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Published May 12th 2019
Discover a locals paradise, a short drive from Nelson Bay
The region of Port Stephens is made up of a number of different towns, suburbs and tourist hubs, all of which have their own unique attractions and beauty. One of the suburbs along the water, just a 10 minute drive from Nelson Bay, is Salamander Bay - named after the convict ship Salamander, which was the first European vessel to enter Port Stephens in 1791. It is mainly a residential suburb, with most of the tourist attractions located further around the bay at Nelson Bay, however it has its own charm and beauty to enjoy.
See below for 5 things to see and do on your visit to Salamander Bay this weekend. One thing is for sure, it is all about sun, sand and pure relaxation...
Take a walk along the scenic Wanda Beach, Salamander Bay (visit at low tide for this wide stretch of sand)
1/ Wanda Beach can be found at the northern end of the suburb, where it adjoins the next suburb of Soldiers Point. This long beach is a popular spot to have a swim in summer - particularly in front of George Reserve, where there isn't as much seagrass in the water. The little reserve has toilet facilities, BBQs and playground for kids to enjoy afterwards a swim. If you walk along the beach to the north, you can fish off the Soldiers Point Jetty or visit The Tavern at Bannisters Port Stephens. If you walk south along the beach, you will find Wanda Wanda Head and the short walk, below.
2/ Mariners Walk Heritage Trail can be found along the length of the Soldiers Point and Salamander Bay peninsula, with signs to read along the way about the maritime history of the region. The walk is 3.3 kilometres long, however if you would like to do just a short, scenic section, then take a walk along the path at Wanda Wanda Head, starting from the end of Wanda Beach. It is a fascinating insight into local history of the region. See here for details.
Signage to read along the Mariners Heritage Trail at Wanda Wanda Head
3/ Holberts Oyster Farm can be found on the opposite side of the peninsula, just a short drive off the main road. Holberts is a leading oyster supplier for the region and if you love your oysters, there is a small shop where you buy a tray of oysters and sit at their picnic tables and enjoy them with a view. For those who don't like oysters, they also have a small selection of prawns. See here for details. For more seafood shops in the region, see here.
4/ Horizons Golf Course is located on Salamander Way and is ranked in the Top 100 courses in Australia. This 18 hole golf course is open to the public to play, with options of green fees, with or without a cart to take you around. There is also a small café at the club house, to have breakfast or lunch afterwards. Koalas and kangaroos are often seen on this course, so look out for cheeky kangaroos as they cross your path! See here for details.
5/ Salamander Bay Square shopping centre may not be a major attraction, however anyone who visits the Nelson Bay region is sure to pop in there for supplies. The centre has Woolworths, Coles, Aldi, K-Mart, Target and a range of specialty shops (see here for details). Outside the centre there is also a McDonalds, Kentucky Fried Chicken, L'il Buddha Asian Cuisine, Anytime Fitness, Salamander Bay Tavern, Tomaree Library, Salamander Super Strike Tenpin Bowling and more.
Whether you are visiting Salamander Bay to see family, or maybe staying at the popular Oaks Pacific Blue Resort, there is something to do for everyone in the Salamander Bay and Nelson Bay region. So take off your thongs, feel the sand between your toes and leave your footprints in Salamander Bay...