Things to do in Port Stephens
Port Stephens is well known for its wide, golden beaches. Some are perfect for sunbathing and swimming while others attract visitors interesting in riding quads, sandboarding, or motorbike riding. The uncrowded beaches and sheltered bays are also ideal for lazy family picnics or an afternoon snooze. This area is also nicknamed the “Dolphin Capital” and offers many tours that will allow you to encounter these playful creatures in the wild. In season from late May through early November, whales can also be seen off the coast of Port Stephens.
After you’ve seen the more than 70 bottlenose dolphins that call Port Stephens home, keep exploring the underwater world with a snorkeling tour. Visit Fly Point Park located between Little Beach and Nelson Bay for a day of snorkeling to see shipwrecks, sea caves, and marine life. Other fun family activities include horseback riding on the beach, animal-focused tours to see koalas in their natural environment, and signing up for classes to learn how to surf. People with an extra adventurous spirit might want to give para-sailing a try too.
Where to eat in Port Stephens
In addition to outdoor adventure, Port Stephens is also a dining destination. Restaurants of all shapes and sizes specialize in local seafood, straight from the waters of Port Stephens. Accompanying local seafood is local wines, from vineyards surrounding the Port Stephens area. Special meals in Port Stephens can take many forms, from a dinner cruise to a fine dining restaurant overlooking the bay to a small sidewalk café in one of the region’s charming towns. There are also many wonderful places to set up a picnic from a local specialty store.
A number of restaurants are centered in Nelson Bay, including Moonshadow Cruises for a dinner cruise, the Little Nell Café and Bar, and the Wood Oven for pizza, pasta, and salad. Other popular dining destinations include Mermaids Bar and Grill in Shoal Bay and the Shoreline Steakhouse in Soldiers Point. Each town has its own local restaurants and cafés that serve everything from early morning breakfast before a fishing expedition to a seafood feast to coincide exactly with sunset.
Where to drink in Port Stephens
In addition to great dining, Port Stephens is also home to a range of nighttime entertainment. Certain places are known for their happy hour specials such as Sandy Foot Café and the Nelson Bay Golf Club. Other spots are known for live entertainment or poker nights, such as Nelson Bay Diggers or the Seabreeze Hotel. While many of the places to grab a drink are located in bustling Nelson Bay, there are also bars outside this large town.
In Soldiers Point, the Soldiers Point Bowling Club offers a range of entertainment depending on the night. Known for affordable drinks and live entertainment, this is a great spot for much more than bowling. Another place not to miss is the Port Stephens Winery. Here you can sample a wide range of local wines from the region. Beer lovers will also have a big selection to choose from, including ales from local breweries. People who are willing to travel for their drinks might also want to plan a day trip to the region’s wineries for an on-site tasting – sure to please everyone.
To find more holiday rentals, try www.homeaway.com.au