Georges River

Georges River, Kyle Bay
Georges River, Kyle Bay

The Georges River, formerly known as Tucoerah River, is an intermediate tide dominated drowned valley estuary, located to the south and west of Sydney. The Georges River begins its journey approximately 60km south-west of Sydney in the town of Appin. From here the river flows north towards Liverpool, through the Chipping Norton Lakes Scheme, then east until it reaches Botany Bay. The catchment area of the remarkable Georges River covers an area of approximately 960km2 and, with over 1 million people living within it, is one of the most highly urbanised catchments in Australia.

The river has a number of important tributaries including Bunburry Curran Creek in Glenfield; Cabramatta Creek in Cabramatta; Prospect Creek in Georges Hall; Williams Creek in Holsworthy; Salt Pan Creek in Padstow; Mill Creek in Menai; and the Woronora River in Illawong.

The Georges River was an important focal point for Aboriginal life and culture in the southern Sydney region, offering both food, transport and dreamtime links. Several major language groups existed along the river: Eora to the east, Dharug to the west, north and north-east, Dharawal to the south and Gandangarra in the far south-west.

The river was first explored by Bass and Flinders in 1795 on their first voyage on the Tom Thumb after their arrival in New South Wales. The exploration led to the establishment of Bankstown. The early 1800's saw European settlers migrating to the areas along the Georges River and the river became increasingly important as a transport route. Much of the catchment was cleared for farmlands and housing, however the banks stayed relatively untamed due to their rugged slopes. Development within the catchment has only flourished since WWII. The consequences of urbanisation in the catchment are significant, with stormwater pollution, increased runoff and vegetation loss all of great concern.

Ingleburn Weir
Ingleburn Weir

Liverpool weir, constructed in 1836 by convict labour, forms the tidal limit for the river. It was built to supply water to the town of Liverpool and to serve as a causeway across the Georges River.

The Georges River National Park was established in 1992. It is located in the middle reaches of the River within the Bankstown and Sutherland Council areas and covers approximately 5.14km2. Prior to becoming a National Park, it was a state recreation area under the management of a trust.

The Georges River is a popular area for recreational fishing. Species present in the river include bass, bream, whiting, yellowtail, jewfish and flathead. The river is also host to a number of commercial oyster farms. The upper ends of the Georges River are abundant with Bass during the summer months and during the winter months these bass migrate down to the lower ends of the river towards the salt water to breed. Waste water inflows to the river are carefully managed to maintain the estuarine habitat.

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How to get there:
By road: Canterbury Road and New Canterbury Road lead to the eastern section. Princes Highway and Southern Cross Drive service Sydney Airport and the suburbs in its vicinity and to its south and south east. King Georges Road gives access from the northern and western suburbs of Sydney.

By train: Sydney's southern suburbs are serviced by two railway lines. The Airport-Macarthur lines service the eastern section; the Illawarra line the suburbs in the south. Both lines service the inner southern suburbs.

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