Just a short drive from Newcastle is Hunter Wetlands National Park, a wildlife sanctuary with family-friendly walking, cycling, fishing and birdwatching.
It’s hard to believe Hunter Wetlands National Park, a haven for nature-lovers, is so close to the city of Newcastle. Pop the kids and their bikes in the car and head to Ash Island, where Riverside Park is just the spot for a picnic and easy cycling – or walks if you prefer – through rainforests and mangroves. You can also meander to the old World War II radar station or explore the ruins of Milham’s Farmhouse.
For twitchers, this is paradise. More than 200 species of birds either live in or migrate through the Hunter estuaries. One of the most popular spots for birdwatching is Stockton Sandspit, right next to Stockton Bridge, where shorebirds such as curlews and avocets come to roost and feed.
The diverse ecosystems also mean that underwater life is abundant. Bring your fishing rod or handline and try your luck off the jetty at Riverside Park. You won’t be the only one trying to catch a fish – pelicans, cormorants and sea eagles are often spotted here.
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