With the lull in agricultural work continuing (come on blueberries – grow!) I could no longer resist taking my itchy feet off on a little adventure! Although spending the day debating between whether to visit the beach or stay by the pool can really only be described as living the dream, the lack of work and routine has started to take its toll, so I became a little desperate for a change of scenery to relax and recharge.
Only a two-hour journey north from Coffs Harbour, I chose Yamba for my getaway. Not traditionally one of the main stops along the stereotypical backpacker route on the East Coast, and definitely not the place to visit for any wild party nights; Yamba is a small, quiet town which is perfect for a relaxing break.
Although this town is known for its great surf, I somehow managed to catch a cold in the 30+ heat, and seeing as my balance is somewhat challenged on the best of days, it didn’t seem like the right time to make an attempt at this…!
I booked two nights at the YHA Yamba which was conveniently located right in the centre of town. I had a great stay at this hostel, purely because for some reason I was given a room with a private bathroom – after two months of not so prestigious hostel life sharing a bathroom with god knows how many people, it’s amazing how much you appreciate small things in life like this!! With indoor and outdoor social areas, and a decent bar downstairs, there’s definitely plenty of space to relax and socialise, and there are activities running daily which is always fun as a single traveller. “Shanes famous tour” was recommended as a must do activity however, it wasn’t said that this doesn’t run every day… so maybe next time…
With one full day to explore the area, I set off bright and early to explore before the heat became too much to handle. The hostel is only a short 10-minute walk down to the bay, and from here you can easily join the Yamba coastal walk. I started close to Hickey Island, which on one side has the marina area full of yachts, and on the other sees Whiting Beach – a long, narrow beach where the water was so calm and inviting I almost abandoned my walk to take a morning swim before it had even really begun.
From here, I continued to walk along the break wall, which runs alongside the much larger Turners beach, where you can definitely start to see why the area is so popular for surfing. With just a small number of people walking, this is a beautifully peaceful area to stroll along, and I was lucky enough to stop halfway to watch a large group of Dolphins playing in the ocean – morning walks don’t get much more perfect than this!
After finally tearing myself away from the Dolphins, I followed the path up to the lighthouse on the top of the hill, where I stopped to enjoy a beautiful view of the beaches down below.
Wandering down the hillside took me to Yamba beach. This was very slightly busier, but I still barely crossed paths with anyone whilst strolling through the water to cool off. This beach also has an ocean pool, similar to the many I saw back in Sydney.
Up above Yamba beach sit some very impressive houses, I must say what a view!
My final beach stop of the day was Pippi beach – which was by far my favourite. This appears to stretch endlessly, with such bright blue water photos could never quite do this justice. Another one of those moments of “This is Australia!“. After frolicking around for a while as the only person on the beach, in typical unpredictable Aussie weather style a storm rolled in, so it was time to call it a day!
As my last night rolled in so quickly, I ventured off with two new acquaintances to watch the sunset over the harbour. As recommended by Shane at the hostel, we also took another stroll to the breakwall, and spent as long as we could watching the dolphins play before darkness rolled in *and the mosquitos became too much to bare!!*
Feeling ready to get back and tackle the remaining few weeks of blueberries, I was waved off by some kangaroos – how charming! Yamba may just be a small stop off on the East Coast, but it has definitely left me excited to get on the move again and see the exciting places that lie ahead…
With kindest regards,