Action Weekend on the Sapphire Coast

Looking for an active long weekend amid spectacular scenery? Here’s your guide to an action-packed Sapphire Coast escape.

Destination NSW

Destination NSW

Sep 30 -
4
min read

The Sapphire Coast, which stretches from Bermagui in the north to Eden in the south, is wrapped in beautiful beaches, lakes, lagoons, headlands, forest and bush that provide the perfect outdoor adventure playground. Take to its blue waters and green trails for the ultimate stress-busting getaway – not forgetting to unwind with long lunches and serene sunsets, too.

GETTING THERE 

Dip your toes in the water. 

KEY FACTS: 

Tathra Beach Holiday Apartments is located at 

  • 57 Andy Poole Drive 
    Tathra NSW 2550 
  • It’s a six-hour drive (420km) south of Sydney.  
Bermagui Blue Pool - Sunrise. Image Credit: David Rogers

Getting to the Sapphire Coast requires a long drive from Sydney or Canberra, but in compensation you’ll have an exhilarating sense of really getting away from the daily grind and into uncrowded, beautiful landscapes. Leave early and you could be moseying into seaside village Bermagui for a late lunch. Shake off cramped car legs with a swim or snorkel at Blue Pool, a spectacular natural rock pool.

Aerial of the Blue Pool situated along the Bermagui coastline - Sapphire Coast

Aerial of the Blue Pool on the Bermagui coastline - Sapphire Coast 

Head onto Tathra. It’s conveniently central, making an excellent exploration base without the hassle of having to change accommodation. Choose between the ensuite cabins at BIG4 Tathra Beach Holiday Park or Tathra Beach House Apartments, both right opposite the main surf beach, or the bush setting of Kianinny Bush Cottages, where a pool and tennis court tempt anyone with energy to spare.

DAY ONE: FRIDAY 

Between beach and bush. 

DAY ONE KEY FACTS

Tathra Beach and Bike is located at  

  • 31 Andy Poole Drive 
    Tathra NSW 2550 
  • It’s just a few hundred metres from the beach. 
Image Credit: Tathra Beach and Bike

Morning

After yesterday’s journey, you’ll want to stick close to Tathra today, but that doesn’t mean you’re short of options. The town is famous for its magnificent timber wharf and water activities, so take your pick from kayaking, boating, surfing or fishing. The 3km beach invites a run or swim, and you can hire a surfboard or stand-up paddleboard (and take lessons) from Coastlife Adventures.

Tathra Wharf. Image Credit: David Rogers

Tathra Wharf. Image Credit: David Rogers

Fuel up for the afternoon on a hearty pub lunch at the Tathra Hotel, matched with ale, pilsner or lager from its Humpback Brewery.

Afternoon

While the Sapphire Coast is rightly considered a water world, it often goes overlooked for its brilliant mountain biking trails, many of which are found around Tathra. Hire a bike from Tathra Beach and Bike and spend the afternoon on an easy ride amid beautiful scenery, or tackle a more challenging rollercoaster track through forest – there are options for both beginners and experts. A cycling track also leads 5km south to Kalaru.

Image Credit: Tathra Beach and Bike

Mountain Biking in Tathra with Tathra Beach and Bike

Evening

You’ve certainly earned your dinner at Fat Tony’s Bar and Grill inside a 1905 heritage house in Tathra. The chicken risotto, pork-belly burger or triple-cheese seafood mornay will hit the spot – and after all that exercise, you’re entitled to a caramel tart or sticky-date pudding, too.

Fat Tony's in Tathra

Fat Tony's Bar & Grill in Tathra

DAY TWO: SATURDAY 

The Sapphire’s southern pleasures. 

DAY TWO KEY FACTS: 

Merimbula Wharf Restaurant is located at

  • The Wharf 
    Merimbula NSW 2548 
  • It’s just a 30min (29km) drive north of Eden. 
Merimbula Aquarium and Wharf Restaurant

Morning

Head south today to explore along the coast. It’s an hour’s drive to Eden, a noted centre for whale-watching between September and November. It’s worth leaving at the crack of dawn to join a kayak tour with Kiah Wilderness Tours along the lovely Towamba River. Here you’ll find pretty scenery along the river’s many twists and turns, as you’re serenaded by birdsong during a peaceful full morning’s paddle.

Kayaking at sunrise along the Kiah Wilderness Tours

Kayaking at sunrise along the Kiah Wilderness Tours

Afternoon

Pack a picnic, because Loch Garra Cottage at historic Davidson Whaling Station is a great spot for lunch. It’s in Ben Boyd National Park, which has a stunning, convoluted coastline and walking tracks that range from easy to challenging.

Light To Light Walk

Light To Light Walk, Sapphire Coast. Image Credit: David Rogers

Sapphire Coast Guiding Co offers guided walks through this magnificent wilderness, including – if you have more time – the three-day Light to Light walk from Boyds Tower to Green Cape Lighthouse.

Then head back towards your accommodation, stopping at Wheelers Oyster Bar in Pambula for some pre-dinner oysters and a cocktail, and at Merimbula for another lashing of superb landscapes, including headlands, blue lakes and stunning Main Beach, which runs for 6km. If you’re keen on snorkelling, slide into the waters off Bar Beach; for windsurfing and surfing, hit Short Point.

Evening

It’s only a 20min drive back to Tathra, so there’s no rush to leave Merimbula. Enjoy an evening meal at Merimbula Wharf Restaurant , where the seafood platter for two is hard to resist and showcases the region’s freshest oysters, scallops, fish and more. Seafood chowder, spicy fish burgers and piles of sweet-potato chips are also delectable after a day’s exercise – as are sunset views over the ocean.

DAY THREE: SUNDAY 

The leisurely way home. 

DAY THREE KEY FACTS: 

Bermi’s Beachside Cafe is located at  

  • 2/4 Lamont Street 
    Bermagui NSW 2546 
  • It’s a 45min (46km) drive from Tathra. 
Mimosa Rocks National Park. Image Credit: David Rogers

Morning 

Time to head home, but there are still moments to enjoy. Head north and you’re shortly passing through Mimosa Rocks National Park, characterised by cliffs and castle-like rock outcrops. If you’re up early enough, Bunda Head is a top spot for sunrise. Active choices for the morning include a swim at Moon Bay, or surfing, snorkelling or hiking. 

Mimosa Rocks National Park. Image Credit: David Rogers

Mimosa Rocks National Park. Image Credit: David Rogers

Continue onwards for a celebratory lunch at stunning Mimosa Wines and devour soft-shell crab, lamb with sweet potato or miso-glazed eggplant accompanied by wines from the surrounding vineyards. Alternatively, Bermagui is just up the road for an informal fish and chips, or else a scrumptious baguette, bun or bagel from Honorbread. 

Afternoon 

If you don’t mind getting home late, why not slow down and enjoy one of Australia’s most delightful roads as it winds between beaches and lagoons. You could stop for a kayak, boat or even water-ski on tranquil Wallaga Lake, a fittingly scenic finale to a great long weekend of outdoor adventure. 

Wallaga Lake Bridge, Bermagui

Wallaga Lake Bridge, Bermagui

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