6 ocean-based activities to try during a weekend escape to Port Macquarie

Port Macqaurie’s most fabulous feature

Port Macquarie is known for its coastal charm. Boasting gorgeous sandy beaches and rocky coves, the relaxing seaside town is the ideal spot for a seaside getaway. In fact, the drive from Sydney to Port Macquarie takes around four hours, making it perfectly feasible to escape here only for a weekend.

During a weekend escape to this NSW coastal gem, you’ll want to soak up the fresh ocean air. And with lots of water-related activities and things to do in Port Macquarie, you’ll have plenty of opportunity to enjoy the sea.

Take a wander along the shore and have some lunch by the beach. Watch out for whales in winter. Float around in a kayak. Grab a board and head out surfing for the morning. Whatever it is you’re here for, there’s a seaside activity to get you immersed in the relaxed atmosphere and ocean life of Port Macquarie. After a weekend by the sea here, you’ll be completely revitalised.

Here are five of the best ways to enjoy the ocean during your next trip to Port Macquarie.

1. Go surfing in Port Macquarie 

Surfing in Port Macquarie is highly recommended. At Town Beach, Grants Beach, Rainbow Beach, Lighthouse Beach and many more, you’ll discover pretty consistent waves and very appealing backdrops. If you haven’t been on a board before, or you’re looking for a refresher, try surfing lessons in Port Macquarie. It’s a pretty good place to try, and without the crowds of Bondi Beach, you’ll be way more relaxed. Soul Surfing, Port Macquarie, is a great place to go if you’re wanting to take the plunge. Personalised and private surf lessons with highly qualified instructors allow you to learn from the best. Surfing in Port Macquarie will tire you out and send you back to Sydney refreshed.

surfing in Port Macquarie

Pic credit: Destination NSW

2. Visit some pristine beaches in Port Macquarie

If your kind of weekend escape involves relaxing by the ocean, Port Macquarie is home to some striking beaches that will satisfy your needs. Turquoise waters and little rocky coves are scattered along the coastline. Pilot Beach is beautifully tranquil and sits at the mouth of the Camden Haven river. Found between two break walls, it is sheltered and protected from the ocean, making it ideal for the kids.

Flynns Beach, situated just south of Port Macquarie is nestled between two rocky headlands that jut out into the sea. This serene beach is also well protected from the winds. Alternatively, Rainbow Beach, running for 2.5km along the New South Wales coastline is lifeguarded during the holidays. Sand stretching into the distance here, makes for a very typical Australian beach scene. A park and a picnic area at Rainbow Beach also make it ideal for chilled out afternoons and long lazy lunches. There are 15 beaches in Port Macquarie to choose from so take your pick.

beaches in Port Macquarie

Pic cedit: Destination NSW

3. Go hiking in Port Macquarie along the shores

Walks in Port Macquarie are plenty. Capturing glimpses of the picturesque NSW coastline is guaranteed. Kattang Nature Reserve offers stunning views, gorgeous wildflowers and easy walking trails. Family picnicking as well as fishing and whale watching are also highly encouraged here.

One of the best walks in Port Macquarie is Port Macquarie Coastal Walk. The 9km trail follows the winding coastline, taking you up to soak in gorgeous ocean views and back down again stroll over the sandy beaches. Along the way, you’ll also find historic points of interest, a lighthouse, rainforest landscapes and secluded coves.

Pic credit: Destination NSW

4. Take a boat trip in Port Macquarie 

Port Jet Cruise Adventures offers a great deal of options in terms of water-based experiences. If it’s whales you came to see during the winter months, pack your camera and take a short trip from the shore to see the annual whale migration. Get up close, watching the beautiful creatures as they travel up and down. For those of us who are seeking less tranquility and more adrenaline, at Port Jet you can hire and drive a jet ski along the Port Macquarie coastline. It’s absolutely worth a go and you don’t need a specialised licence. For a bit more swell and excitement, take the Ocean Blast trip on one of NSW’s fastest commercial boats. Spotting dolphins and sea turtles along the way is not unlikely on this hair-raising ride.

Pic credit: Destination NSW

5. Glide across the ocean’s surface on a SUP board

If you’re not a surfer but you still like the idea of getting out into the sea, hiring a SUP board is just the thing for you. Port Macquarie Sup Fun has plenty of boards for hire. However, you could also opt for a Stand Up Paddling session to learn some new skills. Perfect for catching a glimpse of serene 360 ocean views, Stand Up Paddling is also excellent for your fitness and core strength.

6. Hire a kayak in Port Macquarie

Granted, this one might be a little less about the ocean and more about the river leading up to it. However, hiring a kayak in Port Macquarie is a great idea if you’re looking to slide across the water for the afternoon and watch the town go by. Enjoy the banks of the beautiful Hastings River by kayak, by heading to Jordan’s Boating Centre. Hire your single or double kayak by the hour and head out along the river.

Book your accommodation in Port Macquarie

Looking for hotels in Port Macquarie? For beachfront views, an outdoor swimming pool and crisp modern interiors, head to Ibis Styles Port Macquarie. Click here for more information.

Interested in learning a little more about things to do in Port Macquarie?

Take a look at our Ultimate Guide to Port Macquarie to discover everything there is to see and do in this beautiful NSW town – both on water and on land. When it comes to Port Macquarie restaurants, cafes, hikes and experiences – you name it – we can tell you about it.