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Batemans Bay

5 October 2010 59,415 views 5 Comments



I figured the success of the weekend depended on doing the Dad thing and getting up early to Beat The Traffic. So, up at 5, out the door at 5.45, cruising out of Sydney and down the Freeway / Highway One towards Batemans Bay. The journey was cool actually, light rain, Larry was on good form and great driving tunes. I pushed through and stopped at Berry for breakfast. It’s a cute little town, I’d like to go back and see more.

I find the scenery south of Sydney lovely, lots of rolling green hills, and I actually like it when it’s raining / drizzling like today, more atmospheric. I stopped briefly at Ulladulla and saw the harbour which was nice but quiet. The journey was flying by and before I knew it I was cruising past Jervis Bay, then some good stretches of National Park before arriving at Batemans Bay.

Now I haven’t been to Batemans Bay before but I applied the lessons I’ve learned from other parts of Australia and as soon as I saw Woolworths I stopped to get the shopping. (Made the ‘there’ll be another place’ mistake in both Yeppoon and Kakadu …) Loaded, I then went to find my hostel which was at a camp site slightly outside of town. Threw together some veggie burgers and sat outside thinking that it seemed very quiet and civilised for a long weekend!

The surf beaches are outside of Batemans so I headed further south to see what was happening. Surf Beach was really nice and I had a big walk around the coast because ironically, there was no surf. Malua Bay was a bit busier but still pretty, again no surf. McKenzies Beach was beautiful, a small stretch, tucked between cliffs, just lovely.


It wasn’t until I got to Broulee that I actually found any surf. Broulee was the longest beach so far, the point / head was all rockpools and along the beachfront the sand dissolved into dunes into bush, it was excellent. Like I say, there was some surf, and it was lovely actually, long waves, nice and gentle. I caught all the ones I wanted to and did an ok job in the water. Once the surf had completely died I got googles and swam instead. Which was a great idea until I realised I was swimming, alone, on a beach I didn’t know and with definite rips that I wasn’t tuned in to. If there had been any surf at all I would have gone back out to catch one wave to say I’d done a solitary surf (!) but nada, niet, rien, zilch.

So I backtracked up the coast to McKenzies again because that had definitely been my favourite beach, and this time I sat down with beers and my excellent running book. It was an awesome spot: sun going down, air cooling, waves trickling in, I was happy.


The next morning I was up fairly swiftish, piled everything in the car and got straight out. Picked up coffee and bread and headed straight for Surf Beach. Again no surf so I sat, nibbled, read, yoga-ed. And then I followed the same tracks as yesterday, inspecting each beach, and, again, it was Broulee that had the most promising waves. Instead of going straight out in the water though I went for a run first, and then for a beautiful surf. It was stunning and I caught some crackers, again, I was happy.
And I was hungry, so it was back to Surf Beach, charmed a burger van to cook my veggie patties for me (they weren’t thrilled, til I flashed ‘em two dollars.. ) and more hanging out and eating on the beach.

This evening I went back to Batemans before it got dark so that I had time to walk around and see the Bay. It was quite pretty, lots of waterside parts that were good for fishing, stopping, lazing around. There’s a nice stretch of bars and restaurants along the harbour side but they were fairly quiet given it was Sunday of long weekend. So, quiet night out for me too, just wine back at the hostel.


Monday was a really early start as I needed to pack everything and get us down to Mossy Point because I’d booked onto a sea kayak trip. I’d figured that if there wasn’t much surf I was onto a good thing going for a paddle. The trip was superb; I could have stayed out all day.

Pebbly Beach

Still scummed up from paddling I got straight on the road, a brief stop in Batemans for provisions and then on the way to Pebbly Beach. Jess had told me that Pebbly was lovely, and then others had mentioned it too. The road to the Beach has also been recently tarmac-ed so that made the decision / journey a bit easier for Lazza. And Pebbly was gorgeous. There’s a woody, bush area with a little stream running through, wild flowers all around, and birds everywhere, it’s such a nice picnic spot. And then the bush turns to grass, turns to dunes, turns to sand and you’re on the beach, and it’s a lovely bay with a fair bit of surf. There were cliffs on the north going to a point / head; the south opened to pebbly :), rocky coastline backed by cliffs and covered in all different shades of green algae. It’s really stunning and I walked a fair distance along the pebbly beach. When I felt incredibly remote I decided to turn round and come back. I hung out on the beach for a while, mooching, yoga-ing and then, finally seeing kangaroos which is always exciting. Then I threw together sandwiches and soaked up the final bit of the soft air, lulling surf and gentle breeze.

Then it was on to the road. I was still filthy from the whole day but I figured I’d get a chunk of journey done before stopping. So much for plans. The traffic was horrendous and I ended up pushing on to Berry before I stopped by which time all fuel was drained – mine and Lazza’s. The rest of the journey was fine and I was back in Manly with enough time to unpack and de-sand my life before collapsing in a heap. A happy, makeup-less, sunburned, chilled heap.

I had completely enjoyed exploring the south coast and next time I go I’ll try to stay somewhere a bit more remote because while Batemans Bay was nice, it didn’t do much for me and I loved all the little beaches and camp grounds. I really hope I come back again soon, and I hope there’s more surf next time too.


Surf Beach

Malua Bay

McKenzies Beach

Before surfing

After surfing


View Larger Map


  • lucyjjames » Blog Archive » Morning Paddle Batemans Bay said:

    […] X do water activities and trips around the Batemans Bay area. Despite their excellent advertising the way I found them was a good old fashioned sign on the […]

  • Belle said:

    Who stole your wetsuit while you were surfing?!

  • lucyjjames » Blog Archive » Trail Running said:

    […] running barefoot for the first time in Batemans Bay I have been trying to do runs that are more interesting. So I ran the Manly-Spit Scenic Walk one […]

  • lucyjjames » Blog Archive » Running Barefoot said:

    […] anyway, I’d been rationing chapters but when I was in Batemans Bay I piled through and there was one part that was so good, and, yes, inspiring, that I just shut the […]

  • lucyjjames » Blog Archive » Shells said:

    […] Bits n pieces washed up on the beach in Batemans Bay. […]

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