The lovely seaside town of Port Macquarie is a memorable getaway. Discover beautiful beaches, a rainforest boardwalk, fascinating heritage, the Koala Hospital, acclaimed restaurants and more. The whale watching is incredible, too. And the beautiful Hastings River wine region is on your doorstep.
Port Macquarie is at the mouth of the Hastings River, on the mid NSW North Coast about four hours’ drive north of Sydney and six hours drive south of Brisbane. Oyster farms dot the pristine estuary and curious bottlenose dolphins frolic in the sparkling waterway alongside the river tour boats.
The town began colonial life in 1821 as a penal settlement because of its distance from Sydney. Visit the Port Macquarie Museum for a journey from convict history to the present day. Port Macquarie Hastings Heritage offer walking tours by a multi-award-winning Heritage Consultant of the intriguing heritage.
Explore the spectacular coastline on the Port Macquarie Coastal Walk, which meanders into the Sea Acres National Park. At the Sea Acres Rainforest Centre you can join a guided Aboriginal cultural heritage tour and stroll along the enchanting Sea Acres Rainforest boardwalk, an easy 1.3km walk.
Two more top attractions are the Koala Hospital and the Billabong Zoo: Koala and Wildlife Park, home to a giant saltwater crocodile Shrek. There is a daily tour of the hospital, which treats between 200 and 250 sick or injured koalas a year, and the zoo’s koala breeding program is world-renowned
You’ll encounter giant koala sculptures, too. The Hello Koalas Sculpture Trail is more than 50 hand-painted koalas each a metre high resting around the town and Greater Port Macquarie. The koalas are all painted differently by artists, and you’ll find them in parks, by beaches and outside shops.
Check out the exciting events calendar of arts, sports and festivals. Exhibitions and performances are held at the Glasshouse, in the cultural heart of Port Macquarie. The architectural gem contains the regional public gallery and its engaging collection of mainly abstract and landscape works of art.
You’ll find accommodation options to suit various budgets, from holiday parks to luxury resorts. Enjoy delicious places to eat, with the Stunned Mullet and Bills Fishhouse featuring in The Sydney Morning Herald’s Good Food Guide. There is a vibrant bar scene and small craft breweries, too.