Coastal Rowing is an internationally endorsed FISA sport which continues to grow in Europe and in North America. Coastal Rowing & Touring Australia is a unique organisation aimed at fostering Coastal Rowing (ocean/ beach racing), and Tour Rowing (recreational), throughout Australia.

                                   Adventure rowing for school rowers builds confidence, strength and resilience.

What Is Coastal Rowing

Coastal rowing is the extreme version, the adventure side of rowing. It involves rowing along the coast and out into the sea and is one of the fastest growing communities of rowers. It is especially popular in Italy, France and Great Britain as well as Maldives, South Africa, Canada and the USA. Coastal rowing boats are also used inland on lakes and rivers where the water tends to be rough.

Rowing on rough water means that coastal rowing is quite different from the flat-water Olympic style of rowing in "fine boats". Coastal rowers instead, often prefer rough water which adds a whole new dimension to the sport with many coastal rowers cherishing the exhilarating aspect of rowing in extreme conditions. The similarity with flat-water, "fine boat" rowing is the movement of the stroke, everything else is different.

Coastal rowing is easier to learn, due partly to the stability and robustness of the coastal boat. The standard boats are singles (or solo), doubles and coxed quadruple sculls. Just knowing how to handle a coastal boat is not sufficient to become a good coastal rower. Crew must be aware of tides and currents, navigation, and must understand maritime traffic rules and what to do in cases of bad weather. When racing the boats you have to interact with the other boats.


"Explore Sydney Harbour"  http://youtu.be/B0iaYSbUFgE

The Club 

Coastal Rowing and Touring Australia (CRATA) is a Club with members in four states and a fleet of boats based in several locations. Coastal boats have been introduced into two Sydney schools for their junior programs and one Club in Canberra

Coastal Rowing is an internationally endorsed sport through FISA, the World Rowing Organisation. FISA prescribes specifications for the boat class and sanctions the annual FISA World Coastal Rowing Championships held in a different country each year.  FISA now see coastal rowing as a pathway to Olympic rowing and a branch of the sport which is inspiring younger and older rowers in increasing numbers.

CRATA conducts recreational and tour rowing. Racing is becoming increasingly popular as more boats are available. Some ocean challenge races have already occurred with several boats competing in the annual Bridge to Beach Race on Sydney Harbour.  

Our members come from traditional rowing backgrounds and by direct entry to the sport. The boats are ideal for training new rowers as the boats are inherently stable and make an excellent training platform. Many of our members now, only row coastal boats.

see www.worldrowing.com/rowing/coastal

Rowing Tours are conducted annually and include Australian and International rowers.  photo taken at Shark Bay, Sydney Harbour.

 "Adventure and Fun"    https://youtu.be/f2ReEgxFf6M


Fast and Capable Boats 

The key attributes of coastal rowing boats are their sturdiness, stability and seaworthiness.  They are world class sea racing boats. They have sliding seats and use standard oars. They are capable of safely withstanding rough conditions and moderate swells, but are not surf boats and are not suitable for rowing large steep waves. They are suitable for excursions across lakes and off the coast on longer expeditions over a number of days. When operating offshore an experienced certified cox is essential. The boats can go places that it would be too dangerous to take fine boats. FISA class Coastal Rowing Boats are built for speed in rough water conditions.  New boat innovations are being continually developed.

   At one with nature, Laguna Bay, early morning row, stroke Cherie

There are no Australian manufacturers of FISA class coastal rowing boats yet. Therefore the boats are fully imported. This significantly adds to their cost.

The Australian coastal rowing fleet is continuing to grow with interest, knowledge and membership increasing. Coastal boats will be based at new locations around Australia, as membership grows and operating costs can be covered.  


  Coming ashore after an 11km race to Manly beach, Sydney, during the annual Bridge to Beach Race. 

Exhilaration, Safety and Freedom

You can't beat the excitement of waves lashing the boat, the panoramic scenery, the sun shining off a glassy sea or pulling the boat up on a picture perfect sandy beach, with no one else in sight. Racing these boats is an absolute blast! You can surf waves and crash over rolling swells, the boats a very manoeuvrable. Pitting yourself and your skill against the elements is an incredible challenge and is completely exhilarating.

Racing is conducted on courses close to the coast, women and men row the same course. Beach Racing is also becoming very popular. These races are match races with two boats over approx 500m, out and back, zig zaging between buoys in two lanes. Similar to surf boat racing, but without the steep waves.

When cruising you can row and take a picnic or row the coastline and have breakfast or lunch at a cafe/ pub.

Rowers have been short changed for too long. Come on board and find out what you are missing. Put the excitement back into your rowing.  In the UK and France athletes move freely from Coastal Rowing boats into fine boats and back again with no difficulty. Coastal rowing is often used for endurance training, it's fun and relieves the monotony of early morning starts or choppy conditions. Join us or get some Coastal Boats for your Club, we can help.

For information concerning membership email or phone:-

Peter Watson - peter@wbgroup.net.au;  0432 757 477  or

Creagh Mecham - cmecham@icloud.com;  0400 996 346