Woven between the mountains and the sea, Coffs Coast is a breath-taking tapestry of colour, with many quaint villages, national parks, mountain escarpments, sandy beaches and marine reserves. Located half way between Sydney and Brisbane we found it an idyllic destination to discover the mid North Coast of NSW. As we left today, there was the NSW state of origin team in training for the first of three big clashes.
Muttonbird Island Nature Resort – Boat Harbour and Jetty
Fantastic views and a great walk. The Marina area has a terrific co-op where you can buy the freshest of fresh fish. Each evening you watched as the fishing trawlers head out to sea. They only went just past the headland to fish so the ocean must be very rewarding around Coffs. There was a great mountain backdrop when you looked towards the hinterland. A bonus for us was spotting our first 2 whales frolicking off Mutton Bird Island. Unfortunately a bit too far out to get a decent camera shot. But they were having a wow of a time, beaching and tail flicking for a good 20 minutes before they were just too far away to see.
Just past the Big Banana there is a turnoff to a magnificent viewing point namely Sky Pier. Great designer as it perched high over the escarpment. Fantastic views of Coffs, Mutton Bird Island. It overlooked banana plantations and you could see the great range of mountains. We were at this 10-minute stop for about 90 minutes as everyone up there was so friendly and chatty.
Village of Sawtell
Took a quick drive to neighboring village of Sawtell to check out the lookout. Great views of the rocks and ocean. A great vantage point to see whales but we weren’t lucky to spot any. Lots of locals there are looking out for the beautiful creatures. Several great headland views of the Pacific both north and south. These headlands had stunning views.
Visited the Butterfly House in Bonville just out of Coffs. Delightful place with lovely staff who were happy to chat. Butterflies were easily seen and spectacular. We could not get a good photo of the beautiful Ulysses butterfly with its iridescent blue wings with drop ends. There was a small display of stick insects – camouflage extraordinaire.
Dorrigo, Dengar Falls and Belligen
Drive through up the mountain was on narrow and very windy roads but we made it without mishap. [Good Driver] Arrived at The Rainforest Centre near Dorrigo to do a 6.6km walk. Dorrigo National Park is part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area offers stunning scenery that has been millions of years in the making. The park contains a range of forest types that protect an enormous variety of animals and birds, like red-necked pademelons, the vibrantly coloured wompoo fruit-dove and the spectacular regent bowerbird.The Rainforest Centre was full of the most gorgeous souvenirs – most of them very unusual and more importantly made in Australia. The lady working there was very friendly and informative, telling us the best way to do the walk so we wouldn’t miss anything.