Sawtell

Sawtell is a quaint, sunny, seaside town famous for its blue skies. While you’re visiting, take a stroll down First Ave. amongst the magnificent Moreton Bay fig trees or hop just one street over for a swim at Sawtell Main Beach. 

First Avenue is the iconic main street- full of cafes, restaurants & locally owned boutiques. If you’re searching for groceries, you don’t even have to leave the village as we have a boutique butcher & a local fruit & veg shop. If you’re in the mood for a movie, grab a seat at the Sawtell Cinema, a gorgeous art deco cinema that was built in 1941 and a refurbishment in the mid-2010s.

Walking tracks and roads make it easy to go up Boambee and Bonville (Sawtell) Headlands for a spot of whale watching (May to November) or just for the outstanding views.

On the southern side of Sawtell Headland is the Sawtell Memorial Rock Pool, providing swimmers with a protected place to do their laps.

Here are some things to do, places to eat & where to shop while you’re staying in the lovely seaside village of Sawtell.

Breakfast & Lunch

Sawtell is full of breakfast & brunch options. Simply walk down the street and you’ll find people dining outside and sipping on freshly brewed coffee. Here are some tips about our favourite go-to’s:

  • Split CafeOpen-spaced cafe & patio seating with classic breakfast dishes & great coffee.
  • The Kiosk Overlooking Main Beach at the Surf Lifesaving Club with breathtaking views and breeze.
  • French Basket – The newest cafe to hit Sawtell, this boulangerie serves freshly baked French goods and delicious coffee.
  • Hearthfire Bakery – Locals can’t walk by without stopping to get a pie or quiche. This long-standing favourite is a must-do!
  • The Hilltop Store – Journey just a few blocks up the hill and dine on some delicious breakfast & lunch items including Eggs Benedict with Burnt Butter Sauce or Wagyu Beef Burgers. 

(Is anyone else getting hungry yet?)

Dinner & Drinks

We highly recommend making a booking, even on slower nights. As a small town full of foodies, local restaurants are often bustling. Our favourite spots include:

  • The Sawtell Hotel – The local watering hole! This pub is the go-to for locals. With live music, good food, and cold beer – you won’t be disappointed. 
  • The Toormina Hotel – If you’re travelling with a family, we recommend visiting the Toormina Hotel which is just a short 5-minute drive from Sawtell. 
  • The Sawtell RSL – With classic pub food & great daily specials, make sure to pop into The Sawtell RSL while you’re in town.
  • The Spare Room – Cocktails made to perfection & gourmet pizzas
  • 63 First Ave. – Yes, it’s made the list again! This time for its selection of craft beer, wine & tapas.
  • Kimono – When visiting a coastline with such fresh seafood, Kimono Japanese is the perfect place to try some sushi or other classics like Ramen and Sake.
  • Indian Cottage – Sometimes you just need a curry! Indian Cottage has a range of insanely delicious curries and Indian classics. This restaurant also delivers in the evenings if you feel like relaxing from your holiday home.
  • The Sawtell Cinema – The perfect before or after dinner date! This stunning theatre plays new & classic movies.

Things To Do

Sawtell is full of things to do. So whether you’re a shopper or a surfer, here are some of our top suggestions for your perfect holiday:

Important Things To Know

  • Most restaurants are closed on Mondays. Make sure to double-check the opening hours of the cafe or restaurant you’ve been eyeing down.
  • Restaurants are often busy from Thursday – Saturday evenings. We recommend making a booking in advance. 
  • Sawtell is very bicycle-friendly!

Getting There

  • Sawtell is just a 15-minute drive from the Coffs Harbour Airport.
  • Driving to Sawtell from:
    • Brisbane to Sawtell – 4.5 hours
    • Gold Coast to Sawtell – 3.5 hours
    • Byron Bay to Sawtell – 2 hours, 45 minutes
    • Sydney to Sawtell – 5.5 hours
  • Great for a long weekend getaway or a long-term stay where you’ll get to know the locals. Once you’re here, you’ll want to stay longer than you expected!

Adventure-lovers can have a full schedule (if they want!) while visiting the region. Check out the Coffs Harbour page for a full list of regional tours & activities.

 

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Big Banana Fun Park

A Day at the Big Banana

The Big Banana is the biggest theme park between Sydney and the Gold Coast, and has got something to cater for all ages. The park’s many rides & attractions will leave you wanting to come back for more amazing experiences and family time. So, pack the kids in the car and get ready for a full day of fun and adrenaline boosting activities. 

 

Here are the activities & attractions you can find at the Big Banana Fun Park:

Laser Tag At The Big Banana

Strap on your battlesuit vest & phaser before you head into the battleground where you zap your enemies while looking out for the interactive hidden targets around the field. This activity will get you on your toes and is sure to bring out the ninja within you.

Have you ever tried a 4D Ride Simulator? The XD Theater at the park has some great 4D ride films, and offers a multi-sensory and immersive experience letting you truly live the film.

Put on your swimmers and be ready to get splashed! This water park features 4 thrilling slides in the world class where you can reach speeds of up to 60km/h. These slides are definitely not for the faint-hearted, but the adrenaline junkie will be sliding again and again and again…

Water Park In Coffs Harbour

This Family Entertainment Centre features an amazing range of ticket redemption gaming machines. All the games within the Fun Zone are based on skills, which means you can collect more tickets if you’re really good at them! The tickets can then be redeemed at the Prize Hub or the Gift Shop.

Ice Skating Rink In Coffs

The ice rink is the perfect place to cool down on those hot summer days, or you can bring some hot chocolate and bring “Christmas in July” to the next level!

Ah, the famous toboggan ride of Coffs Harbour! The track is over half a kilometer long, and offers a great view from the top. Let your excitement excel as you rush down the track- but don’t forget to hold on when you are cutting the corners!

Get the history behind the bananas on the Coffs Coast from the discovery of them and through to today. This new theatre experience lets you sit back and watch while the projector presents images and film onto a scrim screen with an object stage background. Following the film screening is a short plantation walk where the visitors are allowed into the re-established packing shed to watch a short film of the banana plantation.

Banana Plantation In Coffs Harbour

Gather your mates and head to the mini-golf course for a friendly round of mini-golf! The Big Banana Fun Park has a total of 36 holes, which will leave you entertained for days.

For some more educational entertainment, make sure to step into the world of pythons, venomous snakes, turtles, lizards. You can even meet a saltwater crocodile in this part of the Big Banana!

Saltwater Crocodile In Coffs Harbour

The indoor, 83m long “Racer” is the biggest slide in the country with a height of 17.5 meter. The slide has also got an interactive scoring system which will manage to draw out your most  competitive side when you race against your friends in one of the 6 lanes.

Banana Split And Milkshakes

When at the Big Banana, why not indulge in all banana-themed sweets? Choose between banana split, banana smoothie, banana pancakes or just a simple chocolate coated banana. The Cafe & Ice Creamery will also have plenty of ice creams and coffee that you can pair it with- it’s a winner for sure! 

With candy making demonstrations daily, The Candy Kitchen welcomes you into a magical world of colours, flavours & smells. After a visit here, you’ll be leaving the park on a sugar high!

Get in touch with Holiday Coffs Coast to book your holiday, or check out 7 more Family-Friendly Activities on the Coffs Coast here.

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