Things to do

Attractions

The South West Rocks area is home to a number of historical attractions with many dating back to the 1800’s. The Trial Bay Gaol is the most known of these, its oceanside cliff location within the Arakoon National Park makes it both beautiful and haunting. Explore the picturesque ruins along the Bridle trail or see if you can spot the local kangaroos and wallabies that frequent the site. The Smoky Cape Lighthouse is also located nearby and offers breathtaking 360-degree views of the coastline and hinterland. In operation since 1891, the heritage lighthouse also offers guided tours and with the views from the top great for whale watching.

Beaches

Walking up to the sunrise over the water and being only meters from the beach and creek is one of the major benefits of Horseshoe Bay Holiday Park. Horseshoe Bay is a protected beach that offers a great right-hand wave when an east coast low is in town. The main beach stretches 3.5km around to Trial Bay, making it perfect for a leisurely stroll and dip in the ocean. Trial Bay also offers a shallow, sheltered cove protected from swell by a Breakwall making it perfect for families. If you’re looking to take a drive, South Smoky Beach is accessible by 4-Wheel Drive for those with a beach driving permit.

Fishing and water sports

A great variety of fishing spots, with both onshore and offshore options available at South West Rocks. Anglers regularly catch mulloway from the rock walls at the entrance, bream, luderick, flat head and whiting from the rivers, as well as native bass in the freshwater reaches of the river. If you have the option to head off shore you can try your luck landing a marlin, yahoo, spanish mackerel and longtail and yellowfin tuna. The Horseshoe Bay and South West Rocks area is also perfect for water sports with snorkelling, swimming, kayaking, paddle boarding, surfing and boating all easily accessible and available.

Shopping

Offering a lively local shopping and dining scene, South West Rocks has a number of fashion boutiques, trendy cafes and restaurants serving up delicious seasonal produce. The relaxed costal village setting is perfect to spend the day sipping a coffee while reading the paper, or strolling along the main street looking for unique wares. Our top pick of cafes is Malt and Honey, located only a few meters from the park’s entrance, it has reliability good coffee and great breakfast options. Horseshoe Bay markets are also on the second Saturday of every month from 8am until 1pm and offer a great selection of fresh local produce, jewellery, crafts, crystals and art.

Diving

South West Rocks is world famous for its diving and snorkelling with a number of locations offering excellent clarity and an abundance of marine life. The famous Fish Rock Cave is easily accessible from the area, providing spectacular diving and the chance to see the critically endangered Grey Nurse shark. Fish Rock Cave is the only place in Australia where you can experience a true ocean cave dive. Running for 125 meters through Fish Rock, the tunnel will take you into an underwater world with a completely unique eco-system. Green Island, Black Rock, Ladies Reef and Gaol Reef are also local favourites around the area, with all providing great diving and a range of marine life to be seen.

Visit Macleay Valley Coast for more things to do.