At the mouth of the Clarence River, about 680 kilometres north of Sydney, lies Yamba, the largest town in Maclean Shire. The town, with its population of around 5000, is the focal point of the shire's booming tourist industry which is fuelled by fine beaches, great surfing and excellent fishing.
Yamba enjoys some of the best and most consistent weather in the world, making it an ideal year-round holiday destination in surroundings of rare natural beauty.
Visitors are drawn by the opportunity to go whale watching, when Southern Right and Humpback whales can be seen as they migrate north in August and September. A good spot to see them is from Yamba Lighthouse, an interesting place to visit at other times too. Dolphins can be seen at any time of the year, and other activities include surfing, boating and fishing.
The Clarence River is a major source of seafood and produces a wide variety of fish, along with oysters, lobsters and prawns - a bounty shared by the commercial fishing fleet as well as recreational fishing enthusiasts hoping for catches of jewfish and flathead.
To the south of Yamba lies the surfing village of Angourie, where the freshwater Blue and Green pools provide entertainment for the whole family. Here too is Yuraygir National Park which is notable for its spectacular sand ridges, heathlands and lake system. It is a unique park in that it is where the tropical north and the temperate south meet, creating a diverse range of flora and fauna.
North of Yamba, across the river mouth, lies Iluka Nature Reserve, a World heritage-listed remnant of the once extensive coastal rainforest. Further north, Bundjalung National Park protects the banks of the River Esk, one of the last wild rivers in NSW.
Things to do:
Drop in a fishing line and see what you catch
Visit the galleries showcasing local arts and crafts
Boating, surfing, swimming
Take the coastal walk to Angourie
Whale watching in the winter months
In the area:
Yuraygir and Bundjalung National Parks
Iluka Nature Reserve