Meaning ‘the meeting place of two rivers’ in the local indigenous language, the sleepy village of Bulahdelah’s connection to surrounding waterways runs deep. Boating, fishing and houseboating are popular on the Myall Lakes, the largest natural freshwater lake system in NSW, or you can escape the world at more than 40 beautiful beaches and rolling dunes in the Myall Lakes National Park.
With more than 130km of tranquil waterways to explore, hiring a houseboat is a great way to experience the lake in all its moods. Bulahdelah-based Myall Lakes Getaway Houseboats allow you to skipper a boat to Myall Lakes National Park, where you can kayak, fish, swim and look for wildlife on bushwalks.
The call of nature
Overlooking Bulahdelah, Bulahdelah Mountain is a legislated Aboriginal Place, in recognition of its cultural and spiritual significance to the Worimi people, the traditional custodians of this land. Also called Alum Mountain due to mining in the area in the 19th century, its walking trails passing traditional tree carvings, an Aboriginal scatter site and a cultural space with seating and a fire pit.
There are many other beautiful bushwalks near Bulahdelah, including the O’Sullivans Gap walking trail, where a tranquil clearing under towering gums where koalas perch high in the branches is the perfect place for a family picnic. At the Grandis picnic area, you can take a short stroll to admire the tallest known tree in NSW, a magnificent 400-year-old flooded gum that stands more than 70m tall.
Continuing north to the Wang Wauk State Forest, you’ll find the Wootton Historical Railway Trail, a 6km walk that follows an old logging railway through a rainforest gully, passing creeks, waterfalls and stands of flooded gums before finishing at the remains of an old trestle bridge.
Getting there & where to stay
The western gateway to Myall Lakes, Bulahdelah is a three-hour drive from Sydney and 90min from Taree Airport. It makes a memorable stop on a road trip along the magnificent NSW North Coast. Fly Pelican currently operates direct flights between Sydney and Taree twice a week.
Bulahdelah has plenty of accommodation options, from holiday parks to motor lodges and eco- cottages. Riverside camping in the National Park is also popular. For those wishing to explore further, 4WD beach driving is permitted between Hawks Nest and Big Gibber.