Australia's Murray River, our longest river, and Darling River (our longest waterway) combine to form the backbone of the expansive Murray-Darling Basin (along with their respective tributaries).
With such a diverse expansive landscape, that covers about 15% of the area of Australia, the Murray-Darling Basin lends itself perfectly to some great touring routes; and those that are lesser-known that come from years of experience.
The Murray River rises in the Australian Alps (as a spring near a point known as the Pilot in the Kosciuszko National Park) with the majority of its flow coming from the spring snowmelt on the western side of the alpine mountains which includes Australia’s highest mountain Mount Kosciuszko (2,228 m).
From the Alpine region, the Murray river meanders its way west down through the Upper Murray region to Lake Hume near Albury, across the Riverina to Lake Mulwala (Yarrawonga) and onto Echuca which is the closest point the river gets to Melbourne and the reason Echuca became an important riverboat town.
From Echuca, the Murray River heads northwest through the Barmah forest, through which it ephemerally spreads, before heading to Mildura via Swan Hill. About 20 km downstream from Mildura, it is joined by the Darling River at Wentworth, and as one they flow west across the border into South Australia and onto Morgan via Renmark and Loxton.
From Morgan, the Murray river heads south via Blanchetown, Mannum, Murray Bridge, and Tailem Bend before reaching its final destination of Lake Alexandrina, and out to the Great Australian Bight via to Coorong.