Water-based Activities Licences EOI

The EOI process for licences for water-based human-powered activities is now closed. On this page you will find:

  • Key information for applicants
  • Context for the EOI
  • Consultation outcomes



Key information for EOI Applicants



The application period for Expressions of Interest (EOIs) for a licence to conduct water-based human-powered activities closed on the 27th of September, and the evaluation process is now underway.

These activities include instruction and organised groups for surfing, sea-kayaking, kayaking, canoeing, standup paddling and similar activities, and the non-exclusive hiring of craft and equipment for such activities.

It is expected that, once granted, licences will commence on Saturday 15th December 2018.


Further information

We have provided two additional documents as downloadable PDFs on this webpage to assist people understand the EOI process and the licences. 

  • 'Summary Advice on the EOI Process' provides a broad overview.
  • Our 'EOI FAQs' provides answers to a range of Frequently Asked Questions.

Please note the Summary Advice provides a broad summary of the EOI documentation and cannot be considered a substitute for that documentation.


High resolution maps

High-resolution maps are provided as downloadable PDFs on this webpage.

  • Map 1: Water-based Activities – Zones 1, 2 and 3
  • Map 2: Zone 1 – 15W (Ramp) and 15W (West)
  • Map 3: Zone 1 – 19W (RAAF’s Beach) and 20W (Bridge Beach)
  • Map 4: Zone 2 - Barwon River
  • Map 5: Zone 3 – Thirteenth Beach


Context for the EOI


A changing coast

Barwon Coast Committee of Management has sought to develop a comprehensive process that recognises the local context and responds to new and existing State Government requirements. Competition for access and space on the coast continues to increase, driven by well-known factors such as the growth of local towns and regional cities such as Geelong, changes in user behaviour and expectations and the increasing popularity of the region’s beaches for recreation and events. This results in pressure on natural assets and built infrastructure, and reinforces the need to properly manage activities and provide fair and equitable access to our beaches and coastal areas, particularly in peak season.



The granting of Tour Operator licences is guided by Government policy. In May 2018, Government released two important documents which add to the guidance land managers for issuing licences, and which Barwon Coast is adhering to:

Further information is available through the Department of Environment Land Water and Planning website.


Consultation on water-based activities

Barwon Coast values the opinions of all coastal users, residents and visitors. As part of this EOI process we have sought feedback in two main ways:


Key stakeholders workshop

We hosted a workshop for current licence holders and other key stakeholders on 23rd July at Barwon Heads. A Summary Report from that workshop is provided on this webpage as a PDF document for download.


Community Survey

From mid-July until early August, we sought community feedback through an on-line survey. A total of 26 people responded, and a summary of that feedback is downloadable as a pdf from this webpage.