Travel to Port Macquarie in Australia. Port Macquarie is a large Australian town on the New South Wales Mid North Coast, approximately 400 km north of Sydney.Port Macquarie is a coastal town located on the New South Wales Mid North Coast, about 390km north of Sydney and 570km south of Brisbane. The traditional aboriginal custodians of the land are the Bripai people who inhabited the region for thousands of years prior to European colonisation. The first European arrival was John Oxley, who named the location after the Governor of New South Wales, Lachlan Macquarie. In 1821 Port Macquarie became a penal settlement, replacing Newcastle as the destination for convicts who had committed secondary crimes in New South Wales.Today Port Macquarie has become a popular retirement and tourist destination, with extensive beaches and waterways, and numerous fine cafes and restaurants to dine in.QANTAS provides up to three flights per day from Kingsford Smith International Airport, on Dash 8 (or similar Turboprop driven) aircraft. The flight to or from Sydney takes about an hour.Virgin Blue operates a low cost service, several flights daily, to and from both Sydney and Brisbane.Bookings for both can be handled online or at most Qantas offices. During the middle of the year and in holiday times, flights into and out of Port Macquarie are quite easy to get seats on, however, early bookings are highly recommended for flights in school holidays, especially the summer break.Flights to other regional or capital cities are not currently available directly from Port Macquarie, but connecting flights are very easy to get in Sydney.Both Greyhound and Premier Motor Service run multiple daily bus services to and from Port Macquarie to and from Sydney and Brisbane. Sydney buses arrive and depart Central Railway Station in Central Sydney and take approximately 8 h to travel between Port Macquarie and Sydney. Brisbane buses depart and arrive at the Roma St Transit Centre in Central Brisbane and take approximately 10 h to cover the distance. In Port Macquarie, all buses drop off at the Port Macquarie Coach Station on the southern side of the Central Business District (CBD). The main shopping area is located withing easy walking distance from this station, and some hostels, hotels and a caravan park are located within a distance that you could walk if have not too much luggage. Otherwise, the coach station has a public phone to call a taxi, or hotel for pick up, but most hotel owners and taxi drivers know when the buses arrive and will be waiting for you anyway.Port Macquarie does not have a railway station, but approximately 20 min west of Port Macquarie is Wauchope, which is serviced by the North Coast Railway Line. Services to Wauchope originate at Central Station in Sydney and take around 7 h. Wauchope is serviced by three trains a day from Sydney. One train terminates at Grafton, another terminates at Casino, and a third continues to Brisbane.CountryLink Rail Services arriving or departing during the day and the early afternoon are connected to Port Macqaurie by bus, which must be booked at the same time as booking your rail ticket. (This bus drops off at Port Macquarie Coach Station). Services departing or arriving early in the morning or late at night are more of a challenge, as this connection is not availble, and no public transport services Wauchope at this time. Then, you have to stay in Wauchope (some cheap hotels are located west of the station, and some motor inns are located some way farther west as well) or get a taxi back to Port Macqaurie, which can be extremely expensive. For this reason, arrival by rail at these times is not recommended.Port Macquarie is the eastern start point for the Oxley Highway which runs from there westwards through Wauchope to join up with the New England highway miles inland When travelling from the south (Sydney)via the Pacific Highway you need to take the exit ramp for Wauchope/Walcha/Port Macquarie on the left hand side of the road. Take this exit, turn RIGHT at the large roundabout (called “The Doughnut” by locals), and follow this road (Oxley HWY) into all the way into central Port Macquarie where it terminates. At the doughnut there is a new bypass road direct into the city and some GPS systems will still try to take you on the old road (to the left just past McDonalds). Dont be confused, just go straight thrugh all roundabouts and you will get to the city.When travelling from the north you will enter an 80 km/h zone and cross the Hastings River over a bridge signposted as Dennis Bridge. After crossing the bridge, the exit is located immediately to the left. Follow this road (Hastings River Drive) all the way into town.Note that an alternative route from the south is available which is quite scenic. When travelling from Sydney, take the highway exit ramp on the left to the small town just off the highway called Kew. In the center of Kew turn right at the roundabout and follow this road for about 10 minutes until you are near Laurieton. You will see a sign pointing left saying “Port Macquarie”. Follow this road through North haven and on through Bonny Hills and Lake Cathie into Port Macquarie.This route takes aboute 45 min to get to Port Macquarie, but it is worth it for the scenery including North Brother Mountain (well worth a 5km detour for the view) , Middle Rock Beach and The Christmas Bell Plains.Unfortunately, Port Macquarie does not have a reliable or useful public transport system which can make getting around difficult. While buses may run to most places, they often run at odd times, and terminate early in the day. The most useful bus route is the Shelly Beach – Town Centre route, which seems to run quite regularly, and is the best way of those without a car getting to the beaches and lighthouse. Other than this, don’t bother with the public transport, it isn’t worth the aggravation.Fortunately, Port Macquarie has a great many places to walk to from the Town Centre. From here you can quite easily walk to many beaches and some attractions. Because it has such a compact CBD, you won’t have to walk far to get to restaurants, shops and pubs if you stay in town, or nearby.Port Macquarie has an interesting history. Being the first English convict settlement outside of Sydney and the Hunter it has a few historical sites and museums.Port Macquarie is a popular tourist and retirement destination, with many spectacular beaches and holiday activities. Outside of the beaches and historic attractions Port Macquarie has many high quality restaurants and cafes well worth checking out.The best place to start the walk is on the south side of Gordon St just west of the bridge. Walk along the path between the creek and the car yard and on your right you will see a sign board mounted on a post with a map of the walk. There are several more of these maps on display round the walk so you have no fear of getting lost. There are also numerous signs along the trail giving information about the park and it’s inhabitants.Walk down the stairs and onto the boardwalk. You notice how quiet it is now with all the traffic noise out of hearing. You are walking through mangroves, and as you go up the hill you enter schlerophyll forest. Shortly you see stairs on the right which lead up to Table St and the Girl Guides and Scout halls. Carry on a bit further and a path leads off to the left to a bird hide. It’s a bit overgrown now and you can’t see much of the water.Continue on to the next track on the left which leads over a floating foot bridge which will take you across the sedge land and back to your starting place. This is the short version of the walk. For now, ignore this turn off and carry on and you soon emerge into the eucalyptus grove. This is a nice well cared for park with many large eucalyptus trees, mainly blackbutt and scribbly gum. You are now on a concrete path and walking in the shade of these trees.At the end of the path turn left over another floating bridge and onto the boardwalk which leads you through a paper bark grove. At the end of this path you can turn right to the Wyandra Cresc exit but it’s best to turn left now and head back towards town.You soon see a path entering from the left. This is the end of the path that started at the first floating bridge. On your left you can see the sedge land. Carry on a bit further and you see another exit to Wyandra Cresc. Now you are walking through wetland, thank heavens for the boardwalk which is keeping your feet dry. Go up the hill and down the stairs and you are in wetland again.The next exit on the right follows the creek and doubles back to enter the historical cemetery, but it’s best if you carry on over the bridge. As you loop round to the left you can see the historical cemetery up the hill on your right. Go on a bit further and you see set of stairs on your right which lead up to the historical cemetery. If you keep going you soon see the Mangrove Walk on the left. Take this turn and go along to the second bird hide on the left. This gives a very good view of the water.Continue on the walk now and emerge in the arboretum. This is a park containing many native trees and all are labelled. You will notice you can now hear the traffic again. Over in the north east corner of the arboretum is a toilet block and behind that is a large display showing a map of the park and giving details of the flora and fauna therein. You can go on up to the historical cemetery from here. This is a nice peaceful little park containing the remains of the early settlers. You also get a good view of the main business area of the town.There isn’t really anything you can get in Port Macquarie that you can’t get anywhere else.Central Port Macquarie has plenty of high quality mid range cafes and most days you can just turn up and get a table. Here are some of the best:There are so many mid range places in Port Macquarie that serve food of a high range standard, that it’s almost not worth the extra effort. If you must eat at a high range place, here are a couple:By far the regions premier seafood restaurant, placed over the Hastings River. Has live crabs and lobsters along with fresh local produce. Fish feeding is possible from their balcony seats and private jetty.The hidden restaurant, that food lovers should not miss. Owner and Chef Lindsay Schwab has one many awards and travelled to many countries and taken a small piece of everyone and combined them into his culinary skills. Using the freshest local produce when he can he creates flavours, textures and dining delights to die for. Licenced premises, consistent quality food and service.Port Macquarie is a great place for beachside relaxation, or a family holiday, but a haven for nightlife, it is not. Compared to most other towns of similar size along the east coast of Australia, the pubs and clubs in Port Macquarie are quite substandard. Below are some of the better ones.On Friday and Saturday nights, avoid the main street as there are often brawls. Mostly this occurs as people are making their way from the Macquarie Hotel to Roxy’s. You’ll often see large groups of 18-25 year-olds being hostile towards random passers-by. Other places to avoid late at night are the Town Green, and the area surrounding the McDonald’s carpark (near Settlement City.)Port Macquarie has an excellent choice of motels, hotels, resorts, guest houses, traditional B&Bs, backpacker hostels and apartments.
Airport: PQQ Port Macquarie Airport Cities in Australia