If you are not from Australia, chances are that you have not heard of the Clarence River, in New South Wales. You are really missing something, and we are out to change that. The Clarence River, at 400 km, is the second largest river on the east coast of Australia – and good news, no crocodiles! Located in the Northern Rivers region which reaches to the Queensland border, the Clarence River offers forested upper reaches, lush farmland along the lower reaches and ends at a coast filled with splendid beaches. That would be about 40 beaches in the Clarence Valley area. The subtropical climate means that we can enjoy in equal measure time in the boat and time exploring this beautiful but little-known region. Sounds like a perfect Australia rowing tour!
Sometimes wide and stately, at other times intimate when islands create narrower channels, the Clarence River is generous in its diversity of scenery and experiences. We begin our “rowing trail” just downstream of Australia’s longest canoe and white water trail. For about 100 km we will explore the changes in the landscape as we row to the sea. Minimal boat traffic will intrude on our enjoyment. Tidal influence and sea breezes reach up past Grafton, but currents are gentle and calm water is the norm, especially in the cooler mornings. Three clubs dot the Clarence, and friendly local rowers will welcome us and show us their stretch of the river.