Top Things to do in Coffs Harbour

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Looking for all the best things to do in Coffs Harbour, NSW? Coffs Harbour and its surrounding Coffs Coast region has long been a hugely popular place to visit due to its position as a fairly central “midway-point” between both Brisbane and Sydney. It’s far more than just a stopover destination however, as its coastal location coupled with a huge amount of adjacent greenery make for a highly viable holiday spot in its own right.

While it’s doubtlessly most famous nationally for its local regional icon the “Big Banana” at Coffs Harbour, the Coffs Coast as a whole has plenty more to offer that spans a mixture of wonderful, lush hinterland areas, incredible national parks, and picturesque scenic drives in addition to its signature gorgeous coastline. Add in a range of diving tours, camel rides, skydiving and more, and there's plenty to keep visitors of all ages occupied here. Browse our range of Coffs Harbour experiences below for more detailed information and to book online today.

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Top 10 Things to do in - Coffs Harbour and surrounds

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The Big Banana
#1
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Muttonbird Island Nature Reserve
#2
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Forest Sky Pier
#3
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Dolphin Marine Magic
#4
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Camel Ride
#5
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Butterfly House
#6
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Skydiving
#7
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Scuba Diving
#8
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Horse Riding
#9
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Clog Barn
#10

1. Visit The Big Banana

Location:351 Pacific Highway, Coffs Harbour

Easily the most well-known of Australia’s unusual series of big landmarks, the Big Banana has become synonymous with everything Coffs Harbour since its construction back in 1964. The sheer size of the landmark and its location on the highway has made it a rite of passage for travellers passing through the region. Originally built to draw roadside traffic to a local banana stall, the Big Banana complex has since expanded significantly to include a surrounding plantation, shop, cafe, and even a hybrid amusement/water park in the modern day.

2. Explore Muttonbird Island Nature Reserve

Location:Marina Drive, Coffs Harbour

Muttonbird Island Nature Reserve is a rookery of importance for bird life, which can be accessed via an interconnected jetty from the main wharf and is an essential visit in Coffs Harbour providing a gorgeous return for minimal effort, with views out to the Solitary Islands and beyond. Birdwatching is made all the more impressive by the wonderful surrounds that border each side of the wildlife-rich island which serves as home to a cavalcade of bird life. It’s one of the Coffs Coast region’s most accessible walks and although ascending to the top of the island requires walking up a fairly steep slope, the resulting lookout encompasses views of its signature colony of muttonbirds and their nesting spots.

3. Lookout from Forest Sky Pier

Location:Via Bruxner Park Road, Coffs Harbour

Part of the Orara East State Forest, the lookout point is just a short drive from central Coffs Harbour and offers an outstanding aspect overlooking the city of Coffs Harbour and extending outwards to the open ocean. The platform stands at an elevation of 310m above sea level and as such requires a fairly steep and winding drive to reach, however, the mixture of rainforest-meets-sea scenery makes the effort of driving here well worth the effort. Picnic tables and toilet amenities are also available here, so it’s a good idea to bring along a packed lunch and enjoy a bite to eat in the wonderful surrounds before taking a walk or heading back into town.

4. Visit Dolphin Marine Magic

Location:65 Orlando St, Coffs Harbour

A long-running attraction in the Coffs Harbour region, Dolphin Marine Magic has a focus on all-things-aquatic, offering the chance to get up close with a variety of some of nature’s cutest marine dwellers. Originally established in the 1970’s, the park offers a safe haven for marine animals that have been injured in the wild, and now houses dozens of animals including Little Penguins, sea lions, green sea turtles, and Bottlenose Dolphins. Two presentations are held at 10:00 am and 1:00 pm to introduce the dolphins and seals and highlight facts about their life cycles and habits.

5. Take a Camel Ride with Coffs Coast Camels

Location:Jordan Esplanade, Coffs Harbour, NSW

Local operator Coffs Coast Camels offer visitors the chance to hop on the back of one of these typically docile creatures for their choice of either a 30 minute ride (conducted hourly between 10am and 3pm), or pony up a little more for a magical 1 hour sunset ride in which to soak in a beautiful evening sky right on the water. Despite the relatively short time of the journey, you’ll no doubt form a bond with the camel you are assigned to as their generally laid-back natures makes them highly likeable creatures. Riders are given time to take photos with their camels and the surrounding scenery as well, which makes for a great keepsake during your time spent in the region.

6. Visit the Butterfly House

Location:5 Strouds Road, Coffs Harbour, NSW

Set within a subtropical rainforest setting, The Butter Fly House’s main highlight is a large walk-through enclosure which is teeming with the bright, fluttery creatures of all shapes and sizes, many of which will nonchalantly land themselves right on your head. The variety of colours and patterns on the butterflies is impressive, with no two of the creatures seemingly quite alike, and visitors here are able to witness all stages of the insects’ life cycles. Enthusiastic staff help provide a context on the butterfly’s habits and lifespan, making for an experience that’s not only visually impressive but educational as well.

7. Go Skydiving with Coffs Skydivers

Location:64 Aviation Drive, Coffs Harbour, NSW

Offering unmatched views of both greenery and golden beaches (assuming you can keep your eyes open), Coffs Harbour’s coastline forms a wonderful backdrop as the Pacific Ocean lingers in full-view of adrenaline-seekers trying their hand here. Local operator Coffs Skydivers have been taking adventure junkies on free-falls over the Coffs Coast region for over 20 years, and thus have plenty of experience and reassurance to go along with it. They’ve also got a knack for making first-time skydivers feel safe (an understandable concern for newbies) while going the extra mile to add a sense of personalization to the experience that many other skydiving operators lack.

8. Scuba Dive with Jetty Dive

Location:398 Harbour Drive, Coffs Harbour, NSW

The Coffs Harbour Jetty is an exceptionally well-conserved local landmark that juts out prominently from the mainland and is popular for photography fishing and simply strolling along, however it’s what lies below its waterline further off shore that will be of most interest to the aquatic-oriented visitor to Coffs Harbour. Jetty Dive – named after this iconic piece of architecture – offer a number of scuba trips and courses within the waters of the expansive Solitary Islands Marine Park; a 90-some kilometre long stretch that is home to some ideal environments for marine life.

9. Horse Riding with Valery Trails

Location:758 Valery Rd, Valery, NSW

Set on a spacious, 400-acre farm fringed by a national park which lies around 18km to the south of central Coffs Harbour, Valery Trails offer aspiring riders the choice of both 1 and 2 hour guided horse riding experiences. Conducted through a pleasant mixture of woodland and open meadows on a journey that crosses through the cover of Pine Creek Forest and the greenery of Bongil Bongil National Park, rides are tailored based on ability level to ensure newcomers and novices feel welcome.

10. Visit the Clog Barn

Location:215 Pacific Highway, Coffs Harbour, NSW

This unexpected little slice of Europe in Coffs Harbour serves as an interesting, multi-purpose attraction that’s well worth a stop. The Clog Barn is part accommodation, souvenir store, cafe and wonderful tourist attraction, however, its main highlight is its exquisitely crafted miniature replica of an authentic Dutch village, complete with windmills, saw mills and even trains that all demonstrate moving parts. It’s a definite labour of love created with pure passion and a knack for attention to detail, all wrapped up in surroundings of a wonderfully-made and manicured lawn and gardens.

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