Discover Port Stephens’ wonderful beaches and resident wild dolphins. You’ll enjoy dolphin-watching cruises and parasailing on the sparkling blue waters. There are 26 sandy beaches, some sheltered in bays that are perfect for families as well as swimming, snorkelling and kayaking. The towering Stockton sand dunes are great for quad-biking and horseriding.
The area is named after Port Stephens, which is the major geographical feature of the area. It extends generally from the Hunter River in the south, to near Clarence Town in the north, and from the Tasman Sea in the east, to just south of Paterson in the west. Port Stephens is about two and a half hours north of Sydney.
As one of the most popular coastal regions in New South Wales, there are plenty of beaches to explore in Port Stephens. Among the most stunning is windswept Zenith Beach, somewhat hidden behind the more well-known and family-friendly Shoal Bay. Experienced surfers are attracted to the wild waves at Zenith, as well as Wreck, Box and Samurai beaches. There are plenty of beaches for families, too, such as One Mile Beach, Fingal Bay and Birubi Beach. You can hire a surfboard or stand-up paddleboard from Port Stephens Surf School, or sign up for a surfing lesson. Other seaside activities include sunset camel rides, horse riding in Anna Bay, and sandboarding down Stockton Bight sand dunes.
It's a steep hike to the top of Mount Tomaree, in Tomaree National Park, but well worth the effort for the views of Port Stephens alone. Tomaree Head Summit Walk is only one kilometre (0.62 miles) each way, but it is a challenging trail so allow up to two hours return. You will find the trailhead at Zenith Beach carpark. Don't forget to take a camera and binoculars – the summit is an ideal spot to watch migrating humpback whales between May and October.
The location doesn't get much better than at Crest Birubi Beach at Anna Bay, a modern café that sits on a grassy headland with beautiful views of Birubi Beach. Surfers parade past as you join locals dining on freshly caught seafood. In Nelson Bay, considered the hub of the Port Stephens region, there is a great range of dining choices in town and at the marina. For fine dining head to the waterfront restaurant Little Beach Boathouse, or for a mix of seafood and classic pub fare book a table at Mavericks on the Bay, at the marina.
• Tomaree National Park
• Oakvale Wildlife park
• Sand Dunes Adventures
• Stockton Sand Dunes
• Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters
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0800 270 0009
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