Things To Do In Yamba
National Parks & Walking Trails
Bundjalung National Park
Located between Evans Head and Iluka, Bundjalung National Park contains vast areas of coastal plain, heathland and solitary beaches. The Esk River, the largest untouched coastal river system on the north coast, runs through the southern half of the park.
Other features include the Jerusalem Creek Peninsula, freshwater lagoons, mangrove mudflats and rare rainforests at Woody Head.
Iluka Nature Reserve
Iluka Nature Reserve contains the largest remaining stand of littoral “by the sea” rainforest in New South Wales and is a World Heritage listed Gondwana rainforest.
Rich and diverse, it is an ecosystem adapted to a harsh environment of salt-laden winds and poor soils. The Riberry and Broad-leaved Lillypilly forest where strangler figs, ferns, epiphytes and vines intertwine is sheltered by protective sand dunes and salt-tolerant Tuckeroo and Banksia trees.
Home to more than 140 species of birds, the reserve is a bird watchers paradise. You might see the an Eastern Whipbird as it rustles through the leaf litter or hear its call – the whip crack belongs to the male and the sharp chirps (choow choow) to the female as she responds to the males call.
Things to Do:
- Spend time exploring the Esk River and Jerusalem Creek systems by canoe or kayak.
- Launch at Bill Weiley Bridge on Iluka Road for the Esk River and at the canoe pontoon at Black Rocks Camping Area for Jerusalem Creek.
- For boating enthusiasts, Woody Head Camping Area has a public boat ramp. You can explore the Esk River south of Jackys Gully through riverine and mangrove ecosystems to the tidal Clarence River estuary. Access into the Bundjalung Wilderness Area above Jackys Gully is available to electric or non-powered craft only.
- Recreational fishing is permitted in rivers, estuaries and along the coastline. Anglers require a permit from DPI Fisheries (see back cover for contact details). Spearfishing is not permitted in sections of Woody Bay.
- Explore the Iluka Peninsula with its wave cut rock platforms and beaches. Look for, but don’t take, the interesting marine life in the rockpools at low tide.
- Best viewing points for whale watchers include the lookout at Iluka Bluff. From April to June whales are travelling north, returning with their young in early Spring.
- Take a self-guided walk through Iluka Nature Reserve where informative signs share the secrets of this World Heritage Gondwana rainforest.
Go for a walk
- Gummigurrah Walk 1 3.5km, 2 hours return, easy grade. Gummigurrah is an Aboriginal area – used as a winter camping ground for the Bundjalung people. From the picnic area, walk through open woodland, heath and rainforest to a shady midden beside the Evans River.
- Jerusalem Creek Peninsula Track 2 8km, 3 hours one way, easy grade. Follow Jerusalem Creek, a tea-tree stained freshwater creek, north from Black Rocks Camping Area to the
- Woody Head rock platform 3 1km, 30 minutes one way, slippery uneven surfaces
Venture around the headland at Woody Head Camping Area for views to the south. Explore the rock platform, but just look at the rockpool animals and leave them in their homes.
- Iluka Bluff Lookout 4 150m, 10 minutes one way, moderate grade with steps
While at Iluka Bluff picnic area, take the steps to the top of the bluff where a viewing platform provides a spectacular outlook over Iluka Nature Reserve, coastal beaches and the mouth of the mighty Clarence River.
- Iluka Rainforest Walk 5 2.5km, 1.5 hours one way, easy grade Take a stroll through the World Heritage Listed Gondwana Rainforest of Iluka Nature Reserve where tall trees are intertwined by strangler figs. If you walk quietly, you can hear the chatter of the brightly coloured Noisy Pitta and the sharp crack of the Whipbird. A section of this walk is wheelchair accessible. Wear insect repellent.
Yuraygir Nationaal Park
60 kilometres of striking cliffs, rocky headlands, isolated beaches and quiet lake systems, set against a backdrop of forests, heaths, estuaries and wetlands, make Yuraygir the longest stretch of undeveloped coastline in NSW.
Things to Do:
- Spend time exploring Lake Arragan, the Sandon River system and Station Creek by canoe or kayak. Canoe launching facilities are provided at Station Creek and Lake Arragan.
- Recreational fishing is permitted in rivers, estuaries and along the coastline, except in marine park ‘no-take’ sanctuary zones. Anglers require a permit from DPI Fisheries (see back cover for contact details).
- Best viewing points for whale watchers include Dirrangan Lookout, Red Cliff, Rocky Point and Wilsons Headland. From April to June whales are travelling north, returning with their young in early Spring.
- In the school holidays, take a Ranger guided Discovery tour. Check park noticeboards for planned activities or pre-book your tour before you leave home. View our Discovery program at www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au.
Go for a walk
- Angourie Walk 1 10km, 4 hours one way, medium difficulty. Linking Mara Creek and Lake Arragan, this walk takes you through a variety of coastal ecosystems. Views from Dirrangan Lookout are magnificient. Dolphins are regularly sighted and you can see south to Red Cliff and Brooms Head. Take plenty of water.
- Angophora Grove Walk 2 1km, 30 minutes loop track, easy grade. From Illaroo South picnic area, meander past pandanus trees and through coastal heath before entering the
dense smooth-barked apple (Angophora costata) forest.
- Wilsons Headland Walk 3 3km, 1 hour one way, easy grade. Joining Boorkoom camping area and Wilsons Headland picnic area, panoramic ocean views contrast with secluded coves, isolated beaches and banks of wildflowers. Enjoy the views from seats along the track. A section of this track is wheelchair accessible.
- Freshwater Track 4 4km, 1.5 hours return, medium difficulty. For a truly solitary experience, walk to the isolated and remote Freshwater Beach. Track starts at the northern end of Pebbly Beach camping area.
- Corkwood and Scribbly Gum Walk 5 1.5km, 1 hour loop track, easy grade. From Station Creek camping area, follow the creek upstream through coastal forest. A short side track loops through scribbly gum forest.
Reel Time Fishing
Reel Time charters specialises in both deep sea and river fishing expeditions, from Yamba. Using two purpose built boats. They operate 12 months of the year and go to sea every day, weather permitting.
They cater for individuals, group bookings as well as birthday and bucks parties. They also do one off bookings for those who would like to book the entire boat for themselves to do whatever type of fishing the like.
- All fishing gear and bait supplied
- Pick-up from Yamba or Iluka ferry wharf
- No fishing licence required
Deep Sea Charters
Deep sea charters are run out of the port of Yamba, because of our location we are blessed with the mixture of both tropical and coldwater species of fish.
Species regularly caught on our charters are: Snapper, Cobia, Pearl Perch, Morwong, Yellowtail Kingfish, Sampson fish, Blue spot Flathead, Tregalin, Jewfish, Venus Tuskfish, Blue Groper, Yellowfin Tuna, Dolphin fish, Spanish & Spotted Mackerel, Wahoo, Maori Cod, Wrasse, Sweet lip and many more.
Available in season,duration 4 hours.
On Estuary charters some of the species you can catch are: Dusky flathead (these can grow to over a meter in length and exceed 8kg), Bream, Flounder, Mulloway or Jewfish (can exceed 40kg), Tailor, Giant Trevally, Mangrove Jack & Luderick or Blackfish.
There is a vast array of other species caught in our estuary on top of the ones listed. They are currently the only licensed charter boat operating on the Clarence river. The Clarence River is the largest estuary on the east coast of Australia; it also has more Islands than any other river in the world, over 100 islands on the river.
Suitable for both beginner and experienced with up to 4 anglers (children welcome).
Reel Time Charters also operate eco tours on the Clarence exploring the not so well known back waters and pointing out the abundance of wildlife both in and around this wonderful waterway, at the same time giving a bit of a trip back in time with the history of fishing & the sugar cane industry
Kitchen To Table Cooking School
Our cooking classes are held in Yamba, and are all about making food fun, from choosing a recipe to preparing and serving the meals.
Jason our chef has been playing with food professionally for over 23 years and his passion for great food continues to grow.
We have designed our cooking evenings to be a relaxing and enjoyable time where you will be sure to learn a few tips and tricks to help you achieve a much better result.
Ph: 02 6646 1557
A real old fashioned movie theatre with prices to match – $10 for all tickets all sessions.
Located in the centre of town, it’s a great place to go after a meal. Latest releases shown, plus they serve coffee/tea on site.
You can find the latest screening session info on the front desk in reception or you can head to their website via the link below.
There are so many dining options available in Yamba, and from Beach Kiosks to trendy Cafes to Fine Dining. It’s best if you explore them all for yourself. For a town of only around 7000 people, we certainly do know how to do great food with a nice relaxed atmosphere.
There are also two prawn farms on Palmers Island less than a 3 min drive from the park who sell their prawns retail to locals and visitors at decent prices when they are harvesting.
The Yamba Lighthouse sits atop the highest hill in Yamba. The original tower was built in 1880 and has since been replaced with a new tower in 1955. The new lighthouse is built of concrete in a very modern style and sits 18 metres high.
The view from here is expansive, taking in 365 degree views. Iluka to the north, Angourie to the south, views the Clarence River and its many Islands to the west and the Pacific Ocean to the east. The sunrises and sunsets from this vantage point are simply stunning.
Most evenings, at dusk, you can see the deep-sea fishing fleet heading out of the mouth of the River. During May to October you can see the whales migrating North for the winter.
Immediately south of Yamba along Angourie Road, lies Angourie Point and Township. A small quaint village. The Point is famous, worldwide, as one of Australia’s very best surfing spots.
Angourie is also famous for its Blue Pool, which was originally a rock quarry. During quarry works, an underground spring was disturbed and the quarry filled with fresh water. It is a great swimming spot, lying just metres from the ocean in a beautiful bush setting.
After viewing the pools it is also possible to walk over the rocks to Angourie Point. You can then head up the well-marked sand track to the lookout.
The Clarence River
The Clarence River
This mighty River, also known as the “River of Islands”, is the largest river on the east coast of Australia, and can be enjoyed in so many ways; it is up to you to take advantage of all the activities available.
You could do a spot of fishing. Good spots include lovers point, the break wall, Whiting Beach, middle wall, Oyster Channel or Lake Wooloweyah (you will need a boat to access some of these spots). Your boat can be launched from our private boat ramp or simply throw in your line from the boat ramp.
You could take a paddle on a canoe and take in the beautiful views.
Take a Whale watching trip out on the ‘Rockfish’ Catamaran. The trip runs from around 10am to 3pm and includes Lunch and afternoon tea from $90 per person. Whale watching season is approximately May to October.
The Yamba Iluka Ferry runs daily from River St wharf. The Ferry company also runs River cruises to Harwood Island on Wednesday and Friday, BBQ cruises on Wednesday and trips to the Tavern in school holidays (Sunday). Great time Cruises- River Explorer 2 run lunch and dinner cruises.
People with Ski boats and Personal Watercraft are sure to find some fantastic locations for a day of fun on the River.
The beaches in Yamba are stunning. There are 11 glorious beaches to choose from so there’s a beach suited of everyone no matter what the weather is doing.
The Main Beach: below Flinders Park and the Pacific Hotel, is patrolled during summer season. The 33 metre salt water Rock Pool is located on this beach is great for swimming laps or for the kids who don’t want the waves. The kids will also love to explore the rocks which are filled with tiny fish and crabs. The Main beach Kiosk is also a great place to enjoy an espresso and a bite to eat overlooking the beach. Toilets, showers, picnic tables, surf straight in front of pool or beach, snorkel in northern corner, protected from southerly and northerly winds.
Turners Beach: found between the break wall and the lighthouse and is patrolled in summer. Surf at northern and southern end of beach, little rock pools, toilets, showers, picnic tables, rock fishing, break wall fishing, protected from southerly winds.
Whiting Beach: a still water river beach with little to no waves, just inland of the break wall, is ideal for children even when seas are high elsewhere. Toilets, shower, picnic tables, great place to take kids fishing, protected from southerly winds.
Convent Beach: between main beach and Lovers Point is also calm in most conditions. Small waves, little rock pools, snorkel in southern corner, protected from southerly winds.
Pippi Beach: runs from Lovers Point to flat rock and further south to Angourie. It is a very good walk for the fitness fanatics. Small sections are patrolled in summer. Open to the ocean, toilets, showers, surf straight in front or northern corner, fish off rock shelf at northern end or open beach, 4 wheel drive access.
Flat Rock:- open to the ocean, fish off rock ledge, 4 wheel drive access.
Green Point: fish off rocks, protected from southerly winds.
Spooky Beach: great for kids surfing, snorkel on southern end, toilets, showers, 4 wheel drive access, shop.
Angourie Point: Surfers heaven when working, fish off end of southern rock ledge, fresh water rock pool, toilets, showers, shop.
Back Beach Angourie: surf in northern corner and further down beach, toilets.
Shelley Beach: only for the adventurer, good 2 hour coastal range walk along designated track, no facilities, great fishing.
Golf & Bowls
Golf & Bowls
Yamba’s Golf & Country Club is?located?five minutes walk from the centre of town.?They?have all of the latest facilities you’d expect from a modern social and sporting club. From the clubhouse you can enjoy picturesque views of our championship 18 hole golf course.
Yamba Bowling Club is right in the middle of town and offers both competition and social bowls on their well maintained grass greens.
They also have a great bistro and provide regular entertainment from comedy shows to live music.
Iluka has both a bowls and a golf club. The bowling club features a Chinese restaurant as well we the recently re-opened Oasis Bar. The golf club has a 9 hole course and they offer great packages for golf clubs or golf groups looking to organize a day package including green fees and lunch.
Maclean has an 18 hole golf course and tends to be a little quieter than Yamba, sometimes making it a better option for visitors looking for a social round of golf.
There is also a bowling club in Maclean.
Each year Maclean & Yamba host a tournament as part of the ‘Veterans Week of Golf’ tour.
The Maclean Veterans Week of Golf is generally held in July, the first week after the school holidays.
Each year we have many players staying with us for this fantastic week of golf. You can learn more via the link below
Bowlo Leisure Centre
The Bowlo Lesuire Centre
The Yamba Bowling Club is home to a surprisingly good leisure centre that includes an 18 hole mini golf course, a 4-lane bowling alley, a lateral rock climbing wall and a soft play area for the toddlers.