Depart Mannum Mon. & Fri. 4.30pm
(boarding from 2.30pm)
Return Mannum Mon. & Fri. 9.00am
Friday: Mid-afternoon the PS Murray Princess departs historic Mannum, birthplace of the Murray River trade and communication, and heads upriver while you enjoy pre-dinner drinks and a Welcome Dinner. As we cruise under floodlight to our overnight mooring at Craignook you may see nocturnal wildlife on the riverbank. Watch for grey kangaroos, hairy-nosed wombats, Murray longnecked tortoises, spoon-beaked egrets and many other species. (Our on-board entertainer provides music for the night owls.)
Saturday: Go ashore after a hearty breakfast for a guided
nature walk to discover the local flora and fauna. We reboard and head upriver,
past big river cliffs which tower 90 metres over us, and an ever-changing
countryside. At the 207km mark we turn and head downriver to Piggy Flat where we
join our discovery vessel for a backwater wildlife tour. Travelling in small,
personalised groups, we explore the maze of backwaters, creeks and lagoons. The
birdlife is amazing. Watch for darters, herons and egrets feeding along the
river's muddy edges. After dinner enjoy the fun and excitement of the Murray
Sunday: Bring your camera, we're going ashore to capture the dawn light, a special time on the river. As we leave Piggy Flat breakfast is served. Enjoy a morning talk about the riverlands' bountiful food and wine trail. After lunch we reach the Pomberuk Aboriginal Cultural Centre at Murray Bridge. The river has been a source of life for indigenous people of the riverlands, including Australia's largest aboriginal community, the Ngarrindjeri people. Visit the Pomberuk Aboriginal Cultural Centre where you will be treated to a dramatic dance performance and encounter, Ngurunderi - an ancestral being, whose battle with the Murray Cod created the Ngarrindjeri world. Your ship departs for Mundarra. Join the Captain and officers for pre-dinner drinks and then the Captain's Dinner & Dance.
Monday: After breakfast, PS Murray Princess arrives at Mannum where you will join our coach tour to the famous Barossa Valley, the beautiful 'valley of the vine' and source of about a quarter of Australia's world-renowned wines. You'll visit three premium wineries and enjoy lunch before returning to your ship at Mannum. Depart 4.30pm and moor overnight at Caurnamont.
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, blue wrens and black swans. Enjoy a leisurely morning and lunch cruising upriver to Big Bend where we will rendezvous with our vineyard coach tour. This afternoon visit Burk Salter's vineyard on the banks of the river and enjoy wine tasting at the cellar door. Rejoin Murray Princess at Swan Reach and cruise upriver to our overnight anchorage. Tonight is fancy dress night on board. (Bring your own or hire one.) We also have our famous musical quiz.
Wednesday: After breakfast join a guided nature walk, then cruise downriver to Swan Reach. The town was first settled in the 1850s and was originally the largest of five sheep and cattle stations in the area. The original Swan Reach homestead is now the Swan Reach Hotel. Join the guided walking tour and visit the Swan Reach Museum.
Cruise downriver after lunch and take in the tranquillity as the landscape slides by or enjoy a lifestyle and info-cruising presentation. We arrive at Sunnydale. All ashore for the Woolshed Sound & Light 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. After dinner, join us on a nocturnal eco-tour by tractor and cart.
Thursday: After breakfast the ship cruises slowly downstream 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 to view ancient rock carvings and to learn about aboriginal history in the area.
We return to the ship to cruise downriver to Younghusband. Along the way, adventure seekers can also take a speed boat ride. We pass large billabongs, open expanses of water, surrounded by cliffs and reeds. Tonight the Captain and his officers host a spectacular Farewell Captain's Buffet. Dress up and dance, if you wish.
Friday: We leave Younghusband & head home to Mannum. Reluctantly, we say farewell as we arrive at Mannum Wharf.
Adelaide Transfers - Coach transfers are available between Rockford Hotel (164 Hindley St, Adelaide) and Mannum (approx 90 minutes). Car Parking is also available at Mannum. Pre-bookings are essential for both transfers and car parking. Details, prices and times available on application.
Approximate Coach transfers:-
Departs Rockford Hotel Adelaide Sunday 4.00pm,
Returns Rockford Hotel Fridays 12.30pm.
* The Murray River is subject to variations in water level due to flooding or drought and therefore itineraries are subject to change without notice.