Elizabeth Beach picnic area
Booti Booti National Park
A short drive from Forster, Elizabeth Beach picnic area offers a great spot to relax near a beach popular for swimming, surfing, and whale watching in winter.
- Picnic areas
- Booti Booti National Park
- Entry fees
- Park entry fees apply
- What to
- Drinking water, hat, sunscreen
- Please note
- This beach is seasonally patrolled during the summer months
Framed by a scenic backdrop of the imposing Booti Hill, Elizabeth Beach is a popular spot for families, surfers and day-trippers. More intimate than the nearby Boomerang Beach, it’s a great place to throw down the towel and soak up some sun as sea eagles and shore birds glide past.
Visit in summer to make the most of the beautiful beaches, where you can swim, surf or snorkel. In winter, whales can be glimpsed migrating off the coast – so don’t forget the binoculars. All time of year is great for a bit of adventure, with the Booti Hill/Lakeside walking track threading right past.
The picnic area is just a short stroll from the beach, making it a perfect place for a leisurely barbecue by the sea. Bring a packed lunch or check out the nearby cafes for coffee and delicious fresh food.
For the latest updates on fires, closures and other alerts in this area, see https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/picnic-areas/elizabeth-beach-picnic-area/local-alerts
- National Parks Contact Centre
- 7am to 7pm daily
- 1300 072 757 (13000 PARKS) for the cost of a local call within Australia excluding mobiles
- in Booti Booti National Park in the North Coast region
Booti Booti National Park is always open but may have to close at times due to poor weather or fire danger.
Park entry fees:
$8 per vehicle per day. Day passes are available from the Manning Great Lakes Area Office, Tea Gardens Visitor Information Centre, Bulahdelah Visitor Information Centre and the Hawks Nest Newsagency.Buy annual pass.
All the practical information you need to know about the Elizabeth Beach picnic area.
Getting there and parking
Elizabeth Beach picnic area is in Booti Booti National Park. To get there from Forster, follow The Lakes Way through the national park then turn left onto Lakeside Crescent. Elizabeth Beach is to your left.
- Sealed roads
- 2WD vehicles
- All weather
Parking is available at Ruins campground, Elizabeth Beach, or Sunset picnic area, all accessible via The Lakes Way.
Best times to visit
There are lots of great things waiting for you in Booti Booti National Park. Here are some of the highlights.
See the park's magnificent wildflower displays as they bloom across the heathlands.
Swim at the seasonally patrolled Elizabeth Beach or kayak in Wallis Lake, whilst staying at the nearby Ruins campground.
Visit Cape Hawke lookout to watch whales migrating off the coast.
Weather, temperature and rainfall
15°C and 30°C
5°C and 20°C
The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day
You'll need to bring your own drinking and cooking water.
- Flush toilets
- Gas/electric barbecues (free)
- Cold showers
Maps and downloads
Disability access level - medium
Assistance may be required to access this area
A current NSW recreational fishing licence is required when fishing in all waters.
Elizabeth Beach picnic area is in Booti Booti National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:
A haven for birds and birdwatchers alike
Booti Booti National Park features a substantial number of amphibians and reptiles, including red-bellied black snakes, brown snakes, rose-crowned snakes and blue-bellied swamp snakes. Goannas are regular visitors to The Ruins campground and picnic areas, and you may even be lucky enough to see a land mullet or water dragon. The unusual peninsula between the Pacific Ocean and Wallis Lake also provides an outstanding habitat for over 210 species of birds, including rainbow and scaly-breasted lorikeets, yellow-faced honeyeaters and silvereyes, as well as a number of waterbirds, including pelicans and the endangered little tern.
- Cape Hawke lookout Just five minutes from Forster, the Cape Hawke lookout offers spectacular 360-degree views along the coast from the top of a dedicated tower, perfect for whale watching.
- Elizabeth Beach picnic area A short drive from Forster, Elizabeth Beach picnic area offers a great spot to relax near a beach popular for swimming, surfing, and whale watching in winter.
- Sailing Club picnic area An alternative to the ocean-front options of Booti Booti National Park, Sailing Club picnic area offers a shady rest spot on the shore of Wallis Lake.
Captain Cook first sighted Cape Hawke on May 12, 1770, and named it in honour of the First Lord of the Admiralty, Edward Hawke. The famous explorer and surveyor John Oxley later passed through the area in 1818. The first European inhabitant was Captain J. Gogerly, who sailed between Forster and Sydney ferrying timber, oyster shells, and sandstone. Today you can pay respects to Captain Gogerly and some of his relatives at their gravemarkers, across the road from the Ruins campground.
- Booti Hill and Wallis Lake walking track Just 20km from Forster, this thrilling track offers a scenic day walk including beaches, Wallis Lake, and plenty of opportunities for swimming and whale watching.
Spirituality, identity and lifestyle
Booti Booti National Park holds important cultural significance for the Worimi Aboriginal people, who have lived on and used the land and waters for many thousands of years. Dozens of Aboringal sites exist within the park, including artefact scatters, stone quarries, tool sites, and shell middens. These are important markers of Aboriginal history in the region, demonstrating how land, water, plants and animals contributed to and continue to have significance for Aboriginal identity, spirituality, and lifestyle.