Park, Arcadia Streamside Reserve.

    Attachments: Alternatives to Barmah Island (270KB)

  • Notices Affecting Multiple Parks

    Murray River Adventure Trail

    Stage One of the long-distance nature-based Murray River Adventure Trail will encompass a series of new and upgraded trails and other facilities from Barmah National Park (near Picnic Point) to Koondrook. The trail will pass through Lower Goulburn National Park, Gunbower National Park, Murray River Reserve and Echuca. Find out more about the project.

Tours and adventure experiences in parks

One of the best ways you can get into nature is with a Licensed Tour Operator.

There are more than 400 Licensed Tour Operators across Victoria who are ready and waiting to help you experience and connect with Victoria’s spectacular parks and waterways.

Discover more than 60 different types of nature-based experiences including hiking, mountain biking, boating, four-wheel driving, indigenous culture tours, birdwatching, surfing, diving and so much more. 

Licensed Tour Operators know all the best places to go and will plan and prepare your visit to ensure you are safe and can enjoy your nature-based adventure to the fullest.

Find a Licensed Tour Operator
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