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After spending some time on the South Coast of New South Wales, we drove across the border into Victoria and the small coastal village of Mallacoota. Although this town is somewhat isolated being 23 kilometres off the highway, it’s well worth the drive. This unique patch of paradise on the far south eastern coast of Victoria in Australia boasts a myriad of natural attractions. With hinterland, bush, lakes, rivers and coast and a laid-back style where you can fish, swim, boat or ski.
Mallacoota is the hub of Croajingolong National Park, an extensive wilderness area stretching over 100 kilometres of rugged and unspoilt coastline. It offers a rare glimpse of wilderness, wildlife and adventure and is ideal for camping, bushwalking or day trips.
Croajingolong National Park surrounds Mallacoota Inlet that consists of two large lakes, forming the estuary of the Genoa and Wallagaraugh Rivers. The Inlets’ lakes have approximately 320 kilometres of shoreline that offers unique opportunities for canoeists, kayakers and motor boaters to see a wide range of wildlife in their natural habitat.
The waterways feature a Top Lake and Bottom Lake that are linked by a deep channel of water know as The Narrows. Top Lake and Bottom Lake are both expansive areas of water containing ( in fishing terms) drop-offs, deep holes, sand and weedbeds and rocky points.
We discovered there are many beautiful, pristine beaches with spectacular vantage points that you can walk, cycle or drive to in close proximity to Mallacoota. Mallacoota Beaches
At Betka Beach, where the Betka River enters the ocean, you can enjoy a swim or a picnic in the adjoining park. Whilst Quarry Beach boasts pleasant seascapes of folded and faulted colourful rock strata. But my favourite was Secret Beach with its sea cave at the northern end of the beach, that you can enter at low tide.
We spent a few days exploring the area on foot on the extensive walking tracks in and around Mallacoota, including some spectacular beach and coastal paths, and some great nature walks through the rainforests.
Each afternoon at beer o’clock we would take our esky and snacks to sit atop Captain Stevenson’s Point and The Entrance Viewing Deck. From here we were rewarded with perfect views of the islands of the bottom lake and the sand dunes separating the lake system from the Tasman Sea.
You can enjoy an informative and relaxing cruise on a ferry boat through the beautiful forested river waterways. Or choose your own view to wake up to each morning aboard a fully self-contained houseboat.
Take a water taxi service to nearby Gabo Island with its lighthouse that was constructed in 1858 using distinctive pink granite. It has significant colonies of seabirds including Little Penguins. Walks around the island provide stunning land and seascape views set off by floral displays in season.
The Mallacoota Inlet is a recreational fisherman’s paradise! My husband spent some time each day either throwing a line into the estuary or fishing right off the beach. The result was a nice catch of Australian Salmon.
There are many species of fish, including Flathead and Bream, to be caught in the catchment area of 1750 square kilometres of lakes and rivers. Fish off one of the four fishing platforms, or throw a line from a beach, the wharf, a boat, or a secluded lakeside spot.
Take a boat trip or drive down to Gipsy Point, that sits restfully on the banks of Mallacoota Inlet, located in the middle of the UNESCO listed Croajingolong National Park. Here you can watch the kangaroos laze in the sunshine by the lakeside as well as some impressive birdlife.
On the day we were here we saw loads of kangaroos grazing on the nearby fields of green grass.
We stayed at the Mallacoota Foreshore Holiday Park, one of the largest holiday parks in Victoria with over 600 caravan and camping sites. Select from lakefront or beachfront sites, with jetties and moorings for boats on some of the sites as well as boat trailer parking.
There are also two other caravan parks in town, cabins, motels and a range of holiday units and homes to select from for your Mallacoota Accommodation.
There really is nowhere else in Australia where you can experience pristine, wild and unspoilt landscapes like this. Magic Mallacoota is the place to go wild!
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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Pinky PoinkerMarch 15, 2014
Those photos are brilliant. The pelicans! I think you should write a special post with tips on how to make your dog comfortable and cope with a dog on a trip like you’re doing. I’ve never seen a post like that and it will come in very handy for me when we eventually hit the road :) Actually you could even include dog friendly places on each post! Thank you for making me jealous again Kathy!
KathyMarch 15, 2014
Yes I have a soft spot for pelicans. Everywhere seems to be fairly dog friendly so far. More and more caravan parks allow dogs and we have a canopy on the back of our ute for the dog to travel in. She is extremely comfortable and we stop every few hours to let her out for a run and a pee. The only barrier so far is that you can’t take dogs into National Parks or out for dinner at a restaurant! But we leave her in the back of the car for a few hours with all windows down and in the shade. She is absolutely no problem!
Jan from Retiring not shy!April 15, 2016
This is our home town Kathy and it really is one of the most naturally beautiful places in Australia if not the world.
KathyApril 15, 2016
Well fancy that! I have featured your gorgeous hometown. We really enjoyed our time here. It was such a wonderland of natural beauty. :)
JanApril 15, 2016
Don’t forget to visit us again and let me know if you are coming into the area – it would be fun to meet you :-)
KathyApril 15, 2016
Sure will Jan. Not sure when we’ll get down that way again. ?
raehilhorstApril 15, 2016
I have never heard of Mallacoota, you are opening up so many places for me x
KathyApril 16, 2016
I’m glad I am educating you Rae about the East Coast of Australia. Mallacoota is probably not on a lot of people’s bucket list, but I think it is very worthy of a mention. Such a beautiful place! :)
budgettraveltalkApril 15, 2016
The name of Mallacoota sounds very familiar to me but I don’t think I’ve been there. It looks beautiful and those Pelicans are certainly well fed. I love that view from Captain Stevenson’s Point.
KathyApril 16, 2016
If you ever travel the South Coast of NSW, it is just across the border into Victoria. It is a bit off the main road but fully worth the effort. I’m certain you would love it here. :)
patgarciaApril 15, 2016
I have never been to Australia but would like to go there because I have a very good girlfriend who lives in Perth and I have not seen her for ages. I enjoyed looking at your pictures and reading your excerpts about Mallacoota. I especially liked the pictures with the kangaroos. I am a kangaroo fan and hope to see one whenever I visit Australia.
Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.
Patricia @ EverythingMustChange
KathyApril 16, 2016
If you ever get to Perth in West Australia to visit your girlfriend you will see plenty of kangaroos! They are pretty much everywhere in Australia. Mallacoota is a very picturesque town on the East Coast of Australia. :)
Life Images by JillJanuary 9, 2020
Just noticed this was written a couple of years ago. It looks like a beautiful place to visit. I hope it can recovered from the bushfires that have ravaged it.
KathyJanuary 11, 2020
Yes Jill this is a re-hash of an old post, but I wanted to re-post it to bring people’s attention to this beautiful little town. Mallacoota and many other small towns affected by the bushfires are going to need all the support they can get. I hope in the aftermath, that the bushfires don’t deter people from visiting and injecting money into the economies of these towns.
Jan WildJanuary 30, 2020
As you know this was our home town up until 2 years ago, and it still holds a piece of my heart.
The road in is only just being reopened, and the community has been devastated with the loss of over 100 homes. It will be a long journey back for the residents, but the good news is that the commercial centre was unscathed so having visitors with open wallets will be much needed. Can I put in a plug for Croajingolong Cafe and the Art Gallery as deserving of special attention?
KathyJanuary 30, 2020
I can imagine how upsetting if was for you to see your previous home devastated by the bushfires. Mallacoota was a real standout for us when we were travelling around Australia so I truly do hope it will get back on its feet quickly. I’m more than happy for you to put in a plug for the cafe and art gallery. Hopefully tourists will get onboard and support these towns.