Tamar River

The Tamar River (Kanamaluka) is a 70-kilometre (43-mile) estuary located in northern Tasmania, Australia. Despite being called a river, the waterway is a brackish and tidal estuary over its entire length.

Tamar River (Kanamaluka)
The Tamar from Brady's lookout, near Exeter
Location of the Tamar River mouth in Tasmania
EtymologyRiver Tamar
RegionTasmania, Northern Tasmania
Physical characteristics
Source confluenceSouth and North Esk Rivers
  coordinates41°26′4″S 147°7′38″E
MouthPort Dalrymple, Bass Strait
Low Head
41°3′19″S 146°46′28″E
0 m (0 ft)
Length70 km (43 mi)
Basin features
  leftSupply River
State reserveTamar River Conservation Area

Location and features

Formed by the confluence of the North Esk and South Esk rivers at Launceston, the Tamar River/kanamaluka flows generally north towards its mouth at Low Head, north of the settlement George Town[2] and into the Bass Strait via Port Dalrymple. The Tamar River/kanamaluka has several minor tributaries including the Supply River.[1]

Low Head Lighthouse is located at the tip of a peninsula, on the east side of the mouth of the Tamar River. The only full crossing of the river is the Batman Bridge in the relatively remote area of Sidmouth, around halfway up the river.

Although the Port of Launceston is now used very little in comparison to the past[3] and the SeaCat Tasmania ferry no longer docks at George Town,[4] the river still is used for shipping, with light and heavy industries at George Town including aluminium smelters as well as commercial boat cruises.[5]


The Tamar River was named after the River Tamar in South West England by Colonel William Paterson in December 1804.[6]

See also


  1. "Map of Tamar River, TAS". Bonzle Digital Atlas of Australia. 2015. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  2. "George Town Council". georgetown.tas.gov.au.
  3. "The Development of the Port of Launceston". Launceston Historical Society. Archived from the original on 30 September 2009.
  4. "Bass Strait Passenger Ships and Passenger/Vehicle Ferries". users.nex.net.au/~reidgck.
  5. "Tamar River Cruises". tamarrivercruises.com.au.
  6. Bladen, F. M. (Frank Murcott), ed. (1897). Historical records of New South Wales, Volume 5King, 1803-1805. Sydney: Charles Potter, Government Printer. p. 497.

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