Are you looking to escape Sydney for the day and want to do something different that doesn’t break the bank? When we found out about the Riverboat Postman Cruise, we couldn’t believe you can actually go and watch the postman deliver the mail on a three hour cruise around the Hawkesbury River.
I’m sure everyone has driven over the Hawkesbury River Bridge at one time or another when driving up the coast from Sydney. It’s that moment when you cross over the bridge that you feel like you’ve completely left the city behind whilst looking over to those dreamy river vibes. But, how many of you have actually been ON the Hawkesbury River?
When we found out about the long running tradition of the Riverboat Postman Cruise, we knew we had to check it out.
Australia Post has been delivering mail via a boat service to its remote residents on the Hawkesbury for more than 100 years. Since they opened it up to the public, you can join them at work whilst they deliver post around seven locations along the river.
We’re here to tell you all about it and how it’s become a local hidden gem. Best of all, this Hawkesbury River Cruise is an incredibly affordable day out of Sydney.The Riverboat Postman office is a beautiful boat shed.
When we arrived at the ticket office we couldn’t believe how adorable it is. It’s the perfect little boat shed you could only dream of owning one yourself.
Here’s everything you need to know about doing the Riverboat Postman Cruise and what our personal highlights are too.
How to get to Riverboat Postman
A great thing about the Riverboat Postman Cruise is that they’ve wonderfully scheduled the timings alongside the trains so that everyone can experience the famous postman run.
The cruise lasts for three hours from 10-1pm and the train arrives into Hawkesbury River station from Sydney at 9:47am and leaves at 1:24pm. Did we mention the station is next door to the Riverboat Postman as well? This means you could bring the whole family along as there’s next to no walking involved.
If you’re driving, just head over to Dangar Road in Brooklyn which takes around 1 hour from Sydney to get to. There’s a lot of free parking in Brooklyn and most parking spots will have a four hour limit which is absolutely perfect for the cruise.
What’s the route and how much does is cost?
For a great day out with your friends or family, the Riverboat Postman Cruise costs just $58 per adult, $18 per child or a family ticket is $135 (2 adults, 2 kids).
Above you can see where the cruise takes you. You’ll head up past Dangar Island, underneath the Brooklyn Bridge and up to the mangroves in Marlow Creek.
What’s included in the River Boat Postman Cruise?
For $58 pp, you’re looking at a three hour cruise which includes tea or coffee on arrival including their famous homemade ANZAC biscuits. You can even grab the recipe off them at the end of the trip. Trust me, you’ll want to do this. You’ll also get a ploughman’s lunch, and a tour around the Hawkesbury whilst the postie drops off the mail to seven different spots around the river. You can also buy a bottle of wine for just $20 on board, something that would be a great day out for the girls. Just imagine a couple of glasses of wine whilst cruising along the Hawkesbury! Yes please… Just make sure you bring cash with you.
Whilst the boat meanders around the river to remote housing, we loved how peaceful the cruise really is. The majority of the other passengers all discussed whether they could see themselves living in these beautiful but very remote parts of the Hawkesbury even if it would cost around $650K for a property. Even some of the areas didn’t even have electricity, something that’s still quite amazing to believe considering the distance to Sydney. We loved how much all of the posties seemed very proud of their job, almost like celebrity status whilst all of the passengers leaned over the side of the boat to get a photo of them delivering the mail to the residents.
It seemed there was a theme when the mail was being delivered, a resident would wait on the wharf with their excited dog for our boat to pull up. The residents dogs all knew too well how they would be getting a treat off the posties when they delivered the mail. The driver gave us some good insights into the area, like did you know the Brooklyn Bridge is named after the Americans who came over to build it? The cruise takes you underneath the Brooklyn Bridge.
The sandstone cliffs are also fantastic and look like they’ve been transported over from the outback in the Red Centre. It’s quite remarkable. The sandstone rocks sit within the Hawkesbury River. This passenger hadn’t seen Milson Island in over 50 years.
We met one passenger who was particularly excited when we reached Milson Island. He used to play cricket there over 50 years ago and it was his first time back visiting since those days – we couldn’t believe it. These days, the island is a sport & recreation centre for kids. The Riverboat Postman Cruise is a great day out along the Hawkesbury River and if you’re looking for things to do on the weekend in Sydney, this is a great option for the whole family.
We definitely recommend booking as it gets really busy that sometimes they take out three boats!
What if you want to go on a cruise on the weekend? You can go on a three hour cruise to the popular Seven islands of the Hawkesbury on a Sunday. It leaves a little later at 11am and you’ll get a local fish & chips on board for lunch 🙂
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