Diamond Head Loop walk

Crowdy Bay National Park

Overview

Diamond Head loop walk offers scenic coastal views across Crowdy Bay National Park. Expect beaches, lookouts, and glinting rock faces, giving Diamond Head its name.

Where
Crowdy Bay National Park
Distance
4.3km loop
Time suggested
1hr 30min - 2hrs 30min
Grade
Grade 3
Price
Free
Entry fees
Park entry fees apply
What to
bring
Drinking water, hat, sunscreen
Please note
  • Remember to take your binoculars if you want to birdwatch or whale watch
  • A current NSW recreational fishing licence is required when fishing in all waters
  • Toilets and picnic facilities are located at Diamond Head campground

Diamond Head loop walk is the ideal introduction to the splendour of Crowdy Bay National Park, near Port Macquarie. Starting at Diamond Head campground, you'll link up with Headland walking track and Forest walking track for a walk packed with visual delights, which highlights why this park is a national treasure.

Passing through heath and forests of paperbark and swamp mahogany, pause to take in the exceptional views at Kylie’s lookout and scan the waters for dolphins. It's thought that Diamond Head draws its name from the quartz crystals in the cliffs and you might see them sparkling in the sunlight.

The headland rises dramatically and offers panoramic views across Crowdy Bay, north to Perpendicular Point and south to Crowdy Head. In between are superb sweeps of golden sand, and rising out of the lush forested hinterland, behind you, are the majestic Three Brothers mountains.

Take a virtual tour of Diamond Head loop walk captured with Google Street View Trekker.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Current alerts in this area

There are no current alerts in this area.

Local alerts

For the latest updates on fires, closures and other alerts in this area, see https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/walking-tracks/diamond-head-loop-walk/local-alerts

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Diamond Head Loop walk.

Track grading

Grade 3

Learn more about the grading system Features of this track
  • Time

    1hr 30min - 2hrs 30min

  • Quality of markings

    Sign posted

  • Gradient

    Short steep hills

  • Distance

    4.3km loop

  • Steps

    Occasional steps

  • Quality of path

    Formed track, some obstacles

  • Experience required

    Some bushwalking experience recommended

Getting there and parking

Diamond Head loop walk is in the northern precinct of Crowdy Bay National Park. Access is via Diamond Head Road.

Parking

Parking is available at Diamond Head campground.

Best times to visit

Crowdy Bay National Park generally enjoys a warm subtropical climate. However outside of winter the temperature can reach above 30C, so be sure to carry sunscreen, a hat and plenty of water. Drinking water is not available within the park. Winter days and nights can be cool to cold, particularly in exposed areas of the park.

Spring

Wildflowers paint the dunes and heath in spectacular colour during spring.

Summer

Swimming, boating and fishing – enjoy the delights of Crowdy Bay's magnificent beaches Look out for the festive Christmas Bell blooms.

Winter

Remember your binoculars and camera to experience the sight of migrating whales.

Weather, temperature and rainfall

Summer temperature

Average

19°C and 25°C

Highest recorded

43.3°C

Winter temperature

Average

10°C and 19°C

Lowest recorded

-1.7°C

Rainfall

Wettest month

February and March

Driest month

September

The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

310mm

Maps and downloads

Safety messages

Beach safety

Beaches in this park are not patrolled, and can sometimes have strong rips and currents. These beach safety tips will help you and your family stay safe in the water.

Bushwalking safety

If you're keen to head out on a longer walk or a backpack camp, always be prepared. Read these bushwalking safety tips before you set off on a walking adventure in national parks.

Mobile safety

Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency + app before you visit, it helps emergency services locate you using your smartphone's GPS. Please note there is limited mobile phone reception in this park and you’ll need mobile reception to call Triple Zero (000).

Prohibited

Pets

Pets and domestic animals (other than certified assistance animals) are not permitted. Find out which regional parks allow dog walking and see the pets in parks policy for more information.

Smoking

NSW national parks are no smoking areas.

Nearby towns

Laurieton (8 km)

Located at the base of North Brother Mountain in Dooragan National Park, Laurieton is one of the villages that make up the Camden Haven area on the North Coast of NSW. Laurieton is 30km south of Port Macquarie and offers an idyllic holiday spot for families, nature-lovers and anyone who enjoys a holiday by the beach.

www.visitnsw.com

Port Macquarie (31 km)

Vibrant Port Macquarie is surrounded by beautiful waterways - the Hastings River, canals, creeks, bays and the Pacific Ocean. The city also has a five-star collection of golden-sand beaches stretching from Port Macquarie Beach to Town Beach and north along the 16-km swathe of North Beach.

www.visitnsw.com

Taree (39 km)

Taree is a major mid North Coast city, ringed by superb beaches. It's situated on the Manning River and set against rolling hills.

www.visitnsw.com

Learn more

Diamond Head Loop walk is in Crowdy Bay National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

Gifts of nature

Kookaburra (Dacelo novaeguineae), Crowdy Bay National Park. Photo: John Spencer

The views may grab the headlines, but within the park are more secretive delights that change with the seasons. These include rolling dunes that spring to life with wildflowers and migratory birds that populate the lagoons. There are lots of great lookouts to spot whales from as they migrate along the coast in winter or watch ospreys and falcons circle in the skies. Not to mention, kangaroos, koalas and cockatoos galore. Christmas visitors will receive an extra gift, Crowdy Bay's famous festive season blooms of Christmas bells.

  • Mermaid lookout track Mermaid lookout track takes you on a tour of Crowdy Bay National Park's secret surprises. Secluded coves, sweeping beaches and mountain views await you on this short hike.
  • Metcalfes walking track Get up close with nature on Metcalfes walking track, which links Indian Head and Kylies Beach in Crowdy Bay National Park. It's a family friendly hike and the kids might even spot a koala.

Past present

Kylies lookout, Crowdy Bay National Park. Photo: Debby McGerty

The Birpai People have climbed the headlands, swum in the rivers, crossed the sand dunes and walked the beaches of Crowdy Bay National Park for thousands of years. The sea and forest areas were a rich food source for the Birpai People, providing fish, shellfish, wallabies and berries. The park protects a number of Aboriginal sites, like shell middens and campsites, the oldest of which are about 6,000 years old. The park continues to be an important place for local Aboriginal people today.

Postcard perfect

Split Rock, Crowdy Bay National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

This spectacular environment is truly something to write home about. If you can't find the words, try these - panoramic, breathtaking, even gobsmacking. Then again, you'll probably be too busy exploring the tracks, gazing agape at the huge rock arches, communing with wildlife or throwing a line to write lines on a postcard.

  • Crowdy Gap walking track The short and sweet Crowdy Gap walking track in Crowdy Bay National Park, near Taree, offers a stroll through rainforest with scenic views and the chance to see koalas.
  • Diamond Head Loop walk Diamond Head loop walk offers scenic coastal views across Crowdy Bay National Park. Expect beaches, lookouts, and glinting rock faces, giving Diamond Head its name.

Writers' retreat

Kylies walk in campground, Crowdy Bay National Park. Photo: Debby McGerty

During World War II, the Australian author Kylie Tennant moved to Laurieton where she met the reclusive Ernie Metcalfe, a farmer who grazed cattle on Diamond Head. Ernie built Kylie a timber slab hut to use as a writer's retreat. In return, Kylie portrayed Metcalfe and Crowdy Bay in the book The Man on the Headland. Kylie Tennant donated the hut and the surrounding land to Crowdy Bay National Park in 1976. If you're walking along the Metcalfe walk, stop to have a look inside Kylie's hut, or you could set up camp at one of the shady campsites at Kylie's Hut walk-in campground.

Plants and animals you may see

Animals

  • White-bellied sea eagle. Photo: John Turbill

    White-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

    White-bellied sea eagles can be easily identified by their white tail and dark grey wings. These raptors are often spotted cruising the coastal breezes throughout Australia, and make for some scenic bird watching. Powerful Australian birds of prey, they are known to mate for life, and return each year to the same nest to breed.

  • Brown-striped frog. Photo: Rosie Nicolai/OEH

    Brown-striped frog (Lymnastes peronii)

    One of the most common frogs found in Australia, the ground-dwelling brown-striped frog lives in ponds, dams and swamps along the east coast. Also known as the striped marsh frog, this amphibian grows to 6.5cm across and has a distinctive ‘tok’ call that can be heard all year round.

  • Lace monitor, Daleys Point walking track, Bouddi National Park. Photo: John Yurasek

    Lace monitor (Varanus varius)

    One of Australia’s largest lizards, the carnivorous tree-dwelling lace monitor, or tree goanna, can grow to 2m in length and is found in forests and coastal tablelands across eastern Australia. These Australian animals are typically dark blue in colour with whitish spots or blotches.

Plants

  •  Black sheoak. Photo: Barry Collier

    Black sheoak (Allocasuarina littoralis)

    The black sheoak is one of a number of casuarina species found across the east coast of Australia and nearby tablelands. Growing to a height of 5-15m, these hardy Australian native plants can survive in poor or sandy soils. The barrel-shaped cone of the black sheoak grows to 10-30mm long.

  • Grass trees, Sugarloaf State Conservation Area. Photo: Michael Van Ewijk

    Grass tree (Xanthorrea spp.)

    An iconic part of the Australian landscape, the grass tree is widespread across eastern NSW. These Australian native plants have a thick fire-blackened trunk and long spiked leaves. They are found in heath and open forests across eastern NSW. The grass tree grows 1-5m in height and produces striking white-flowered spikes which grow up to 1m long.

Environments in this park

Education resources (1)

Colourful pebbles. Photo: Debby McGerty