Port Stephens is such an incredible landscape and offers a very diverse set of experiences for both visitors and those who call it home.
The Stockton Bight Sand Dunes, in the Worimi Conservation Lands, are the largest moving coastal dunes in the southern hemisphere. The 32 kilometres of sandscape reaches heights of 40 metres in places and slopes of 60 degrees making ideal launch pads for sand boarders. There are many ways to experience these monumental dunes with tour operators offering 4WD tours, quad bikes, camel rides and horseback.
Port Stephens is a an incredible water way. It is larger than Sydney Harbour yet offers a deep entrance ideal for boating and many secluded bays and anchorages perfect for boating, swimming or other water sports.
The neighbourhood of Shoal Bay has a postcard perfect beach with soft white sand, turquoise waters, with a lighthouse at one end and the famous Mount Tomaree. This heavenly hamlet is just 5 minutes from Nelson Bay CBD and handy to many clubs, pubs, restaurants, cafes and tourist attractions.
Take the 40 minute walk to Tomaree Summit for unforgettable views of the coastline and visit the WWII gun emplacements on the way, or take the coastal walk from Zenith Beach via Wreck and Box Beach to Fingal Bay. Shoal Bay has a coastal village atmosphere with a range of beachside dining, shopping and accommodation options, including resorts and apartments to cabins and safari tents.
Hire bikes, or standup paddle boards or take a guided tour. After a day of adventure or just lazing on the beach, call in for a cooling drink at the famous Shoal Bay Country Club an institution for holiday makers built in the 1950s. An easy walk to the northern end of the beach brings you to a road which accesses a lighthouse, marine museum and tea rooms for the best scones in the region.
The heart of the incredible Port Stephens is Nelson Bay. It is the CBD of the Tomaree peninsula and the main tourist precinct with its thriving marina, pretty foreshore and bustling commercial centre.
D’Albora Marinas overlooks moored yachts and cruisers from around the world and has a lovely array of shops, cafes, restaurants, bars and ice creameries. The fish co-op on the waters edge provides the freshest seafood you can get - prawns, oysters, crabs, lobster squid and fish straight from the trawler.
These docks are where you’ll get on board for your dolphin and whale watching cruises with Moonshadow-TQC or Imagine Cruises, ferry trips to Tea Gardens or tours around the bay. Swim at Fly Point (a famous scuba diving location) wander the foreshore or cycle the paths to Corlette or Shoal Bay.
Around the Nelson Bay headland is Little Beach a popular spot for picnickers with its boat ramps, pelicans, grassy foreshore and BBQ areas. The boathouse at the end of the beach has been converted into a restaurant and bar renowned for fine food, great cocktails and spectacular sunsets.
On the southern end are the surf beaches and townships Fingal Bay, Boat Harbour , One Mile Beach and Birubi Beach.
A picturesque coastal village with a relaxed ‘holiday’ vibe - the Fingal Bay neighbourhood is an idyllic location where good surf, friendly locals and a relaxed atmosphere meet on the sand. With a good range of accommodation from a Beachside Holiday Park and seaside resort, to luxury homes, families come year after year and make holiday memories that last a lifetime.
Fingal beach is a glorious white sand beach tucked under Fingal Head. This family-friendly, patrolled surf beach is perfect to catch a wave, catch a fish, or just catch a sunrise on your early morning walk or for a relaxing Sunday afternoon drink overlooking the beach.
There’s plenty of lookouts to take in the sweeping vistas of rocky coastlines and the passing parade of humpback whales - Barry Park at the northern headland has a whale watching platform and picnic area.
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 & ruined caretakers cottage.