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17 Best & Fun things to do in Nelson Bay (Australia)

Things to Do in Nelson Bay (Australia)

Looking for the best fun things to do in Nelson Bay (Australia)? then this article is for you. Nelson Bay is a coastal town located in the Port Stephens area of New South Wales, Australia. It is approximately 60 km northeast of Newcastle and 200 km north of Sydney.

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The city is a popular tourist destination due to its beautiful beaches, clear waters, and abundance of marine life. Some of the popular activities in the area include swimming, surfing, fishing, diving, and dolphin and whale watching. The town also has a variety of shops, restaurants, cafes, and bars for visitors to enjoy.

As a visitor to Nelson Bay, there is much to enjoy. The city is a gateway for people of all ages as it offers a variety of things to keep tourists busy throughout their stay.

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Choosing the best things to do in Nelson Bay might be a little bit hard especially if you’re visiting the city for the first time.

For your perfect travel experience, here is the list of the Best & fun things to do in Nelson Bay Australia.

Things to do in Nelson Bay

1 Tomaree National Park

Things to Do in Nelson Bay (Australia)One of the main attractions in Nelson Bay is the Tomaree National Park, which is home to the Tomaree Head summit walk. The park is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including eucalypt forests, heathlands, and wetlands. There are several walking trails in the park, ranging from easy to challenging, that offer visitors the opportunity to explore the park’s natural beauty.

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One of the most popular walks in the park is the Tomaree Head Summit Walk, a 2.2 km trail that leads to the summit of Tomaree Headland. The walk takes approximately 1-2 hours to complete and offers spectacular views of the coastline and the surrounding area.

Other walking trails in the park include the Shoal Bay to Tomaree Headland Walk, the Zenith Beach Walk, and the Wreck Beach Walk. The park is also a popular destination for birdwatching, fishing, and picnicking.

Tomaree National Park is a must-visit destination for anyone visiting the Port Stephens area. Its stunning scenery, diverse wildlife, and rich history make it a unique and memorable experience.

2 Visit Gan Gan Lookout

Things to Do in Nelson Bay (Australia)Gan Gan Lookout is a popular vantage point located in the Tomaree National Park in the Port Stephens region of New South Wales, Australia. The lookout offers panoramic views of the surrounding area, including the Port Stephens waterways, the coastline, and the nearby mountains.

The lookout is located at an elevation of 160 meters above sea level and can be accessed by car or on foot via a walking trail from the car park. The drive to the lookout takes visitors through the Tomaree National Park, offering beautiful views of the park’s flora and fauna along the way.

From the lookout, visitors can enjoy stunning views of the entire Port Stephens region, including the town of Nelson Bay, the Pacific Ocean, and the Tomaree Headland. The view is particularly spectacular at sunset when the sky is filled with an array of colors.

Make sure to add the Gan Gan Lookout to your list of things to do in Nelson Bay.

3 Nelson Bay Golf Club

Things to Do in Nelson Bay (Australia)The Nelson Bay Golf Club is a popular golfing destination located in the coastal town of Nelson Bay in the Port Stephens region of Australia. The club offers a beautiful 27-hole golf course, as well as a range of facilities and services for golfers and visitors.

The golf course at Nelson Bay Golf Club is known for its beautiful setting, with panoramic views of the Port Stephens waterways and the surrounding bushland.

The course is divided into three nine-hole courses, each with its own unique character and challenges. The fairways and greens are well-maintained, and there are plenty of natural hazards to keep golfers on their toes.

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The club also offers a range of facilities and services for golfers, including a pro shop, practice areas, and golf carts and equipment rentals. There is also a clubhouse with a bar and restaurant, where golfers and visitors can relax and enjoy a meal or drink after a round of golf.

4 Whale and Dolphin Watching

Things to Do in Nelson Bay Nelson Bay is a popular destination for whale and dolphin watching, as the waters around the town are home to a variety of species of marine mammals. Visitors can take a range of tours and cruises to see these magnificent creatures up close.

During the months of May to November, humpback and southern right whales migrate along the east coast of Australia, passing by the Port Stephens area on their way to their breeding and feeding grounds. Visitors can take whale-watching tours from Nelson Bay to see these majestic creatures breach, tail slap, and play in the water.

The waters around Nelson Bay are also home to a large population of bottlenose dolphins. Visitors can take dolphin-watching tours from Nelson Bay to see these intelligent and playful animals in their natural habitat. Some tours also offer the opportunity to swim with the dolphins in the open water.

Overall, viewing whales and dolphins in Nelson Bay is a unique and unforgettable experience that gives tourists a chance to get up close and personal with some of the most amazing marine life.

5 Nelson Head Heritage Lighthouse & Reserve

Nelson Head Heritage Lighthouse & ReserveOne of the enjoyable things to do in the Port Stephens area of New South Wales, Australia, is to visit the Nelson Head Heritage Lighthouse & Reserve.

The lighthouse was built in 1875 and served as a navigational aid for ships entering and leaving Port Stephens for over a century.

Today, the lighthouse and surrounding reserve have been preserved as a heritage site, and visitors can explore the area and learn about the history of the lighthouse and the important role it played in the development of the region.

The reserve surrounding the lighthouse offers beautiful views of the coastline and the surrounding bushland, with several walking trails that visitors can follow to explore the area. The reserve is also home to a variety of birdlife, and visitors can often spot sea eagles and other species of birds flying overhead.

6 Worimi Conservation Lands

things to do in nelson bayThe Worimi Conservation Lands is a vast coastal reserve located in the Port Stephens region. The reserve covers an area of over 4,200 hectares and includes some of the most stunning beaches, sand dunes, and coastal landscapes in the area.

One of the highlights of the Worimi Conservation Lands is the Stockton Bight Sand Dunes, which are some of the largest moving sand dunes in the Southern Hemisphere. Visitors can take guided tours of the dunes, which offer breathtaking views of the coastline and the surrounding bushland.

The Worimi Conservation Lands is also home to a variety of wildlife, including kangaroos, wallabies, and a range of bird species. Visitors can explore the area on foot, by bike, or by 4WD, with several trails and tracks leading through the reserve.

Worimi Conservation Lands is also a popular destination for outdoor activities such as fishing, swimming, and surfing. The beaches in the reserve have some of the most pristine conditions in the region, with smooth white sand and crystal-clear water.

A visit to Worimi will be one of the top things to do in Nelson Bay for couples who wish to explore Sand Dunes.

7 Fly Point Aquatic Reserve

Things to Do in Nelson Bay Fly Point Aquatic Reserve is a protected marine reserve located in the town of Nelson Bay in the Port Stephens region. The reserve covers an area of approximately 20 hectares and is home to a diverse range of marine life, including a variety of fish, sea grasses, and coral species.

Visitors to Fly Point Aquatic Reserve gets to enjoy a range of activities, including snorkeling, scuba diving, and swimming while observing the marine life in their natural habitat.

One of the highlights of Fly Point Aquatic Reserve is the abundance of colorful fish species, including blue gropers, kingfish, and schools of yellowtail. Visitors can also spot sea turtles, octopuses, and other marine creatures during their visit to the reserve.

Fly Point Aquatic Reserve is also home to several shipwrecks, which provide a fascinating glimpse into the area’s maritime history. Divers can explore these wrecks and learn about the stories behind them.

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8 Fingal Bay Beach

things to do in nelson bayFingal Beach is a stunning white sand beach located under Fingal Head.

This family-friendly surf beach is ideal for catching a wave, catching a fish, or just catching a sunrise on your early morning walk or for a leisurely Sunday afternoon drink overlooking the beach.

Fingal Spit is a sand spit that links the mainland to Fingal Island. The island is still accessible by boat and well worth taking a cruise which includes a fully guided nature walk visiting an Aboriginal fish trap lagoon, as well as Point Stephens Lighthouse and ruined caretakers cottage.

There is a whale-watching station on the headland if you drive all the way to the end of the beach. From May through November, whales pass past.

9 Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters

Things to Do in Nelson Bay for couplesNelson Bay has it all for your satisfaction if you’re the kind that likes marine life. The Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters is dedicated to showcasing and educating visitors about a variety of marine life, including sharks, rays, turtles, and other species of fish.

One of the highlights of Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters is the opportunity for visitors to interact with marine life in a safe and controlled environment. Visitors can participate in shark and ray feeding sessions, where they can hand-feed these magnificent creatures and learn about their behavior and habitats.

The aquarium also offers a range of educational programs and tours, including behind-the-scenes tours, school excursions, and interactive talks about marine conservation and the importance of protecting marine habitats.

The aquarium also offers a range of educational programs and tours, including behind-the-scenes tours, school excursions, and interactive talks about marine conservation and the importance of protecting marine habitats.

One of the unique features of Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters is their focus on the conservation and preservation of marine life.

The facility works closely with marine researchers and conservation organizations to raise awareness about the threats facing marine ecosystems and to promote sustainable practices for managing these fragile environments.

10 Oakvale Wildlife Park

things to do in nelson bayOakvale Wildlife Park is a family-owned wildlife park located in the town of Salt Ash, near Port Stephens. The park is home to a wide range of native and exotic animals, including koalas, kangaroos, wallabies, emus, wombats, and a variety of bird species.

At the park, visitors can hand-feed kangaroos and wallabies, cuddle a koala, and even hand-feed farm animals such as lambs, goats, and chickens.

In addition to the animal encounters, Oakvale Wildlife Park also offers a range of family-friendly activities and attractions, including tractor rides, pony rides, and a playground area. The park also hosts regular events and activities throughout the year, including animal shows, face painting, and live music.

Make sure to schedule some time during your trip to visit the Oakvale Wildlife Park, which is a great attraction for people of all ages.

11 Little Beach Reserve

Things to Do in Nelson Bay Little Beach is a small beach facing northwest adjacent to the Halifax Holiday Park and the Nelson Head lighthouse reserve. The Little Beach foreshore has both a grassed area and a beach area ideal for family and social club gatherings.

The sandy expanse and calm seas of the beach make it a great place for small children. This site is very popular with both a public jetty and a boat launching ramp. The area is well-liked by pelicans and has a fish-cleaning table for seasoned fishermen.

Little Beach features a disabled access jetty. The ramp allows wheelchairs direct access to the ocean.

Little Beach also has a Barbeque & picnic facilities center so you’re sure to have a perfect day out in this fascinating location.

12 Toboggan Hill Park

Things to Do in Nelson Bay Toboggan Hill Park is set amongst natural bushes just off Salamander Way at Nelson Bay.

The park offers a range of family-friendly activities and attractions, including toboggan rides, mini golf, a giant maze, a giant slide, a jumping castle, and a go-kart track.

One of the highlights of Toboggan Hill Park is the toboggan ride, where visitors can ride a specially designed toboggan down a winding track that stretches for over 1 kilometer.

The park also offers a range of other thrilling rides and attractions, including a giant slide and a go-kart track, which is suitable for both adults and children.

For those seeking a more leisurely experience, Toboggan Hill Park also has a mini-golf course, a giant maze, and a jumping castle. The park also has a cafe where visitors can grab a snack or a meal, as well as a picnic area where families can enjoy a picnic lunch.

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Toboggan Hill Park is a popular destination for families and groups and is suitable for visitors of all ages.

13 Visit The Fighter World

things to do in nelson bayFighter World is a family-friendly and totally ‘hands-on’ experience. Visitors can walk around and see inside the cockpits of some of Australia’s most renowned aircraft, including the iconic F-111, at the Newcastle Airport facility, which is close to the RAAF Base.

Visitors can even take a seat in the cockpits of the Mirage and Macchi jets to get a first-hand glimpse of what it’s like to be one of the best “Top Guns” in the world.

Along with a variety of weapons and jet engines, the main hangar also houses the Norm Forrester Collection, unquestionably one of Australia’s best collections of hand-built model airplanes.

Additionally, while you’re there, take advantage of Cafe Fighter World’s friendly ambiance, delicious food, and warm welcome.

14 Oakfield Ranch

Things to Do in Nelson Bay for couplesOakfield Ranch is an animal farm located in the town of Williamtown in the Port Stephens region of New South Wales, Australia. The ranch is home to a variety of domestic and exotic animals, including alpacas, miniature ponies, cows, goats, pigs, and rabbits.

Experience the thrill of the ships of the desert over the vast sand dunes of Port Stephens. Enjoy a relaxing ride along the sands of Birubi Beach at Anna Bay.

In addition to the animal encounters, Oakfield Ranch also offers a range of family-friendly activities and attractions, including pony rides, train rides, and a playground area.

The ranch also hosts regular events and activities throughout the year, including sheep shearing demonstrations, animal shows, and farm tours.

Operating 6 days a week (closed Wednesdays) and every day of NSW Public School Holidays.

15 Aqua Blu Bistro & Bar

Things to Do in Nelson Bay (Australia)Visit the Aqua Blu Bistro & Bar if you’re seeking a premier restaurant to experience delectable regional Australian food.

It offers a range of modern Australian cuisine with a focus on seafood, as well as a variety of drinks including cocktails, beer, and wine. The restaurant has both indoor and outdoor seating options with views of the marina and bay and is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

If you’re interested in dining at Aqua Blu Bistro & Bar, I recommend checking their website or contacting them directly for more information on their menu, hours of operation, and reservation policies.

Located at 22 Teramby Rd, Nelson Bay NSW 2315, Australia. Phone: +61 2 4984 9999.

16 Nelson Bay Cinema

Things to Do in Nelson Bay (Australia)Looking for a nice spot to enjoy a thrilling movie in the city of Nelson Bay, then head over to the city Cinema located in the town in the Port Stephens area.

It features three cinema screens that show the latest Hollywood and Australian films, as well as a range of independent and foreign language movies. The cinema also hosts special events and film festivals throughout the year.

Nelson Bay Cinema has comfortable seating and modern digital projection and sound systems. It offers a range of snacks and drinks at its candy bar, and patrons can also purchase food and drinks from nearby restaurants and cafes to enjoy during the movie.

Nelson Bay Cinema is the perfect place to go for couples wishing to go on a movie date.

17 Barramundi Farm

Things to Do in Nelson Bay (Australia)Barramundi farms are commercial fish farms that specialize in raising barramundi, a popular fish species in Australia and other parts of the world.

Barramundi is known for its white, flaky flesh and mild, buttery flavor, and is often used in a variety of dishes including fish and chips, grilled barramundi, and fish tacos. A visit to the farm is one of the famous things to do in Nelson Bay for couples.

You can see the production cycle of the fish growing process, fish from 40mm to 800mm, and have free access to feed and play with the fish in the front pond surrounding the family restaurant at the barramundi and hydroponic vegetable farm tour, which is the largest producer of barramundi in NSW with year-round production.

Best time to visit Nelson Bay

The peak tourist season in Nelson Bay is during the summer months of December to February when the weather is warm and sunny, and there are plenty of outdoor activities and events on offer.

If you prefer a quieter and more relaxed atmosphere, the shoulder seasons of March to May and September to November can be good times to visit. During these months, the weather is still mild and comfortable, and there are fewer tourists, making it easier to find accommodation and enjoy the local attractions without crowds.

Winter (June to August) can be a good time to visit for those interested in whale watching, as this is the peak season for humpback whales migrating along the east coast.

However, the weather can be cool and wet during these months, so it’s important to pack warm clothing and rain gear.

 

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