Blessed with an abundance of natural resources, there’s something for every kind of traveller on the Coffs Coast.
‘Giinagay’ and welcome to Gumbaynggirr Country, the bountiful land of its traditional owners, the Gumbaynggirr people.
Known by many as the Coffs Coast (and by some as ‘that place where the mountains meet the sea’), the region always was and always will be a place of plenty for everyone – the Gumbaynggirr people welcoming visitors by delving into their rich past as the ‘sharing people’.
This isn’t anything new of course: the pristine rivers, plentiful oceans and fertile forests of their country have always provided the Gumbaynggirr people with such an abundance that a willingness to enjoy with other Indigenous nations has long been a way of life.
Home to a wealth of national parks and state forests, as well as a thriving marine park, the ‘sharing is caring’ ethos is protected, too.
The Coffs Coast is committed to providing a significant number of sustainable nature-based tourism experiences, helping Coffs Harbour become NSW’s first destination to become accredited under the ECO Destinations Certification. It’s a way of operating that highlights the care taken for the region’s spaces and culture. Yes, not only does this mean the Coffs Coast will remain a place of plenty for generations to come, the region offers a wealth of experiences for every traveller, from families and young couples to silver adventurers.
Here’s a little taste of what’s on offer…
Family Escapades on the Coffs Coast
No Australian childhood is complete without a visit to The Big Banana Fun Park, but Coffs Harbour with its endless golden sand beaches and nature-based activities, offers so much more for families.
The first port of call? Dolphin Marine Conservation Park, where a host of dolphins and seals (as well as a supporting cast of penguins, turtles and more) are keen to share tales of rehabilitation and conservation. During school holidays, kids aged eight to 16 can even sign up to be a Marine Animal Carer.
The human residents are just as friendly, of course, and an excellent way to meet them (and make the most of Coffs Harbour’s magnificent coastline) is with a Montem Bike Tours around the Jetty foreshore. A range of leisurely rides are on offer suitable for all abilities.
For a splash of adventure TreeTops Adventure Park is serving up a healthy dose of magnificent gum trees as you navigate your way through the towering treetops on this self-guided rope course.
You’ll have a whole bunch of fun at the Big Banana Fun Park – enjoy amazing rides, slides and waterslides plus other exciting activities like mini-golf, laser tag, toboggan rides and more. Grab a choc-coated banana or a famous banana split!
And make sure you grab a selfie with Australia’s favourite ‘big thing’.
Accommodation: Check out Coffs Coast Holiday Parks comprising four award-winning, waterfront holiday parks dotted around the region. From villas to camping, waterparks to kids’ clubs, every need (and want) is catered for.
Adventure together on the Coffs Coast
Whether you’re dreaming about a romantic hike, an exhilarating climb or a leisurely swim, there’s no better place to get your thrills (and spend quality time with your partner) than on the Coffs Coast.
Get to know the region’s riches of native animals, rainforests and waterways with a Waves to Wilderness tour. Essentially serving as a ‘top hits’ of Coffs, tours include a selection of experiences such as guided walks, kayaking, surfing and gourmet grazing.
Keen to continue that aquatic focus? C Change Adventures not only offers a range of canoeing, kayaking and stand-up paddelboarding experiences, the adrenaline junkies among us can opt for a whitewater or sea kayaking experience (often complete with dolphins frolicking alongside).
Of course, if you want to experience cultural eco-tourism at its finest, Wajaana Yaam Adventure Tours welcomes those keen to connect with land and sea by paddleboarding with the direct descendants of the world’s first paddleboarders. Choose your own adventure at Red Rock, Moonee Beach or Coffs Creek.
Ready to dive in? Jetty Dive offers a range of adventures around the region, from whale watching and diving, to its popular snorkel trips out to the Solitary Islands Marine Park, a sanctuary of underwater wonders.
Side note? Coffs Harbour has been assessed by the CSIRO as having the best climate in Australia so you can look forward to perfect subtropical weather, no matter the activity.
Accommodation: Stay in style at Observatory Holiday Apartments. Located right by the heart of the action, the self-contained one- two- and three-bedroom apartments all take advantage of the spectacular foreshore.
Spirited Explorer: relaxing on the Coffs Coast
Looking for inspiration and ready for fun? Coffs Harbour – home to significant Gumbaynggirr Indigenous cultural sites, spectacular food and drink offerings, and some truly exquisite flora and fauna experiences – is all about living your best life in a manner befitting the region.
Get in the spirit (literally) by dropping into Critters Distillery and signing up for the Critters Distillery Experience, an artisan vodka tour that pairs sustainability education with a range of specifically crafted vodka cocktail samples and an antipasto grazing plate.
Housed in a Second World War bunker, The National Cartoon Gallery is known as the spiritual home of cartooning in Australia and exhibitions include the Bill Leak Exhibition and Bald Archy Prize.
The cherry on top? A CBD ‘eat and walk’ session with Bite Food Tours which includes sweet and savoury bites around town, including dessert at an American-style diner.
Adding wine, beer (or an evening of live music and dance) into the mix is easy; simply make a booking at Element Bar, a lively venue located on the popular Jetty strip. It’s as famous for its bands (Friday and Saturday nights as well as the Stone & Wood Sunday sessions) as it is for its varied menu.
For local Indigenous experience, an invitation to connect with the Gumbaynggirr culture presents itself in the form of a Bush Tucker & Medicine Tour courtesy of Yarrawarra Aboriginal Cultural Centre.
Taking place in the lush, coastal heath and wetlands, the classroom is every bit as intoxicating as the lesson itself.
Accommodation: Located within the heart of the Coffs Harbour Jetty Precinct, Pacific Marina Apartments offers a range of spacious, one- two- and three-bedroom apartments within a stone’s throw of some of Coffs Harbour’s best beaches and restaurants.
For further information on a Coffs Harbour holiday, visit Coffs Coast.