Australian Sailing Guides

Australian Sailing Guides
detailing anchorages, marinas, fishing, points of interests

Web Based:
On the following webpages are shown chart locations of anchorages around Australia with photos and description including facilities, protection and holding.
Western Australia
South Australia
Coral Sea
Northern Territories

Electronic Format:
As above and expanded with historical notes and additional information.
Immediate download for all popular devices.
South  Australia
Coral Sea

Recent Australian Voyages of the Banyandah

Tasmanian CruiseCoral Sea - Top End Cruise


Australian Sailing Guides — 15 Comments

  1. Hi Jack,

    I am an experienced Sailor for over 25 years and I live in Hobart. I have a 40 foot steel yacht and me and my wife (who is also an experienced sailor) will be sailing from Hobart to Perth in the next couple of weeks, as I have recently retired! I have never sailed to Perth before. Can you please provide me with some useful information and what to expect on this trip. Thanking you in advance.

    • Hello Simon,
      Having sailed east to west before, we found January a good time to begin the voyage. Close to the mainland coast, an easterly flow is established by the heat rising from the center and west, producing easterly winds upwards of 25 – 30 knots from midday to midnight.
      There are numerous anchorages, mostly all reachable in day hops.
      For the two or three day hop across the Bight, we began from St Francis which is around forty miles west of Streaky Bay. Interesting islands. We recommend Daw Island on the western side. Good protection from north thru east to south. And from there there are plenty of stops through the Recherche Archipelago to Esperance. The a jump to Albany, Emu Harbour is our choice of anchorages there, or you may prefer the marina downtown. Pick your weather window for rounding Cape Leewun and then head for Geographe Bay, maybe Dunsbourgh. The summer winds are generally fairly light near the coast in Geographe Bay. From there to Fremantle can be down in day hops.
      Three essential items –
      1/ Jack and Jude  South Australia Cruising Guide
      2/ FSC WA Sailing Guide – free download online
      3/ Book – Where Wild Winds Blow by Jack and Jude describing our east to west to east crossing containing place descriptions and history information.
      Hope that helps,

  2. Hello there,

    I’ve just purchased your wonderful Tasmania guide. I’m curious about your thoughts as to sailing around Tasmania at this time of the year, i.e., April ~ May? Is it fair to think that the strong summer winds would have abated but the winter gales not yet set in? Any gotchas?

    Skipper, Arriba

    • The cold westerlies are here and unless you are willing to hole up to let the bad stuff pass, then don’t come this way. on the other hand, if you like lonely anchorages and the place to yourselves, and can handle the bigger seas, then come on down knowing it will only get worse – if you like that.

  3. Hi Jack and Jude,

    Only just discovered your web-site. My husband Allen and I have sailed a bit in the past and need to find a good guide foe sailing with anchorages from Mandurah WA to Tassie. We have bought an old well sailed but much loved 32ft boat and want to get to know her in small jumps down and around the south west coast.

    • Hello Linda and Allen,
      Wonderful Mandurah with loads of tasty blue swimmers just outside the training walls. We’d love to be there again, but maybe not till summer.

      Sailing to Tasmania from Mandurah is a wonderful trip, with a few challenging patches. The first, getting around Cape Leeuwin. That’s a bit easier now that the new marina is available at Augusta. But there can be southern ocean swell even in summer. We generally wait for a good window and make a run for Albany in one go. There are a few spots before Albany, but again if the swell is running they can be challenging. In Albany our preference is Emu Harbour. Tight entrance but safe and quiet and and lovely bike ride to town.
      You can get WA anchorage info online from the Fremantle Sailing Club
      Try here to download it It was free, so let us know if you’re successful. You’ll also find plenty of info on our website here.

      For the remainder of you journey, Jack and Jude produce two excellent guides:
      For South Australia – You can peruse the free online version here or get the extended offline version here that comes in several formats for all devices for the cost of a drink.
      For Tasmania – You can peruse the free online version here or get the extended offline version here that comes in several formats for all devices for the cost of a drink.

      Hope that helps.

  4. Hi Jack n Jude.
    Really like your web site. I notice there is not a lot of info regarding the NSW coast which is where I am located. Just wondering am I missing something, or is it on your “to do” list?

    • Hello Noel, Glad you like our site. Regarding NSW, our lack of a guide is not from a lack of knowledge but out of respect for Alan Lucas who has contributed so much to Cruising. That said, we fervently believe that electronic guides are the go, and have put NSW, Qld and WA on our list to do, following the completion of our latest book, Around the World in ever increasing circles. Keep you posted.

  5. Hi,I am looking at buying a 30 ft sail boat in Victoria and sailing it up to Brisbane as the cost of transportation by road is 1/3 the cost of the boat.How long do you think this will take if only sailing by day as I am not a very experience sailer .
    Thanks Nick.

    • Hello Nick

      Rule ONE – Make sure you do not need to be rescued.
      Rule Two – Do not endanger other people’s lives.

      Melbourne to Brisbane may at first seem an easy thing to do, like what a speedboat fellow once said years ago, “just keep Australia on your left.”

      But the truth is there can be any number of events that can put a vessel and her crew in mortal danger.
      Let’s look at what you have.
      Firstly, you state you are inexperienced, piloting a vessel new and unfamiliar to yourself.
      That alone has us wondering –
      Is there adequate safety gear on board?
      Is the gear up to the challenges of the voyage? Big winds can strike anytime on that run plus you’ll be bucking a strong south running current, making good runs hard to achieve. And at only 30 foot, she might be slow.

      So, it is impossible for us to predict how long that voyage will take. But, to give an example, last December we sailed out of Ballina, which is near Brisbane, on a vessel we’ve known for over forty years, the current with us, and made Eden in four jumps, all of them over-nighters, one lasting three days. Given rest stops and breaks for weather ate up another two weeks On that voyage, we suffered equipment breakage that had us stranded for another month. All up it took two months to reach Tasmania.

      If we can be more helpful, send details of the vessel, it’s gear, (usually supplied when making a purchase) and a rundown of your blue water experience. How many on board? Have you had the vessel surveyed? Hope this helps.

  6. Hi, my partner and I are sailing from Vanuatu to Indonesia the most practical route is passing though cape york, how is it to navigate the reefs there? are they easy to see? if you could give us some advice from your experiences of sailing that era it would be very helpful

    • Hello Brad, should be good fun running down wind all the way to Indonesia. Will you stop in Australia or sail through? We once came down from Port Morseby non stop to Darwin. Our last journey through Torres Straits came from the Coral Sea, entering the reef at Pandora’s Passage. There are other passages further north. Bramble is marked with lights. We had strong wind and choose to enter behind the protection of a long reef, in good light and in time to find an snug anchorage for the night, followed by a 50/60 mile sail to the channel and Mount Adoulphous Island. Choose your tide to ride through. If entering Australia, make arrangements to clear at Thursday Island, I think – best check that yourself. Other than that, work the tides. Our preferred anchorage is at Horn Island and Bamaga at Red Island Point. hope that helps

  7. Great site, would appreciate being included in your newsletter post

    Terry Gleeson
    M.V. Accalia

    Hello Terry – thank you for your kind words. We have added you to our newsletter list, cheers.

  8. Pingback: Australian Sailing Guide | « Marina Sport Racer Sailing Club

  9. Thanks for your help and suggestion. Your site looks awesome. I’m going to have a good read. Hope to follow in your wake. We (my wife and I) are not real tech savvy and have found good e-help elusive so far. If you know anyone reliable would love to hear about them. U-tube is one thing I can handle. I have posted a few videos of our adventures at “alanrb1” Thanks again.

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