How long is the Hunter River?

How long is the Hunter River?

Written by: Cameron Ward

Published: 03/23/2019

Reading time: 3 mins

Hunter River is one of the major Rivers of New South Wales.

Zigzagging from Liverpool Range through to the Tasman Sea at Newcastle. The river cuts through an endless range of scenery, from lush bushland, townships, to vineyard valleys. Home to thousands of species of wildlife that blend together with these sceneries, creating a glorious natural site.

History of the Hunter River

Before the European invasion, the local Aboriginal people roamed across the land. There is not an exact number of how many tribes and people were within this land at the time, but we do know the number dropped significantly after the European invasion. One of the main tribes, particularly in the Hunter Valley region is the Wonnaruah people, who still maintain a close bond with their ancestor’s land.

The first Europeans to discover the river was in the 1790s. It was first named ‘Coal River’ after fishermen found coal within the river area. However, in 1797, it was renamed Hunter River, to honour Captain John Hunter, who was the Governor of the colony within the New South Wales at that time.


Hunter River is home to a buzzing selection of wildlife. Marine life swarm through the river water and wetlands, including fishes, turtles, water rats, and platypuses. Over 60 different species of frog exist throughout the river, including some endangered species that are not found anywhere else. Birds littering the skies and tree branches boarding the river, diving into the water for food, or bathing in the hotter days. Even see the reptiles that hang out on the fallen logs and hot rocks lining the river, including snakes, lizards, and more than soak up the Aussie sunrays. See all these animals in one day as you travel down the river, spotting them popping in and out of the water, or hanging out by the boarding bushland.

Activities to do around the Hunter River

  • River Cruise

    See all that the river has to offer and join the rivers cruise. Here you can spot all the surrounding wildlife while you sit back and enjoy the relaxing pull of the boat as it slowly travels down Hunter River. Even tuck into some delicious snacks offered along the way.

  • Sailing

    if you enjoy a faster journey, try out sailing down the river. Navigate through the winding twists and turns while you marvel at the natural scenery passing by.

  • Ballooning

    See the river from a distance when you hop on a hot-air balloon. Rise at the crack of dawn and set off before sunrise to see the truly epic view of the winding river. See the patchwork of sceneries boarding the river all at once, with green fields, thick bushland, and historic towns all with the brilliant sunrise creating an enchanting glow across them all.

Related article: What to do in Hunter Valley at night?

Cameron Ward
Cameron Ward
Managing Director at Sightseeing Tours Australia

Cameron Ward turned his travel passion into a thriving Australian tourism business. Before he co-founded his own business, Sightseeing Tours Australia, he was enjoying being a Melbourne tour guide. Even now, Cameron delights in helping visitors from all around the world get the most out of their incredible Australian trip. You’ll see Cameron leading tours or writing about his favourite Australian places where he shares his local insights.