Port Stephens With Kids: Top 5 Things To Do on A Weekend Away

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If you’re going to Port Stephens for a weekend with the family, here’s our list of fantastic family fun.

You see, there’s just too much to do at Port Stephens, where to start when just there for a couple of days?

Well, we boldly suggest that these are the best things to do, certainly our five favourites.

PS If you are looking for somewhere to stay in Port Stephens, click here to find a useful post which also has a longer list of activities.

port stephens with kids things to do

1. Dolphin Cruises at Port Stephens

More than 400 dolphins make Port Stephens their home and they are spotted on most cruises.

We had a wonderful trip out with Imagine Cruises, and saw a pod of dolphins which stayed with us for quite a while. The photo above was taken by Imagine, isn’t it fab?

My photo is below, not so spectacular, but it was wonderful to watch these fine finned fellows.

port stephens with kids things to do

port stephens with kids things to do

Spending time in the bow net was a huge hit with the girls.

dolphins port stephens with kids things to do

They also went out in the boom net, very brave girls as it was a wee bit chilly. How exciting!

port stephens with kids things to do

The catamaran was very spacious, and tea and coffee with biscuits was available throughout the cruise. The crew were helpful, knowledgeable too, and safety conscious.

 

Imagine Cruises offers dolphin cruises all year round, dolphins swims, snorkelling, marine discovery, dinner cruises and more. Whale watching is done from May – November.

The cruises leave from the lovely marina at Nelson Bay.

Read all about Imagine Cruises on their website here

 

imagine cruises port stephens with kids things to do

I enjoyed the bow net too!

 

 

camels port stephens with kids things to do

2. Camel Riding On The Beach

Worimi Conservation Lands are the largest area of sand dunes in the southern hemisphere. The dunes are also known as Stockton Bight Sand Dunes.

At the north end is Birubi Beach and camel tours set off from here.

Now I’ve been on a camel before so wasn’t scared, but the girls were nervous. When the camel stands up you do need to hold on tight.

camels port stephens with kids things to do

Here’s our merry crew aboard the ships of the desert, who don’t look too impressed at all.

camels port stephens with kids things to do

We really enjoyed spending some time with the camels, they were very calm and patient.

camels port stephens with kids things to do

A camel chewing the cud, or maybe having a chat to its mates.

Ours was just a 20 minute ride, far too short, we would have loved to wander off for a much longer trek into the dunes. These are available so we’ll have to do that next time.

At $30 for adults and $25 for children, the 20 minute ride is not cheap, but a very unusual and interesting experience for riders. Call or SMS ahead to check what is available on the day you want to ride..

Oakfield Ranch Camel Rides

Birubi Point Public Carpark, James Paterson St, Anna Bay NSW 2316
Phone: 0429 664 172

Oakfield ranch website is here

camels port stephens with kids things to do

Camels on the beach, we took this photo the next day

 

port stephens with kids things to do sand boarding

Wheeeee! Downhill on a board is fast and furious and good fun

3. Sandboarding in The Dunes

From the same large car park at Birubi, you can easily join a trip into the dunes. We went with 4WD Tours R Us who run all sorts of tours and trips. We did a simple sandboarding tour.

A small 4WD bus dropped us off to the base camp not too far into the dunes.

port stephens with kids things to do sand boarding

This is base camp where we met the instructor and were given our instructions

port stephens with kids things to do sand boarding

It looks so remote doesn’t it? But it’s just a short drive into the dunes

port stephens with kids things to do sand boarding

Two young ladies about to set off along the ridge of the sand dune to pick a spot to whizz down

port stephens with kids things to do sand boarding

The instructor was very helpful, on these steep dunes all guests need to sit on the boards as they slide

port stephens with kids things to do sand boarding

It all reminded me of a ski slope area… except there are no lifts to get back up the slope. Sand boarding is a great workout as it’s a slog to climb back up the dunes

 

4WD Tours R Us can be found at the Lower Car Park, James Patterson Street, Anna Bay.

You can book tours online at the website here.

Phone: 02 4981 9352

 

port stephens with kids things to do sand boarding

We did try a bit of stand up sand boarding on a less steep area. The girls are so graceful… we mums not so much

 

 

port stephens with kids things to do birubi crest cafe

 

4. Swims, Walks and Eats at Birubi Beach

Well there are HEAPS of great places to swim and eat at Port Stephens, but we enjoyed Birubi Beach the most. There’s a terrific cafe with the most jaw-droppingly sweeping views.

port stephens with kids things to do birubi crest cafe

Crest Cafe is light and airy with a long menu full of healthy choices

port stephens with kids things to do birubi crest cafe

Having breakfast with this view was divine

Crest Birubi Beach is found at the Birubi Point Surf Life Saving Club at Anna Bay. It is open for from 8am for breakfast and lunch seven days a week. No bookings are taken. We went both Saturday and Sunday, it was much busier on the Sunday, of course.

Crest Birubi beach website is here.

port stephens with kids things to do birubi crest cafe

Excellent nosh to set you up for a day of activity and movement!

 

port stephens with kids things to do birubi crest cafe

The views, the views! Hiking up Tomaree Head rewards your efforts. This is the ocean view north to Hawks Nest and Broughton Island

5. Hiking Up Tomaree Head

Tomaree Head Summit Walk is not long, but it is certainly steep. The official difficulty rating is medium. The walk is only 1km in length, but takes about 30 minutes due to the steep climb. The summi is 161 metres high.

port stephens with kids things to do climb tomaree head

The girls were complaining and puffing and panting right from the start. Who knows why cos they are as fit as fleas

port stephens with kids things to do climb tomaree head

There are lots of steps as well as the paths

port stephens with kids things to do climb tomaree head

This is the view south across Zenith Beach, Wreck Beach, Box Beach and to Fingal Spit.

port stephens with kids things to do climb tomaree head

Some serious selfie action… this was after the complaining had ceased

port stephens with kids things to do climb tomaree head

Yes girls, it is certainly easier on the way down

Tomaree Head Summit Walk

Start at the Zenith Beach car park and follow the well signed track.  Afterwards enjoy a cooling dip at Zenith Beach, or drive down to Shoal Bay as we did.

Read more at the NPWS website here.

 

You might also like to check out our post on 15 Things To Do in Port Stephens With Kids and Where To Stay here.

Our weekend away in Port Stephens was active and adventurous, with good food and some relaxation when we got home to our holiday park (read about The Retreat Port Stephens here).

All highly recommended.

Next time we visit Port Stephens, I’d love to take longer camel trip and dolphin cruise. I feel we’ve had a great taste of what to do, now we need to book in for a week and explore more… and swim more…. and relax more too.

Have you visited Port Stephens?

What did you enjoy doing there?

Happy holidays

 

Disclaimer: We were guests of the tour operators and are grateful for their hospitality. All opinions are our own.

 

 

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Posted on: December 9, 2017

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