Blessed with beautiful beaches and a tranquil estuary, Urunga is a lovely seaside destination on the southern Coffs Coast where the Bellinger and Kalang rivers meet and dolphins swim. Enjoy surfing, fishing and boating. There are two waterway boardwalks, including the famous Urunga Boardwalk.
The elevated Urunga Boardwalk is a 1km trail and wheelchair accessible. It’ll take you along the Kalang River in pretty Bellinger Heads State Park to the confluence with the Bellinger River, and then over the shimmering Urunga Lagoon and along the estuary mouth to the edge of the Pacific Ocean.
Keep an eye for bottlenose dolphins frolicking in the estuary, a popular spot for paddleboarding and kayaking. Birds of prey such as osprey and white-belling sea eagles soar above on the lookout for fish. In the shallows, pied oystercatchers and graceful white-faced herons wade in search of food.
Along the boardwalk are spectacular views west to the Great Dividing Range and north to Mylestom. Just south of the estuary mouth is littoral rainforest and Hungry Head Beach. The reef off Hungry Head is a favourite among surfers, with both left- and right-handers. There are beach breaks, too.
In whale-watching season between May and November, you can spot humpback and other whales on their annual migration. The beach fishing is great, with tailor, whiting and bream all biting. The rocks at Hungry Head and a little further south at Wenonah Head are cherished for rock fishing.
The second, shorter boardwalk is over the Urunga Wetlands, teeming with birdlife. Other wonderful things to do and see include riverside golf on the nine-hole course and ArtUrunga’s, an annual event in September with more than 30 sculptures in the riverside park.
You’ll find accommodation in and around Urunga, and cafes and restaurants such as the riverside Anchors Wharf serve fresh local seafood. The town is a great base for exploring the Waterfall Way, a lovely driving route to Bellingen and the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Dorrigo National Park.
For wine lovers, Raleigh Winery is just north of Urunga. The young and young at heart will love go-karting at Raleigh International Raceway. Urunga is less than 30 minutes’ drive south of Coffs Harbour and the airport, and halfway between Sydney and Brisbane. Trains stop at Urunga Station.