Herring Island is the only island in the Yarra River. It is man-made and was built in 1929 to help alleviate flooding in the river. The trees were planted on the island to stop it from flooding. At only 2.8 hectares, the island is small, but it’s beautiful. Today, Herring Island is a conservation park managed by Melbourne Parks and waterways.
To get there, you catch a small punt that travels about 6 m to the dock on the island.
During the summer, Herring Island hosts an Arts Festival which rotates through various artists every few weeks. When we were there, the Victorian Basketmakers Association were on display. An unexpected medium for art, but it was actually really awesome; weaving and basketry can be incorporated into so many cool things.
The vegetation on Herring Island is quintessentially Australian. I got the opportunity to touch the Yarra River, which isn’t possible anywhere else in the city, as most other places are elevated from the water. This is one of the places that is the closest to bushwalking that we’ve come. Herring Island is an environmental oasis in the middle of a busy city river.
Across the street is Como Park, which is home to a beautifully maintained oval. On weekends, you can almost always catch a cricket game, as we did.