FORMER CONVICT and businessman Henry Garwood traveled to Murray at the end of his sentence in 1853. Near Ichuka, he faced the need for a ferry, appreciated its importance, created a ferry and built the Bridge Hotel.
However, Ichuka truly became his property in 1864, when the railway from Melbourne reached the port. Suddenly, a city with paddle steamers on the Murray River became the largest inland port in Australia. Today, the characteristic features of the area are horse carts, working steam engines and old-fashioned wooden mills.
Tours around the area are possible thanks to regular river trips on a paddle steamer. Visit the Star Hotel and walk through a secret tunnel where you can stay for hours. There is also an exhibition dedicated to a paddle steamer in front of the hotel: About 30 km upstream from Ichuka lies Barma Forrest, the world’s largest forest of red eucalyptus trees. We strongly recommend going to the forest with 300-year-old red eucalyptus trees and important places for aborigines, as well as going on an eco-cruise, which can be made from Barma.