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Woven between the mountains and the sea, The Coffs Coast is a breathtaking tapestry of colour, encompassing quaint villages, national parks, mountain escarpments, 90 Km of sandy beaches, islands and marine reserves. Located half way between Sydney and Brisbane on the Mid North Coast of NSW, Coffs Harbour is the region’s hub and is the only place in Australia where the Great Diving Range meets the Pacific Ocean.
It is said that The Coffs Coast has the most liveable climate in Australia, which is what brings thousands of tourists to the area all year round. Although it’s economy was once based mainly on banana plantations, it has now being superseded by blueberries as well as tourism and fishing. One of the biggest attractions is the Big Banana, one of the first of Australia’s Big Things, (which celebrated it’s 50th birthday in 2015). The Coffs Harbour Jetty is also a historically important point of interest as it was the timber wharf where coastal shipping once moved the timber from the hinterland. For the nature-lover, nearby Solitary Islands Marine Park preserves a diverse underwater ecosystem, covering the southern limit of northern tropical species and the northern limits of the southern temperate species. Muttonbird Island is accessible by walking along the breakwater from the harbour, with the nature reserve protecting a significant Wedge-tailed Shearwater breeding site. The Muttonbird Island footpath leads to a viewing platform where whales are often spotted between the months of June and November. A nature-lover’s paradise.
10 Km south the small village-like Sawtell, has become a satellite suburb of Coffs Harbour, as it is increasingly referred to as being part of the city instead of its own entity as a town. Sunny Sawtell, as it is referred to by the locals, offers safe patrolled beaches, renowned surfing locations, as well as most sporting activities including golf, bowls, tennis, croquet and fishing. Entertainment, day and night, is available at three licensed clubs. What I loved about the town was the main street with ancient Moreton Bay Fig trees and flowered gardens centred down the avenue, providing shade and refuge for shoppers. The street has many little cafes, nice boutiques and interesting gift shops.
Further south, 27 Km from Coffs Harbour, is the tranquil holiday resort and one of the State’s secret treasures, Urunga. The town is set at a coastal location at the mouth of the Bellinger and Kalang rivers. There is a 1 Km boardwalk extending from the town to the Pacific Ocean through the wetlands out to Urunga Heads with spectacular views of the beaches to the north and south.
The town boasts a world class golf course, a bowling club and a great pub. You can take a drive out to nearby World Heritage Dorrigo National Park and walk through the rainforests, take a short drive to Mylestom, a small peaceful village with kilometres of white sandy beaches or go fishing on one of the rivers. If you like honey, have a taste test at The Honey Pot.
North of Coffs Harbour is the town of Woolgoolga which is famous for the architectural landmark of Guru Nanak Sikh Temple, a huge and imposing white structure, that’s the town’s main attraction. It was built by the town’s Sikh residents whose ancestors travelled to the North Coast around the time of Australian Federation.
From the Woolgoolga headland there are coastal walking tracks with magnificent views to the beaches and the Solitary Islands Marine Park. Nearby beaches include Mullaway, Arrawarra, Corindi and Red Rock. There is another walking track along Woolgoolga Creek which takes you to a lovely waterfall or drive out through the Wedding Bells State Forest where the subtropical rainforest provides a habitat for many bird species.
For those of you who like to get away from the hustle and bustle of town there are two great camping areas located right on the beach just 42 Kms from Coffs Harbour, Corindi Beach and Red Rock. Red Rock is a small suburb of the northern beaches of The Coffs Coast situated beside the banks of the Red Rock River and surrounded by National Parks. You guessed it – it is named for the red outcrops of rocks on the headland.
Nearby Corindi Beach is another great little camping area . Corindi has a little township consisting of a post office, milk bar/newsagent and a tavern. The camping area is grassy with shady trees and is surrounded by beach on one side and parklands on the other. A very pretty spot.
With so much natural beauty and a temperate climate is it any wonder that The Coffs Coast is often referred as being ‘Australia’s pocket of paradise’?
Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 6 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now in her early 60s. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Tweed Coast of New South Wales, Australia. Kathy enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, photography, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.
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