This attractive seaside town is full of surprises and a top spot to create fab family memories, hence its position at no.29 on your list of Top 50 Aussie Towns.
Find the complete list of the Top 50 Aussie Towns here.
There’s a real charge in the atmosphere in Merimbula. It’s full of van lifers, surfers and grey nomads, and children enjoying the type of holiday their parents knew, all of which adds layers to the region’s appeal.
Sit down by the sea for long enough and you’re likely to see a dad chasing one of his charges up the beach. A game of cricket underway. And straggly-haired surfers with furrowed brows, squinting at the galvanised sea.
Over the past few years, this pretty little town on the NSW Sapphire Coast has emerged in the collective Australian consciousness as a captivating place to visit. While it has long been bookmarked by Victorians and Canberrans as a top spot for a beach holiday, an influx of young creative types who have travelled around the world and back have injected a bit of big-city sophistication to Merimbula.
Here is our guide to some of the best places to eat, stay and play in Merimbula.
Fall in love with Valentina. (Image: David Rogers Photography)
Valentina is a destination diner. Plug it into your Navman and point your car towards the centre of the seaside village where you will be joined by an invading army of well-travelled foodies in this elegant dining room that has helped put modern-day Merimbula on the map.
Sister venue Dulcie’s Cottage also connects visitors with the local food and drink scene, as does bright and wholesome Mormors cafe. Newcomer Kitty’s Bar within Club Sapphire is the place to listen to live music, enjoy a few spritzers at sunset and roll up for a game of barefoot bowls.
Eat healthy, tasty fare at Mormors. (Image: David Rogers Photography)
There are 30 rooms at Hillcrest Merimbula, which you can book independently or with a group of friends. The reimagined motel is set at the curve of a hill overlooking Merimbula and its stylistically simple, standing out like a beacon against a vast blue sky.
The nearby Coast Resort Merimbula has also been curated with a coastal chill vibe. There’s a mix of townhouses, penthouses and privately owned apartments arranged around a curvy pool on the peninsula between Merimbula Lake and Merimbula Beach.
The sandbar and inlet leading to Merimbula Lake is a must-see.
The marine life in Merimbula is fantastic and the location so beautiful and rugged you will want to get out and explore it. Surf the string of breaks that necklace the coastline, head off from Mitchies Jetty on a stand-up paddleboard, or go on a multi-day walk with Sapphire Coast Guiding Co while the moon is as bright as a street lamp above.
Find rustic oyster shacks along the Sapphire Coast Oyster Trail, go whale watching with Sapphire Coastal Adventures or take a scenic flight with Merimbula Air Services to see the craggy coastline from above and understand the sheer magic of Merimbula.