It’s starting to feel a bit like the unofficial mantra of this department, but it’s true – if you want to score the best spots, with the thinnest crowds, you’ve just got to be prepared to drive that little bit further than the next bloke.
If you’re craving a weekend of beachside revelry north of Sydney, you could pull in at Blacksmiths or Stockton and get your fill. Or, if you value your solitude that is, push on that little bit further up the coast to Mungo Brush.
Perched midway between Port Stephens and Seal Rocks, the diminutive beachside hideout is nestled within the expansive Myall Lakes National Park.
Visitors claim quick and easy access to the calm waters of the Myall Lakes system, as well as the open surf beach on the campground’s eastern front. It’s one of those spots where you get to have your cake and eat it too.
If the family at any point tires of swimming, fishing and driving on the magnificent Mungo Beach, it’s time to bust out the canoe, kayak or tinnie and explore the massive lake system just inland of your camp.
STUFF TO DO
4WDING: The sweeping beach run curving southwest of Big Gibber headland along Mungo Beach offers ample opportunity to air down the tyres and explore the coastline up close. Permits are required before hitting the sand, they’re available online and from a number of local outlets.
THE MYALL LAKES: Hitting the calm waters of the lake system in a canoe or kayak is a delight when the weather is cooperating. There’s some huge flathead in these waters too, so bring a light casting setup and a few packs of soft plastics if you’d fancy a feed of fresh fried flatty tails.
LOCATION: 250km north of Sydney, Mungo Brush can be reached in just under three hours drive from town on a good run. Access is via the Pacific Highway, John Renshaw Drive and Mungo Brush Road.
CAMPING: The campground is fitted out with barbeques, picnic tables, toilets and a boat ramp, however campers must carry in their own fresh water. Fees of $12 per adult per night apply and bookings can be made online or by phoning 13000 72757.
FUEL is available on the Pacific Highway, at Newcastle, Port Stephens and Bulahdelah.
MORE INFO is available at www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au