North Coast


North Coast beaches

Whether you love body-surfing or serious wave riding, swimming in safe, shallow waters or long beach walks, the beaches of the North Coast are just about perfect. This is the most accessible coastline in Australia, with national parks, nature reserves and headland lookouts.

  • Avoca Beach, Central Coast
  • Cape Byron Headland and Lighthouse

About the North Coast

Visit the scenic North Coast of NSW where you'll discover a hinterland of lush river valleys and a coastline of sparkling beaches that are accessible from the Legendary Pacific Coast touring route.

North Coast holiday choices are many and varied: tackle the vast sand dunes of Stockton Beach north of Newcastle by 4WD, or scuba dive at the Solitary Islands Marine Park off the coast of Coffs Harbour.

Discover unique nature experiences in the North Coast's many national parks and reserves. Hike through the ancient forests in the World Heritage-listed Dorrigo National Park. The Yuraygir Coastal Walk is a multi-day walk that stretches from Angourie to Red Rocks within Yuraygir National Park. For coastal views at a more leisurely pace, Tomaree National Park at Fingal Bay offers a number of walks of varied length, including the short Wreck Beach Walk.

Whale watching is also popular at many locations along the North Coast. Humpback whales and southern right whales migrate along the NSW coastline throughout June and in the first week of July, and return southwards from around September to November. Observe the migration from several headlands and lookouts, or join whale-watching tours that set off from Byron Bay, Coffs Harbour and Port Stephens.

  • Ballina

    The towns of Ballina and Lennox Head are home to spectacular beaches, including Lennox Head Beach and Lighthouse Beach, with water conditions suitable for both families and surfers. Lennox Head is an excellent location for sighting humpback whales as they pass close to shore during the migration season, with Pat Morton Lookout offering extensive views of the Pacific Ocean. 

  • Byron Bay Area

    Located along a coastline of sparkling beaches, Byron Bay is a great location to enjoy a wide range of water activities, including surfing, kayaking, sailing and swimming. Main Beach is ideal for families, while The Pass is popular amongst surfers. Hike through rainforest and across clifftops with stunning ocean and hinterland views on the Cape Byron Walking Track.

  • Clarence Coast

    Located on the banks of the Clarence River, the town of Grafton is renowned for its beautiful jacaranda trees that line the town's roads and fill its parks with colour. The World Heritage-listed Iluka Nature Reserve is filled with wildlife and gives visitors the chance to explore ancient rainforests. Superb fishing locations can be found in the towns of YambaIlukaWooli and Maclean.

  • Coffs Harbour Area

    Relax in Coffs Harbour's friendly atmosphere and experience great dining in the town's restaurants, including those on the famed Jetty Strip. Nature lovers can visit an ancient rainforest walking along the scenic Dorrigo Skywalk within Dorrigo National Park. Bellingen is the region's creative hub that hosts several cultural festivals and events throughout the year. 


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Local areas

  • Byron Bay Area Lush hinterland, sparkling beaches, popular beach culture, great shopping and lively events calendar.
  • Clarence Coast Grafton is on the banks of Clarence River with endless outdoor adventures and great surfing beaches.
  • Coffs Harbour Area Adventure sports, world-class golf courses, art galleries, cafes and plenty of exciting events.
  • Forster & Taree Area With superb beaches, the Manning River and Great Lakes, this region is dominated by water sports.
  • Kempsey Area This historic river town is close to national parks and majestic beaches such as Crescent Head.
  • Lake Macquarie Area Linking the lake, beaches and mountains are more than 90 villages, with great surfing and heritage towns
  • Lismore Area Famous for its World Heritage-listed rainforests and national parks, alternative lifestyle and festivals
  • Newcastle Area A vibrant cosmopolitan city perched between a working harbour and beautiful beaches.
  • Port Macquarie Area The Hastings River flows into the Port Macquarie sea, national parks'region,surf beaches,coastline.
  • Port Stephens Area Golden beaches, a beautiful bay and plenty to do; surfing,kayaking, bushwalking, and dolphin-watch cruises.
  • The Tweed Area Enjoy a beautiful coastline and sub tropical climate, stunning resorts and great dining in style.