Nelson Bay is on Pacific Highway (A1)
Broughton Island is a treeless, windswept, rocky island outcrop located just 20 kilometres from Port Stephens. Large black rays and grey nurse sharks flock here in the warmer summer months.You will enjoy a full day of cruising, snorkelling, swimming, exploring, fish feeding or just relaxing on the beach. Once on the island, go on a discovery walk to wildlife breeding areas and secluded coves. The vessel that takes you to the island is a 19.5 metre ocean going motor vessel with boom net rides. Morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea are supplied and included in the price. The cruises run from September to April.
The cruise departs, subject to weather and bookings from the D'Albora Marinas in Nelson Bay which are only a few hundred metres from the Nelson Bay Information Centre.
This lookout is at the top of Lily Hill Road, so named because of the abundance of Gymea lilies that grow there. In spring they burst into an impressive show of flowers. At the lookout there is a car parking area and a viewing platform facing south to Stockton Beach and Newcastle. To the north you can see as far as Hawks Nest. There are a number of Interpretative Panoramic Display units to provide an understanding of the significance of the history of Gan Gan Lookout and Port Stephens plus signage pointing out the the various suburbs and landmarks visible from this vantage point. The access road to the lookout is closed to vehicles between sundown and sunrise to prevent vandalism.
Turn east off the Pacific Highway, 6 kilometres south of the Raymond Terrace roundabout and 1 kilometre north of the Hexham Bridge, onto Tomago Road (signposted to Williamtown and Nelson Bay). Travel 15 kilometres then turn left at the roundabout onto Nelson Bay Road. Follow the signs to Nelson Bay for 32 kilometres then turn left onto Lily Hill Road (2 kilometres after the Salamander Bay roundabout). There is a Lookout sign at the turnoff Follow this sealed but steep, narrow and winding road for 1 kilometre to the lookout car park. The road is not suitable for caravans. From the car park follow the path around the Telstra building to the viewing platform.
Nelson Head Light, also known as Nelson Head Inner Light, is located on Nelson Head. It is more unusual than most lighthouses in that the light shone through a 3 metre window of an octagonal lantern room attached to the keepers cottage. In 1876 the light first, which was run by four kerosene lanterns, shone from the lantern room. In 1946 the light was run by electricity and in 1984 it was automated. In 1995 the light was replaced with a solar powered lantern and mounted on the outside of the lantern room. In 2003 it was deemed that the light was un-necessary and was shut down. The cottage is managed by Marine Rescue NSW and serves as a maritime museum which is open to visitors every day.
Turn east off the Pacific Highway, 6 kilometres south of the Raymond Terrace roundabout and 1 kilometre north of the Hexham Bridge, onto Tomago Road (signposted to Williamtown and Nelson Bay). Travel 15 kilometres then turn left at the roundabout onto Nelson Bay Road. Follow Nelson Bay Road for 33 kilometres, turn right at the roundabout onto Stockton Street then take the 2nd exit at the next roundabout onto Dowling Street (signposted to Shoal Bay). Travel 1 kilometre then turn right at the T-intersection onto Fingal Street (towards Shoal Bay). Take the 1st left onto Trafalgar Street then turn right at the T-intersection onto Shoal Bay Road. After 300 metres turn right onto Dixon Drive. Follow Dixon Drive which becomes Beach Road for 650 metres then turn left at the Nelson Head Lighthouse sign. Follow this steep narrow road to the public car parking area.
This is a 2 kilometres return medium grade walk to the top of Tomaree Head where you will enjoy panoramic views from the north platform of Yacaaba Head, Cabbage Tree and Boondelbah and Broughton Islands and from the south platform, Zenith, Wreck and Box Beaches, Fingal Island and Point Stephens Lighthouse. Make sure you check out the historic World War II gun emplacements on the way back down. Wear sturdy shoes and take care along the steep sections of this walk as well as the paved areas which can become very slippery when wet.
Turn east off the Pacific Highway, 6 kilometres south of the Raymond Terrace roundabout and 1 kilometre north of the Hexham Bridge, onto Tomago Road (signposted to Williamtown and Nelson Bay). Follow the signs to Nelson Bay for 48 kilometres then take the 2nd exit at the roundabout onto Stockton Street (towards Nelson Bay Town Centre). Take the 2nd exit at the next roundabout onto Dowling Street. Travel 1 kilometre, turn right at the T-intersection onto Fingal Street (towards Shoal Bay), take the 1st left onto Trafalgar Street (towards Shoal Bay) then the 1st right at the next T-intersection onto Shoal Bay Road. Follow Shoal Bay Road for 3 kilometres then park the car in the parking area at the entrance to Tomaree Lodge. Follow the pathway to the right of the Lodge entrance to the summit of Tomaree Head.