Yarralumla Bay



Yarralumla Bay photo

Yarralumla Bay foreshore park comprises the southern shore of Lake Burley Griffin between Orana Bay and Blue Gum Point, with access off Alexandrina Drive. It provides opportunities for people of all ages to enjoy the waters of the lake whether involved in boating, swimming, paddling or just strolling on the water's edge. The western part of the area has sailing and rowing clubhouses, launching ramps, piers and a wharf. Pleasant shaded picnic areas are connected to a popular commuter and recreational cycleway/walkway with information and directional signage around the lake.

The swimming area comprises a sandy beach, and enclosures for swimming and paddling. The swimming beaches are monitored for blue green algae and bacteria. Whenever conditions are unsuitable for swimming the National Capital Authority gives public warnings.



The name "Yarralumla Bay" area was officially adopted in 1963 for a well defined bay in the lake under construction. Through common usage that name has been attached to the shore between Orana Bay and Blue Gum Point. The name "Yarralumla" is an Aboriginal word meaning "echo".

Yarralumla Bay is included in the National Trust of Australia (ACT) listing of the foreshores of Lake Burley Griffin.

Designed for recreation

The National Capital Development Commission proceeded with the development of Yarralumla Bay in the early 1960s, as part of the construction of Lake Burley Griffin. The planting schemes envisaged the use of large numbers of deciduous oaks to provide pleasant shaded areas for lakeside recreation with pines on the upper slopes. Poplars, willows and river oaks were planted closer to the lake edge. It was designed principally for water-based recreation with sections set aside for swimming and boat launching. In the western part of the area, sites were allocated for the construction of sheds and clubhouses for rowing and sailing clubs, launching ramps and piers, and a wharf. A water police facility was constructed at the point of Orana Bay, while a former farm house was converted to a water police residence.


Gray, J (1997) The Historical and Cultural Background of Selected Urban Parks in Canberra - Volume 2.

Facilities and activities

Facilities and activities

  • Electric BBQ
  • Boat ramp
  • Swimming
  • Fishing
  • Windsurfing
  • Picnic shelter
  • Picnic tables
  • Cycling
  • Walking trails
  • Toilets



About urban parks

Transport Canberra and City Services manages urban parks and open space in Canberra. There are three main types of urban parks in Canberra: town parks, district parks and neighborhood parks. Other landscaped components of the park system include:

  • Pedestrian parkland which are corridors of open space provided for pedestrian movement within and between suburbs.
  • Semi-natural open spaces which are areas of remnant grazing land or native vegetation, and include creek corridors, hilltop areas, ridges and buffer areas between suburbs.
  • Native grassland or woodland sites which contain endangered plant species.
  • Major road verges and medians.
  • Informal use ovals which are non-irrigated open dryland grass areas for informal sport and recreational use.
  • Special purpose areas which are large open spaces dedicated to specialised recreational activities or sporting events.

Plans of management

Plans of management for urban parks identify what is important about the areas and how they are to be managed. A plan of management is intended to provide direction and guidance to the land custodian, management staff, visitors, neighbours, volunteers, and others with an interest in the area.

More information and feedback

For more information or to provide feedback, contact Access Canberra on 13 22 81 or complete an online feedback form.