Sailing the Gippsland lakes since 2013...



Alan Lewis is the owner and skipper of the “Rubeena”. He moved to Sale in 1968 when he was appointed City Engineer, Town Planner and the Engineer for Water Supply. His appointment coincided with the oil boom in Bass Strait, which made for exciting but challenging times during his tenure. Following his resignation in 1985, he established a project management business, Lewis McNaughton, which completed numerous projects throughout Melbourne, Sydney and Gippsland.

He has also been actively involved in community and regional organisations over the years. He started sailing yachts in 1969 and enjoyed cruising the Gippsland Lakes, the East Coast of Australia and the Barrier Reef. During this time he developed a love for timber boats and early Australian history. His involvement in tourism organisations within the region, identified the need for tourist attractions, in particular the Port of Sale and it’s interesting History. Alan purchased the “Rubeena” when it came up for sale at Lake Tyers in 2013, he then established the Port of Sale Heritage Cruises with his daughter Rachel. He completed his coxswain course and now shares his extensive knowledge with his passengers. He is assisted in the day to day running of the business with Elizabeth Hutchinson, and his daughters Rachel and Christina, who take the bookings.

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Learn about the history of the first European settlers and the local Gunnai Kurnai people. Click on our virtual tour to get a taste of what a trip on the Rubeena is like.


Liz McCormick

After many years of family holidays cruising the Gippsland Lakes plus rowing with the Sale Rowing Club and dragon boat paddling with the Gippsland Water Dragons Liz joined the Rubeena as a deckhand in 2019. Having achieved her Coxswain Certificate in 2020 she relieves Alan as Coxswain enabling Elizabeth and Alan some days off together.

Dave Verey

Maintenance Man
Dave is the “Magic Man” for the “Rubeena” following many years with the RAAF maintaining aircraft he has now adapted his extensive skills to maintaining and crewing on the “ Rubeena” ensuring that she is in tip top condition for her 110th birthday.

Drift back into a different time, when our waterways were our highways, and journey from the Port of Sale to the landmark Swing Bridge.

Spot birds and wildlife as you cruise and your guide recounts the region’s remarkable stories, from its first people the Gunnaikurnai, through early settlement to the present day.


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save the date!


Come and join us in celebration of 110 years of the Rubeena in operation on the Gippsland Lakes.

Activities for the Day commencing at 10am:

Free short rides on the Rubeena approx. 30 minutes duration from 10am – 2pm.
Other Activities include:
Food Vans
Bike & Blend Smoothies.
Donuts, Fairy Floss & Coffee.
Trackless Train Rides.
A Petting Zoo.
Historical Vehicle Exhibition.
Briagalong Bush band – live from 10am

We look forward to seeing you there!

Prior to the Race we are running a Drawing Competition in conjunction with Gippsland Art Gallery – Entries are available at the Visitor Information Centre at the Port of Sale Building.

1st Prize 2hour Exclusive hire of the Rubbena with crew for 30 people (valued at $600)

2nd and 3rd Prize Family Ticket (2 adults and 3 Children value $75) normal running times

The winners will be announced at 11.00am Sunday 3rd of April at the Rubeena’s birthday party.