Watch humpback whales breach in one of the world’s deepest natural harbours at Eden, a pristine hamlet via the main coastal road mid-way between Sydney and Melbourne. You’ll spot them at Rotary Lookout or see them up close aboard the Cat Balou.
You’re literally surrounded by water in this idyllic seaside town, with an ocean beach to the north-east, a cape to the south carving out two coves within Twofold Bay. Not to mention the barely inland Lake Curalo.
The rich ocean waters support a working port that reaps an absolute bounty captured in the bay’s wide mouth. In fact, here, you can purchase mussels straight from the docks. Or, just settle in for pleasant feast at a fine restaurant within town.
WATER PLAY IN EDEN
On the northern shores of Twofold Bay, east of Eden on a stunning spit, you’ll find Aslings Beach. This picturesque beach, suitable for swimming and surfing, is patrolled in the summer. Here, explore the glorious man-made Eden Rockpool along this stretch.
Aslings Beach shares a narrow strip of land with Lake Curalo, where a changing lush green outlook reflects within its fresh waters.
A wide, flat boardwalk through melaleuca forest encircles the watercourse linking up to the historic Aslings Beach Maritime Walk. Early risers will enjoy a morning choral. On Lake Curalo, prawning and fishing is a popular pastime among tourists, locals, the black swans and pelicans.
South of Aslings Beach, at Snug Cove near the operating port, you can swim among blue groupers and weedy sea dragons on your own or on a guided snorkel tour hosted by the Marine Discovery Centre.
Boatings can launch into Quarantine Bay (in the southern part of Twofold Bay).
Anslings Beach, courtesy of Cat Balou Cruises.
EDEN KILLER WHALE MUSEUM & EDEN LOG CABIN
This seafaring town has a whalers past, and you can discover it at Eden Killer Whale Museum in the centre of town. Here, learn the startling tale of Old Tom, a killer whale whose hunting skills were exploited by the local whalers. Admire Old Toms’ skeleton within this modern, state-of-the-art facility. Then, learn about the rise and fall of Benjamin Boyd, a controversial entrepreneur responsible for Boyds Tower and Boydtown.
You’re close to the Eden Log Cabin, a traditional Canadian log cabin undergoing restoration, a few streets back from the main street of Eden.
CAT BALOU CRUISES AND SAPPHIRE COAST MARINE DISCOVERY CENTRE
For insight into local sea life head to the Sapphire Coast Marine Discovery Centre at Eden Wharf at Snug Cove, then head out with Cat Balou Cruises.
Here, the deep harbour, wide bay mouth and temperate waters create the perfect storm for sea-life spotting, and you can get right up close aboard the cruise. From between April and November migrating whales and dolphin pods shelter and feed among the bay.
The service offers 2.5 Whale Watching Cruise and 3.5-hour Whale Watching Cruise, Twofold Bay Highlights cruise and Wildlife Cruise, next to the Sapphire Coast Marine Discovery Centre.
BEN BOYD NATIONAL PARK
Admire fierce waves crashing against dramatic brick-coloured outcrops within Ben Boyd National Park. The Pambula River and Pinnacles track are within easy reach. In the southern end of the park, enjoy a heart-racing walk to the Boyds Tower.