Where in Australia can you stroll along gloriously golden beaches in the morning, kayak through stunning waterways, enjoy a picnic lunch on a hidden river bank, take a rainforest trek in the afternoon, and finish the day watching the sun dip over cascading waterfalls?
On the Coffs Coast of course!
No matter if you’re a stand up paddle boarding fan or a bird watcher, or someone who simply loves being surrounded by endless nature, you’re in for a treat in this unique region.
Coffs Harbour is conveniently located halfway between Brisbane and Sydney along Australia’s east coast. Although with so much fun to be had along the Coffs Coast, we suspect you won’t want to leave.
Get on the water
One of the most exciting ways to experience the area is by getting out on its beautiful meandering rivers and creeks and exploring the Coffs Coast by kayak, canoe or paddle board.
A great place to start your epic journey, whether you’re new to the kayaking game or a seasoned water adventurer is at the Orara River in the Orara Valley. Slightly inland from the coast, this area is renowned for its crystal clear waters and gentle rapids.
Whether you opt for the 45-minute paddle from Hartley’s Bridge to Coramba Bridge or the two-day trip between the villages of Coramba and Nana Glen, stop at some of the beautiful picnic spots along the way and discover a variety of wildlife, including turtles and water dragons.
Head up the coast to Moonee Creek and Beach to experience tranquil natural beauty and awesome aquatic activities. Meander along the tidal river on your paddle craft and watch as the landscape slowly changes from mangroves to melaleuca and large eucalypts.
If you’re keen on seeing some of the incredible marine life that the waters along the Coffs Coast have to offer, but prefer to stay dry, head south from Coffs Harbour to Boambee Creek Estuary. Watch casts of crabs scuttle across the sandflats and stingrays patrol the shallow waters from the over-water boardwalk which offers unique access to this environment.
If you’re looking for an adventure on Coffs Coast’s waters, then kayaking the rapids along the Bellinger River is a must.
Flowing from high on the Dorrigo plateau, through the villages of Thora and Bellingen before entering the ocean at Urunga, paddling the river offers views of lush farmland and mountains, as well as fun rapids at Upper Thora and peaceful swimming holes where you can cool off.
Drive the Waterfall Way
If you’re intrigued to see what lies beyond the rivers and estuaries close to Coffs Harbour, then pop your kayak back on your car and head along one of Australia’s most scenic routes – Waterfall Way.
Along the way, stop off at the township of Dorrigo which lies on the edge of the Great Dividing Range escarpment, 731 meters above sea level.
Dorrigo holds many hidden treasures including the World Heritage-listed Gondwana rainforests in the Dorrigo National Park, scenic walking trails, waterfalls, and a variety of bird and native wildlife.
Stop at the Canopy Café at Dorrigo Rainforest Centre to dine on delicious local produce, then walk out to the end of the Skywalk Lookout to watch the forest birds flitting around the tree tops and enjoy the magnificent vista across forests and valleys out to the coast.
If you’re enchanted by the magic of waterfalls, then head further along Waterfall Way to Wollomombi Falls, the second highest waterfall in Australia, and watch as the gushing river plunges more than 100 metres into the ravine below.
Further up into the highlands, Ebor Falls in Guy Fawkes River National Park, is another spot perfect for picnics, where you can look out over the impressive, rugged gorge on three different platforms.
Whether you enjoy the spectacular sights of rainforests and exotic flora and fauna driving along the Waterfall Way, or you want to take to the water with a paddle to explore the unique rivers and estuaries, you are in for a wonderful experience on the Coffs Coast.
Create your own piece of paradise here and remember Coffs Harbour as a window into unspoiled natural beauty, adventurous river journeys, perfect picnic spots and unique wildlife.
You’ll never want to leave!