It’s been a long time since I’ve been to Jervis Bay until we spontaneously decided to go camping there for the weekend. If you’re unaware of Jervis Bay, it’s a three hour drive south of Sydney and home to apparently the world’s whitest sand at Hyams Beach.
We actually stayed for the weekend during winter and still found loads to do so don’t be fooled by thinking Jervis Bay is only good for a summer getaway. There was something very magical about going there in winter as it was very quiet in the area. If you’re going in summer, just be prepared to book in advance which is probably why I haven’t been there for ages as I usually plan everything at the last minute! Here’s my complete guide to Jervis Bay!
How to get there:
Driving – It’s a 3 hour drive south of Sydney, easy.
Public Transport – The quickest I’ve seen is 3h43m. You’ll need to get yourself to Bomaderry Station, then it’s a 40 minute bus ride to Huskisson. More info here
I’ve only just realised how similar Jervis Bay is to Byron Bay! Read on why…
I think of Jervis Bay as an area split into 3 sections. You have the top, the middle and the bottom which is Boderee National Park. See my rubbish version of what I mean below! I’m not massively familiar with the top although we did visit this time, the middle is the main area of Jervis Bay centred around the town of Huskisson and a tip for when you head into the National Park in the bottom section, you’ll need to pay $11 in CASH at the gates to get in. We weren’t aware and like most people who don’t carry cash, we frantically tried to find some change to get in.
Over the weekend I’ve accounted for everything we did and other things we would have done if we had time, so here my guide to the top things to do in Jervis Bay!
There are loads of beautiful campsites in Jervis Bay but during summer it’s not that easy to get a spot. You’ll need to put your name into a ballot system by August to hopefully get a spot during the summer holidays (more info here). As it was winter, I actually managed to get us into the Cave Beach campsite in Boderee National Park which felt like a sign because it’s always booked up. Cave Beach is known as one of Australia’s best secluded camp spots according to Australian Geographic and I could see why.Cave Beach campsite, Boderee National Park
When I first went to Jervis Bay over three years ago, we randomly found Cave Beach and instantly wanted to buy a tent to camp there. Fast forward three years later and we finally bought into the camping thing and so I wanted to make that dream a reality.
Related Post: 6 Items You Need To Camp On A Budget In Australia
The reason why this campsite is amazing is because it sits about 50 metres from one of THE most beautiful and secluded beaches I have ever seen. It’s also a 300 metre walk from the car park to the campsite so expect to have to carry (bring a trolley) all your things down a hill to the site. Going back up wouldn’t be much fun. There’s also loads of kangaroo’s around but as someone who isn’t a fan of them, they weren’t aggressive in the slightest. Click here to book Cave Beach campsite. Cave Beach, Boderee National Park and not one other person in sight!Surprisingly there’s some caves to be explored at Cave Beach!
Other campsites include Honeymoon Bay and Green Patch. We went to check out Honeymoon Bay as that’s another one of the best camp spots in Australia which would actually be perfect for a family with it’s natural lagoon. It is however on the Beecroft weapons range department of defence which is a bit odd, but it’s safe. You’ll have to drive right into the weapons range and pass through the rangers to get there on an unsealed road.
If you want to book Honeymoon Bay, it’s so popular that for the summer season, again, you’ll have to put your name down to be put into a ballot before August for the summer holidays. Crazy I know, but you have to be organised, otherwise throughout the rest of the year, it’s first come, first served. More info here. We went to check this beach out and there wasn’t a single tent to be seen. That’s winter camping for you!Honeymoon Bay, Jervis Bay in winter
Ariel shot of Honeymoon Bay via Andy Hutchinson
Although Green Patch campsite is located in Boderee National Park, it’s actually the closest campsite of the three mentioned to Hyams Beach. To book Green Patch, click here. There are other campsites located in Jervis Bay and we did see one in Huskisson (the main town) but these three are the most sought after from the research I have done in the past.
Although we went to camp in Jervis Bay, because it was a very windy day, we ended up getting a last minute airbnb which was lovely (The Aussie isn’t a big fan of the cold!). The host was really nice and accommodated us literally an hour before we turned up at her doorstep. I wouldn’t hesitate to stay again and for just $100 a night, you’ll get your own floor in the house with a big bathroom, a living room and a comfy double bed, right near Huskisson in Sanctuary Point.Comfy bedroom in our airbnbOwn living area in our airbnbBig bathroom in our airbnb
I did see some beautiful holiday lets over at Hyams Beach that looked absolutely gorgeous which I’d definitely investigate for another stay. It has a very relaxed, holiday vibe over there which looks out onto the stunningly beautiful beaches. This one below is called Whalers Cottage and can be booked here.
3. Beaches in Boderee National Park
There are so many beaches to choose from in Jervis Bay. There are loads to choose from in the bottom section of Jervis Bay, Boderee National Park. Obviously Cave Beach is one of my favourites, not for swimming as it’s more of a surf beach, but for the rugged beauty it holds. It makes you really feel like you are far, far away, from everything!
Cave Beach, Jervis Bay
There’s also Murray Beach which is a bit less busier than others and at the tip of the park opposite Bowen Island. I went here when I first went to Jervis Bay a few years ago and remember it being total paradise.
Murray’s Beach, Jervis Bay
We went to Murray’s Boat Ramp next to Murray’s Beach to watch the sunset and it was spectacular! We didn’t even plan it, we just stopped off as the sun was setting to try and capture the incredible cloud formation.Murray’s Boat Ramp Sunset, Jervis BayMurray’s Boat Ramp, Jervis Bay
I’ve read that Steamers Beach is a firm favourite for many. It’s a 3KM walk to get there so expect literally zero crowds. I have read that there are sharks in this area so unfortunately it’s not a beach to be swimming in. Here’s a good post to read more about it here.
Steamers Beach, Jervis Bay
Out of the National Park, there’s loads of beaches to choose from around Huskisson. See below for more details!
4. Beaches in Huskisson – White Sands Walk
After doing a lot of research on if there are any hikes around Jervis Bay, I found out about the White Sands Walk which starts from the Vincentina Sailing Club at Plantation Point and ends at Hyams Beach. Because I hadn’t seen the famous Hyams Beach before, I thought it would be a great finish to the walk.
White Sands Walk, Jervis Bay
I actually thought the walk was going to take like 10 minute but I was completely wrong. It took us an hour each way and I clocked up over 10KM on my Garmin 235 watch after we completed the return. It is however, an easy walk which is flat and very easy to navigate which takes you right next to many amazing beaches.Nelson Beach, Jervis Bay
We started at Nelson Beach and saw loads of pods of dolphins which was a great start to our morning. As the path meandered through the bush, we came to our first secluded beach at Blenheim Beach. It was completely deserted with white sand and turquoise water. What a gem!Blenheim Beach, Jervis Bay
Moving onto Greenfield Beach which I think we decided on was our favourite was a stunningly beautiful beach! Although when looking at my photos of Blenheim and Greenfields, they look very similar, Greenfields just had an amazing vibe about it. Greenfields Beach, Jervis Bay
Then onto Chinaman’s Beach which is next to the famous Hyams Beach, is a longer beach and much quieter than its neighbour. And just to mention, Chinamans is a million times more beautiful than Hyams.
Chinamans Beach, Jervis BayOn Chinamans Beach, Jervis Bay
When we reached Hyams Beach, I actually couldn’t believe what the fuss was all about. It’s a small beach and there were so many people on there taking selfies. All we were thinking was, the last 4 beaches we walked past were a million times nicer and ironically, the sand was much whiter on all of them! The area of Hyams Beach was gorgeous though with all of the holiday cottages and quiet vibe. Crowds on Hyams Beach, Jervis Bay
Other recommended hikes in Jervis Bay would be to Steamers Beach and onto St Georges Track which is a 16KM round trip. Or you could head up to Gosangs Tunnel up in my top section of Jervis Bay near Point Perpendicular. There’s a hidden small hole in the rocks which you have to climb through about 20 metres before you pop out onto the sea cliffs on the other side. Looks amazing but I briefly saw a few posts about this place and didn’t look much into it until it was too late 🙁 You can find the tunnel by following the walking track at Abraham’s Bosom Reserve in Currarong, it takes about an hour return.
Gosangs Tunnel, Jervis Bay
At the end of the White Sands Walk, we had planned to go to the Hyams Beach Store & Cafe for a brunch. It had Byron Bay vibes all over it with it’s beach feel and we were really impressed with the food, it was the best we had in Jervis Bay.
Hyams Beach Store & Cafe, Jervis Bay
We both had the caramelised onion tart and a selection of salads and it tasted really, fresh and just good food.
Caramelised Tart at Hyams Beach Store & Cafe, Jervis Bay
We also ate at Pilgrims vegetarian cafe, which to be honest was amazing for us that a veggie cafe even existed in the area. We got there just after they had finished serving although they kindly made up an acai bowl for us. It’s not the healthiest cafe as they mainly serve veggie burgers but they usually do mexican food in the evening from 5:30pm. Unfortunately, as it was winter, they had decided not to open that evening.
Acai Bowls at Pilgrims Cafe, Jervis Bay
So we went to The Huskisson Pub for dinner. It’s a huge pub at the end of the main street and has a bit of an air that it’s the go to pub. We ordered a risotto and a veggie burger and both were pretty good, standard pub food. If you’re going in winter, I’d suggest booking a table inside in the restaurant section as they have a big outdoors area with heaters, but it’s a bit cosier indoors especially as it’s dark so it’s not like you’re missing out on the view.
Gorgeous views at The Huskisson Pub, Jervis Bay
6. Dolphins & Whales
Photo taken from Jervis Bay Wild
As I mentioned before, we saw some dolphins in the water on our coastal walk. But there’s loads of tour companies offering up dolphin and whale cruises. Remember it’s whale season in winter so that’s another good reason to visit Jervis Bay. We didn’t have time to do any but I can imagine they would be good.
7. Light house
When we arrived in Jervis Bay, we made a beeline straight to Honeymoon Bay to check it out. On the way there, the ranger mentioned to us to visit the Point Perpendicular Lighthouse so we made what seemed like a very long journey along an unsealed road to the lighthouse. Point Perpendicular Lighthouse, Jervis Bay
When we arrived it was pretty spectacular and seemed like we were on the edge of the world. It was amazing to see the white sand of the beaches I mentioned on the White Sands Walk completely lit up in the distance. When we were doing the white sands walk, we could see the light house in the distance and we were glad we made the journey out to it.
Another beautiful photo from Andy Hutchinson – Point Perpendicular, Jervis Bay
8. Jervis Bay Botanic Gardens
Botanic Gardens, Boderee National Park
Before we left Jervis Bay to drive the 3 hour journey home to Sydney, we decided to check out the Botanic Gardens. We didn’t have too much time but it was nice to walk around, taking in the quietness and beauty of the area. I think it would be a gorgeous place to visit during Autumn or Spring.
Byron Bay Vibes
So there’s my top 8 things to do in Jervis Bay. The thing that stood out the most for me was that it had a real magical vibe about it, similar to what I feel about Byron Bay. When swimming in the ocean in Byron, it has a fantastic vitality about it which really makes you feel alive. Although I didn’t swim in the water in Jervis Bay (because it was Winter when we visited), I really got the sense that it was the same as Byron.
When I left Jervis Bay, all I was thinking was, why hadn’t I been to visit more? Much cheaper than flying to Byron and although it’s not exactly the same, I reckon I’d get the same out of it by spending the weekend swimming in those beautiful waters. Here’s to more trips down to this beautiful part of NSW this summer!
Is there anything I’ve missed off the list? Let me know in the comments below.
Thanks for reading!
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