There are beaches to surf, oceans to fish, campgrounds for relaxing, and a variety of short headland walks that total up to 9km on this loop exploring Point Plomer Road and Maria River Road.
Do this tour in either direction. We travelled clockwise, turning left as we left the Settlement Point ferry over the Hastings River. On the bridge across Limeburners Creek, look out for the oyster farms. Along Maria River Road there are tea tree plantations on one side and the forests of Limeburners Creek National Park on the other side of the road.
Most of this tour is 2WD accessible, but not the beach or rough section of Point Plomer Road between North Shore Drive and Queens Head which are 4WD only. If you are driving on the beach, time your journey for a low tide and buy a permit from Port Macquarie Council. The beach is definitely the nicer route, as the old sand mining road behind the dunes is corrugated with deep potholes.
The Headland Walking Tour
Climb both Little Nobby and Big Nobby, where you can watch the surfers, the sea birds and whales in season. Big Nobby is the highest of the headlands on this route, with a view south over Goolawah Beach which stretches for 6.5 km to Racecourse Headland. Crescent Head has a nice creek to play in, with a pedestrian bridge, and an excellent bakery!
There is a popular campground and surfing break here, and a 1 km grass walking track across the headland a deep cleft. The dog friendly Racecourse beach curves south to the Delicate Nobby rocks which extend out to the sea. Delicate campground is dog friendly, and Waves campground has hot showers and a cafe. Beyond the rocky promontory, Delicate Beach extends for 2 kilometres to Melaleuca Creek and Big Hill.
At Big Hill there is a 1.4 km walk through littoral rainforest and heath to a lookout, starting from the picnic area. The Melaleuca campground is situated alongside the creek. The bitumen ends here, and the dusty gravel Point Plomer Road begins.
Point Plomer and Queens Head
Popular Point Plomer campground faces Barries Bay, with a short walk onto the headland. A hundred metres further south is a turnoff to a parking area on Queens Head. A grass path leads onto the headland while a sandy track takes you to the beach. There are good views south along North Shore beach toward Port Macquarie on the horizon.
Just beyond the Queens Head carpark is the 4WD track onto the beach for a 10km drive south at low tide, exiting onto North Shore Drive. After reinflating your tyres at the beach exit, you can turn south to view the Hastings River breakwall, then continue to the Settlement Point ferry.
A great day out!