A few years ago we spent a week over the New Year holidays on beautiful North Stradbroke Island, or Straddie as it’s better known as! Straddie is the second largest sand island in the world, and as we very quickly found, one of Australia’s best kept secrets. Straddie has white sandy beaches, magnificent inland lakes, hidden waterways, wildlife, friendly locals, scenic walks and wonderful laid-back way of life. It’s easily accessible by ferry from Brisbane and is a beautiful place for a laid-back, affordable and relaxing holiday in paradise! Here are 10 places to visit on North Stradbroke Island.
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Amity Point is the smallest of the three townships on Straddie. It is a laidback, fishing village located on the north-western tip of the island which has some of the best seafood on the island!
Amity has resident pelicans, cute koalas and wild dolphins that visit the local jetty. Amity is the perfect town to relax in and is ideal for families with a relaxing atmosphere, shaded sandy beaches and a large swimming enclosure that provides a safe place to swim. Due to Amity’s location on the island there are no surf beaches which make it ideal for swimming, fishing and snorkelling.
Blue Lake is located a few km from Brown Lake and can only be reached on foot. It is a 5km return trip to this freshwater lake that is fed from a underground aquifer. The colour and stunning beauty of the lake are well worth the hike through peaceful bushland. Blue Lake is also known by its Aboriginal name, Karboora which means ‘silent pool’.
Myora Springs are a freshwater spring located on the drive to Point Lookout from Dunwich. The springs have been running for thousands of years and are a wonderfully refreshing place to take a dip! Myora Springs were only a few minutes from our campsite and so we visited quite regularly when we were on Straddie.
The Point Lookout township is situated at the north-eastern tip of the island and was our favourite place on Straddie with stunning scenery and beaches. Point Lookout is a series of beaches and headlands that offer visitors crystal clear beaches, great surfing, stunning headlands to walk and spot marine life from and enough activities to keep even the most adventurous of visitors happy!
We spent an afternoon at the Point Lookout Surf Club which we’re convinced has some of the best views on the island (plus cheap drinks). The surf club open their bar on weekends and every afternoon during holidays.
North Gorge Walk
One of the highlights of our time on North Stradbroke Island was doing the North Gorge Walk in Point Lookout. The walk offers stunning views over the Pacific Ocean and is a perfect place for spotting marine life and wildlife.
We were lucky enough to see pods of dolphins, turtles, manta rays, sharks and even kangaroos one morning. Between June to November, the walk is also one of the best spots on the entire East Coast to watch the annual migration of the humpback whales!
There are also a number of shipwrecks around the island, particularly around Dunwich, which you can explore on low tide! We caught an amazing sunset by the shipwrecks at Dunwich, shared with only millions of tiny little crabs scuttling around on the sand.
Cylinder Beach is a picturesque cove between Cylinder and Home Beach Headlands that is a patrolled beach. The water is crystal clear and the waves are small and calm making it ideal for swimming.
Brown Lake is located 5km inland from Dunwich and gets its name from the brown colour of the water which comes from the surrounding tea trees. Brown Lake is surrounded by natural bushland and has safe swimming, BBQs and picnic tables. We loved swimming in the lake and exploring on our SUPs! It’s a great place to relax and spend a day with the family.
Naturally beautiful Main Beach reminded us a lot of our stunning Lighthouse Beach in our hometown of Port Macquarie. The beach is patrolled by lifeguards and stretches for more 32km.
We loved swimming at Main Beach but it did have a lot bigger and more powerful waves than Cylinder Beach. Main Beach is very popular with surfers and is overlooked by the Point Lookout Surf Club.
Deadman & Frenchman’s Beaches
Deadman & Frenchman’s Beaches are secluded spots, nestled between North Gorge and Cylinder Beach. They are not patrolled so it isn’t recommended to swim there but they are lovely to stroll along and explore the rock pools where you see the fish, star fish, anemones, shells and crabs that call this place home.
What are your favourite places to visit on North Stradbroke Island?
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