The Murray River tumbles down from its source in the Alps through mountains and floodplains to Lake Hume, passing forests, farmland, parks and reserves. Every bend offers a fresh scene and opportunities for recreation in a beautiful setting of peaceful valleys and rugged hills.
The river is relatively narrow above Tintaldra – clean and clear like a mountain stream with gravel bars – gradually widening as it descends and transforms into the iconic Murray River of the floodplains.
There are many tranquil spots along the river to go for a paddle in your canoe or kayak or enjoy angling or fly fishing for trout, Murray Cod and Redfin. Riverside camping is available at several bends in the River Murray Reserve and Clarke Lagoon Wildlife Reserve. Most sites have no amenities, except Indi Bridge which has a toilet, and Bunroy Creek which has a toilet and picnic tables.
In summer, swimming, fishing, canoeing, bushwalking, biking and four-wheel driving are popular. Birdwatchers and nature lovers will find much to enjoy along the river and up into the surrounding hills.
Visitors keen to explore the Murray mountain parks might prefer the Cotton Tree Creek Camping Area in Mount Granya State Park or The Kurrajongs Camping Area in Mount Lawson State Park. Both are close to the river and have toilets, picnic tables, firepits and walking tracks. Nearby Burrowa Pine Mountain National Park supports a diverse range of habitats, rare plant life and the beautiful Cudgewa Bluff Falls.
All riverside campsites are free, no bookings required. For more information about the different sites along this reach of the river, including what regulations apply (for example whether dogs and campfires are allowed), click on the links below the map. Check out additional advice on campfire regulations and safety.
When you’ve decided where to visit, please check the change of condition notices in the need to know section. Visitor sites along the Murray are sometimes closed for your safety due to floods or damaged roads and amenities.
Things to do
Burrowa Pine Mountain National Park
Mount Granya State Park
Mount Lawson State Park
Mount Mitta Mitta Regional Park
How to get there
Upstream of Lake Hume
Need to know
Upstream of Lake Hume
Visiting a park can be more of a challenge for people with disabilities, however in Victoria there are a wide range of facilities to help people of all abilities enjoy our wonderful parks around the state.
Assistance dogs are welcome in Parks Victoria parks and reserves. Entry requirements apply for parks and reserves that are usually dog prohibited, such as national parks.
The parks and reserves along the Victorian side of the Murray River above Lake Hume are in the North East fire district.
Bushfire safety is a personal responsibility. Anyone entering parks and forests during the bushfire season needs to stay aware of forecast weather conditions. Check the Fire Danger Rating and for days of Total Fire Ban at www.emergency.vic.gov.au, on the VicEmergency smartphone app or call the VicEmergency Hotline on 1800 226 226. There is limited or no mobile reception away from towns along the river, so check the forecast before you set out and tune into local radio stations for updates.
No fires may be lit on Total Fire Ban days. On Catastrophic Fire Danger Rating days many parks close for public safety. Do not enter parks. If you are already in a park, leave the night before or as early as possible in the morning. Check below for park closures or call 13 1963.
Do not park, camp or rest under or near large trees, like River Red Gums. Branches may fall at any time and swing away from the tree. Whole trees can also fall without warning. Rope swings are not recommended.
Rivers may have fast currents, cold water, low visibility, underwater objects, slippery rocks, shallow areas, unstable banks, drop offs and deep holes. Always enter the water slowly, feet first. Do not dive or jump in. Submerged objects can cause neck or spinal injuries. Never swim alone or in flood waters. Drinking alcohol significantly increases the risk of drowning. Always actively supervise children in or near water: children under ten should always be within sight; children under five should always be within reach. Lifejackets and flotation devices are recommended.
When the river is in flood, some areas of the River Murray Reserve may be closed for public safety. Check below for the latest conditions and respect closures and signage. Do not walk, ride, or drive through flooded areas.
Mosquito-borne diseases, including Ross River Fever and Barmah Forest Virus occur in the area. Avoid being bitten by using repellent and wearing long sleeves and pants, particularly around dawn and dusk.
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 Parks
Murray River closures
The Murray stretches across the state and there are many different parks, reserves and other areas along it. These areas have also been heavily impacted by the 2022 floods and some places are still closed.
We have split the Murray into four reaches to explain these closures, starting from the far east to the South Australian border.
Upstream of Lake Hume (see map)
All River Murray Reserve visitor sites upstream of Lake Hume are open.
Barnawartha to Echuca East
East of Barmah National Park (see map), the following areas are closed:
- Forest Beach camping area (near Strathmerton)
- Breens Beach camping area (near Strathmerton)
- Long Beach camping area (near Strathmerton)
- Cobrawonga Creek camping area (near Yarrawonga) - see Northern Flood Recovery Update newsletter - Cobrawonga Creek Bridge (PDF)
- Lumbys Bend (near Yarrawonga)
- Richardsons bend (near Wangaratta)
- Moodemere bend (near Wangaratta)
See closures on the Barmah National Park page.
Barmah Island (west of Barmah National Park) to Echuca (see map), the following areas are closed:
- Barmah Island South Camping Area (near Barmah)
- Barmah Island Central Camping Area (near Barmah)
- Barmah Island North Camping Area (near Barmah)
- Barmah Willows (near Barmah)
Echuca to Swan Hill (see map)
The following areas are closed:
- All camping areas between Torrumbarry Weir Road and Young Road are closed (Farley Bend is open) - see maps of closures for this area
- Will’s Bend east of O'Dwyer's Road between Will's Sandbar and the O'Dwyer's Road Entrance is closed - see maps of closures for this area
- Benwell and Guttrum State Forest camping areas are closed
- Nyah Central Camping Area is closed
- Loddon Floodway Eastern Bend camping area is closed
While areas are open, access tracks may still be in poorer condition than normal. 4WD vehicles are recommended and please take care and avoid further damage by staying out of any wet areas.
Swan Hill to South Australia border
Flood waters took longer to get to and recede from this part of the river, therefore the team have had less time to get into areas, assess and re-open them.
See more information and maps about which river bends are open and closed (PDF).
See closures on the Hattah-Kulkyne National Park page.
Murray River Adventure TrailStage 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.