For natural beauty, heritage delights and water sports, Norah Head on the Central Coast of NSW is a wonderful destination. Enjoy a rainforest walk or cycling in a red gum forest, visit a heritage-listed lighthouse for breathtaking views and whale watching, and have fun swimming, surfing and fishing.
With so many things to do and charming places to stay, begin your discovery at the Norah Head Lighthouse. One of the last classical-designed lighthouses in NSW, it started operating in 1903 and still shines brightly. Tours are available, and the lovely location is popular for weddings and events.
You can even stay in the Lighthouse Keepers Quarters, waking up to gaze at a glorious sunrise and then enjoying a swim at a pretty beach. The pretty headland on which the lighthouse sits is a vantage point for spotting humpbacks on their annual migration between May and November.
The annual Whale Dreamers Festival in July celebrates the wonder of these majestic marine mammals. There are more vantage points to spot whales in the northern section of the splendid Wyrrabalong National Park, home to the largest remaining littoral rainforest on the Central Coast.
On the Lillypilly loop trail, you’ll walk under the littoral rainforest canopy of cabbage tree palms, corkwoods and tuckeroos. The 3.5km loop includes vistas of sparkling Tuggerah Lake - a popular waterway for kayaking, sailing and waterskiing - and links up with the Red Gum trail, a 3.4km loop.
The Red Gum walking and cycling track winds past towering red gums, banksias that blossom yellow-green flowers in summer and flannel flowers, the floral emblem of NSW for the Centenary of Federation. For swimming and surfing, Soldiers Beach is nestled between the park and Norah Head.
The beach and rock fishing is great around Norah Head, with plenty of locations to cast a line along the stunning coastline just north of The Entrance. Please read these fishing safety tips, especially if you’re going rock fishing. Norah Head is 90 minutes’ drive from Sydney and an hour from Newcastle.