Wallingat National Park

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On the mid-North Coast of NSW, Wallingat National Park, with its varied forest and swamp landscapes, offers hiking, touring, birdwatching and camping in a coastal locale.

Read more about Wallingat National Park

Here, on the Mid North Coast of NSW, the Pacific Ocean meets forest. At Whoota Whoota lookout, one of Wallingat National Park’s most visited attractions, you’ll be overwhelmed by the beauty. Explore the park further and you’ll see stands of straight, tall flooded gums. At Sugar Creek, there are also stands of cabbage palms, filled with the sounds of Wallingat’s native birdlife. Pack the car and explore what this great park has to offer for a few hours. There’s camping at Wallingat River, and a picnic area at Sugar Creek.

A network of unsealed roads throughout the park allows you to discover its best features. Accessible by 2WD in dry weather, you can also explore them by mountain bike or horseback. There’s great fishing in the river and lake, and you can swim when the weather is warm. Keep your eyes peeled for kangaroos and wallabies, as well as some of the 200 species of birds that make Wallingat their home.

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/visit-a-park/parks/wallingat-national-park/local-alerts

Contact

  • in the North Coast region
  • Wallingat National Park is always open but may have to close at times due to extreme weather or fire danger.

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See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Wallingat National Park.

Getting there and parking

Get driving directions

Get directions

    From Forster:

    • Travel 30km south along Lakes Way to Sugar Creek Road

    From Bulahdelah:

    • Head north on Pacific Highway
    • Turn right at Lakes Way – it is signposted Forster
    • Follow Lakes Way for approximately 40km to Sugar Creek Road (2.5kms past Bungwahl)

    Park entry points

    Parking

    By bike

    Check out the Bicycle information for NSW website for more information.

    By public transport

    For information about public transport options, visit the NSW country transport info website.

    Best times to visit

    There are lots of great things waiting for you in Wallingat National Park. Here are some of the highlights.

    Autumn

    With temperatures slightly cooler, explore the network of gravel roads by foot or on a mountain bike.

    Spring

    With the wildflowers - including the purple blooms of the velvet mint-bush - coming out, this is a great time for birdwatching.

    Summer

    The weather is warm and sunny, so now's the time to pitch a tent and stay for a few days. Make the most of the boat ramp at Cockatoo picnic area Head to Sugar Creek picnic area and, after lunch, take a walk through the cool forest. .

    Winter

    Visitor numbers are down, so take the car along the park's unsealed roads and discover the forest, rivers and lake.

    Weather, temperature and rainfall

    Summer temperature

    Average

    20°C and 29°C

    Highest recorded

    45.2°C

    Winter temperature

    Average

    7°C and 21°C

    Lowest recorded

    -5°C

    Rainfall

    Wettest month

    March

    Driest month

    Sept

    The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

    280.2mm

    Facilities

    Maps and downloads

    Safety messages

    However you discover NSW national parks and reserves, we want you to have a safe and enjoyable experience. Our park and reserve systems contrast greatly so you need to be aware of the risks and take responsibility for your own safety and the safety of those in your care.

    Be fire aware

    Remember that during a Park Fire Ban the use of wood fires and solid fuel barbecues is prohibited, whereas during a Total Fire Ban all fire, gas and cookers of any sort are prohibited.  For more information on fire safety see general safety information. Check with the park office for information on fire bans in place.

    Food
    The towns of Bungwahl and Coomba Park have small community stores with basic provisions. For more extensive supplies you may need to go to the large towns of Forster/ Tuncurry or Bulahdelah.

    Water for horses is available from dams near Gur-um-bee picnic area and near the junction of Sugar Creek and Whoota Lookout roads.

    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

    Generators

    Generators are prohibited in this park.

    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

    Forster (30 km)

    Dominated by water sports Forster is the centre of the Great Lakes area.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Bulahdelah (32 km)

    Buladelah is the gateway to Myall Lakes National Park. It's situated on the Myall River, with a backdrop of soaring, forested hills.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Taree (64 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

    Wallingat National Park is a special place. Here are just some of the reasons why:

    Life among the trees

    Cabbage Palm loop, Wallingat National Park. Photo: John Spencer

    More than 200 species of birds make Wallingat National Park a home. Walking through forest as well as stands of straight flooded gums, and cabbage palms, you'll hear birds singing. Noisy friarbirds, for instance, have a distinctive 'ya-kob' call, while a 'woop, woop, woop' sound signals the presence of the wonga pigeon. You might see blue wrens flitting through the trees, as well as king parrots and glossy black cockatoos. Wallingat is also a popular spot for the satin bowerbird – the males are black and shiny, the females are a plainer brown. They both, however, have startling lilac eyes.

    • Double Wharf trail Experience the scenic waterways and mountainous forests of Wallingat National Park along Double Wharf trail – perfect for walking or mountain bike riding.
    • Sugar Creek picnic area Sugar Creek picnic area is a family-friendly relaxation spot with easy walking trails through forested landscape, a leisurely drive from Forster and Pacific Palms.

    Fun times

    Gur-um-bee picnic area, Wallingat National Park. Photo: John Spencer

    Whether you're after a relaxing time or something more adventurous, Wallingat is just the spot. Take to the gravel roads either on foot, in a car or on a bike – to explore the forests. You can swim, fish and paddle on Wallingat River. Pitch a tent in the campground and get away from it all for a few days in this naturally beautiful setting. Surrounding some of the picnic areas and campsites, you’ll find magnificent stands of trees. In the southeast corner of Wallingat, there are tall, straight flooded gums, as well as stands of cabbage palms. Find both during a walk from Sugar Creek picnic area. Some rare plants such as the liana woody climber, a climbing species that bears white flowers from August to May, can also be found here.


    • Double Wharf trail Experience the scenic waterways and mountainous forests of Wallingat National Park along Double Wharf trail – perfect for walking or mountain bike riding.
    • Wallingat Forest drive The 25km loop of Wallingat Forest drive, near Forster, is on unsealed roads that meander through forests, and excellent for cars, 4WDs, bicycles, walking and horse riding.
    • Whoota Whoota lookout From Whoota Whoota lookout, easily accessible by car, you can see for miles. Take in scenic views of Wallingat’s eucalypt forests, Wallis Lake and 100km of coastline.

    Ancient footprints

    Cabbage Palm loop, Wallingat National Park. Photo: John Spencer

    The 6,557ha of Wallingat National Park is part of the identity and spirituality, as well as a resource, for people of the Worimi nation. The Worimi People lived a traditional hunter-gatherer lifestyle and used the leaves of the cabbage palm for weaving baskets and its fibrous bark for making fishing line. They used many of the area's natural resources, including the freshwater lakes, stone outcrops, and the ocean. A central campsite was known to exist in the area now known as Coomba Park, although there are few other Aboriginal sites recorded within the park include the Bungwahl area.

    Education resources (1)

    What we're doing

    Wallingat National Park has management strategies in place to protect and conserve the values of this park. Visit the OEH website for detailed park and fire management documents.

    Sugar Palms, Wallingat National Park. Photo: NSW Government