Coffin Bay National Park
This scenic coastal park covers a rugged spur of land jutting west from the tip of Eyre Peninsula into the Southern Ocean. On two sides wild surf beaches, massive mobile dunes and eroded limestone cliffs are for the adventurous, while the park’s northern coastline with its lovely sheltered bays and inlets offers perfect places for picnics or camping holidays.
From Adelaide via Port Augusta then Lincoln Hwy to Port Lincoln; from Ceduna via Flinders Hwy, or Eyre then Tod hwys
Spring and summer
700 km west of Adelaide; 360 km south-west of Port Augusta; 21 km west of Port Lincoln; 415 km south-east of Ceduna
- Coffin Bay ranger (08) 8685 4047
- Parks SA Port Lincoln (08) 8688 3111
Park Day Pass required per vehicle for day visitors; camping permit required per vehicle per day for campers
31 000 ha
Coffin Bay (08) 8685 4057
Featured Activities in the National Park
Paddle your canoe in Yangie Bay
Enjoy secluded beaches at Point Sir Isaac
Surf-fish from the white sands of Gunyah Beach
Walk to Sudden Jerk Lookout for stunning views
A look at the past
Matthew Flinders named the bay after his friend Sir Isaac Cofﬁn in 1802. Whalers and sealers followed soon after and pastoral leases were issued as early as 1847, then for 140 years the peninsula was farmed. Ruins of early huts, wells and stockyards can still be seen. Cofﬁn Bay National Park was created in 1982.
This area is the home of the Nauo-Barngarla people and, in 2000, the park was accepted as part of the Nauo-Barngarla Native Title lands, protecting the many Aboriginal cultural sites including ﬁsh traps and campgrounds.
The peninsula is formed from massive dunes, some so ancient that they have hardened into the limestone of the park’s wind-sculpted cliffs. More recent dunes are still accumulating at Avoid Bay, Misery Bay and Gunyah Beach. Point Sir Isaac is composed of gneiss, a rock that has been hardened by volcanic heat and pressure deep within the earth’s crust. At the south-west end of the peninsula is the magniﬁcent Point Whidbey Wilderness Zone, comprising dense coastal heathland and mallee.
This park protects the rare dryland tea-tree, growing up to 10 metres tall in sheltered spots, with displays of creamy flowers in spring and summer. A dwarfed form is found at Point Avoid, where constant winds have pruned it into contorted shapes. In the sandy soils there is open scrub of coastal white mallee. The dune vegetation is mainly coast daisy bush and coastal bearded heath, and on the cliff tops there is cushion bush, sea box, sea heath and the gorgeous salmon correa. The park’s wetlands support fringing groves of swamp paperbarks and where soils are boggy there is samphire and smooth cutting-grass.
The park has sizeable populations of western grey kangaroos, bush rats and western pygmy-possums. Of 150 bird species, Latham’s snipe, diamond firetails, white-winged choughs, weebills, southern emu-wrens and western whipbirds are classified as rare. The park’s beaches provide nesting sites for pied oystercatchers, and hooded and red-capped plovers during summer.
Day-visit areas accessible by 2WD are at Point Avoid, Long Beach, Almonta Beach and Little Yangie Bay. Much of the national park is accessible to 4WD only (40-kph speed limit applies). Check tide times for 4WD beach tracks, and avoid driving above the high water mark. The enclosed sheltered waters of Little Yangie Bay are the perfect spot for paddling a canoe or a kayak.
Beach and bushwalking
At Yangie a gentle walk with interpretive signs, Kallara Trail (2 km loop), passes a range of plant communities. Yangie Island Trail (5 km return) leads to views of Yangie Island, while the Yangie Bay to Long Beach Trail (10 km) heads out between the vegetated dunes to Long Beach. Boarding House Bay Walk (23 km, 8 hours) from Sensation Beach is a day trek through pretty coastal heath, samphire ﬂats and mallee woodland to exposed west-facing cliffs, offshore reefs and ocean beaches. Black Rocks Trail (6 km, 2 hours), with views over Lake Damascus, leads south from near the Black Springs turn-off through dune vegetation to the wild coast of Avoid Bay.
Exciting ﬁshing locations include wave-washed rock platforms and exposed ocean beaches and sheltered bays. Head south to Gunyah, Almonta and Sensation beaches, or Mullalong Beach on the north coast. More sheltered waters are found at Seven Mile and in Yangie Bay. There is rock-ﬁshing at Flat Rock, Reef Point and Point Sir Isaac.
Templetonia Lookout, 10 kilometres west of the park entrance, has panoramic views while from Point Avoid there are spectacular coastal vistas. On the park’s western extremity Reef Point Lookout offers exhilarating scenery. From Sensation Beach a 2-kilometre walk leads to Sudden Jerk Lookout with views to Sudden Jerk Island. Yangie Lookout is a 20-minute climb for views over Yangie Bay and Marble Range.
Swimming and surfing
The southern beaches are hazardous in places but the north coast has sheltered bays suitable for swimming. Long Beach is popular and easily accessible, while Phantom Cove, The Pool and Point Burgess are protected coastal areas reached by 4WD. Southern Ocean swells provide experienced surfers with renowned breaks at Mullalong Beach in the west and Flat Rock and Almonta Beach in the south.
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