1. (1/2 to 1 hour)
Follow Boronia Street to the Bonville Headland. From here you can either turn left at the park and cut through to the beach at Sailors Bay, or continue on to the path up the headland.
From the headland you can enjoy magnificent views to the South over the Rock Pool, Bonville Estuary and Bongil Bongil National Park.
On a clear day you can enjoy the view far as South West Rocks along the coastline.
Continue to the top of the headland (keeping an eye open for passing migratory humpback whales in the season from July through to November), and down the wooden steps to the beach.
You can choose to shorten the duration of your walk by exiting at any of the pathways from the beach to return you to First Avenue.
The round trip from First Avenue, around the headland and exiting at the Surf Club takes about 1/2 an hour at a reasonable pace.
2. (1 to 1.5 hours)
As above, but this time continue the full length of Sawtell beach until you reach Boambee Headland to the North.
Boambee Headland affords beautiful views to Coffs Harbour and Mutton Bird Island and a challenging cardiovascular workout if you follow the footpath straight up the face of the headland to the water towers. (Once again, watch for whales in season). From the water towers, you can either return to the beach or follow the road to rejoin Sawtell Road to make your way back to First Avenue.
Instead, to make the walk a little easier (not shorter) follow the path which leads around the face of the headland back to the car park adjoining Sawtell Road. This pathway is now fully paved and follows the estuary (Boambee Creek) with continuing views of the beach, estuary and hinterland.
Sawtell village through caravan park and via Golf club
3. (1 hour)
Head South along First Avenue and cross the bridge, walk past the Bowling Club and left into the caravan park, past the croquet courts and clubhouse.
Take as many detours through the caravan park as you desire, keeping to the left uphill, you will see Bonville estuary and the cabins along the ridge. Continue along till you pass Mick’s Retreat picnic area. (It’s worth a short diversion to look at the picnic area and regenerating littoral rainforest areas). Follow the road through the trees, this time veering to the right to exit onto Lyons Road. Cross over to Bayldon Road and walk down to the entrance to the Golf Club. If you are still feeling energetic, detour up to the clubhouse and have a look at Sawtell’s pretty golf course – add 10 minutes to your walk, and make a note to bring your golf clubs next time you visit.
Continue back to Bayldon Road, follow the path back to Lyons Road near the Bowling Club and bridge and back to base.
BONGIL BONGIL National Park
3. (2 hours)
Entry to the National Park is opposite the Primary School corner of Toormina Road and Lyons Road. You can take a 5 minute drive here, there is a car park area for your vehicle. A 2.5Km walk takes you through forest (which was a plantation), a paper bark swamp and a creek walk to the picnic grounds on Bonville Creek. This is a very pretty picnic area with an information board and toilet facilities. Did you carry a picnic lunch? There is also a small jetty for fishing or launching a canoe. Return along the same route. (Take the soft track by the creek).
Variation of above – BONGIL BONGIL National Park
3. (2 – 3 hours)
Entry to the National Park as above, but this time turn left under the Railway Bridge and follow the creek track East to Bonville Waters Estate where the track emerges, just past Moller Drive. Turn left from Moller Drive to Bonville Waters Drive up to Lyons Road. If you drove and parked your car at the school corner, turn left into Lyons Road. Otherwise, turn right to return to Sawtell Village.
Toormina to Boambee – (Nature walk)
3. (2 hours)
Drive to Centro Shopping Centre, Toormina and start at Apex Park in Toormina Road. Take the concrete path which follows a water course to Jane Circuit. Cross over Jane Circuit and follow a track through a bushland park to the top of the hill where Toormina water tanks are. Keep an eye open for koalas sleeping in the trees. Whilst development is encroaching up the hill, there are still good views to the north up the coast, and views of the mountain ranges to the west across Linden Avenue. The concrete path continues around the hill, south to Sunrise Drive. Take the first grassed lane on your left in Sunrise Drive to Harvey Drive, and a further lane left from Harvey Drive to return to the park, and then any easterly track will return you to Jane Circuit. Retrace your steps over the concrete path to Apex Park, Toormina.
With thanks to Maureen Tresize (Sawtell Progress Association) who compiled the original version of these walks.