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Australia Day - Free Port Open Day Boat Tour

Home > Melbourne > Australia Day | Community Events | Family | Free | Outdoor
by Lorraine A (subscribe)
Avid trail runner, freelance writer and a mother of four with a healthy obsession for the great outdoors. Join me in my discoveries along the Mornington Peninsula and further afield by subscribing to my articles.
Quick reserve your place before it's booked out
Port of Melbourne Tour Boat at Docklands

Australia Day ( January 26th) is your chance to see the nation's busiest port from the comfort of a boat and is totally free. Tours depart from Gem Pier in Williamstown and Victoria Harbour in Docklands for a total of 5 tours on the day.

Tours are available from:
Gem Pier, Willamstown at 9am and 11am and last approximately 90 minutes return . This tour includes a visit to Webb dock which is currently being developed as Melbourne's third container terminal.

The boat we went on at Gem Pier, Williamstown

Docklands tours leave at 1:45pm, 3pm and 4:15pm and last for approximately 60 minutes. This tour takes in the sights of Appleton Dock and Victoria Dock and is the ports more historic facilities.

Our family previously went on the tour from Gem Pier after reading about it on Weekendnotes. I can happily report that not only did the children love it but so did we. The views towards the city are amazing and being on the water shows you another perspective of Melbourne's skyline. We were lucky enough to get up close to extremely large shipping vessels and also view the vessel below that was still under construction at the time.

Getting up close

The boat we took our tour on was very comfortable and the staff were very friendly, especially with smaller children that weren't very interested about Port facts and were instead given coloring sheets and pencils to keep them amused.

View towards the city from on board the boat

The Port of Melbourne has a staff member on the tours to provide running commentary on the ports history, current projects and to answer any questions that can be thought of during the tour.

Though the boat trip is free we found parking difficult to find and expensive in Williamstown but I have managed to find a car park that is free on weekends at Tenix car park along Nelson Pl ( which is about 400m away), alternatively there are another four free car parks listed here.

Parking in Docklands is easier with many having a flat rate of $10, you can check the full list of car parks here.

Gem Pier, Williamstown

If you would like to join the Free Port of Melbourne boat tours on Australia Day, you can secure your spot by booking here or by calling 03 9683 1565.

If you would like to go on the tour but can't make it on Australia Day, they also operate free tours on the last Sunday of each month.
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Why? Free boat tour
When: January 26th with various times between 9am - 4:15pm
Phone: 03 96831565
Where: Docklands and Williamstown
Cost: Free
Your Comment
I am glad the tour is by booking only because sometimes free offers such as these ones end up seeing very very long and frustrating queues. Have fun everyone.
by Happy Mom (score: 2|548) 2366 days ago
Thanks for the post Lorraine!
Weekend Notes readers have responded in kind and the tours are filling up fast. Those interested are encouraged to get in quick and book at:
We look forward to seeing you on board.
Jenny Bygrave, Community Relations Manager, Port of Melbourne Corporation
by commu (score: 1|22) 2372 days ago
An update: all Australia Day and February tours are now fully booked.
To sign up to learn of future tours, email your name, suburb and postcode to
Thanks for your interest, WeekendNotes readers!
Jenny Bygrave, Community Relations Manager, Port of Melbourne Corporation
by commu (score: 1|22) 2366 days ago
Upon this recommendation, we did the tour. It was superb!
by dsawa (score: 0|4) 2332 days ago
Thank you so much for the post Lorraine we look forward to our boat trip
by jansi (score: 0|2) 2370 days ago
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