North Coast Beaches
The North Coast of NSW is home to every beach experience you could wish for, from tranquil coves of white sand nestled in wilderness to family-friendly stretches by seaside villages and world-famous surf breaks. Explore further by kayaking and snorkelling or meander along beautiful coastal trails where national parks meet the sea.
Before heading to the beach, always check Beachsafe for the latest updates.
Swimming & surfing
Roll out a towel and enjoy one of the many deserted and stunning beaches all along the coast. You can also relax with lunch at one of the barbecue facilities available at many beaches such as Fingal Bay Beach in Port Stephens, Flynns Beach in Port Macquarie, Jetty Beach in Coffs Harbour and Wategos Beach in Byron Bay.
Find the perfect wave at one of the many world-class surf breaks along the coast. You’ll find famous National Surfing Reserves in Newcastle, Crescent Head, Lennox Head and Angourie, south of Yamba. There are also plenty of surf schools and surf tours to coax beginners out on their board.
Explore miles of spectacular beaches and littoral rainforest as well as headlands for jaw-dropping views. There’s everything from short walks to multi-day hikes with campgrounds you can stay at along the way, such as in the Yuraygir National Park.
The top coastal walks on the NSW North Coast include:
- Coastal walking track and Caves Beach near Swansea
- Bathers Way in Newcastle
- Cape Byron walking track in Byron Bay
- Solitary Islands coastal walk on the Coffs Coast
- Yuraygir coastal walk between Yamba and Wooli
- Aboriginal Cultural Ways in Ballina
- Booti Hill Lakeside walking track near Pacific Palms
- Port Macquarie coastal walk in Port Macquarie
Wildlife & whales
Then there’s the wildlife you’ll see. From kangaroos bounding along the beach to humpback whales breaching just offshore between May and November. In some beachside national parks, such as Tomaree in Port Stephens or Bongil Bongil on the Coffs Coast, you might even glimpse a koala snoozing in a tree top perch.
Enjoy NSW beaches by following these safety tips
Always swim between the red and yellow flags; surf lifesavers have identified this area as the safest spot to swim in the water. It's also a good idea to always swim with a friend.
Pay attention to the advice of the lifesavers and safety signs. Visit SharkSmart to understand any potential risks in the area you are swimming. You are always welcome to ask lifeguards for more safety advice. If you find yourself needing help in the water, stay calm and attract attention. Check conditions before you go. You can also find patrolled beach by visiting beachsafe.org.au.