Kirsten's Guide to Fingal Bay in Post Stephens.

Discover Fingal Bay

Fingal Bay is surrounded by Tomaree National Park and capped with a pristine white sand beach.
The perfect place for a family escape
Nestled amidst Tomaree National Park in Port Stephens, Fingal Bay is a coastal township that oozes Australian small town charm. Less than a three-hour drive north of Sydney and an hour past Newcastle, Fingal Bay is situated just 12-minute drive away from the larger and slightly more famous township of Nelson Bay.

And while the name isn’t super well known, the famous split sure is. The location was used for the 2006 Australian Tourism ad, made famous by Lara Bingle asking the audience ‘where the bloody hell are you?’

Read on for some of our favourite things to do in this beautiful pocket of the NSW coast.

Fingal Beach

Voted one of Australia’s top 20 beaches by Tourism Australia in 2020, Fingal Beach is nothing short of glorious. The white sand beach is wheelchair accessible, family-friendly, and patrolled – making it the perfect place for a family getaway. Home to Fingal Bay Surf Club Relax with a drink, throw out a fishing rod, or take to the waves.

The Fingal Beach Surf Club was establish in 1964 when locals recoginised the need for a patrolled beach. This modern Clubhouse has volunteer and professional life guards and boasts amazing views of the ocean, National Park and coastline. The building is home to Saltwater Restuant Fingal Bay which offers a wedding venue and a relaxed dining experience for lunch and dinner with amazing views. The fingal beach Cafe is lcated at the entrance of the beach walkway and The Port Stephens Surf School offers board hire and lessons for all ages and abilities from the beach sand.

The famous Fingal Spit is a sand spit that links the mainland to Fingal Island – a place rich in culture and history. You can access the island by boat, where you can enjoy a fully guided nature walk visiting an Aboriginal fish trap lagoon, as well as the Point Stephens Lighthouse and ruined caretakers cottage.

About Fingal Bay
Fingal Bay Bushwalking

Bushwalking + Koala Spotting

Surrounded by Tomaree National Park, Fingal Bay offers countless tracks for you to explore. Enjoy the 8.7km Fingal to Tomaree walk, or witness unparalleled views of the Port Stephens Coastline at the summit of Tomaree Head, just 161m above the Port Stephens entrance.

Fingal Bay is incredibly fortunate to be home to a Koala colony. Koala’s are regulary spotted in the trees of the Fingal Bay Foreshore Reserve. Remember to look down as well as up! Koala scat on the footpath can indicate a Koala near by. Port Stephens Koala Sanctuary is where you are guarenteed to see Koalas.
The Sancturary is located on Gan Gan Road, One Mile, and surrounded by native bushland. For a small fee the Sanctuary provides an educational experience while assisting to preserve our endangered koala population.

 

Dolphin + Whale Watching

A Holiday High light is Dolphin And Whale sightings!

Fingal Bay is blessed to be one of the best places to view whales frolicking in prestine blue waters. Witness the giant magestic creatures leap out of the water, roll, deep dive with tails out and play spot the water spouts. As Humpack and Southern Right whales mirgate up the NSW coastline past the Fingal Bay waters between May to Novemenber. To campture this experince, Barry Park in Fingal Bay boasts a custom built whale watching platform. This is an awesome place to witness whales just off the coastline. The park provides signage with whale watching tips and guidleines and is easily walking accessible with BBQ, picnic tables, restrooms and ample parking.  Port Stephens Council often presents free talks in July school holidays at Barry Park called “Whale Tales” in which a whale expert provides a free talks about whale watching whilst what watching whales! In addition, whale watching crusies operate regullary during whale migration season from neighbouring Nelson Bay.

Port Stephens is the capital of Dolphin encounters. It would be a shame to visit the area and not witness the beauty yourself. With more than 140 bottle-nosed dolphins making Port Stephens’ waters their home, the area offers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to swim with the dolphins in their natural habitat. Boat tours depart regualry from Nelson Bay which allow you to discover and partcipate in the tranquil beauty of the bay. Maybe you might will be lucky enough to be swimming in Fingal Beach and have a dolphin ride the waves with you!

Fingal Bay Dolphin Watching
Fingal Bay Cultural Experiences

Cultural Indigenous Experiences + Sacred Sites

Land of the Worimi people, the area of Port Stephens is full of culturally significant sites to the original custodians of the land. After all, the history of the hunter-gatherer Worimi (Warrimay) people dates back over tens of thousands of years. Cultural significant sites include relics sites, canoe trees at little beach, ceremonial sites, stone arrangements, campsites and Middens. There is a midden located at Fingal Bay Spit.

Port Stephens is home to the largest coast sand dunes in the Southern Hemisphere. Sand Dune Quad Bike Adventure Tours at Stockton Beach offers an aborigibnal cultural experince, aderenaline and adventure all on Quad Bikes. The tour is an exhilerating introduction to aboriginal history and culture of the Worimi people. At Tanina Bay, Port Stephens you will find Koori Coulors Art Gallery run and dedicated by award winnning Worimi artist Jason Russel and his wife Kez. View multiple forms of art by Jason and enjoy some yarn telling. Inaddition, the gallery provides art and cultural workshops for children and adults.

The Lighthouse, Fingal Bay

The historic Port Stephens Lighthouse is a hertitage listed active site located on an unnamed headland of Fingal Bay on Fingal Bay island. Parks and Wildlife Servie NSW have been care takers of the site since 1998. The original light house opened in 1862, along with 3 cottages for the  lightkeepers residence, after the coastline surrounding the entrance to Port Stephens had claimed 24 ships to wreckage. The original apparatus of the light has been updated from a gas lights to in 1922 electric and now today is automated and solar powered. The light house cottages were abandoned in 1991 and shortly after were destroyed by vandalism and fire. The unique cottages remain in ruins, an eerie reminder that better care of our history should be taken. It is not safe to walk accross the Fingal Bay Spit to the island as the tide and swell can be unpredicatble. Instead take a boat tour to Fingal island and explore the site, climb the spiral stair case of ttower, share stories, take photos and enjoy the eco-walk tour with Aquamarine Adventures disembarking frorm Nelson Bay.

Fingal Bay Lighthouse
Fingal Bay Sandboarding

Whole Family Entertainment in Fingal Bay

Saltwater Restaurant Fingal Bay

Where to Eat and Drink in Fingal Bay

  • Saltwater restaurant is located perched atop of Fingal Beach Surf club overlooking Fingal Bay. It’s the perfect choice for a relaxed lunch, afternoon drink & delicious dinner.
  • Cellar Café Fingal Bay located Market St, Fingal Bay, open for coffee & drinks 7 days a week during in summer. Open for dinner including Pizza Thurs – Sun.
  • Long Boat Café Fingal Beach open 8 am to 3pm eat in or takeaway light meals, milk shakes, ice-creams and coffee at Fingal Bay Surf Club.
  • Fingal Bay Grocers Shop 2, Market St boasts a gourmet deli, barista coffee, BBQ chicken plus mini-mart.
  • Fingal Bay Sports Club located 100 Rocky Point Rd for all things bowls, bingo, drinking and eating.
GeeJayys Crepes and Coffee Fingal Bay

Where to grab a Barista Coffee in Fingal Bay

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