Today Merimbula’s timber wharf is a beautiful place to watch the comings and goings of Merimbula Lake, discover marine life and enjoy a beautiful meal, day or night. But it’s long history has been also been marred by struggle, to build, to keep and finally to replace the wharf.
The first structure, a platform with drawbridge, was laboriously built in the 1860s. It meant travellers and goods no longer had to brave a dangerous bar crossing in small boats, however during strong winds it was still a risky berth for steamer captains, who often had to decide whether to pull into Tathra or hope for the best at Merimbula.
The coastal steamer trade continued to the late 1950s when roads became a more viable transport option.
A decade later the deteriorating wharf was considered a public risk and recreational fishermen banded together to replace the deck. This bought the wharf more time, but by 1979 it was slated for destruction. In October crowds lined the headland to watch it burn.
The fishers again launched into action, fundraising to replace their beloved fishing spot and the current, modified version was reopened in 1983.