Brendon is heading north on the NSW coast for some of the best waves, dolphin watching and a spot of fishing.
Yamba and Iluka headlands, where the Clarence River meets the sea, have beaches, rivers, wetlands, forests, lazy coastal towns and the longest stretch of undeveloped coastline in New South Wales.
Yamba, on the southern side of the river estuary, is Australia’s easternmost seaport and serves the entire northern rivers area of New South Wales. It has the state’s second largest fishing fleet, supplying much of the country’s seafood, and handles a wide range of imports and exports, but is still a quiet seaside town.
Jane and Tony Hinchley, owners of On the Rocks oceanfront apartments, can arrange everything visitors need, from a relaxing massage to fishing gear. The fully-equipped apartments allow you to enjoy the Pacific Ocean in total luxury and privacy. If you want to venture out, an 18-hole golf course, tennis and squash courts, bowling greens, heated pool and gymnasium are close by. There are also first class restaurants to enjoy.
Iluka, on the other side of the river, is also a get-away-from-it-all place, with an economy driven by oysters, prawns, fishing and tourism.
Brooms Head is a wonderful camping and angling destination. Just 25km east of Maclean on the outskirts of Yuraygir National Park, it’s laidback and leisurely. Norfolk pines line the beach and the large lagoon is great for children. There are rockpools and crevices just right for exploring.
Brooms Head Caravan Park is spacious, level and grassy. It has 250 sites spread along 1.5 kilometres of beachfront. You might spot a humpback whale or dolphin. You won’t find much in the way of night life, but you will find a bowling club, service station, bottle shop, general store, post office, tennis courts and a snack bar. For family holidays, that’s all people want.
Back in the 1970s when Byron was becoming a little crowded, surfers headed to Angourie on the northern tip of Yuragir National Park. It has some of the best surfing in Australia. The small village has accommodation, a general store and restaurant. The Blue Pool was once a rock quarry which filled with water from an underground spring. It is a popular swimming hole in the bush, but sometimes has algae, so watch for the signs. From there, it’s an easy walk to Angourie Point.
Just south of Angourie is a sublime coastal walk. The track meanders along the coastline, leads to lookouts, Shelley Beach, caves and Lake Arragan.
Spooky’s Beach and Green Point are nearby and worth a look. Beachcombers could find some beautiful shells there.
The Yamba Marina is owned by Peter Sutton and Kay Cottee, who can take care of all your sea-going needs. Open every day, the marina sells fuel and groceries, can help with repairs and maintenance and has a sailmaker, shipwright, ship chandlery and showers, toilets, laundromat and pump-out facilities.