Pint-sized Belmont on the eastern shore of beautiful Lake Macquarie on the NSW North Coast is a lovely getaway. Discover ocean beaches and nature reserves, and enjoy fun activities like sailing, water sports, golf and cycling around landscapes painted 1,000 shades of blue and green. Thrill-seekers can also try tandem skydiving.

Life here revolves around the lakefront, which is dotted with lively restaurants and cafes that overlook Australia’s largest coastal saltwater lake. The pretty foreshore is a popular spot for family picnics as there are barbecue facilities, picnic tables and other amenities in the Green Point reserve.

Children running on Belmont Jetty, Lake Macquarie

Lake Macquarie Yacht Club is located on picturesque Belmont Bay. Relax at Crusoe’s on the Lake, the club's casual waterfront restaurant with a large outdoor deck overlooking the waterway, which is larger than Sydney Harbour. You can also learn to sail with Lake Macquarie Sailing Charters, based at the club.

Fishing, kayaking, sailing and stand-up paddle-boarding are popular activities on the lake, home to fish, dolphins and green sea turtles. Sandwiched between the lake and the ocean is the Belmont Golf Club, an 18-hole championship links course that has spectacular views over the lacquered green landscape, ocean and lake.

Stand up paddle boarding at Naru_Beach in Lake Macquarie

The enchanting Belmont Wetlands is home to more than 100 bird species. This pretty playground for birdwatchers is also popular with walkers and cyclists who share the sealed path known as the Fernleigh Track. Stunning Nine Mile Beach is ideal for fishing and 4WD vehicles are permitted in some areas.

At the northern end of a 14km stretch of coastline is Redhead Beach, which is patrolled in Spring and Summer and excellent for surfing. At the southern end of Belmont is the air strip, which offers aerial adventure tours that range from skydiving with Skydive Newcastle to helicopter joy flights and aerobatics with Matt Hall Racing.

Belmont is less than two hours drive north of Sydney and a short drive south of Newcastle. There are waterside accommodation options to suit various budgets, as well as motels, cottages and a holiday park with villas, cabins and sites by the lake to park your caravan or pitch your tent.