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Hike Port Macquarie's Rugged Coastline

Port Macquarie, New South Wales



2.5 miles

Elevation Gain

129 ft

Route Type



Added by Brooke Wylie

Beautiful coastal trail showing off some of Port Macquarie's best features. Hidden beaches, panoramic views of the Pacific from the cliff tops.

Situated 550km from Brisbane and 385km from Sydney, Port Macquarie is a great spot to spend the night or a few days, and explore the New South Wales Mid North Coast. This stunning coastal hike can take you from Port Macquarie's Lighthouse Beach all the way into the centre of town, but for those not up for the full 9km trek, a shorter 4km hike between the Lighthouse and Flynns Beach will show off all the best bits of the stunning Sea Acres rainforest and rugged coastline.

Beginning at the Lighthouse, this well marked but quiet trail descends down across rocky and secluded beaches, before a steep ascent into the Sea Acres reserve. From the top of the cliffs you can capture stunning pictures of the quaint lighthouse (I recommend dawn or dusk for the colours and contrast) and during peak whale migration season, you're bound to spot some babies breaching as they travel south.

The trail then takes you through dense rainforest, before you return to the cliff face and from here it's all down hill to Miners Beach. This beach is really three separate beaches, and a warning, it is the town nudist beach, but you'll be lucky to spot a soul down here, especially during the day.

Walking across Miners beach is a time warp. The white sand, pristine waters, and dense rainforest surrounding the beach feels entirely remote and as it isn't easily accessible by car - few people venture down here.

You'll make your way up a long flight of stairs back into the rainforest, which winds along the coast line, past hidden alcoves and alongside plenty of wildlife before hitting Shelly Beach. This beach is a popular fishing and camping spot. It's a busy beach and home to a few large goannas. Here you'll also find restrooms and drinking water.

This beach is the end of the first segment of the trail, but I recommend continuing across Shelly's, and up another flight of stairs. This section of the trail will take you right along the cliff face and has incredible views up and down the coast.

From Shelly's the track is less secluded, and a popular walking spot for locals. Following the rocky coastline you'll arrive at Nobby's Beach, a leash free beach where if you're a dog lover, you'll be among friends.

This beach is shorter than the others, and quite a relaxing walk. At the north end you'll climb a final flight of stairs and cross the headland before arriving at Flynns Beach.

This is the end of the 2nd segment of the track, you can stop here and take a dip in the patrolled beach, or continue on towards town past Oxley and Town beach. The remainder of the track will take you along the coastline but via main roads and concrete footpaths.

During Spring and Summer, Flynns is packed with tourists and locals. It's a vibrant little beach with a kiosk stocking ice creams and cold drinks, as well as toilets, change rooms, and parking. You can also hire a boards and equipment. At the top of the hill on Pacific Drive, you'll find a number of local restaurants, as well as a local bus stop.

This hike takes about 90 minutes and is quite steep in parts but can easily be done in runners if the weather is fine. It's a stunningly beautiful trail and there is an abundance of wildlife within the rainforest.

There is parking available at Lighthouse Beach, as well as at all the beaches along the trail if you want to lengthen or shorten the trip.

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