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Photos by Caroline Strainig, Visit Moreton Bay, Tourism and Events Queensland

CAROLINE STRAINIG shares one of her favourite boating destinations in SE Queensland – historic Redcliffe just north of Brisbane.

Whenever I am asked about my favourite spots in SE Queensland, there is one that springs immediately to mind: the picturesque and historic town of Redcliffe, just north of Brisbane.

Put simply, I love Redcliffe and everything about it. This small coastal town 40km north of Brisbane and the other nearby towns on the peninsula of the same name have so much to offer boaters, whether as a short-term destination, permanent base, or just a spot to call in for a break from passage-making, while heading along the coast through Moreton Bay.

You can dine al fresco at one of the many cafes and restaurants on Redcliffe Parade, which is the waterfront main street, wander along the historic jetty, or browse at the popular Sunday farmer and artisan markets.


Checking out Bee Gees Way is a must. This is a laneway right in the middle of Redcliffe with signage electronic screens, and even bronze statues paying homage to the Bee Gees Gibb brothers, who hail from Redcliffe.

Redcliffe was the first European settlement in Queensland and you can take a trip back through time at the Redcliffe Museum. The Comino’s Arcade in the middle of town dates from 1945 and also has many photos of Redcliffe over the years, as well as several fascinating shops.

Another popular must-do for families in particular is a round of putt-putt golf on the challenging 18- hole course at Undersea Putt & Play, which also has an arcade café and bar.

A stroll along the waterfront is another enjoyable way to spend an hour or two. There are many kilometres of paved waterfront walks on the peninsula to meander along while you take in the stunning ocean vistas, and on hot days you can take a refreshing dip at the Settlement Cove public lagoon.


Seafood lovers are spoilt for choice. Not only are there options galore in Redcliffe itself, but Morgans Seafood is only a stone’s throw away at the suburb of Scarborough just to the north and west. Morgans has the largest shop display of fresh seafood in Queensland and you can see your chosen fish cooked in front of you while you wait. We love grabbing fish and chips there and finding a nice waterfront spot to enjoy it.

Time your visit to coincide with a festival or activity if you can to make it even more fun. There’s an impressive line-up of events during the year, ranging from the Redcliffe Festival of Sails at Easter to the Moreton Bay Food and Wine Festival in July. We even caught classic Aussie band Daddy Cool live at a free concert a few years ago.


Once you arrive in Redcliffe, you can get a full briefing on what to see and do at the Redcliffe Jetty Visitor Information Centre, right on the main street in front of the jetty, where the helpful staff will ply you with information.

The volunteers offer free heritage walks to highlight the historical background of Redcliffe, and commercial cruises into Moreton Bay and the seasonal whale-watching tours also depart from the jetty. It’s a good idea to organise these in advance.

You can tie up at the jetty with your boat to drop off or pick up friends, but time limits apply, so be careful.


Make time while you are there to head over to Tangalooma Island Resort on Moreton Island, 27km to the north, and dive or snorkel to see the wrecks off the island, 15 junk ships buried in a sandbank. You can do this in your own boat or hop on board a commercial day-trip.

Bribie Island, 26km to the north, is another great spot to visit, but watch the tides in Pumicestone Passage because they race in and out and there’s also a bridge that limits anchoring options for boats with masts.


The waters of Moreton Bay off Redcliffe to the east are exposed to the prevailing south-easterlies and shallow, so most visitors base themselves around the top of the peninsula at Scarborough, in the protected Scarborough Boat Harbour. Here you can berth at the Moreton Bay Boat Club marina, Scarborough Marina, or Redcliffe marina.

Some visitors do anchor off the leads at the entrance to the harbour, but these waters are also shallow so be careful. Another popular option is the Newport Marina, located in a residential canal development just to the south.

The Moreton Bay Boat Club is a licensed venue complete with a restaurant and has live music on some Sundays. It is one of the most popular stopovers for visitors. We spent a lovely Sunday af ternoon there just recently listening to a folk band. They also have social sailing races twice a week. The club has boat ramps for members and there is also an excellent public ramp just adjacent.

A friend kept his trailer-sailer on the hard here one winter escaping the cooler weather down south and recommended the club as a base. “In fact, we enjoyed our winter here so much that we ended up buying a house in Redcliffe and moving here,” he said.

The Scarborough Marina is very popular with liveaboards in particular. Here you will find a chandlery and hardstand services. It’s a great place to do your annual haul-out while you check out what Redcliffe has to offer.


For those who don’t have their own transport, there is an excellent public bus service that travels throughout the peninsula. You can also go by taxi or Uber, hire a car, or even rent an electric trike or e-bike. The nearby Kippa-Ring train station connects to the Brisbane and Gold Coast suburban train network, and Brisbane Airport is a 25-minute drive to the south.There are also several cafes and restaurants near the Scarborough Boat Harbour in addition to the boat club’s restaurant, including the upmarket Tempest Seafood Restaurant.

So, grab your calendar, block out a few days, and get ready to head out and discover for yourself one of Southeast Queensland’s premier boating destinations. Ten years on, I am so glad we did just that, because a weekend away at Redcliffe remains one of my all-time favourite boating adventures.


For general visitor information and to see coming events visit:

Contact the Redcliffe Visitor Information Centre in Redcliffe Parade, in front of the jetty. Open seven days a week from 9am to 4pm. (07) 3283 3577.

For information on getting there and boating in the area check the Beacon to Beacon Guide


Moreton Bay Boat Club

Bird O’Passage Parade, Scarborough

Facilities: 118-berth marina, licensed club, toilets, showers, laundry. Overnight visitors welcome – book a berth in advance. Note: This is a licensed club and you must be a member of another yacht club or live more than 15km from club to overnight here. Sample price of berth overnight for 15-metre monohull: $101

(07) 3203 5188,

Scarborough Marina

Thurecht Parade, Scarborough

Facilities: 270-berth marina, travel-lift, dry-stack, boatyard, all major services, chandlery, toilets, showers, holding tank pump out (self-serve), laundry, water and fuel (24 hours with credit card). Visitors welcome. Phone or email ahead to book a berth. Berth overnight for 15-metre: $72.

(07) 3880 0300,,

Redcliffe Marina

Reef Point Esplanade, Scarborough

Redcliffe Marina is on the northern side of the Scarborough Boat Harbour and managed by the Department of Transport and Main Roads. Book ahead. Facilities include 74 berths, showers, toilets, laundry, water. Berth overnight for 15-metre, minimum one month: $880

0436 945 777,

Newport Marina

Griffith Road, Scarborough

Facilities: 187-berth marina, toilets, showers, laundry, water, barbecue area. No fuel. Visitors welcome. Email or phone to book prior. Berth overnight for 15-metre: $55

Ph: 0450 698 737,,




Published in print July-September 2022


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