Noosa River and Everglades

Cooloola is the birthplace of the Noosa River, a place where the tannin-stained, still waters create magnificent reflections as the river flows through dense banks lined with sedges.

The river gathers energy as it passes through the Cooloola National Park and past Kinaba National Park. Here, the Wildlife Service Information Centre provides a geographic display of the Noosa Everglades with a boardwalk through the mangroves.

Noosa River then flows into Lake Cootharaba, Queensland's largest natural lake with an area of 90 square kms. Sailing and windsurfing are popular pursuits on this huge body of water. The lakeside township of Boreen Point has restaurants, an old-fashioned hotel, accommodation, boat hire, caravan park and public boat ramp.

Meandering south, the river cuts a channel through Lake Cooroibah, then flows on to Tewantin, past Lake Doonella, and on through Noosaville and Noosa, where it is joined by Weyba Creek. From here it flows out into Laguna Bay at the end of Noosa's Main Beach.

A unique encounter with nature

The best ways to explore Noosa River and Everglades are:

  • Day trip cruise
  • Self-drive housebout
  • Pontoon boat
  • Noosa Ferry
  • Gondola
  • Water bus

Day trips

For a unique way of viewing the river and appreciating its beauty, take off on an exotic day trip cruise. Local companies have daily trips that travel up the Noosa River through the lakes and up into the calm water of the Everglades, stopping at several locations for lunch and morning and afternoon tea. You'll never know how vast the river system is until you explore it first hand.

Houseboats: Another novel alternative, if you have the time, is to hire a self-drive houseboat sleeping from 1 to 8 people. You can cruise up the Noosa River and into the tributaries and lakes to the north. Don't forget to take crab pots to enjoy a fresh catch for lunch.

See a different view of Noosa from the water
Sticking closer to Noosa? Hire a pontoon boat, self-drive dingy or half-cabin boat. A self-drive flat-bottom boat can hold between 1 and 12 people, and is fully equipped with barbeque, esky and maps (fishing rods can be hired at a very reasonable cost). This is a fun and scenic way to cruise the river, the canals and the Noosa North Shore. Other relaxing ways to see the river are by water bus, gondala or ferry.

Lake Weyba

Just a few kilometres from Noosa's centre, Lake Weyba is one of the most beautiful and naturally preserved stretches of water in the Noosa River system, but it is also one of the least known.

The lake is an important marine habitat and home for birds such as jabirus, swans and brahminy kites, but responsible fishing and crabbing are permitted. Sailing and sailboarding are also popular on Lake Weyba's long reaches.