The Nambucca Valley


Bowraville is about 17km inland from Nambucca Heads and is known as the verandah town. The town developed around the timber industry which has influenced it in every way and is responsible for the unique streetscape and architecture. Bowraville has a rich mix of Aboriginal and European history and cultures and is home to many interesting people, businesses and attractions.

The town invites tourists with such things as a folk museum, a war museum, a historic theatre, and other historic features. It also invites new residents with its scenic beauty and idyllic lifestyle. The Bowraville Jockey Club holds regular race meetings, and this also invites visitors from neighbouring towns and afar.  In 2011, Bowraville was honoured as the winner of the Cultural Heritage Award and came third overall in the Tidy Towns Awards by Keep Australia Beautiful – Tidy Towns.


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Congarinni is a rural/residential area just west of Macksville along Taylors Arm Road. Congarinni South Road runs off Taylors Arm Rd to the left. Congarinni North Rd runs off Talarm Rd on the right.  Not surprisingly, the stunning Nambucca River is a major attraction of this delightful locality. Rural house blocks and small hobby farms have cropped up among larger working cattle farms. Fruit, vegetables and nuts are grown on a commercial basis.

“Valley of the Mist”, Congarinni North Rd, is a good example of sustainable farming methods and ecologically-sensitive tourism. Owner, Dennis Ryan, guides a maximum of four people on a canoe tour through 100-plus acres of breathtaking wetlands and adjoining waterways. Visitors can quietly marvel and photograph the abundant wildlife – estimated to be more than 100 species!

A range of gourmet bushtucker tours are also available. Sample bush food and condiments made from native plants such as Lemon Myrtle, Finger Limes, Davidson Plum, Lilli Pilli, Riberries, Aniseed Myrtle and macadamia nuts – all grown on the plantation.

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Macksville  is a peaceful riverside town on the Pacific Highway and a great place to experience some real country hospitality! The riverside parks and ‘Lily pond’ parkland at the southern end of the town are popular resting places for travellers. Rich in history, the wide Nambucca River now provides many recreational opportunities – sailing, canoeing, jet ski and waterskiing, as well as fishing and rowing.  Away from the water, Macksville offers a range of tasty food products, arts and craft; and historic country pubs.

Macksville proudly retains two historic hotels: the Star Hotel on River Street and the Nambucca Hotel on the corner of the Pacific Highway and Wallace Street. Opened in 1885, the Star Hotel is the oldest original hotel on the north coast of NSW. Visitors enjoying a wander around the town can sit on the verandah of the Star and watch for dolphins or admire the antiques, old photos and beautiful cedar staircase on display at the Nambucca.

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Nambucca Heads

Just a short drive from the Pacific Highway ensure you turn off to see the magnificent vista of the Nambucca River meeting the sea. The breathtaking views from Captain Cook and Rotary Lookouts showcase the fabulous beaches and coastal scenery.  Take a walk along the outdoor graffiti gallery known locally as the V-Wall. The town has become even more popular since the highway bypassed it.  So take a stroll, bag a bargain, update your beachwear … just relax and enjoy this historic friendly town.
Nambucca Heads was an important coastal port with ship building and timber mills as the main industries in the 1800s and early 1900s. The Shire Council’s investment in a system of boardwalks and storyboards along the waterfront will guide the discerning visitor through the town’s change of fortunes.
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Scotts Head

Scotts Head can be seen across the mouth of the river at Nambucca Heads but to get there by car, it’s 10 kilometres off the Pacific Highway and about a 15-minute drive south of Macksville.

Scotts Head is a must-surf destination!  Mastering the waves there has seen a number of locals do well on the professional circuit. Softboards can be hired or lessons booked at Scotts Head Surf School. Excellent surf conditions can be found at three beaches.

You don’t need to bring provisions or a picnic lunch – the bakery, butcher, supermarket, takeaway, coffee shop, club bistro and even a local ‘fisho’ will ensure you don’t starve. There is also a range of accommodation options available. Heading out of town, Mt Yarrahapinni (the big one with antennas on top), Yarriabini National Park and Way Way State Forest are only minutes from Scotts Head, sandwiched between the coast and the Pacific Highway.

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Taylors Arm

Taylors Arm is known for being the site of the “Pub With No Beer” which was immortalised in song by Australian country singer Slim Dusty.  When its main industries of cedar felling and dairying were at their peak the small village of Taylors Arm was thriving. It had a boarding house built around 1890, then five years later the pub was built.  Other stores were built including a bakery, butchery and a grocery store. There were apparently seven schools from Thumb Creek to Macksville.

Taylors Arm and the surrounding area is a very beautiful part of the Mid North Coast. Undulating landcsape, State Forest, National Parks and Thumb Creek to Taylors Arm river, that consists of some very inviting water holes in the hot summer. On entry into the quiet village, an avenue of Paulownia trees is set in the foreground with blue mountains in the background.

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Valla is a small community on the western side of the Pacific Highway, just north of Nambucca Heads.  Its rich rural land and state forests accommodate some mighty giants. On the coastal side of the highway, is the place for those seeking solitude.  Miles of unspoilt beaches provide the perfect setting for slow leisurely walks poking around shells, driftwood and interesting landforms, including a cave.

Macadamia nut plantations now cover the hills which were once the home of red cedar. Visits to a Macadamia Plantation can be arranged through Nambucca Macnuts. Ph. 6568 4210.  There is a range of accommodation in Valla.

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Warrell Creek

Warrell Creek is a highway village just south of Nambucca Heads which might be missed if not for the speed sign!

Sutton’s Fruit and Vegie Stall is the most southerly stall on the Pacific Highway selling home-grown bananas and an array of local produce.  Why not pose with a bunch of bananas for a great photo opportunity!

Lookout for the turn to Mount Yarrahapinni Lookout! Turn from highway at Warrell Creek. The spectacular 360 degree views make the rumble up an unsealed road more than worthwhile.

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