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After departing the Myall Coast or Great Lakes Area of New South Wales we kept heading south until we reached Lake Macquarie. We had put in a few days camped at Belmont on Lake Macquarie on our previous trip down the coast, but this time we wanted to see some more of the charismatic Central Coast.
The Central Coast region begins at the mouth of the Hawkesbury River and stretches all the way to the southern end of Lake Macquarie. This region has been serving holidaymakers from Sydney for a century or more with the perfect combination of lakes, lagoons and surf beaches.
There are a number of picturesque towns and villages including Umina Beach, The Entrance, Avoca Beach, Terrigal and Ettalong Beach. What struck me about the seaside towns on the Central Coast is that all have a retro feel about them, with manmade ocean pools, old Surf Clubhouses perched beachside and old beach shacks still standing.
After spending a night at Belmont and catching up with friends, we awoke to inclement weather, but that is all part of travelling so we soldiered on. We arrived at The Entrance at lunchtime and had a quick look around this pretty as a picture coastal and lakeside town.
Bounded by beaches, lakes and lagoons, The Entrance has been a popular holiday location since the first guest house was built here in 1885. Tuggerah Lake is ideal for water-skiing, canoeing, sailing, rowing and sailboarding, whilst the beach is popular for swimming, surfing and beach fishing.
There are extensive pathways that follow Tuggerah Lake where it meets the ocean and around the headland to the surf club and ocean pool. Although we started walking this path we soon had to seek shelter as the skies had opened up again and the rain made it unpleasant for walking.
We jumped back into our car and drove the short distance of 14kms from The Entrance to Terrigal. Thankfully the weather was looking a little better as we drove into this pretty town. There are stately Norfolk Pines that line the promenade along the main beach of Terrigal that curves around to Broken Head.
We parked the car out of the town a little way and scaled up the steep incline of Skillion Lookout where we were rewarded with majestic views towards Avoca Beach and back towards Terrigal Beach.
Terrigal and its nearby beaches are popular swimming and surfing spots, with Terrigal Haven and Wamberal Beaches, just north of Terrigal, being popular with the more experienced surfers. There is also a fascinating dive site that can be found 1.4 km offshore, where the wreck of the Ex-HMAS Adelaide rests in 32m of pristine ocean.
The next seaside village on the Central Coast is Avoca Beach that is a mere 7kms away, swerving around Avoca Lake. Avoca Beach features rocky headlands at each end of a long, golden beach. It’s a popular holiday destination, especially for families, and it has a vibrant surf culture and a relaxed and friendly ambience.
At Avoca Lake you can hire a watercraft from a huge selection of pedal boats and kayaks, or try stand-up paddle boarding.
Of course the Central Coast continues further south to Ettalong Beach and the mouth of the Hawkesbury River, however we got as far as Gosford and then got back onto the Pacific Highway to resume our journey. It was a lovely detour to see this delightful coastal area and I would definitely love to return here to spend some time exploring it further.
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.