Short Point Beach Merimbula
Short Point Beach
Merimbula

The Sapphire Coast offers everything that beach holiday dreams are made of. Sandy beaches stretched along a ruggedly beautiful coastline, spectacular wilderness, coastal lakes and some of the best whale watching in the country.

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Places to stay

Merimbula is perched in the middle of the picturesque Sapphire Coast, and is the gateway to the many lakes and beaches of the region as well as charming seaside towns and national parks stretching from Bermagui and Tathra in the north, to Eden and the Victorian border in the south. 

There are few resorts or hotels on this stretch of coast, but motels, holiday apartments and Airbnbs are plentiful. Whether you’re embarking on a solo escape or taking the entire family for a classic beach holiday, you’re sure to find accommodation perfect for your needs in this part of New South Wales. 

If you’re planning an outdoor escape, why not pitch a tent or rent a cabin at one of the family holiday parks in each of the seaside towns – such as Merimbula’s NRMA Beach Holiday Resort or Reflections Holiday Park in Bermagui.

Alternatively, keep the creature comforts of home with an Airbnb or self-contained apartment — or if a bit of luxury and romance is what brings you to these shores, you can’t go past Coast Resort Merimbula.

Things to do

Spend your day on the sand or take a dip in Bermagui’s famous Blue PoolOpens external site in a new window, or in crystal-clear water at one of dozens of beaches. Head out on a day of fishing or rent a kayak and explore the Kiah River or one of Merimbula’s famous coastal lakes – Merimbula Lake to the south or Back Lake to the north.

Learn to scuba dive and explore ocean caves with sea dragons and manta rays at Dive EdenOpens external site in a new window or make a day of it and head two hours north to Narooma, where Underwater SafarisOpens external site can take you swimming or scuba diving with playful fur seals, the puppies of the sea.

If you’re looking for fresh forest air, drive south and discover the enormous Ben Boyd National Park with short walking tracks like the 1km Pinnacles Loop Walking Track only 15 minutes' drive from Merimbula, or longer day trails. For a real challenge, the 31km Light to Light Walk will take you from the historic Ben Boyd Tower to Green Cape Light station over three days. Be sure to check the National Parks alerts and guidelines Opens external site in a new windowbefore you begin. 

Visit Bermagui and take the 1.5km path to view the striking landmark of Horsehead Rock, thought to be one of the oldest rocks in New South Wales and over 500 million years old. For an experience that brings you closer to the history of the land, follow the Bundian Way Story Trail in Eden, a 1.8km self-guided walk through native bushland, learning indigenous stories along the way.

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Where to go

Merimbula is the perfect starting point for your holiday and the best place to fly into, but the entire Sapphire Coast region is well worth exploring. Whether it’s on land or sea, you’ll find many corners to discover along this stunning stretch of coast. 

Take a drive north to the towns of Bermagui, Tathra or Pambula or south to Eden and the Ben Boyd National Park. If you’re visiting in spring, then pack your binoculars because the whale-watching here is some of the best in Australia, with tours and vantage points stretched all along the Sapphire Coast. 

Meet the Makers - Sapphire Coast Meet the Makers, Sapphire Coast
Find out moreOpens external site in a new window Captain Sponges Oyster Farm

Whale watching

The Sapphire Coast is one of Australia’s best whale-watching destinations, especially in the spring months when majestic humpback whales pass with calves in tow on their migration south towards Antarctica.

Boat tours depart from towns including Merimbula, Bermagui, Pambula or Tathra. A visit to Eden is a particularly good choice to celebrate all things whale migration, with several operators taking whale watching boat tours daily as well as the Eden Killer Whale TrailOpens external site in a new window and Killer Whale MuseumOpens external site in a new window.

If you’d prefer to keep your feet firmly on dry land, head to the Tathra cliffs or one of the many seaside lookouts for a picnic or walk with a good chance of spotting the gentle giants from land. 

Find out moreOpens external site in a new window
Discover local delicaciesOpens external site in a new window Humpback whale Merimbula

Food and drink

If you’re looking for fresh seafood, locally produced cheese and fresh farm greens, this is the region for you. 

In Pambula you’ll realise all your oyster dreams with Broadwater Oysters at Pambula LakeOpens external site in a new window, Wheeler’s Oyster FarmOpens external site in a new window and Captain Sponges Magical Oyster ToursOpens external site in a new window all in and around town — with the latter two offering informative tours before inviting you to tuck into freshly-shucked samples. 

For a seafood treat in Merimbula, stock up on the catch of the day with fish and chips at Fishpen Takeaway on Marine Parade. If cheese is what tempts your tastebuds, visit the iconic Bega Cheese or Eden SmokehouseOpens external site in a new window, each around a thirty-minute drive from Merimbula. 

Discover local delicaciesOpens external site in a new window
Car hire information Bournda National Park

Getting around

From the airport: Merimbula Airport is located 2km from the city centre and a taxi rank is available at the airport terminal, which is a convenient choice if you're staying in Merimbula.

Even if you’re staying close by, you’re going to want to explore the national parks and coastal towns of the region, so the best plan is to hire a car.

In and around the city: With a car, you will reach Tathra, Pambula and Eden all within a 30-minute drive, or Bermagui or Ben Boyd National Park within an hour.

To get around town and travel between coastal towns without a car, FlexibusOpens external site in a new window and Sapphire Coast BuslinesOpens external site in a new window also service the region but be sure to check their websites for schedules and further details.  

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Important information

Disclaimer: ^ Qantas Frequent Flyer members will earn 3 Qantas Points per A$1 value unless otherwise specified, for hotel stays booked through qantas.com/hotels, except Classic Hotel Rewards and Airbnb bookings. Points Club members will earn 25% more Qantas Points, and Points Club Plus members will earn 50% more Qantas Points. Qantas Points will be credited to your account at least 8 weeks after check-out. Qantas Points may be earned by the member in whose name the booking is made. Members will not be able to earn points on additional charges paid to the accommodation provider for extras (including cots, breakfasts and other incidentals) on check-in or check-out (as applicable).  

Disclaimer: ++ Status Credits are earned on eligible Qantas, Jetstar, oneworld® member and oneworld connect® airlines only - see the Airline Earning Tables and Qantas Frequent Flyer program Terms and Conditions for details. Status Credits may not be earned on some fare types and booking classes. 

Disclaimer:  Meals, beverages, entertainment offerings vary between flight times.

Disclaimer: + The number of destinations is correct as at 4 July 2022, but is subject to change. Before booking and departure, ensure you check the latest travel requirements, which may include mandatory health declarations, vaccinations, COVID-19 tests, use of face masks, entry permits, pre-approval and quarantine (possibly at your own expense), or you could be denied entry.

Disclaimer: # You must be a member of the Qantas Frequent Flyer program to earn and redeem Qantas Points. A joining fee may apply. Membership and Qantas Points are subject to the Qantas Frequent Flyer program terms and conditions.