Both rivers are dominated by the Felixstowe and Harwich docks at the sea entrance but are very rural upstream.
A very busy port with a precautionary area offshore, and a small craft channel outside the ‘dual carriageway’ of the channel and designated crossing point on the main channels.
As you approach the entrance there is a breakwater off Blackman’s Head, which is covered at HW. Harwich shelf to the Guard is a shallow bank between the main channel and the east side of Harwich, which narrows the small-craft channel considerably.
Shotley Spit extends virtually up to the cardinal on the north side of the Stour and it has a sharply dredged shoulder.
Harwich Haven Authority has an excellent guide to the local rivers, available free (01255 243030).Also available on www.HHA.co.uk but to read it in enough detail you will need to print it on a large high resolution printer and view with a large screen. So paper is best.