With beautiful beaches, lush rainforests and jaw-dropping coastal lookouts, the Port Macquarie Coastal Walk is one of the best coastal walks in NSW.
We acknowledge that this adventure is located on Birpai Nation, the traditional Country of the Birpai people who have occupied and cared for this land and water for thousands of years. We pay our respects to them as the Traditional Custodians and recognise that sovereignty was never ceded.
- Stunning beaches
- Jaw-dropping coastal lookouts
- Picturesque lighthouse
- Luscious rainforest
From City to Surf in No Time at All
Set in Mid North Coast NSW, the Port Macquarie Coastal Walk is a stunning seaside bash. From a surprisingly bustling town centre, the coastal path quickly leads you through a series of spectacular beaches and headland lookouts.
On top of that, the coastal walk meets the Sea Acres National Park, where you’ll be mesmerised by gorgeous rainforest. So, round up your hiking buddies, set aside half a day and get ready for one of the best coastal walks in NSW.
Read more: The 10 Best Coastal Walks in NSW
Town Centre, Town Beach and Flagstaff Lookout
Begin your walk by taking in the many colourfully painted rocks of the famous Port Macquarie Breakwall that overlooks the Hastings River. As you take in the view, keep in mind that the Birpai people are the Traditional Custodians of the land around the Hastings area, which has been their home for over 40,000 years.
After about 1km, you’ll trade views of the Hastings River for the Pacific Ocean as you arrive at Town Beach. It’s a busy stretch of coastal path, so I recommend motoring on to Flagstaff Lookout, where you’ll be treated with gorgeous views back towards Town Beach.
Beach Hopping Along the Port Macquarie Coastline
Following Flagstaff Lookout, the beaches along the Port Macquarie Coastal Walk get better and better. After passing Oxley Beach, the coastal path takes you high above Rocky Beach where your views of the coastline become even more exquisite, with Rocky Beach Lookout being one of the highlights.
You’ll find the next beach along, Flynns Beach, a popular spot with locals. There’s a lovely café if you’re keen on a takeaway coffee, and public toilets here too.
Next, there’s Nobbys Beach with an epic headland at the southern end (Nobby Head). Neighbouring this headland is John Downes Park which adjoins Shelly Beach – another beautiful beach with rocks scattered along stretches of the shoreline.
At the southern end of Shelly Beach, you’ll join the Miners Beach Walking Track which provides phenomenal views of the coastline ahead. Get your camera ready for that classic shot of the wooden staircase that leads you down to the white sand of Miners Beach.
Sea Acres National Park and Tacking Point Lighthouse
As you walk along the northern end of Miners Beach, you’ll notice the luscious rainforest that hugs this section of the coastline. Soon enough, the coastal path leads you through the coastal outskirts of the Sea Acres National Park. As you walk through dense rainforest, you’ll be occasionally spoiled by mind-blowing unimpeded views back over the coastline you’ve just come along.
Expect the idyllic coastal forest vibes to continue as you near the end of the walk towards the picturesque Tacking Point Lighthouse. Once you reach the lighthouse, cast your eye over the vast ocean – between May and November, you may be lucky enough to see a whale during their annual migration.
Now that you’ve officially completed the Port Macquarie Coastal Walk, you have a few options. You can enjoy a swim at Lighthouse Beach, check out Watonga Rocks further along the coastline or grab lunch at COAST Lighthouse Beach.
Either way, to get back to Port Macquarie town centre afterwards, you’ll need to catch the 322 bus from Lighthouse Plaza, or are you legends game enough to do the return walk? If so, simply retrace your steps and relive the exceptional Port Macquarie Coastal Walk in reverse.
How To Get There
Street parking in the Port Macquarie town centre is free but it can fill up quickly. There are also quite a few car parks in and around the town centre but some have time restrictions. So your best bet may be the generously sized car parks at either end of Town Beach or street parking along Stewart Street, which are both free and located close to the beginning of the coastal walk.
The Port Macquarie Coastal Walk starting point (Port Macquarie Breakwall):
Distance Covered / Elevation Gain / Duration
One-way: 10km / 54m / 3 hours
Return: 20km / 54m / 6 hours