About Us

About Us

Established in 1987, Yarra River Cruises (formerly City River Cruises) offers sightseeing and function cruises through Melbourne’s beautiful Parks, Gardens, Ports and Docklands aboard our corporate cruiser the Melba Star.

Accommodating from 20 to 160 passengers, the MV Melb Star caters for corporate luncheons and dinners, river transfers, weddings, engagements, birthday parties, Christmas functions, New Year’s Eve parties, social-club activities, educational school excursions, daily sightseeing cruises, business lunches and dinners and much more. We can arrange all of your catering requirements for Buffets, Cocktail parties, Luncheons and Dinners. Yarra River Cruises’ friendly Function Co-ordinators will assist you on all aspects of the planning of your function from menus and bar facilities through to the smallest details.

The Melba Star will adapt splendidly to any occasion. The duration of the cruise can be organised to suit your needs. The Melba Star has been designed with particular emphasis on passenger comfort, with seating facilities, heating and private washrooms and a large sundeck. The ample fully weather protected indoor area and large after-deck allows for all occasion cruising, ideal any time of year. With our state-of-the-art sound system and excellent musical directors, your party is guaranteed to be a hit.

For more information or to book your function, please contact us during business hours and one of our friendly Cruise Co-ordinators will be more than happy to help you make arrangements.


Conservation, Sustainability & the Environment

Obtaining Ecotourism Certification in the past 12 months has enabled our business to formalise our contribution to the local environment. But we do a lot more at a local level. We commenced our journey by installing a fuel-efficient John Deere engine in our river cruiser Melba Star back in 2018. Not only did we want a safe, reliable and quiet vessel, but we also wanted to reduce our carbon footprint as much as practical.

Eco Tourism Australia Logo

Together with our staff, we strictly follow best practice recycling guidelines in use at Fed Square, and have systems in place to separate recycling rubbish and avoid double handling.  Third-party caterers are discouraged At a local level we financially support the Yarra Riverkeeper Association (www.yarrariver.org.au) who play an important role  in tackling ecological risks and helping keep the river clean. We also recognise that environmental issues affect the whole planet and donate to the Australian Conservation Foundation (www.acf.org.au) at a national level.

Our buying policies also include buying in bulk on a monthly basis to reduce excessive transport activity, and where possible, we source local catering suppliers, some within walking distance, to avoid or reduce reliance on vehicle transport.

During the live commentary on our river cruises, we also promote the great work that Parks Victoria undertake in keeping rubbish and plastics from entering the bay by managing 14 river traps that collect rubbish at strategically placed locations in the lower Yarra River area. This rubbish appears after heavy rain and is washed into the river system.


First Nations People & Local Culture 

Our location at Federation Wharf is within 500 meters of where the first European settlers first landed in 1835 on the vessel Enterprize, an expedition headed by John Batman. Federation Wharf has been used for 100 years, and is located on the Fed Square riverfront. Koorie Heritage Trust is located at the Yarra Building at Fed Square and is a contemporary space featuring Aboriginal & Koorie art & artifacts with public programs (www.koorieheritagetrust.com.au)


Berth 2, Federation Wharf, Princes Walk, Melbourne VIC 3000. This is the default departure location dependant on circumstance. If the departure location changes you will be contacted in advance of your booking

Yes, all cruises come with fully equipped bathroom facilities

Given that the Yarra River is almost always calm with the water having a very flat surface, motion sickness and sea sickness is extremely rare.

At Yarra River Cruises, we strive to provide accessibility for all passengers. Our back deck is wheelchair accessible, please ensure wheel are not wider than 70cm to fit through the gate. However, access to the main cabin involves descending four steps.

Bathrooms are located inside the cabin for convenience. Please contact Yarra River Cruises to determine a suitable time for safe access, as the boat’s height may vary due to tides. For passengers with heavy or electric wheelchairs, please reach out to us directly to confirm suitability and make necessary arrangements.

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