"Port Macquarie - not just for holidays" Top 5 Page for this destination Port Macquarie by iandsmith

Port Macquarie Travel Guide: 160 reviews and 460 photos

Something to look forward to

Port was always known as "God's waiting room". It referred to the propensity of tourists who had holidayed there and ended up retiring there. The majority of them were from south of the town. Sydney, for one, and particularly Melbourne, from where the idyllic temperatures and seaside lifestyle seemed like a magnet but, as time went by and more people moved there and younger people were required to service the increasing tourist demand, it slowly blossomed. Then, in the late 20th century, it boomed. In a seemingly few short years it doubled in population and spread into areas that I remember pointing out to my family as lovely bush.
Now it still retains its allure. Good shopping, excellent fishing, good sports venues and generally good weather make for a nice lifestyle.
As far as beaches go, personally I used to go elsewhere and still do. I find the ones here pretty but not good for surf. North or south of Port the beaches are far superior. The exception is Lighthouse Beach.

The hinterland

Some of Australia's finest rainforest lies in the hinterland though it's rarely visited by tourists.
Comboyne (see my Comboyne pages) is absolutely stunning yet most people in Port have never been there though it's just half an hour up the road.
Wilson River Reserve and Werrikimbe are further inland, the former is one of Australia's finest rainforest pockets with several waterfalls and a picturesque stream to boot.
This shot is taken at Werrikimbe and shows King Fern Falls which you will come across should you take the 2km walk from Plateau Beech camping area.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Great weather, nice feel, relaxed atmosphere, wonderful hinterland
  • Cons:Poor beaches
  • In a nutshell:A nice place to holiday
  • Last visit to Port Macquarie: Sep 2006
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (40)

Comments (10)

  • Jenniflower's Profile Photo
    Apr 9, 2009 at 2:37 AM

    I enjoy your fishing stories! My hubby is a keen fly fisherman. Your photos are beautiful too!

  • Stephen-KarenConn's Profile Photo
    Jun 29, 2005 at 6:08 PM

    Timbertown, steam engines, a lighthouse, waterfall, winery ... You've sold me. Now just a matter of saving up for a ticket.

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    Mar 27, 2005 at 6:23 AM

    Solid suggestion to tourist to see more than the beaches. You certainly have had some adventures, but attacked in your hotel room! I hope they are able to keep Timbertown open; it seems like a great place. Your pages...never dull, ever.

  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo
    Mar 19, 2005 at 4:32 PM

    Ian, a great page on this delightful looking area, especially Ellenborough Falls! Being a 'coaster', I would not mind a tour of the barque 'Alma Doepel' either! Your beaut photo of Lighthouse Beach also shows why it rates very high in your estimation.

  • JLBG's Profile Photo
    Dec 2, 2004 at 10:36 PM

    Well done page on a place that looks very nice. I hope I will be able to check by myself one day ! Thanks for sharing !

  • Jerelis's Profile Photo
    Nov 3, 2004 at 8:24 AM

    Beautiful and very informative page about a great place in the Mid North Coast region. Well done!

  • bugalugs's Profile Photo
    Sep 18, 2004 at 6:45 AM

    Very informative page, and lovely pics, but I am always concerned for these horses lugging people around and whether they have enough water!

  • dr.firas's Profile Photo
    Aug 24, 2004 at 4:43 AM

    Great trip, tips and pic's dear Ian :-)))

  • unravelau's Profile Photo
    Aug 12, 2004 at 3:36 AM

    Well what a wonderful sunset shot Ian........did you use a tripod? Port Macquarie is on my list too, for one day soon. Great page, thank you.

  • aussiedoug's Profile Photo
    Aug 11, 2004 at 4:38 PM

    Didn't think Port had 5 must sees! lol! Should have built a warchoppy page aswell mate. Now 4 the big question. Where's the North Haven page?

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