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Matty on Sydney Harbour
Matty on Sydney Harbour

Kayak & Sail on Sydney Harbour

Sunday, February 15, 2004
The best way to spend the day on Sydney Harbour is starting with a kayak tour to Little Sirius Point with Natural Wanders, followed by a yacht cruise on the harbour with Sydney By Sail.Kayaking

  • Sydney has more than 240km of the shoreline to explore
  • Natural Wanders has been owned and operated by Patrick Dibben since 1993.
  • Patrick runs various half-day guided kayak tours around Sydney Harbour.
  • The Bridge Paddle (the kayak tour we’ll be shooting) is the most requested tour. It’s a spectacular and adventurous paddle starting from the Natural Wanders base in Lavender Bay, just west of the Harbour Bridge. You’ll paddle under the Harbour Bridge, past the Opera House and explore the bays and beaches of Sydney's north shore. You’ll then stop for brunch on a beautiful beach in a bushland setting (Little Sirius Point, near Taronga Zoo), and after a short bushwalk, the group makes the return paddle back to Lavender Bay.
  • Other tours include: Watsons Bay Paddle, Berry Island Paddle (near Balmain), Ryde to Lavender Bay, or you can custom-make a paddle to suit your own needs. Patrick also offers early morning paddles (before work) or the evening paddles.
  • Patrick prefers to keep the groups small, with no more than 6 people on each tour to provide a personalised quality experience. Your guide will usually paddle in a single kayak.
  • Natural Wanders use double (two-person) "Dusky Bay" sea kayaks with foot operated rudders and water tight gear compartments. They are approx 20ft long and are made of fibreglass. The kayaks are unlikely to tip over. They use double sea kayaks which are quite stable. They’ve had two kayaks tip over since 1993!
  • The minimum age for a paddle is 15 years, and all participants you must be able to swim.
  • FYI – Patrick has never seen a shark in 15 years paddling in Sydney.
  • The Bridge Paddle costs $90 per person and includes all equipment, a qualified and experienced guide, plus brunch. Tours runs all year round.

What To Wear

In general you should wear clothing that is comfortable and appropriate for the weather that you could swim in if you fell in! In summer, most people wear a light short sleeve shirt with shorts over a swimsuit. Some people use bike shorts or tights.

Kayaks carry spare wind/rain jackets which you are welcome to use if necessary. If you don't wear a shirt with sleeves you might also find you get some chafing from the life jacket. It's important to wear footwear that you can get wet and leave on during the paddle. Old sandshoes or wet suit booties are best otherwise old runners or sports sandals. You should also bring your own sunscreen, hat and sunglasses.

Spare clothes - You will probably want to change at the end of the trip so you'll need spare clothes, shoes and a towel.

Sydney By Sail – Sailing

  • Sydney by Sail is a Darling Harbour-based sailing business offering a range of sailing products to the tourism, domestic leisure and corporate markets. They have a fleet of 12 luxury Beneteau yachts - the youngest fleet on Sydney Harbour.
  • Olympic Yachtsman, Matt Hayes, has owned and operated Sydney By Sail since 1995. Matt went to the Atlanta Olympic Games and competed in the ‘soling’ yachting class .
  • The Port Jackson Explorer Sail is the most popular activity – it’s a three-hour cruise departing daily from Darling Harbour. Whilst on board you can trim the sails, or have a try on the helm as you navigate your way past Sydney's historical attractions, luxury homes and beautiful bays and beaches. The Skipper will show you the ropes and can teach you the fundamentals of sailing, or if you prefer, just sit back and relax as you glide under sail around Sydney Harbour. The Port Jackson Explorer Sail costs $130 per person, children under-12 are half-price. Bookings are essential. You can book individually or as a group.
  • Other options sailing trips are available including: half or full-day skippered or bareboat charters (where you charter the yacht without a skipper, but you must be an experienced sailor). There’s also the Dinner At Anchor (a Chef cooks a gourmet meal on board for groups of up to six people), the B‘n’B on Sea (a night on the harbour on a luxury yacht with gourmet dinner, champagne and breakfast), or you might like to try social racing - these events are held on Friday nights or once a month on Saturdays.
  • Sydney By Sail also conducts a number of learn-to-sail courses from beginner to advanced
  • Matt says he is happy to sail wherever we want to on the day of our shoot and will point out the highlights along the way.


Sydney Harbour


Costing as listed above.
Please note prices are valid at time of filming.

More information

Natural Wanders
Lavender Bay Wharf
Lavender Bay
Phone: (02) 9899 1001 or 0439 745 895
Web Site:
Contact: Patrick Dibben

Sydney By Sail
North Wharf
Sydney Maritime Museum
2 Murray Street
Darling Harbour
Phone: (02) 9280 1110
Fax: (02) 9280 1119
Contact: Matt Hayes

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