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 Cafe – Open-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:
- Shopping at First Ave. Boutique & Brooke George Boutique
- Spa & Beauty at J Society & Fig Tree Day Spa
- Water Adventures with Solitary Islands Surf School or C-Change Adventures
- Nature trails ? Sawtell Walking Trails by Coffs Trails
- Yoga & Mediation at The Yoga Shack
- Family fun at The Coffs Harbour Butterfly House (short drive from Sawtell)
- A day in the sun or an afternoon picnic at the local beaches & rivers. Read more about the local beaches here.
- Sawtell Main Beach
- Boambee Creek Reserve ? Dog Friendly Beach, $5 Paid Reserve Access
- Bonville Headland ? Boat Ramp, Beach Launch
- Boambee Headland ? Whale Watching (seasonal)
- Boronia Park ? Perfect for Riverfront Picnics
- Bonville Boat Ramp & Mick’s Retreat ? Boat Ramp
- Murray’s Beach ? Dog Friendly Beach (leash is required)
- Sawtell Family Markets at Sawtell Community Centre every 4th Saturday
- Family Fun Day every 1st Sunday of the month at The Toormina Hotel
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!
- 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.