Bermagui is a great little gem for a stop over
Reviewed Nov 2017
We last visited Bermagui in October 2017 heading north; and again in November 2017 going south.
On our first stop we by-passed the harbour to anchor upstream in the Bermagui River, to put our 12.4 m sailing cat "Single Malt" on the sand to service the props.
There is a modest sized basin in the river, with about 400m X 100m space between the low bridge and the rock walls of the harbour, which mostly dries at low tide (at least during Spring tides).
We used a stern anchor to control any swinging and reduce risks of dragging, but the holding here seems good in sand.
So this is a good spot for cat owners, with plenty of room to sit on the dry for a few hours to get access to the hulls.
The entrance to Bermagui has a rock wall on the west side and natural rocks on the east, and it does not appear to have a bar to cross on the approach; and it has good leads that are easily picked up. The approach is from the north, which could potentially put a vessel beam on to any easterly swell.
Once inside, go straight ahead for the harbour or turn right for the river.
Previous visits to Bermagui have involved tying up to the Fish Co-op wharf, which is fine; but this time when we called in on our way south in November, we tried the marina, getting the phone number from their facebook page.
The marina pontoon was a lot simpler and more convenient to tie up to than the hard wharf pylons. The marina owner is the NSW Lands Department, with an onsite manager. The berth fees are reasonable. The service was very friendly and helpful, with assistance given to take our ropes on arrival (thank you Keith!).
Facilities are in the wharf complex building about 200 metres away, and include coin operated hot showers (3 x $1 coins gives a great shower for a grotty yachtie) and washing / drying machines.
The Bermagui wharf complex is a great place to enjoy food and drink from several good quality establishments including fish and chips, several restaurants, a cafe and a wine bar. The place is modern and has a great ambience and is a credit to the Fisherman's Co-op and the NSW Lands Dept. It is a popular place during the summer tourist season and on weekends. It is also great to see a few commercial fishing boats still making a go of it too, and you can watch them unload and go about their business in between the people-watching.
The small town of Bermagui has everything for provisioning, now with a large supermarket plus local shops selling things like artisan breads, serious coffees, bespoke gelati, french patisserie and of course great local oysters and seafood: you get the picture. Also a good local pub, a bakery and a club for the less up-market tastes.
Bermagui is also a very popular game fishing destination, with a large fleet of local boats and hundreds more visiting during the marlin season. It is a boatie-friendly place.
The wharf complex includes a chandlery and slipway; and specialist items not in stock could likely be frieghted in a few days.
Bermagui would not be a hard place to have to stay whilst you waited for parts: in fact this is a place that I think one could enjoy being stuck in for a few extra days.
Safe harbour entrance with no apparent river bar to cross
A great, boat-friendly location, good marina, funky town
Good place to sit a cat on the hard in the river at low tide
It is really hard to find a fault with the place