Woopi Wonders

FROM FABULOUS FOOD TO BEAUTIFUL BEACHES, WOOLGOOLGA (OR WOOPI AS THE LOCALS KNOW IT) HAS MANY HIDDEN GEMS, JUST WAITING FOR YOU TO EXPLORE.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Spoilt for choice from coffee and sweet treats to fish and chips on the beach, you can indulge in the many amazing food offerings. Take a stroll around town and you’ll find a delicious variety of cafés, restaurants and ‘hole in the wall’ take-aways along Beach Street and Market Street.

Drop into Bluebottles Brassiere to enjoy a coffee and owner Dan’s daily quiz, pick up a calamari wrap from White Salt to enjoy on the headland, enjoy fresh baked scones at Beach House Café and grab a gelato at Tangos.

Don’t miss the hugely popular burgers at The Box Factory, local food creations at Ground Earth, traditional North Indian vegetarian meals at Singhan Da Dhaba, enjoy a drink and tapas at Anchor Kitchen & Bar and don’t forget the family-friendly Seaview Tavern.

NATURE LOVERS

From Woolgoolga Headland you’ll have picturesque views of the Solitary Islands and the perfect vantage point for whale watching.

Woolgoolga is home to several beautiful beaches ideal for surfing, fishing, snorkelling and family fun.

There’s lots to do beyond the beaches too. Nature lovers will be captivated by natural beauty of Sherwood Nature Reserve a spectacular, environmentally diverse area, rich with natural beauty that will be a joy to discover. Explore striking landscapes ranging from rugged sandstone escarpments and coastal ridges to dry open forests, heaths and vibrant subtropical rainforests.

Within the reserve is Woolgoolga Creek Picnic area. Nestled below towering flooded gums, you’ll find this secluded picnic area fringed with blue quandongs. There’s plenty of space for the kids to run around, and nearby rainforest and creeks to explore, making it a great family day out.

A visit to Woolgoolga is not complete without exploring the stunning coastline to the north. The best way to appreciate the coastal strip between Woolgoolga and Arrawarra is on a bike. Take the Woopi Coastal Loop and discover three unique headlands and five amazing beaches providing tranquil locations with spectacular views. You are sure to find your own slice of the north coast for that quick break, a swim and maybe a picnic lunch.

Exploring Woolgoolga

  • Go bike riding on Woolgoolga Coastal Loop
  • Whale watch from Woolgoolga Headland
  • Visit the Sikh museum and temple
  • Swim, surf or fish at Woolgoolga beaches
  • Enjoy fabulous food at the cafes and restaurants
  • Go shopping and peruse the markets
  • Picnic at nearby Sherwood Nature Reserve

Looking for something different? Check out Woopi’s emerging brew scene at Woolgoolga Brewery, where you can come and enjoy a delicious cold beer, great food and live music in a relaxed beer garden setting. Or try a distillery tour and tasting experience not to be missed at Critters Distillery.

FOUR DAYS in COFFS

Coffs Harbour is a thriving eco-tourism destination overflowing with outdoor experiences, family-friendly attractions, local food and drink offerings and action-packed adventures. 

On the journey, the kids do some research. We learn that Coffs Harbour is geographically unique – the only place in NSW where the Great Dividing Range meets the Pacific Ocean – and we make a note to grab a photo at White Bluff. It’s also home to significant Gumbayggnirr Indigenous cultural sites. 

Flying direct to Coffs Harbour from Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane is the perfect option for a quick getaway. But as an active family that loves their bikes and surfboards, we chose to travel the scenic route to this holiday paradise, driving along the legendary Pacific Coast.

Stay in Surf Villa at Big4 Park Beach Holiday Park

Friday Day 1: Arrive check 2 – 3 pm – Villa Park Beach Holiday Park

•             Walk or bike around Coffs Creek to Harbour Jetty Marina

•             Swim at Jetty Beach

•             Dinner at Twilight Food Market with a picnic at Park Beach Reserve

Leave the Pacific Highway to arrive at the Big4 Park Beach Holiday Park in Coffs Harbour with a car packed with all the essentials for a fun family weekend. The kids are eager to explore the park facilities, the mini-golf course, jumping pillow or swimming pool. At the same time, the parents unpack surfboards and bikes and unload the gear from the car.

It’s time to get out and explore on a family bike ride along the Coastal Creek Reserve. Ride past North Wall beach onto the beautiful Jetty Foreshores and out towards the Southern Breakwall, stopping at the historical 700-metre Jetty at Coffs Harbour Jetty Beach. Stop for a swim at Jetty Beach and watch the sup boarders paddling around the Jetty on the return ride. (1 ½ hrs)

For dinner, stroll over to the Coffs Creek Reserve for delicious flavour options at the Twilight Food Market. Watch the sunset on the hill with a few drinks listening to a local entertainer belt out some tunes while the kids explore the reserve. (2 hrs)

Day 2. Saturday: Plenty of Outdoor Adventure and Culture

•             Early Morning Surf at Park Beach 

•             Breakfast at Surf Club Restaurant and Bar

•             Wajaana Yaam Gumbaynggirr Adventure Tours Coffs Creek

•             Lunch at Cafe Aqua

•             Treetops Adventures or Gumgali Track Walk at Sealy Lookout

•             Dinner at Element Bar

Other Experience Options: Dolphin Marine Conservation Park – Animal Carer Experience, Big Banana Laser Tag & Giant Slide. Don’t forget the Family Selfie out the front and sample the famous Banana Split

The day starts with an early morning surf at Park Beach or cruise 1km ride North to the end of Ocean Parade for a surf at Macauleys Beach. The exposed left-handed point break frequently offers surfable waves at all tide stages. (1hr)

Stroll over to the  Surf Club Restaurant and Bar for breakfast and grab a coffee on the way out, and we highly recommend the Vego Big Brekkie with bacon. (1hr)

Head to Coffs Creek for the award-winning ECO Certified Wajaana Yaam Gumbaynggirr Adventure Tours. This experience is a life-changing tour where the family will touch, feel, and taste the soul of Gumbaynggirr country. Learn about culture and history through a 100% authentic cultural experience and knowledge, perfect for curious young minds. (2.5hrs)

After lunch at Café Aqua head North along the Pacific Highway, turning off at Bruxner Park Road as you wind your way through blueberry farms before arriving at the Eco Accredited Orara East State Forest and Sealy Lookout (Niigi Niigi)

It’s time to strap in and climb up through the trees at Treetop Adventures for an afternoon monkeying around in the trees. The family will be swinging on one of twenty ziplines and climbing through rope courses. Grab a coffee or cake from the Nyanggan Gapi Café before you take a bush walk on the Gumgail track. Learn the local indigenous dreaming story of  Gumgali, the Black Goanna and expressed through timber and metal sculptures, murals and signage. Make sure to spot all the goannas along the walk. (2.5hrs)

Dinner at Element Bar of pizzas all round followed by desert. The Bar offers a laidback coastal vibe with a great selection of wines, cocktails, spirits and tap beer for the parents as the family eats out in the alfresco dining area.  

Day 3 Sunday: On the Water with Nature

•             Breakfast on the go – Old Johns

•             Whale Watching / Swim with Whales (Seasonal) or Solitary Eco Adventure Boat Rides

•             Coffs Jetty Markets fresh produce and locally made treats

•             Picnic lunch at Botanic Gardens. Eco Quest search for birds, plants and animals

•             Family bike ride around Coffs Creek or snorkelling at the Jetty

•             Dinner of Fresh Prawns from Fishermen’s Coop & local produce from the markets

Option to book a bike tour with Montem

The morning starts with a coffee, muffin, acai bowls and smoothies from Old Johns at the Jetty Strip. (1hr)

Get ready for the excitement of a fast boat ride with the fantastic crew at the Jetty Dive, Coffs Harbour’s most recent Eco Certified tour operator. Feel the sense of freedom as the boat ventures out of the harbour into the Solitary Islands Marine Park. If you’re lucky the curious whales will come up to the boat and cruise by to check you out. As the family departs from Mega Wild Jetty Dive boat, the kids will be yabbering about this incredible trip.

Shop at the Jetty area for local food, starting at the Fishermen’s co-op to buy locally caught prawns and Jetty Markets to gather local produce and gourmet food. Drop food back at the holiday park.

Take a picnic lunch to the North Coast Regional Botanic Gardens, a family favourite in Coffs Harbour. The Botanic Garden recently achieved Ecotourism Certification to ensure the longevity of its subtropical garden paradise. The gardens are smack bang in the middle of town. The kids can participate in the Coffs Coast ECO Quest, a mobile app game that opens their eyes to the amazing and beautiful local wildlife

Taking in the sweeping views of the ocean, we head out for a family bike ride of Coffs Creek, taking in the abundant birdlife and pristine water.

Day 4 Monday: Soaking up some more of Coffs Harbour Nature 

•             Muttonbird Island Early morning walk

•             Check out of Park Beach Holiday Park

•             Breakfast at Supply Café

•             National Cartoon Gallery

Start the day with an early morning walk up Muttonbird Island and take in the spectacular 360-degree views of Coffs Harbour and the Orara Valley hinterland. Stop at the bottom of the island to read the interpretive boards for a history lesson of the island’s significance by the Gumbaynggirr people.

Take a quick trip back to the holiday park to pack up and say goodbye to your new favourite holiday park.

Breakfast is calling and Supply Café has just what the family is craving… delicious, wholesome food! Pancakes consumed and takeaway coffee full, there is one last stop before the drive home.

Coffs Harbour is home to the only gallery in a WWII bunker – the National Cartoon Gallery – this is the only dedicated gallery for cartoons in Australia and hosts modern and historical displays from around Australia and international artists.

Spirited Local Flavours

The Coffs Coast has some unique food and drink adventures just waiting to be discovered. Whether it’s locally brewed craft beers, distilled spirits, Fine Wines or winery open seller doors for tastings along with alfresco dining.

Immerse yourself in a full-day tour with the experts and learn about the stories behind our producers and the inspiration behind the flavours they create. Explore on your own and take your time relaxing with friends to discover the fabulous country hospitality while your taste buds experience the new and fresh unique regional flavours.

Critters Distillery

Critters Distillery is a bespoke operation producing high-quality vodka and gin from scratch. They are passionate about sustainability and repurpose any waste materials. Enjoy the distillery experiences learning how a distillery operates, meet the head distiller and taste a range of cocktail samples paired with an Australian antipasto grazing plate all served by your very own bartender.

King Tide Brewing

A brand new brewpub in the heart of Coffs Harbour, boasting a European inspired kitchen, locally inspired brews and a cutting edge brewhouse, pumping out a full range of frothy creations. A place to enjoy fresh. quality beer and delicious tasty foods using local produce and cooked to perfection over charcoal.

Woolgoolga Brewing Company

Woopi Brewing Co. to the locals and those in the know, is a proud community craft brewery. Designed to celebrate and connect locals and visitors in a family-friendly environment that reflects the relaxed and vibrant beach culture of our coastal region. Experience the local beach lifestyle of Woopi, enjoy a delicious cold beer, great food and live music in a relaxed beer garden setting.

Element Bar

Element Bar is an exciting and unique venue, all built around a relaxed, authentic social experience with delicious food; a fantastic bar with a huge choice of craft beers, wines, cocktails and drinks; plenty of live music and an awesome vibe! All in a stunning modern rustic urban industrial environment…smack in the heart of Coffs Harbour’s best restaurant precinct, The Jetty Strip.

Bar Que Sera

A relaxed bar/restaurant serving modern Australian food alongside wine, cocktails and craft beer. Come for a relaxed Sunday long lunch or a night out with friends, enjoy a cheeky cocktail or two and soak up the atmosphere of a warm Sawtell night.

Two Tails Wines

Providing a unique and refreshing food and wine experience, with wines produced from grapes grown on-site and their Tapas inspired menu prepared with ingredients sourced from within the Orara Valley and surrounds. Visitors have the opportunity to wine and dine in a tranquil atmosphere overlooking the picturesque vineyard and nearby rolling hills.

The Barrel Run

The Barrel Run Custom Tours is a tour company located on the Coffs Coast. They specialise in behind the scenes tours of local breweries, winery and distillery tours as well as offering custom tours. Locals and visitors to the Coffs Harbour region will be transported to and from their location, and between venues, in our fully air-conditioned bus that caters for up to 13 participants.

Meet The Artisans

Many gifted makers and artisans call the Coffs Coast home. Their clever craftmanship and inspiring creations can be enjoyed at galleries and studios across the region. Take the time to meet a local artist.

Visit Jeffrey Baker Studios to see his signature style of colourful and surrealist designs, inspired by the natural environment. Stop by Wood we Create to meet David Barden at his workshop. See fine-turned pieces highlighting the natural beauty of local reclaimed timber.

Artspace on 45 is a contemporary Australian art gallery, shop and studio in Coramba. It features the work of husband and wife team, Matt Begg and Mary Vicary, who founded the space, and provide a place for other Coffs Coast artists to exhibit. Workshops and classes for adults and children are so much fun and hosted regularly.

The Sawtell Art Centre and Woolgoolga Art & Craft Gallery feature original art and crafts created by talented artists from across the region.

To see the work of local indigenous artists, artisans and craftspeople, don’t miss the Wadjar Regional Indigenous Gallery based at Yarrawarra Cultural Centre at Corindi.

For more galleries and art inspiration see the full list of Arts and Culture businesses.


sunny SAWTELL

For many, sawtell is considered the quintessential coastal village with striking fig trees, located on a stunning stretch of beach , nestled between vast headlands and national parks.
National Parks and Headlands

Nature lovers can head off for a walk along Bonville Headland and Sawtell beach for gorgeous ocean views and warm sea breezes. Why not order a special picnic from Bohemian Banquets and visit nearby Bongil Bongil National Park for a leisurely lunch in a magical rainforest setting. Take one of the bushwalking tracks, looking out for the diverse bird species and if you are lucky, you may even spot a koala or other native wildlife.

Sawtell is loved for its laid back atmosphere
  • Dine out and leisurely breakfast at one of the many cafes and restaurants
  • Enjoy the beach surfing or swim in the ocean pool
  • Watch the sunset with fish and chips on the headland
  • Picnic and go kayaking at Boambee Creek Reserve
  • Go mountain bike riding and bushwalking in the nearby National Parks
  • Shop to you drop at the many boutique shops and rejuvenate at the day spa
  • Book a stay play golf experiences at Bonville Golf Resort or a round at Sawtell Golf Club
STYLISH BOUTIQUES AND VIBRANT CAFE AND RESTAURANT SCENE

Start the day with a mouth-watering leisurely breakfast at one of the vibrant cafes that sunny Sawtell has to offer. Some local favourites include Split Cafe, Cafe Treeo and The Hub Cafe on the main street or The Hilltop Store perched on top of the hill on your way into town. You can also enjoy great ocean views and a casual atmosphere at The Kiosk at Sawtell Surf Club.

If you want to just relax and take in the town, you can pamper yourself at Figtree Day spa with a rejuvenating facial or hot stone massage. You may wish to just browse the many boutique shops along the main street or take in a movie at the newly restored Majestic cinemas.

Sport lovers can enjoy a round of golf at nearby Sawtell Golf Club or take the drive to the award-winning Bonville Golf Resort with its magnificent greens and fairways. For the water enthusiasts, there is so much to love about surfing at one of the many favourite breaks along the sunny Sawtell beaches or you may want to try your hand at kayaking or SUPing with C Change Adventures on Boambee creek.

With so much to see and do, you’ll need more than a day to explore Sawtell!

Orara Valley Hinterland

Head to the hinterland to explore the Orara Valley tourist trail. Escape for a relaxed nature adventure with short bush walks, lush green countryside with quaint villages and friendly locals.

From the highway heading north, take  the scenic drive up Bruxner Park Road to Sealy Lookout and walk out on the Forest Sky Pier for some magnificent views.  The 21 metre pier gives a birds eye view of the Coffs Harbour foreshores, marina, Solitary Island Marine Park and the coastline further south.

Nature and Cultural Walking Trail

The eco-tourism accredited Bruxner Park Flora Reserve offers plenty of open space for a picnic. It is also home to several walking track including the popular Rainforest loop and Gumgali walking Track. The Gumgali track is a 400m scenic trail that follows the Gumbayggirr dreaming story of the black goanna, with murals and sculptures that are surrounded by stunning coastal views.

Join a Giingan Gumbaynggirr Cultural Experience, learning the rich culture of the local Gumbaynggirr people shared with dance, food and stories (bookings essential).  Enjoy the walk along Gumgali Track and discover the hidden goannas and indigenous artwork. 

Recharge with a locally roasted coffee and homemade treat with  a unique native indigenous flavour from the Nyanggan Gapi Cafe. This is found hidden amongst the natural forest habitat. Finish your exploration of the Orara East State Forest by stopping at the Vincent Tree. This is one of NSW’s tallest timbers and great for a insta worthy photo. Then jump back in the car and head onto Bucca Rd.

Rolling green pastures

Further west passing through the historical town of Coramba on your way to Nana Glen for lunch at the winery.  The changing country views include plenty of blueberry and dairy farms. Some even offer their produce at roadside stalls along the Orara Valley Way.

Tasty Delights

Visit the  Two Tails Winery  and Velvets Restaurant for a unique dining experience of modern Spanish tapas menu made with locally produced fresh ingredients while sampling their delightful boutique wines.