Noosa River - Entrance to Lake Cooroibah to Lake Cootharaba


The Noosa River flows into the Pacific Ocean at Noosa, and the river system originates to the north in the sand masses of the Great Sandy National Park, Cooloola section. The sixty kilometre long river is here presented in two sections. The lower section consists of the tidal Noosa River and Lake Cooroibah. Use caution when paddling near the mouth as the tide can surprise with its strength. Cross the river at an angle to minimise the effect of the tidal flow.

Access to Boreen Point is either from the Bruce Highway through Pomona, or McKinnon Road out of Tewantin. You need a street directory to find your way reliably. The directory will assist you to find a boat ramp in Noosa Heads, Noosaville, and Tewantin. The road next to the river, in Noosaville (Gympie Terrace) has numerous launch points where the shoreline is a sandy beach. The Lake Weyba section has a closeup map of Noosa Inlet (the mouth).

From the bar at the entrance to the Noosa River up to the vehicle ferry to North Shore (Moorindil Street, Tewantin) is just over seven kilometres. It is two kilometres more upstream to Lake Cooroibah, and the lake crossed almost due north (340° magnetic) in two kilometres more. From the start of the channel it is 2.5 kilometres to John's Landing, a privately run campground. There is no day use of the launch beach or camp grounds at John's. If you want to launch or pullout from there, camp overnight, it is not expensive. Lake Cootharaba is 5.0 kilometres, past John's Landing.

The last leg across Lake Cootharaba to Boreen Point is 3.0 kilometres. There is a pleasant area to rest in the shade, one hundred metres to the western side of the channel entering Lake Cootharaba, recognizable by the small creek next to it. If you are paddling up the lake, and the wind is up, you will need a rest before slogging on to Boreen point. Paddle early to avoid the afternoon wind and wave. The water on that last leg is very shallow. If you are launching at Boreen Point, the channel to Cooroibah is down where the red and green channel markers are, lining up with the distant flat top hills, or for the well prepared, on a bearing of 195°magnetic.

The above distances are for a journey from the Noosa Bar to Boreen Point, but there is much more scope for exploration than just passing through. Birdlife on the water and in the wallum bushlands surroundings the lakes is often very approachable as the isolation from road access has meant fewer visitors.

Paddlers need to remember that there can be heavy powercraft traffic on the river, including jet-skis. The lower section at Noosa and Tewantin is city urban, with high rise buildings and canal estates on the southern bank. The river is quite wide, and a paddle up the northern shoreline feels very removed from the constant flow of vehicle traffic across the river, and power boats out in the centre channel. Be careful of the twin ferries to North Shore. You should be hugging the shore to avoid powercraft, in the lower section, so time your move past the cable ferries when they are the other side of the river.


Click on thumbnails below photos to see larger images.
looking from the channel north to Boreen Point looking south from John's Landing ferry to North Shore Noosa river mouth
Boreen Pt from south
John's Landing
Ferry to North Shore
Noosa River mouth