Things To Do

Port Macquarie is located in the beautiful North Coast region of New South Wales, about half- way between Sydney and Brisbane.

An attractive holiday destination with something for everyone, Port Macquarie offers a colourful history, ocean beaches with excellent surfing, abundant ocean and river fishing, breathtaking nature reserves and hiking trails, and activities to entertain the whole family.
Port Macquarie is renowned for having the most temperate climate in Australia, with winter and summer extreme temperatures limited to a couple of weeks each year.

Port Macquarie Attractions

The growing town of Port Macquarie is home to more than 70,000 residents. Its lively town centre boasts a delightful array of surfing, antique, craft and gift shops, along with outstanding restaurants featuring a variety of cuisines with international flair.

 

A natural paradise, Port Macquarie is surrounded by beautiful gardens, bushlands, wildlife preserves and tropical rainforests. For those who seek outdoor activities, Port Macquarie offers hiking, whale watching, hang gliding, golfing, and much, much more. 

 

Above all, Port Macquarie is known for its water attractions: 

  • Pristine coastal beaches featuring free parking and barbecue facilities

  •  Awe-inspiring whale watching cruises, from June through October

  • World-class surfing and surfing schools

  • Ocean and river boating, as well as windsurfing

  •  Fishing, with bream, flathead, jewfish, tailor and whiting in abundance
     

Surfing is a popular past time in Port Macquarie with its great surfing beaches, but surfers are not the only sights you will see off the beaches. Dolphins and migrating whales are also spotted off Port Macquarie’s coastline as well as plenty of bird life. 
Koala’s can often be found high in the gum trees around Port Macquarie, however if you want a closer look you can visit the local Koala Hospital, or have a cuddle at the Billabong Koala and Wildlife Park. If you just love nature, Port Macquarie and the surrounding region has breathtaking walks along the beautiful coastline and through scenic rainforests.

 

Food & Entertainment

For your convenience, our roomy kitchens are fully equipped with a refrigerator, microwave, cooktop and oven, crockery and cutlery — everything you need to prepare a delicious meal.  Dine in, order take-away, barbecue — or, if you prefer, stroll a short distance to sample the cuisine of some of Port Macquarie’s most popular restaurants and take aways. The restaurants and bistros of Port Macquarie offer something for every taste, from international cuisine to the freshest seafood in the world.

 

Warning: there are so many great places to eat in Port Macquarie that you may find it hard to settle on one.  

Here are a few suggestions...

Walking Distance from Beachside to:

 

STICKY FINGERS

52 Pacific Drive

Located just 50 metres from Beachside, serving quality burgers, loaded fries, slow cooked ribs and more.

Contact:

6583 7030

ROAM CAFE

52 Pacific Drive

Located just 60 metres from Beachside, serving breakfast, vegan-friendly dishes, sweets and lots more.

Open from:

7AM

BLUE WHALE

4/4 Flynn Street

Located around the corner from Beachside Holiday Apartments, serving authentic and modern Asian cooking, lunch and dinner.

Contact:

6583 4563

SANDBOX

35 Tuppenny Road

Located on Flynns Beach, just 80 metres from Beachside, serving a range of delicious food, all day breakfast, and lunch.

Open from:

7AM

 PASTA PLACE

53 Pacific Drive

Located just 60 metres from Beachside, serving homemade Italian pasta and sauces.

Open from:

5PM

BLUE WATER

Ocean Street

Bar & Restaurant. Located around 500 metres from Beachside, a family friendly bar and restaurant.

Contact:

6583 5730

A Short Drive from Beachside to:

PORT CITY
BOWLING CLUB

4 Owen Street

Just a 3 minute drive from Beachside, boasting three bars and two dining destinations. Serving breakfast to dinner.

Open from:

9AM

HOGS BREATH
CAFE

65 Clarence Street

Just a 6 minute drive from Beachside, family friendly and a wide range of menu items, lunch and dinner. Home delivery.

Contact:

6583 2252

WHALEBONE

WHARF

269 Hastings River Drive

Located just a 12 minute drive from Beachside, experience majestic waterfront views and the finest seafood dishes.

Contact:

6583 2334

MEKONG THAI
LAO RESTAURANT

75 Clarence Street

Just 6 minute drive from Beachside, on the river, serving a refreshing experience of Asian cuisine.

Contact:

6583 8001

MAKIMOTO

JAPANESE GOURMET

Shop 2, 22 Horton Street

Located just a 6 minute drive from Beachside, serving gourmet Japanese cuisine, lunch and dinner.

Contact:

6583 7779

THE BURGER

REBELLION

Shop 9, 6-14 Clarence Street

Located just a 4 minute drive from Beachside, experience gourmet burgers in Port Macquarie.

Contact:

6584 1403

LITTLE FISH

CAFE

147 The Ruins Way

Just a 12 minute drive from Beachside, enjoy a French and Australia inspired lunch, overlooking the Vineyard.

Contact:

6581 1332

BILLS

FISHHOUSE & BAR

Shop 2, 18-20 Clarence Street

Located just a 5 minute drive from Beachside, serving fresh, local seafood cuisine.

Contact:

6584 7228

CHURRO

FONDUE

Shop 9, 23-41 Park Street

Located just 7 minutes' drive from Beachside, serving dessert foods and coffee.

Contact:

5504 5777

Local Markets

ART SOCIETY
MARKETS

198 Hastings River Drive

Held every Sunday, featuring produce, crafts, art, clothing, wares, books, cakes and jams.

Starts from:

8AM

REAL FOOD
MARKETS

Port Central

Organic fresh local produce, held at the Port Central Glasshouse forecourt, in Hay Street. Each Tuesday.

Starts from:

2PM

LAURIETON
RIVERWALK MARKETS

Bruce Porter Reserve

Held on the 3rd Sunday of every month, with an average of 150 stall holders and a wide variety.

Starts from:

8AM

WAUCHOPE
FARMERS MARKET

Wauchope Showground

Held on the 4th Saturday of each month, with the freshest and tastiest food from our local farmers and producers.

Starts from:

9AM

THE ARTIST 
MARKETS

Maritime Museum

Staged on the 4th Sunday of each month, featuring a collection of works by local artisans and artists.

Starts from:

9AM

FORESHORE
MARKETS

Westport Park

Held on the 2nd Saturday of each month, featuring local handmade art, fresh local produce, and more.

Starts from:

8AM

The Pubs and Clubs

After a day of fun in the sun, check out these venues for a cool drink and a night on the town. Music, dancing and colourful local characters are waiting for you!

FINNIAN'S 
IRISH TAVERN

97 Gordon Street

Just 6 minutes' drive from Beachside Holiday Apartments, restaurant and pub, serving lunch, dinner and beverages.

Open from:

11AM

PORT
MACQUARIE HOTEL

8 Horton Street

Located just a 7 minute drive from Beachside, a centrally located restaurant and pub, serving lunch, dinner and drinks.

Open from:

10AM

THE BEACH
HOUSE

1 Horton Street

Just 6 minutes' drive from Beachside Holiday Apartments, serving breakfast, lunch, dinner and beverages.

Open from:

7AM

LOUNGE ROOM

Shop 1A, 18 Short Street

Just 6 minutes' drive from Beachside Holiday Apartments, The Lounge Room is a relaxed bar, with live entertainment.

Contact:

6584 2120

SETTLERS INN

101 Hastings River Drive

Located just a 10 minute drive from Beachside, a family-friendly community pub, serving lunch, dinner and drinks.

Open from:

10AM

ALTITUDE

William Street

Nightclub, just 6 minutes' drive from Beachside Holiday Apartments, is Port Macquarie's local nightclub.

Contact:

6584 0908

PANTHERS 
PORT MACQUARIE

1 Bay Street

Located just 9 minutes' drive from Beachside, play, eat, drink and meet at Panthers Port Macquarie.

Contact:

6580 2300

THE WESTPORT

CLUB

25 Buller Street

Located just an 8 minute drive from Beachside, The Westport Club serves lunch, dinner, coffee and drinks.

Open from:

7:30AM

PORT CITY

BOWLING CLUB

4 Owen Street

Just a 3 minute drive from Beachside, boasting three bars, and two dining destinations. Serving breakfast to dinner.

Open from:

9AM

Wineries

  

The picturesque countryside surrounding the historic Hastings River wine region makes it a must-see destination; but for wine lovers, the proof is in the tasting.

 

The temperate climate in Port Macquarie is ideal for growing the grapes that produce Port Macquarie’s famous premium wines, including such varietals as chardonnay, semillon, sauvignon blanc, verdelho, cabernet sauvignon, and merlot. The region is best known, however, for chambourcin, a rare French red variety which thrives in the relatively humid environment.

 

Port Macquarie’s winemaking history dates back to the early 19th century.  Today, more than 200 hectares of vines produce the grapes that support a number of wineries, including:

CASSEGRAIN
WINES

10 Winery Drive

Located just 18 minutes from Beachside Holiday Apartments, featuring cellar door, restaurant and more.

Contact:

6582 8377

BAGO MAZE
& WINERY

Milligans Road

Just a 35 minute drive from Beachside, featuring maze, cellar door, chocolate shop and coffee bar.  

Contact:

6585 7099

LITTLE FISH

CAFE

147 The Ruins Way

Just a 13 minute drive from Beachside, serving french cuisine, with cellar door and restaurant.

Contact:

6581 1332

LONG POINT
VINEYARD

6 Cooinda Place

Located just a 20 minute drive from Beachside Holiday Apartments, with wine tastings, local art and local products.

Contact:

6585 4598

DOUGLAS VALE 
VINEYARD

235 Oxley Highway

Just 9 minutes from Beachside, this is a Historic Homestead and Vineyard and still producing wine of exceptional quality.

Contact:

6584 3792

ROSES
VINEYARD

132 Apanie Road

Located just 20 minutes from Beachside, Roses Vineyard features a cafe and wine bar.

Contact:

6585 2381

 

Port Macquarie is one of the most family-friendly resort areas on the Mid-North Coast. With so many exciting activities to choose from, you’ll never hear those dreaded words: “I’m bored!” From whale watching to surfing safaris to horse riding, there are a million and one ways to have fun in this spectacular holiday destination.

See some ideas below...

Family Activities

A Water Wonderland

 

Whether you prefer boating and fishing or swimming and surfing, Port Macquarie’s legendary beaches and waterways are here to explore.  Your family will love:
 

PORT JET
CRUISE ADVENTURES

Town Wharf

Activities include the Ocean Blast thrill ride, river cruises, jet ski hire, dolphin spotting, and whale watching (May-Nov).

Open from:

8AM

OCEAN STAR

FISHING CHARTERS

Town Wharf

Port Macquarie deep sea fishing charter, regularly catching snapper, pearl perch, kingfish and jewfish.

Open from:

6AM

STAND UP
PADDLE

Settlement Point Reserve

Stand Up Paddle activities include sunrise paddles, sunset paddles, private lessons, board hire and more.

Starts from:

6AM

FLYNNS
BEACH

Tuppenny Road

Across the road from Beachside Holiday Apartments, a patrolled family beach featuring great surfing and café.

Available:

24/7

STONEY AQUA
PARK

16 Hacks Ferry Road

Stoney Aqua Park boasts a wide array of inflatable fun items including slides, blast bags, swings, based a fresh water lake.

Open from:

6AM

LEARN TO
SURF

46 Pacific Drive

Port Macquarie Surf School, cater for all surfers from beginners to elite surfers, with private and group sessions daily.

Starts from:

5AM

Land Adventures

 

Your family’s spirit of adventure will find a home in Port Macquarie.  Here are some ideas to get you started...

MID-NORTH
COAST PAINTBALL

4 Bill Hill Road

A reputable paintball operation, with over 20 years experience in the industry.

Contact:

0404889361

HORSE RIDING

CENTRE

10 Winery Drive

From beginners, to experienced, groups or birthdays, or your weekend ride. Trail rides, romantic horse rides, and fine wine.

Contact:

0487004483

CAMEL
SAFARIS

Lighthouse Beach

Port Macquarie Camel Safaris, for the best beach camel rides along the gorgeous Lighthouse Beach.

Contact:

0437672080

GOOGIK
HERITAGE TRAIL

Lake Innes Reserve

Enjoy walking, hiking or cycling along the 2km (one-way) walking track while taking in some natural and historical wonders.

Open:

24/7

THE COASTAL
WALK

Sea Acres National Park

Along the costal walk, you'll pass historic sites, stunning coastal scenery, beaches, and rainforest. Visit site for more info.

Open:

24/7

KOOLOONBUNG
CREEK NATURE PARK

Gordon Street

On the edge of the CBD, with over 50 hectares of bush, 3kms of walking trails and boardwalks. Fauna and eco systems.

Open:

24/7

NORTH
BROTHER MOUNTAIN

Captain Cook Bicentenary Road

Situtated in the Dooragan National Park, North Brother Mountain offers some of the most accessible views on the east coast.

Open:

24/7

JOLLYNOSE
MOUNTAIN BIKE PARK

Spring Creek Road

Located in Queen Lake State Forest, the park boasts 50km of single track mountain bike trails for enduro and cross country.

Open:

24/7

HELLO KOALAS
SCULPTURE TRAIL

Throughout Port Macquarie

Over 60 large-scale sculptures, painted by various artists, placed from the mountain to the sea.

Available:

24/7

Rainy-Day Fun

Don’t let a little rain dampen your plans for holiday family fun – there’s plenty to do indoors!

MAJESTIC
CINEMAS

Corner of Horton and Clarence Street

Just 5 minutes from Beachside, a modern 5-screen multiplex with a candy bar, showing blockbuster 2D and 3D films.

Contact:

6583 8400

PLANET X
 

10 Chestnut Road

Just 8 minutes from Beachside, Planet X features recreational skating, laser skirmish, giant slides, arcade games and more.

Contact:

5526 0484

FUNLAND
PORT MACQUARIE

Level 1, The Ritz Centre, Horton Street

Located 5 minutes from Beachside, gaming arcade with fun for the whole family.

Open from:

10AM

ARK SPORTS
CENTRE

203 Lake Road

Just a 7 minute drive from Beachside, with indoor sports and Inflatable World playground and café.

Contact:

6581 4799

CENTRE OF
GRAVITY

52 Jindalee Road

Just a 9 minute drive from Beachside, featuring rock climbing, caving, highropes, leap of faith, and dark zone laser tag.

Contact:

6581 3899

WAVE
BOWL

159 Hastings River Drive

Just 10 minutes from Beachside, Wave Bowl ten pin bowling centre features 12 lanes, a cafe, bar and arcade games.

Contact:

6583 2238

Golf and Tennis 

PORT MACQUARIE

GOLF CLUB

698 Ocean Drive

Majestic and challenging 18-hole course with restaurant and bar, and free courtesy bus available.

Contact:

6582 0409

HYDRO GOLF
& PUTT-PUTT

Boundary Road

Aim at targets floating in the water and win cash and prizes, or play 27-hole miniature golf.

Contact:

6583 3200

PORT MACQUARIE
TENNIS CLUB

12 Maritime Lane

Six all-weather courts in a lovely setting opposite Oxley Beach. Court hire, competitions and lessons available.

Contact:

6584 9940

 

Natural Wonders

Nowhere on the planet will you see a more spectacular array of natural sights than Port Macquarie. Stunning rainforests, cute and cuddly koalas, tropical birds and exotic orchids… surely, this must be paradise.

 

From here at Beachside enjoy leisurely viewing of the migrating whales from our Rooftop BBQ Deck. Nearby, witness the wonder of nature’s delicate ecological balance as you roam through several diverse ecosystems.  Marvel at the sights and sounds, the colours and fragrances, and the diverse plant and animal life. Whether you’re looking for thrilling adventure in the bush-lands or an opportunity to commune quietly with nature, Port Macquarie has it all. Here's a few to get you started...

KOALA

HOSPITAL

Lord Street

Dedicated exclusively to the care and preservation of koalas, with 200 - 250 admitted annually. Guided tour every day.

Open from:

8AM

SEA ACRES
RAINFOREST CENTRE

159 Pacific Drive

Journey along the boardwalk through Sea Acres National Park, providing a wealth of information with guided tours.

Open from:

9AM

BILLABONG
ZOO

61 Billabong Drive

Featuring native Australian and exotic animals, with zoo talks, animal encounters and zoo café open daily. 

Open from:

9AM

ELLENBOROUGH

FALLS

Ellenborough Falls Road

A breathtaking sight featuring a single drop of 200 metres, the second highest in the southern hemisphere.

Open:

24/7

QUEENS LAKE
NATURE RESERVE

Waterloo Creek Road

A little off the beaten track, a lakeside haven for koalas and wildlife, and ideal for swimming, picnicking, boating and more!

Open:

24/7

RAWSON FALLS
WALK

Boorganna Nature Reserve

Follow Rawson Falls walk all the way to the scenic waterfalls, passing a lookout, picnic area, and swimming hole.

Open:

24/7

 

History of Port Macquarie

Port Macquarie is named after Lachlan Macquarie, the governor of NSW from 1810 to 1821. While early explorers Captain Cook (1770) and Matthew Flinders (1802) passed by Port Macquarie on their voyages, John Oxley was the first to explore the Hastings River Valley in 1818.

 

In 1819, at the request of Governor Macquarie, Oxley returned to determine the suitability of the port and surrounding area for use as a penal colony. Founded in 1821, the penal settlement was abandoned in 1830, making way for settlers who were drawn to the area’s pastoral lands, natural resources and fishing. The city of Port Macquarie was established in 1887.

 

Today, historical buildings, museums and landmarks – the remnants of Port Macquarie’s rich past – attract sightseers and history lovers from around the world. 

Historical Sites and Landmarks in the Greater Port Macquarie Region

Established as a penal colony in 1821, Port Macquarie boasts a history as rich and colourful as its origins.  And while modern Port Macquarie is a growing town of more than 70,000 residents, many of its original buildings are still standing, providing a compelling link between past and present. See some examples below...

TIMBERTOWN
 

2325 Oxley Highway

Located in Wauchope, Timbertown is a living depiction of a sawmiller's village, demonstrating life 100 years ago.

Contact:

6586 1940

DOUGLAS VALE 
VINEYARD

235 Oxley Highway

Historic Homestead and Vineyard, created 150 years ago and still producing wine of exceptional quality.

Contact:

6584 3792

MARITIME
MUSEUM

2 - 6 William Street

Mid North Coast Maritime Museum brings history to life through artifact, charts, maps, photographs and scale models.

Contact:

6583 1866

HISTORIC
CEMETERY

Gordon Street

Following the first burial in 1824, 1,500 soldiers, convicts and early settlers were laid to rest here.

Open:

24/7

HISTORIC 
COURT HOUSE

Cnr Clarence and Hay Street

Build in 1869 and restored in 1993, the building was in use for 117 years, before the new court house was built in 1986.

Open from:

10AM

HISTORIC
MUSEUM

22 Clarence Street

The leading and most comprehensive museum in Port Macquarie, offering the best and authentic local history.

Contact:

6583 1108

LAKE INNES
RUINS

Lake Innes Nature Reserve

Open for guided tours only, showing remnants of the lavish house built by convicts for Major Archibald Clunes.

Contact:

6581 8000

ROTO HOUSE
 

Macquarie Nature Reserve

Explore the late-Victorian building located within the Macquarie Nature Reserve, built from red mahogany in 1890.

Open from:

10AM

THE ROYAL
HOTEL

1 Horton Street

Originally built in 1841 to accommodate visiting military officers and new settlers. Burned down in 1886, rebuilt in 1887.

View:

24/7

ST. THOMAS

ANGLICAN CHURCH

50 Hay Street

The fifth oldest Anglican Church still in use in Australia, built by convicts between 1824 - 1828.

Contact:

6584 1033

WESLEYAN
CHAPEL

144 Horton Street

The first Methodist Church on the North Coast. Building began in 1840, and was completed in 1846. 

View:

24/7

WESTPAC
BANK

1 Horton Street

Opened in 1893, Port Macquarie's first bank, previously the Bank of New South Wales. 

View:

24/7