Discover the treasures of the Sapphire Coast in NSW

The NSW far south coast has plenty to offer - from whale watching and secret beaches to a gourmet cooking lesson and unique places to stay.

Two girls in the sea
  • Alexandra Carlton
  • December 2019

From whale watching and bird-filled nature walks to delicious meals and charming lighthouse accommodation, this jewel of the NSW far South Coast sparkles with appeal.

Stay at Green Cape Lightstation

Sitting high above the crashing waves of Disaster Bay on the headland, the Green Cape Lightstation is both eerily isolated and spectacularly beautiful. As well as the original 1883 lighthouse itself, the property contains three restored cottages filled with classical fixtures such as claw baths, wide wooden floorboards and open fireplaces (the cottages can be rented separately or together). There’s a good chance you’ll spot sea eagles, whales and seals from a distance, and meet Socks, the friendly wombat who roams the lighthouse grounds.

A lighthouse perched on the edge of a cliff.
You can actually stay overnight at the Cape Green Lighthouse!

Learn to cook at Eastwood’s Deli and Cooking School

Maybe it’s a skill she learned when she worked with countless amateur cooks on shows including MasterChef and My Kitchen Rules, but Eastwood’s Deli and Cooking School owner Kelly Eastwood is tirelessly patient and cheerful with her students, even the ones who have barely boiled a pot of water. Her lively classes in Bermagui always use the freshest local ingredients like juicy Eden mussels or lemons that her electrician mate brings in from his back garden and you’re encouraged to eat the lot at the end. Don’t fancy attending a cooking class? Pop in on a Saturday for one of their super-fresh donuts.

Two hands peeling a zucchini.
Pop into Eastwood Deli for a cooking class or freshly baked donut.

Camp by the sea at Mowarry Point

Even many locals don’t know about the remote, unpowered camp site at Mowarry Point, which sits on its own sheltered ledge just above a pristine beach of the same name, surrounded by eucalypts, myrtle and banksia inside the Ben Boyd National Park. You’ll have to bring everything you need with you, so it’s not for the fainthearted but the uninterrupted views of opal-blue ocean and, at the right time of year, pods of migrating whales make it worth the trek. The campsite is part of the Light To Light Walking Track.

A man walking alone in a forest.
The Light to Light walk takes you through pristine beaches and stunning flora and fauna.

Whalewatch at The Wharf Local

“I’ve seen whales come right up and have a scratch against the jetty posts,” says Emma Benton, who owns and runs the airy, flower-filled café and gallery The Wharf Local, which sits inside a former cargo shed right on Tathra Wharf. During spring, mother and baby humpback whales – and even the occasional whale shark – swim so close to where diners are eating their sourdough toast, or sipping their flat whites, you can almost touch them. “You see it all from the humpbacks; breaching, playing, feeding,” says Emma. “I never get tired of watching them.”

The interior of a cafe-cum-gallery.
Enjoy a bite to eat and a spot of whale watching at this rustic cafe-cum-gallery

See a cassowary at On the Perch

The southern cassowary bird doesn’t take kindly to being mated in captivity, with the female of the species known to kill the male with a swift kick from her razor-sharp claws. Which is why bird-mad childhood sweethearts Steve and Linda Sass, who run the conservation-focused aviary On The Perch, are so proud of their pair of juvenile cassowary siblings Gorge and Adelaide. The chicks were born at a sanctuary in South Australia and now have pride of place here, along with other endangered species such as the black-throated finch, also known as the Adani Bird.

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