Most Beautiful Walking Trails NSW, Australia

Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast – Five Faves

Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast

If you’re a regular reader, you’ll know this is my first time back home to Australia for two and a half years. Besides family, one of the things I miss most while living overseas is easy and endless access to pristine nature. Australia is designed for walking and just about anywhere you travel, you’ll find well-kept trails of diverse lengths. Here are five of my favourite short scenic walks on the Coffs Coast, the place my mum currently calls home.

Five Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast

Mutton Bird Island

Estimated Length: 3.2 km (return). Estimated Time: 40 minutes.

To start the Mutton Bird Island walk you can park at the marina. Walk along the water’s edge with the boats on the right and Park Beach behind you on the left. There’s a pathway for the entire walk with an incline and several lookouts on the way. This is a popular spot for dolphin and whale watching (May to November), and the island is an important nesting site for the Wedge-tailed Shearwater (or Mutton Birds).

Most Beautiful Walking Trails NSW, Australia
Coffs Harbour Jetty
Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast
Walkway Over Button Bird Island
Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast
Solitary Islands – Views from Mutton Bird

Add On Jetty & Breakwall

Estimated Length: 5 km (return). Estimated Time: 60 minutes.

To extend the Mutton Bird walk, return to the marina and walk parallel to Jetty Beach. You can stop here and stroll along The Jetty (adding 1.5 km to the walk) and then continue either along the beach or the adjoining parkland to the Southern Break Wall. Be sure to stop at the carpark at the top and take in views of beautiful Gallows Beach on the way.

Most Beautiful Walking Trails NSW, Australia
The Jetty Coffs Harbour
Most Beautiful Walking Trails NSW, Australia
Gallows Beach on the Way to the Breakwall

Coffs Creek Walk

Estimated Length: 6.4 km (return). Estimated Time: 80 minutes.

For this walk, I park at the Harry Bailey Memorial Library in Coffs Harbour and head to the park, across a small creek, past the cemetery and the Botanic Gardens carpark. You can continue walking through the bush trail all the way to Shearwater Restaurant. Although Google Maps looks as though there is no footpath, stick to the path with the river on your left and you can’t go wrong. On the other side of The Promenade where Shearwater Restaurant is, you do need to walk a little way on the footpath of Mildura Street before turning left down Hood Street. Here you’ll find the entrance to the mangrove boardwalk which winds along the creek and comes out to parkland bordered by Orlando Street. Most often I turn around and return the same way I came but there is an option to do the entire loop by following the path all the way around. That is about a 10 km circuit.

Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast
Coffs Creek Walk Starting at the City Library
Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast
Coffs Creek Walk
Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast
Coffs Creek
Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast
Mangrove Walk

Urunga Boardwalk – Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast

Estimated Length: 2.4 km (return). Estimated Time: 25 minutes.

About a 30-minute drive from Coffs Harbour, the Urunga Boardwalk offers pretty views of the river, sea and Great Dividing Range. I park at the Reflections Caravan Park and walk out towards the sea. From the viewpoint at the end, you can capture spectacular shots of the river meeting the sea, and looking back you see the layers of the water, land and the rolling mountains. It’s very pretty.

Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast
Urunga Boardwalk

Add On Urunga Wetlands Boardwalk

Estimated Length: 600m circuit. Estimated Time: 25 minutes.

The Urunga Wetlands Boardwalk is a three-minute drive from the Urunga Boardwalk. It’s a short (600 m) but charming circuit through an inspiring wetland habitat converted from a former toxic wasteland. Only the entrance is shown on Google Maps but the path is very clear and loops back around to where it starts.

Most Beautiful Walking Trails NSW, Australia
Urunga Wetlands

Woolgoolga Headland

Estimated Length: 2.5km (return). Estimated Time: 35 minutes.

Woolgoolga Beach is a pretty walk in itself but taking the high road to the right of the shore will bring beautiful rewards. Again, Google Maps doesn’t provide an accurate representation of the walking trail but stick to the coast and you’ll find a paved track all the way to the headland. Be ready for some close-up encounters with kangaroos along the way!

Most Beautiful Walking Trails NSW, Australia
Woolgoolga Beach
Most Beautiful Walking Trails NSW, Australia
Kangaroos
Most Beautiful Walking Trails NSW, Australia
Plenty of Spots to Take a Rest
Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast
More Views
Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast
Headland
Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast
Highly Recommend a Meal at Grounded Earth After Your Walk

Dorrigo – Crystal Shower Falls

Estimated Length: 5km (return). Estimated Time: 60 minutes.

It takes about an hour to reach Dorrigo National Park from Coffs Harbour by car. Here you’ll find several walks but one of my favourite short scenic walks is from the Skywalk Lookout to Crystal Shower Falls. The return journey is about an hour on a mostly shaded path. It is moderately steep in parts and rewards finishers with lovely views of the falls at the end as well as an abundance of bird life in the ancient trees.

Day Trip from Coffs Harbour
Dorrigo Skywalk
Day Trip from Coffs Harbour
Dorrigo National Park
Day Trip from Coffs Harbour
Walk Through Dorrigo National Park
Boutique Tours NSW North Coast
Crystal Falls (a bit dry but still pretty, and you actually walk behind the stream)

Add On Dangar Falls

Estimated Length: 1.5km (return). Estimated Time: 20 minutes.

If you’re already in the area it would be a shame to miss Dangar Falls, which is less than a 10-minute drive from the Dorrigo Skywalk. The walking path is not shown on Google Maps but there’s a carpark and recreation area at the top of the falls. You can take in the views from the top and also walk down to the base and take a dip. It’s a mix of wooden stairs and bush track and about 20-minutes round trip.

Day Trip from Coffs Harbour
Dangar Falls
Boutique Tours NSW North Coast
Stairs to Dangar Falls

Short Scenic Walks Coffs Coast

So, there you have it – my fave favourite short scenic walks around the Coffs Coast with some options for add-ons to boot!

Find more exciting things to do in NSW here and stay up-to-date on our gourmet travel adventures here and here.

3 Comments

  1. The scenery is stunning! Absolutely breathtaking!

  2. Take me with you next time!
    Every scene is so picturesque.
    And the sky is ultra blue, definitely can smell the fresh country air.
    And definitely worth the walk, if I could see those kangaroos.
    That banksia flower is quintessentially Australian 🙂

  3. What a photography odyssey one is taken on! Definitely paradise found with the turquoise waters that envelop you.

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