Looking for things to do in Taree? Or maybe you’re looking for things to do in Old Bar, a gorgeous little coastal town nearby? Fear not… after spending six weeks pet sitting in Old Bar, we were fortunate to be able to explore this gem!
Whilst many people either holiday in Forster or Port Macquarie, Taree and Old Bar NSW are often missed out on most itineraries.
I’m not gonna lie, the town of Taree itself isn’t somewhere you need to go out of your way to visit, but there are brilliant places nearby which you need to know about! You’ll find loads of awesome national parks, a fantastic festival, beautiful beaches near Taree and Taree restaurants in this post.
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Taree and Old Bar are actually one hour South of Port Macqaurie and North of Forster on the mid-north coast of Australia. It’s also a 3h30m drive from Sydney.
Things To Do In Taree & Old Bar NSW
1. Old Bar Beach Festival
A reason which brings many people to the area of Taree is for the Old Bar Beach Festival which is basically a really cool camper van/ kombi van festival in Old Bar during the October long weekend.
What started out as a small festival has now turned into an awesome place to visit for the October long weekend in NSW. You’ll find the kombi parade whereby hundreds of new and old camper vans drive down the long road from the beach and up to the highway and back. You’ll also be able to spend the whole weekend perving on other people’s camper vans which are on display throughout the festival.
It’s a fun event which brings locals and tourists together, even the locals bring out their deckchairs and sit outside their homes to watch it.
There’s also a massive market on during the whole weekend, live music and food stands. Basically it’s the type of event you could easily come to for the entire weekend and camp over the road. Bring kids as the park next door turns into a fun park with rides.
2. Swim at Old Bar Beach
Old Bar Beach is one of those NSW beaches which is completely untouched. It’s a beautiful long beach which tends to get a lot of stones washed up, reminding me of a British beach. But it’s got a really authentic feel to this beach, which we loved.
3. Head Over To Ellenborough Falls
If you love a bit of an adventure, head over to Ellenborough Falls which is about an hour’s drive from Taree.
Known as Australia’s third largest waterfall, there’s a nice 20 minute walk down to the bottom, you don’t want to miss.
We loved this waterfall and would easily recommend it for everyone to visit. It’s also safe enough for kids to walk down but as always please wear sensible shoes.
If you’d like to go on more hikes near Taree, head over to the incredible Barrington Tops. This national park is one of the oldest in Australia and it’s completely mind blowing.
We opted for the Antartic Beech Tree Walk which is a 1 hour loop walk amongst the million year old trees. It’s spectacular! On this walk, you can detour off to swim in a waterfall but I can imagine it will be freezing regardless of what time of year you visit (it was closed when we went).
On the road between Forster and Taree & Old Bar, you’ll come to a hidden fun park complete with toboggan rides, slides, go karting and more. Although we didn’t get the opportunity to visit, we totally would have regardless of not having kids – it looks like great fun!
6. Head Over To Hallidays Point
Continue on from The Big Buzz Fun Park and you’ll come to Hallidays Point which is another holiday park on the edge of Darawank Nature Reserve. Make sure you check out Red Head and Black Head beaches, these are the perfect beaches for families with calm, flat water.
6. Head Over To Manning Point
Although we didn’t get a chance to visit, go and check out Manning Point which is a 20 minute drive from Old Bar and 30 minute drive from Taree.
Manning Point is a a great spot for families as you have the river one side and the beach on the other as it’s where the sea and the north arm of the Manning River meet.
There’s BBQ facilities, picnic tables and a playground there. Plus it’s dog friendly which is always a bonus!
7. Visit Crowdy Bay National Park
Now Crowdy Bay National Park is the place you want to visit. The beaches are some of the best beaches in NSW and you’ll feel like you’re a million miles away. Head over to the long stretches of sand at Kylies Beach and at Diamond Head.
As I was on my way to visit this national park, the bush fires were literally starting and I had to turn back. It is now currently safe to visit the area of Crowdy Bay National Park but check the NSW Fires Near Me app to be on the safe side.
Tips: Both Crowdy Head and Diamond Head offer up camping options. And go check out Harringons Pub on the way to Crowdy Head which we’ll talk more about below because it’s a great little gem!
8. Visit Saltwater National Park
10 minutes down the road from Old Bar lies Salt National Park which provides beautiful lookout points over to Wallabi Point and Old Bar as well as walking tracks and the beautiful Saltwater Beach.
10. Pacific Palms
If you fancy going on a bit of a road trip, head over to Pacific Palms which is an hour’s drive from Taree. This is one of our favourite places in NSW. The beaches in Pacific Palms and Seal Rocks are absolutely stunning, you’ll feel like you’ve come to a hidden paradise. Read: 19 Amazing Things To Do In Pacific Palms >
Whilst there’s not a huge amount of places to eat in Taree or Old Bar, there are a decent handful of places which are worth a mention. Below are our favourite places to eat in Taree and Old Bar.
11. Flow Bar In Old Bar
Flow Bar is actually an awesome place to eat at in Old Bar. To be honest, I’d happily stop off in Old Bar just to visit this hidden gem.
Flow Bar is a combination of many things: It’s a live music venue with the cutest outdoor space I’ve seen in Australia, a restaurant, a cafe and a bar all rolled into one. As it sits just back from the beach (no view), it offers up country beach places to eat and spend some time at that I doubt you’ll find anywhere else like it in the area.
We ate here a lot and really loved the atmosphere. They play music on Friday nights and Sunday afternoons but be aware they stop serving at 2pm on Sundays.
You can also stay above the restaurant which looks like a great place to stay in and I’ve heard there’s yoga here too.
12. Blow Fish Cafe In Old Bar
Blow Fish in Old Bar is a cool little cafe which sits right opposite the beach. Although it doesn’t look like anything from the outside, it’s quite cool inside. They serve up light bites and are well known for their fish & chips. I must admit, the fish & chips is awesome!
13. Greedy Goat In Taree
We really liked Greedy Goat Cafe in Taree which is situated opposite the Manning River. They serve up some really good healthy breakfast options but also cater for lunch and dinner as well. If you’re looking for where to eat in Taree, head to the Greedy Goat Cafe!
14. Two Hans Japanese Restaurant In Taree
We went to Two Hans Japanese restaurant in Taree for my birthday and I was impressed with their noodle soup. Even though it was a Monday night, the Taree restaurant was completely packed, so it must be saying something!
15. Harrigans Irish Pub
As we mentioned earlier in this post, Harrigans Irish Pub on the way to Crowdy Bay National Park is an excellent Irish Pub.
I actually couldn’t believe it when we walked in, because it just reminded me so much of going to a proper pub again. Expats know what I mean by this 😉
The food is also excellent. Obviously opt for the bangers & mash – it literally tastes like back home.
TAREE & OLD BAR ACCOMMODATION Personally I’d either camp or I’d stay in Old Bar when choosing Taree accommodation.
Camping For camping options we recommend staying at the following Old Bar: Lani’s On The Beach Crowdy Bay National Park: Crowdy Gap Campground or Diamond Head Campground Hallidays Point:BIG4 Happy Hallidays