This lovely quiet holiday destination can be found on the northern shore of Port Stephens. Hawks Nest has the best of both worlds with a tranquil river and the stunning ocean front. The river leads to the lush forests and lagoons of nearby Myall Lakes National Park. Hawks Nest is ideally known for its scrumptous seafood and timber industry. The cosy town was originally named after a large tree, a favourite nesting place of hawks. This tree was used as a navigational marker for the town by the Worimi Aborigines prior to white settlement.
Some of the many activities in the area can be found on or in close proximity of the water. These include such things as boating, leisurely swimming, surfing, wind surfing, waterskiing, diving, fishing and canoeing. If you just want to relax then how about laying a towel on the beach and digging in to a good book or magazine. The National Parks close by are also host to many fun holiday activities such as bushwalking, bird watching, camping and picnicking.
You can also get off foot and into a 4WD with tracks offered both north and south of town. A short drive to the neighboring town on Tea Gardens can result in boat and houseboats for hire. You can also enjoy a trip on the passenger ferry which departs regularly for Nelson Bay.
Fishing is a huge part of the attraction to Hawks Nest. You can go about this many ways including river, lake or deep-sea fishing off a boat. Cruises also offer a fantastic dolphin-watch experience for all to enjoy!
For all you need to know about attractions, activities, tours, cruises, accommodation and bookings, in Hawks Nest go to the Visitors Centre in the middle of town. They also offer tourist maps, tide charts and fishing guides.
There’s a fantastic Koala colony located just up the road which gives you the opportunity to get up close and personal with Australia’s native animal. You may also be able to see them along Mungo Brush Rd and in the National Park.
It is well worth your while to walk a couple of kilometers along the spit which separates Hawks Nest from Yacaaba Head. When you come to the base of the promontory a sign stands adjacent to a developed path that takes you along the Yacaaba Head Walk. It takes you across the pebbly southern side of Yacaaba Head where views across the mouth of the bay to the southern peninsula of Port Stephens are magnificent. Just offshore you can see dolphins that frequent the area on a daily basis. This is known as Dolphin Hole. The signs for the walk to Yacaaba Head describe it as "difficult" which is an understatement. Firstly is a gradual path that takes you through beautiful scrub and bush to a mid-level viewpoint which provides excellent views of Hawks Nest and Tea Gardens. Then the walk becomes extremely steep, however it’s worth it for the views you will receive at the end of it at the apex where the views of Hawks Nest are truly breathtaking.
You can expect sunny, warm days in the summer around 23 degrees Celsius and reaching up to 30. And during the winter Forster has a climate between 10 and 18 degrees Celsius depending on the month.