The ULTIMATE activities guide to Greater Newcastle
At CoastXP we’re focused on what makes this region a great place to live, visit and experience. A destination is only as good as the people who call it home, and we think that the Greater Newcastle region is pretty amazing. Throughout this guide you will get to meet many of the local people and businesses which call this region home. Look at this guide kind of like a bucket list — if you got to experience each of these at least once in your lifetime, you would get to see parts of the Hunter few get to see!
Experience the Hunter Coastline with CoastXP
At CoastXP, Dom runs nature-based coastal sightseeing and whale watching tours year-round. These travel from Newcastle in the north to Catherine Hill Bay in the south, depending on the time of year. Tours also get the chance to explore areas of Lake Macquarie, Newcastle Harbour as well as get up-close to some of the Hunter’s most amazing animals including dolphins, and in season, humpback whales.
Walking Tours with Newcastle Afoot
Newcastle Afoot walking tours by Becky Kiil are a must-do when looking to explore Newcastle. Becky runs unique, guided walking tours as well as scavenger hunts and private group tours, right here in Newcastle. When you join Becky on one of her tours you are guaranteed to have an amazing time and learn so much about Newcastle’s present and past.
Photo: Newcastle Afoot
Scenic Helicopter Flight with Aerologistics
Aerologistics scenic flights are the perfect way to see Newcastle from above. The team from Aerologistics conduct scenic tours all around the Hunter. Head inland and see the legendary Hunter Valley vineyards from the sky, or enjoy a thrill as you travel along the Hunter Coastline with the doors off; see rugged cliffs, National Parks or the iconic Stockton sand dunes.
Learn Sailing with Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club
Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club has loads of ‘learn to sail’ programs, to suit a range of ages and abilities. Often you can see the club and its members out enjoying sailing on Newcastle Harbour. Programs include a discover sailing experience, women and corporate sailing, as well as junior sailing starting from as young as 7 years old with their “tackers” program.
Photo: Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club
Tandem Paragliding or Hang Gliding with Air Sports Newcastle
Air Sports Newcastle operate tandem paragliding and hang gliding flights along the Hunter Coastline. Seeing Newcastle’s best beaches from a view few get to see. Their expert instructors can also take you through an approved novice hang gliding or paragliding course after your tandem flight, should you wish to progress your skills and achieve your restricted pilots rating.
Photo: Air Sports Newcastle
Get in touch with your creative side Mitch Revs Galley
Renowned local artist Mitch Revs captures the essence of a Novocastrian lifestyle in his unique artworks. The Mitch Revs Gallery is a destination in it of itself, featuring exhibitions of Mitch’s work along with their very own printing and framing business for other local makers and creators.
Photo: Mitch Revs Gallery
Discover the best of Newcastle, by bike with Newy Rides
Ben from Newy Rides is passionate about sharing Newcastle’s hidden secrets, makers and murals, all while tasting from some of Newcastle’s best coffee stops and food shops. Ben leads guests through streets often only seen by locals themselves while sharing stories with guests along the way about what makes up the fabric of our great coastal city.
Photo: Newy Rides
Become a distiller for a day at Earp Distilling Co
As one of Newcastle’s premier venues, the team at Earp Distilling Co take guests through an immersive gin distilling experience. Learn from the experts as you dive a little deeper into the world of spirits. Lean on Earp’s talented distillers and harness their state-of-the-art equipment while you learn to make your own gin.
Photo: Earp Distilling Co
Meet Native Australian Animals at Oakvale Wildlife Park
Oakvale Wildlife Park is just a short 30-minute drive north of Newcastle. Established on the 1st of November 1979, Oakvale Wildlife Park has continued to be a family-owned and operated business for more than 40 years. Set on 25 acres, Oakvale provides an opportunity to meet Australian native, domestic farm and exotic animals in a fun, safe and educational environment.
Photo: Oakvale Wildlife Park
Get High Among the Trees at TreeTop Adventure Park
TreeTop Adventure Park (Newcastle) is an adventurers playground with over 100 elevated obstacles, set in the stunning Blue Gum Hills. Surrounded by native Australian wildlife, the park features elevated courses suitable for both children and adults. No special skills are required before you can participate in their rope courses, rest assured their knowledgeable team will take you through everything you need to know on the day.
Learn About the Ocean and its inhabitants with Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters
Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters is a unique, interactive aquarium set up in a state of the art facility in Anna Bay. Encounter a vast array of marine species, as well as learn about their conservation and education initiatives to help protect the ocean’s inhabitants through interaction, display, communication, education, research conservation and calls to action.
Photo: Irukandji Shark & Ray Encounters
Quad Bike Across the Stockton Sand Dunes with Sand Dune Adventures
Sand Dune Adventures is owned and operated by the Worimi Local Aboriginal Land Council. Travel across the largest moving coastal sand dunes in the southern hemisphere, located on the Worimi Conservation Lands. The experienced guides will take you on an award-winning indigenous tourism experience by quad bike, as you explore exclusive areas of Aboriginal land.
Photo: Sand Dune Adventures
Freefall Over Lake Macquarie with Skydive Newcastle
Skydive Newcastle offers Newcastle’s closest beach skydive, freefalling at over 200 km/hr for the ULTIMATE adrenaline rush. Did we mention that they get to see some of the best views along the Hunter Coast? Experience spectacular city and lake views as you freefall right above the largest permanent saltwater lake in the southern hemisphere, Lake Macquarie.
Photo: Skydive Newcastle
Aerobatic Flights with Matt Hall Racing
Matt Hall Racing delivers heart-pumping aerobatic flights as well as scenic flights, along the Hunter Coastline. While making your way along the Lake Macquarie coast, experience loops, barrel roles tumbles, stall turns and tail slides during the ultimate experience. Not into all of the thrills? Why not take a scenic flight over Lake Macquarie and the Hunter. Choose your own adventure on the Hunter Explorer.
Photo: Matt Hall Racing
Learn to Stand Up Paddle Board with SUP Newcastle
SUP Newcastle began as the Hunter’s first stand up paddleboard shop, offering school-based sport, social paddles, SUP hire, group lessons and one-on-one lessons. Dylan, the owner of SUP Newcastle is now the Australian distributor for GoFoil Australia producing all carbon, lightweight and interchangeable foils for all types of foil board sports. See Newcastle Harbour or coastline from a foil board or stand up paddle board with Dylan.
Photo: SUP Newcastle
Explore the Great Outdoors with Out and About Adventures
Out and About Adventures deliver quality, safe outdoor recreation activities and education programs throughout the local national parks and waterways. Experience abseiling, rock climbing, hiking, kayaking, sea kayaking or caving with Out and About Adventures. Activities take place all the way from Northern Sydney, right through to the Myall Lakes region of the mid-north coast, including Newcastle Harbour!
Photo: Out and About Adventures
Hot Air Ballooning with Beyond Ballooning
Beyond Ballooning is a family-owned and operated hot air ballooning business, right in the heart of the Hunter Valley. Nathan and the Beyond Ballooning team conduct a range of daily, corporate and special event flights high above the Hunter Valley. Pair your ballooning experience with a gourmet champagne breakfast from the Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley and experience the stunning Hunter Valley surroundings from the air with Beyond Ballooning.
Photo: Beyond Ballooning
See Newcastle’s Sights from Newcastle’s Famous Tram
Newcastle’s Famous Tram offers daily relaxed scenic tours of Newcastle’s beaches and historic sights aboard Newcastle’s Famous Tram. Chris operates the tram, which was built from scratch in 1994, and is a genuine replica of the original Newcastle working tram, which was in service in 1923. The tram is also available for hire for weddings, wine tours and other events.
Photo: Newcastle’s Famous Tram
Scuba Diving Port Stephens with Let’s Go Adventures
Let’s Go Adventures is a 5 Star accredited PADI dive centre offering courses and guided dives throughout Nelson Bay, as well as the offshore islands surrounding Port Stephens. Enjoy guided shore dives at sites like Fly Point (marine reserve), Halifax or Pipeline, or enjoy boat dives at sites like Cabbage Tree Island, the Oakland Shipwreck or Broughton Island. Get up close to grey nurse sharks with Let’s Go Adventures.
Photo: Let’s Go Adventures
Cooking Lessons with The Essential Ingredient Newcastle
The Essential Ingredient Newcastle is a specialty food supplier and retailer, including a delicatessen, cheese counter and large cooking school based inside the Junction Fair shopping centre. The cooking school runs 3–4 classes per week, covering a range of culinary styles and techniques. You will often find some of Newcastle’s best chefs running specialty classes out of The Essential Ingredient Newcastle.
Photo: The Essential Ingredient Newcastle
Horse Riding Hunter Valley — Hunter Valley Horses
Hunter Valley Horses offer rides through the bushland and vineyards of the Hunter Valley on horseback. Enjoy the fresh air, local wildlife, stunning views of the Broken Back Ranges as well as the award-winning wine and produce the Hunter Valley has to offer. Scott, Narin and their team offer rides and horses to suit all levels. Enjoy the beautiful Hunter Valley by horseback with Hunter Valley Horses.
Photo: Hunter Valley Horses
Cruise in Luxury with Hunter Supercruise
Hunter Supercruise offers exhilarating supercar experiences right here in Newcastle. Enjoy cruising along Newcastle’s Best Beaches in the driver’s seat or passenger’s seat of a Lamborgini or Mclaren Supercar. You don’t need to own a supercar to experience one. This top gear experience will have your adrenaline pumping, while you explore Newcastle or the Hunter Valley.
Photo: Hunter Supercruise
Learn to Surf with Newcastle Surfest Surf School
Newcastle Surfest Surf School is operated by the professional coaching team from Sanbah. Sanbah is without a doubt the home of surfing in Newcastle, operating Sanbah Grindhouse, Rip Curl Newcastle, Drift Bikes as well as Surfest Surf School. As a licensed Surfing Australia surf school, the Newcastle Surfest Surf School offers SurfGroms, group, private, school sport and corporate surfing lessons.
Photo: Surfest Surf School
Wine Tour with Two Fat Blokes
Two Fat Blokes provide a range of wine, beer and gourmet food tours throughout the Hunter Valley. Learn about how award-winning wine is produced, meet vintners and chefs, and taste some of the best gourmet produce the Hunter Valley has to offer. Two Fat Blokes also offer VIP experiences including private wine tours and wedding trail tours.
Photo: Two Fat Blokes
NSW Segway Tours
NSW Segway Tours deliver authorised segway tours for couples, families and corporate groups in the Hunter Valley and Newcastle. Adam and the team from NSW Segway Tours provide fun outdoor guided tours on segways to locals, tourists and small corporate groups. If you find that you can’t go back to life as usual after your tour, they also sell segways too.
Photo: NSW Segway Tours