Australia offers the world some of the most iconic places to go swimming. Its coastline is brimming with sandy shorelines to explore. While there are plenty of shorelines to see in Australia, not all of the beach areas in the country are considered safe for swimming.
Things like strong currents or dangerous wildlife could warrant the waters unsafe. Because of this, it is critical to know what beaches are ideal for swimming. This is good information to have whether you are just visiting the beautiful country or if you already live there.
Burrum Heads is known for having calmer beaches than other states in Australia. The main beach area is the safest for swimming This main beach area is a part of two other stretches of beach that run from the Burrum River mouth to Point Vernon.
In total, this area is a 30km stretch that makes up the three sections of the beach that are separated by creeks.
The main beach area in Burrum Heads is just south of the Burrum River mouth. Swimming is safest in this area. It is strongly suggested that people stay away from the river mouth which can experience deeper channels that pull people under, this will provide the best overall swimming experience.
The waters are beautiful and the sand is an absolute delight.
While there is safe swimming at Burrums Heads main beach, there are other nearby beach areas where swimming is possible. These other places are within a 20 minute or less drive from Burrums Heads which makes them super accessible for those staying or living in Burrum Heads. Below are the other beaches near Burrum Heads where you can swim!
Is It Safe To Swim At Burrum Heads?
Swimming at Burrum Heads is considered pretty safe. With the exception of the deep water channels and stronger tides at the river mouth, the water is generally safe. As expressed before, stick with swimming at the main beach area just south of the Burrum River mouth.
The rest of the beach area that stretches down towards Point Vernon isn’t very developed so access isn’t as easy. Moreover, the waters on the main beach in Burrum Heads are just a bit more tolerable than other sections of the 30km stretch between the river and Point Vernon.
When it comes to wildlife, Burrum Heads isn’t known to have many shark sightings. Stingers, like the Irukjandi, have been spotted in Burrum Heads. Additionally, so have bluebottles which are a less deadly form of jellyfish species. Even though sharks are much of an issue, stingers can be sometimes, so staying alert is a smart idea.
The ocean is a vast place and things can change due to extreme weather, etc. Strong ocean tides can carry wildlife where they aren’t normally found. Even in safe waters, it is always smart to practise basic swimming safety protocols. Below are the top tips for basic beach swimming safety!
Basic Beach Safety Tips
Always Bring A Friend To The Beach
Burrum Heads main beach area isn’t patrolled. Due to this, having a beach buddy is a crucial way to staying safe while swimming. This can be applied to swimming anywhere in the world, not just Australian waters. Having an extra set of eyes to stay alert for wildlife or bad weather conditions is truly a lifesaver.
This prevents you or someone you know from swimming alone which can be really dangerous. You always want to have help as soon as possible in the case of an emergency.
Try Not To Swim At Night Or Early Morning
Swimming at night or early morning can be dangerous if there is wildlife present at a beach. These are the times wildlife are more active. Attempting to swim when there is more visibility is always the right approach. The water is simply not as visible as it is during daytime hours.
Always Have Access To A Mobile
Having access to a mobile phone gives you and your beach buddy access to reaching emergency services. No one wants anything bad to happen but being prepared is a good idea. It ensures that you waste no time getting help when help is needed.
Be On The Lookout For Currents Or Wildlife
The biggest concern for Burrum Heads is stingers. They can be deadly with the exception of bluebottles which just produce a painful sting. If you suspect there are stingers in the water, do not enter the water. If you or your beach buddy get stung, get help immediately.
Additionally, even though the area isn’t known for many shark sightings, you should always be aware that a shark could venture close to a shoreline. Never enter waters if you suspect a shark could be present.
High tide currents can occur at Burrum Heads but they aren’t something that happens consistently. Always be on the watch for high currents and never enter the water if it appears choppy.
Overall, Burrum Heads is a safe place to swim. Sticking to practising these beach safety tips will ensure that you and your beach buddy (or buddies!) stay as safe as possible. The main beach area is known for having calmer waters but it is never a bad idea to stay alert and aware if these conditions change as it is a possibility.
Beaches Near Burrum Heads
Woodgate Beach is just north of Burrum Heads and is actually part of what is known as “Burrum Point”. The beach is known for being a backdrop to a town that thrives on being a coastal town.
However, its stretch of sandy shores can be good for swimming when the waves are less than .5m in height. Once they get much larger than that, swimming is no longer safe due to riptides and strong currents. If you are able to make it during a low tide time of day, swimming at Woodgate Beach can be thrilling.
Toogoom Beach is about a 15-minute drive south of Burrum Heads. The beach is best known for its access to fishing, however, swimming here is possible. Toogoom Beach is part of the 30km run of the beach from Burrum River to Point Vernon.
It is important to remember that certain sections of the beach aren’t ideal for swimming, only the main beach areas within the localities. As with swimming at Burrum Heads main beach area, steering clear of the creek or river mouths provides the safest swimming environment.
These other two beaches are just a stone’s throw away from Burrum Heads and can have decent swimming conditions. Always check for bad weather conditions, tidal information, and stay alert for any other potential dangers.
Can You Swim In Burrum River?
The Burrum River is a 31km (or 19 miles) river that winds from the mouth at the beach into the mainland. The river is primarily known for its fishing as it harbours a variety of species that fishermen seek out. Swimming in the Burrum River isn’t generally advised. It is possible at some points of the river that are more inland from the river mouth that faces into the ocean.
Rivers are known for having crocs in them as this is generally a crocodile’s home. Rivers give crocs access to water and land which is critical to their survival. There have been sightings in the Burrum River of crocodiles and due to this, swimming isn’t advisable in the river’s waters.
If you do decide to swim in the river, try to be mindful of where you are swimming and always inspect the water first. But ideally, you should stick to swimming at the Burrum Heads main beach area and the surrounding nearby beaches for the best experience.
The Burrum River has also been known to have shark spotting. While sharks aren’t known to lurk around the beach shorelines, extreme weather can wash them into river systems from the ocean. Due to this, sharks can be spotted in rivers and pose a potential danger to swimmers.
Any sightings of crocs or sharks in a river should be reported to the appropriate agency through the Queensland government to ensure that the wildlife is investigated and taken care of.
While crocs and sharks can be an issue for swimming in the river, perhaps the biggest concern is deeper water channels. Deepwater channels in river systems can sweep you under. This is why swimming near river mouths (or creek mouths) isn’t suggested.
These deeper channels tend to occur at these points because the mouths are what reach out towards the ocean which is significantly deeper than the river itself.
This isn’t to say that more inland parts of a river can’t be deep as well. The safest thing is to watch for where channels could be located and steer clear of swimming in those areas.
Burrum Heads is one of Queensland’s idyllic natural areas and there are plenty of opportunities for swimming in this locality. While the entire beach area here isn’t great for swimming, there are still great locations to take a dip. The key is staying alert and making sure you stay in visible areas with calmer waters.
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