Plan a weekend or a week-long getaway to Port Stephens.

Just over two hours north of Sydney is an idyllic destination that you should see. Port Stephens, with its 26 sandy beaches, many beautiful inlets, vast blue bay, and towering sand dunes, is a popular destination for thrill seekers and those who want to unwind. There are a variety of summertime activities that one can do in Port Stephens.

What are the things you can do at Port Stephens during the summer

What are the things you can do at Port Stephens during the summer?

Port Stephens offers a variety of activities for different people. So, whether you are looking for an adrenaline rush or simply want to relax, you will find something to do at Port Stephens.

1. Sandboarding

Heads up, adventure enthusiasts! With its jaw-dropping dunes that can go as high as 40 metres, Port Stephens is the perfect place for extreme sandboarding. Stand on the board as you soar down the dunes if you are brave enough, or sit or lie if you are not that experienced. In addition, children can surf the dunes, making this a great activity for the whole family.

2. Quad biking

Whilst you are at the dunes, why not try quad biking? It is another favourite activity in Port Stephens and is easy to pick up, even by newbies. Teens 16 years up can ride a quad bike solo. Quad biking is truly an activity that the whole family can enjoy. What can be more exhilarating than speeding up across the sand from the bush to the beach?

3. Camel rides

Port Stephens truly has a lot to offer. If speeding across its dunes is not your cup of tea, you can try riding a camel. It is a fitting way to slow down after a day of frantic activity. Savour the Sahara Desert vibe whilst you marvel at the stunning scenery. You can make it more romantic by joining the sunset tours. Of course, kids two years and older can also participate in this unforgettable adventure.

4. Watch the dolphins

A variety of marine animals are found in Port Stephens, but the bottlenose dolphins top the list of favourites. The more than 120 dolphins that live permanently in the waters are a part of the community and have even been given names by the locals.

You can see these dolphins up close by hopping on a cruise. Professional guides can tell you all about each dolphin that you see. Or you can just hang about the shoreline and the docks and spot dolphins as they roam past in the shallow waters.

5. Go on a hiking adventure

Take the hour-long walk to the summit of Tomaree Head. Then, hiking up the track, you will enjoy stunning views of Port Stephens and its coastline. You can also see as far as Boondelbah and Cabbage Tree islands from the top – these are the only nesting sites for the endangered Gould’s petrel in the world. Point Stephens Lighthouse, as well as Wreck, Zenith, and Box beaches, can also be seen from the south platform.

There is a picnic table at the lookout where you can enjoy the lunch you have brought with you. This is also a fantastic spot to see some dolphins, so do not forget to bring your binoculars. You can also take the Fort Tomaree Walk on your way down.

6. Hire a paddleboard or a kayak

If you want to try kayaking, there are spots in Port Stephens that offers a tranquil experience. Shoal Bay Beach is probably the best beach for sea kayaking, as it is sheltered so the waves are quite gentle. Its water is so clear that you can see the sandy bottom as well as some small fish. Paddleboards are also available for hire at Shoal Bay Beach.

For the more adventurous, Port Stephens Paddlesports offers a guided kayak eco-adventure. It will take you further offshore, where you have a chance to spot dolphins and other marine animals. Whilst this tour is recommended for all skill levels, it goes a fair distance from the shore; thus, it involves paddling long distances.

7. Surf in Port Stephens.

A well-known surf spot, Port Stephens has plenty of surfing beaches suitable for both experienced surfers and newbies. If you are a beginner, you can choose from several established surf schools to teach you as well as bring you to stunning locations for your lessons.

Fingal Bay is the most popular surf spot in Port Stephens. It gets decent waves as it is facing the Pacific Ocean.

Another popular spot is One Mile Beach in Boat Harbour. Its waves are not too high, making them suitable for beginners and surfers who have less experience.

8. Go snorkelling.

Get a chance to see dolphins, turtles, colourful fishes, and other marine species at the protected Port Stephens-Great Lakes Marine Park. You can get your snorkelling gear in Nelson Bay and then head to Fly Point, a rocky inlet that is one of the best snorkelling spots in Port Stephens.

Just a couple of metres from the shore are some of the most extensive sponge gardens in the east coast of Australia. The gardens are home to a wide variety of fish and invertebrates, including damselfish, butterflyfish, and lionfish.

9. Scuba diving

The Port Stephens-Great Lakes Marine Park also has crystal clear waters that are great for scuba diving. Broughton Island has the main diving site, where you can see grey nurse sharks and Fly Point with its plethora of marine life. Several shops in Nelson Bay offer different dives, such as shore dives, seahorse gardens, Broughton Island dives, and a mix of local island diving sites.

If it is your first-time diving, there are dive shops that offer the PADI Open Water Diver course. Your PADI Instructor will supervise your first couple of pool dives before they take you to local dive sites.

10. Relax at Nelson Bay

Being the main town in Port Stephens, Nelson Bay is a base point for the entire region. This is where you can start your snorkelling, sand dunes, and wildlife tours. At night, you can walk the wharf in search of a mouth-watering seafood dinner and a place to unwind after your day of activities.

Stay at The Retreat Port Stephens

Stay at The Retreat Port Stephens

Your day of fun and adventure should end on a high note – a pleasurable sleep care of a relaxing accommodation. Our rooms at The Retreat are simple and tidy and offer all the comforts of home. We have bed configurations for couples, families, and groups of friends. To book your accommodation at Port Stephens, call us at (02) 4982 1244 or email today.