Myall Lakes National Park

Myall Lakes National Park, Tourism New South Wales
Barbecue Bike riding Campfire Caravan Disabled Diving Fishing Kiosk/Restaurant Park entry fee Shower Swimming Toilets Watersports Wildflowers Wildlife Camping area Four-wheel drive touring Information Lookout Ranger Walking


Myall Lakes National Park, on the mid-north coast, encompasses New South Wales' largest coastal lake system, with 10 000 hectares of stunning waterways, 40 kilometres of magnificent beaches washed by the Pacific Ocean, high sand dunes and dramatic headlands, and a wealth of birdlife.

Fact file


From Bulahdelah via Myall Rd (Lakes Rd) to Bombah Point car ferry (operates half-hourly 8am–6pm); at southern end, from Old Pacific Hwy via Tea Gardens Rd to Hawks Nest then Mungo Brush Rd (vehicle access prohibited in some park areas; contact NPWS)

Best season

All year; autumn and spring are most peaceful times


230 km north of Sydney; 50 km north of Newcastle

Park information

  • NSWNPWS 1300 361 967
  • NPWS Great Lakes (02) 6591 0300
  • NPWS Nelson Bay (02) 4984 8200


Permits are needed to drive along the beach north of Hawks Nest


47 593 ha

Visitor information

Bulahdelah/Forster/Tea Gardens (02) 4997 0111

Featured Activities in the National Park

  • Watch for migrating whales from June to October

    Walk through the sun-filtered rainforest at Mungo Brush

    Canoe on the shimmering lake waters

    Net for a feast of prawns on a balmy evening

    Go beachcombing as the Pacific Ocean breaks on the coast’s silvery sands

See Also

A look at the past

Many families have been associated with the area since the early 1800s and their various activities have left a legacy of historic sites – old saw-milling relics, farmhouses, shipwreck remains, pioneer graves and more.

Natural features

The chain of lakes stretches for 50 kilometres and dominates the park, with the interconnected, brackish lakes – Bombah Broadwater, Boolambayte Lake and Myall Lake – bounded by high, tree-covered dunes along the coast and a backdrop of mountains cloaked in forest to the west. Broughton Island, off the coast, is part of the park.

Native plants

West of the lakes is mainly eucalypt forest, much of it logged in the past. Around Mungo Brush coastal rainforest thrives, forming a thick canopy of rosewood, tulipwood, strangler fig and other species, edged by swamp mahogany and Australian fan palms. Open woodland and banksia heathland cover around one-fifth of the park, and the swampy area known as the Moors is fringed by splendid old paperbarks, which give off a heady scent when in flower.


In 1999, Myall Lakes were placed on the Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance. Pelicans fish in the shallows, swans glide by, ducks, egrets, herons and whistling kites congregate in large numbers, and the gawky-looking black-necked stork is one of several threatened species. Honeyeaters, pigeons, parrots and doves flock to the flowering heathlands, rainforest and eucalypt forests.

The watery environment suits frogs and toads, with around 30 species identified. The most likely mammals to be spotted are kangaroos, wallabies, bandicoots and bush rats, and the most common reptile is the red-bellied black snake.

Offshore migrating whales cruise along the coast between June and October, making for a memorable wildlife-watching experience. Climb the outside stairs at Sugarloaf Point Lighthouse (1875) at Seal Rocks for one of the best vantage points for whale-watching and you might also see fur-seals.


There are numerous water-based pursuits and you can hire a craft (from a powerboat to a canoe) if you do not own one. Bushwalking and wildlife-watching are other options.


The relatively mild climate, easy terrain, wildflowers in season, fantastic birdwatching and lovely views make this an excellent park for walking. One popular short stroll is the Mungo Forest Walk (1.5-km circuit, 30 minutes, easy), which loops through a patch of coastal rainforest and is excellent for birdwatching. Check with NPWS for details of other walks.


Watch the weather conditions, which can change quickly, and note that the Lower Myall River is tidal. There are major boat-launching facilities at Mungo Brush, Violet Hill and Nerong. There are wharves at Violet Hill, Korsmans Landing and Bombah Point, as well as three wharves on the Lower Myall River.


There is good ocean, lake and river fishing (mullet, bream and flathead are likely hauls) and you can try your hand at netting for prawns at night.

Other activities

Four-wheel driving is permitted along the beach between Hawks Nest and the Big Gibber, unless signs indicate temporary closure. Access to the beach tracks is off Mungo Brush Drive. Cyclists can explore the park on roads and trails; the 40-kilometre-long Mungo Brush Road is a flat and fairly easy ride. There are a multitude of picnic venues – use the ones with barbecues and tables or just find a shady spot.

Swimming and surfing

The beaches can be a little rough for swimming but there are sheltered coves around some lakes that are more suitable. Broadwater is known for its safe swimming. Surfers will find some good breaks.


Banksia Green camping area

It might be a small site, but the power of Banksia Green lies in its close proximity to beach and lake, and it’s not as far from Hawks Nest as some of the other sites. It’s off Mungo Brush Rd, just south of... Find out more

Boomeri camping area

Boomeri’s 20 sites are set away from the north-eastern banks of Bombah Broadwater, with a walking/cycling track to Johnsons and Shelley beaches. It’s the next campsite north of the Wells camping area, off... Find out more

Brambles Green camping area (walk-in camping)

If you’re after a quieter spot and don’t mind missing out on ocean views, this walk-in campsite on the banks of the lower Myall River, south of Bombah Broadwater, is ideal for self-sufficient walkers and as a... Find out more

Broughton Island camping area (boat-based camping)

Accessible by boat alone, Broughton Island’s Poverty Beach camping area is said to be the only island-based site in NSW where you can camp among an active seabird colony - it’s a vital breeding site for... Find out more

Bungaree Bay camping area

Tucked away on the banks of Boolambayte Lake beneath paperbarks and casuarinas, Bungaree Bay is accessible from Violet Hill Rd, off the Lakes Way. The turn-off to the Lakes Way is 18 km past Buladelah on the Pacific Hwy.... Find out more

Dees Corner camping area

Dees Corner offers quiet camping under the dappled shade of melaleucas by Bombah Broadwater. It’s north of Mungo Brush camping area, off Mungo Brush Rd. You need to bring drinking water and firewood, though... Find out more

Freshwater camping area (walk-in and boat-based camping)

Freshwater is north of Joes Cove on the eastern shore of Two Mile Lake. It’s a boat-based or walk-in site, a 2 km walk from Mungo Brush Rd – check with the parks office for track details. There are toilets... Find out more

Joes Cove camping area (walk-in and boat-based camping)

Joes Cove is north of Bombah Point, on the eastern shore of Two Mile Lake. It’s an 800 m walk in from Mungo Brush Rd. Bring your own drinking water, firewood and gas/fuel stove.... Find out more

Johnsons Beach camping area (walk-in and boat-based camping)

One of the bigger boat-based camping areas in Myall Lakes National Park, Johnsons Beach camping area enjoys an embarrassment of riches - inviting sandy beaches and shallow, aquamarine waters. There are a number of... Find out more

Korsmans Landing camping area

You’ll either need to get the car ferry across to Bombah Point from Mungo Brush Rd and continue north or come down Bombah Point Rd from the Pacific Hwy past Buladelah. Situated on Two Mile Lake, this site has... Find out more

Mackaway Bay (boat-based camping)

You’ll find this site on the western shore of Two Mile Lake, between this and Boolambayte Lake. It’s a good spot to choose if it’s a windy day. Bring drinking water, firewood and gas/fuel stove.... Find out more

Mungo Brush camping area

On the lake side of Mungo Brush Rd, about 22 km north of Hawks Nest, this is a popular campsite as it’s close to the lake and the beach. There’s a boat ramp here and a number of walking tracks, including the... Find out more

Neranie Head camping area

Neranie Head is at the far-north end of the national park, on the north-eastern shores of Myall Lake. There’s a boat ramp nearby, and there is a short walk to the historic cemetery on Neranie Headland. You can get... Find out more

River Mouth camping area (walk-in and boat-based camping)

As its name suggests, this camping area’s at the mouth of the Myall River. It’s a good stopover for canoeists and kayakers on the Upper Myall River. Walkers can also access the camping area via the Rivermouth... Find out more

Shelley Beach camping area (walk-in and boat-based camping)

This is a walk-in or boat-based campsite located 10 km north-east of Bombah Point on Myall Lake. If you’re on foot, it’s an 11 km walk via the Old Gibber fire trail, off Mungo Brush Rd. Bring drinking water... Find out more

Stewart and Lloyds camping area

This is the closest campground to Hawks Nest, 10 km along Mungo Brush Rd from town. It’s tucked away behind sand dunes with easy access to the beach. You’ll need to bring drinking water and firewood; gas/fuel... Find out more

Sunnyside camping area (boat-based camping)

This charmingly named camping spot can be found on the western shore of Two Mile Lake, between this and Boolambayte Lake. Bring your own drinking water, firewood and gas/fuel stove.... Find out more

Two Mile Sands camping area (boat-based camping)

Sandy beaches and shallow waters greet boaters at this camping area on the western shore of Mackaway Bay. Bring your own drinking water, firewood and gas/fuel stove.... Find out more

Violet Hill camping area

A great base for lakeside activities, Violet Hill camping area includes a boat ramp, a wharf and a smattering of boat moorings. There’s space for campervans and trailers, although the main campsite area is closed... Find out more

The Wells camping area

It’s lakefront camping here, north of White Tree Bay camping area off Mungo Brush Rd. Located on the eastern shore of Bombah Broadwater, this is one of the few places where you can have a campfire, although... Find out more

White Tree Bay camping area

On the eastern shore of Bombah Broadwater north of Dees Corner camping area off Mungo Brush Rd, this site includes a gas barbecue. Bring your drinking water; gas/fuel stove only.... Find out more

Yagon camping area

This is a top location, sheltered behind the dunes, close to the beach, Seal Rocks and Sugarloaf Point Lighthouse, and away from the conglomeration of camping sites to the south around the lakes. To get here, turn on to... Find out more

See Also

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