The Tathra Scene
We invite you to get into our nature, it’s our locals favourite time of year.
As the sun rises over Tathra Beach, bathing the sands in tangerine hues, several swimmers slip in to the sea. One lone couple are walking their dog on the beach from Mogareeka and back, and a solitary SUP boarder paddles through golden water. It is Autumn, but that doesn’t stop the ocean-going-people here, and anyway, it’s often warmer in.
Take the plunge into Tathra’s clear, sapphire waters, either open-water swimming, or hire a SUP, grab a wetsuit and explore the many physical and mental benefits that our clear depths bring to your body and mind. Paddling and wading through lakes, rivers and seas is invigorating. It may be exactly what you need for a sense of adventure and to calm your mind. Plus, it’s far more interesting than laps in your local, heated pool.
Swimming in the ocean during Autumn and Winter can be quite addictive. “I dive under and look back up at the sun shining down through the waves and I feel so alive, it’s like a high” says one local woman who swims almost every morning of the year.
Tathra seas can be very calm at this time of year, so bring your snorkel, and dive into our pristine undersea world, perhaps search for crayfish as they make their way into the shallow, weedy bays on our coast. How satisfying will it be to return with a fresh crayfish for dinner? Don’t forget to check with fisheries for bag limits and sizes.
As well as swimming, walking or exploring Tathra and its beautiful surrounds, Bournda National Park to the south and Mimosa Rocks and Biamanga National Parks to the north, will also give you a sense of the surrounding landscape as a wilderness. Take the stunning and rugged, yet relatively easy, Kangarutha Track that runs south from Tathra’s Kianinny Bay to the shores of Wallagoot Lake, and the secret beach that is The Gap. You’ll be lucky to come across any other walkers on this track, especially during the week, and diving into the pretty bay at The Gap makes you feel alive! At 9kms each way, it’s ideal to have someone either drop you at Wallagoot and then walk back (via the Tathra Hotel maybe?). Or head the opposite direction, taking a gorgeous picnic pack of cheese and locally made sourdough from Blend Providore in your backpack, for a gourmet repast with amazing views and tranquillity. The birdlife is myriad, with lyrebirds frequently heard, sometimes spotted, and many gorgeous bays to sit and contemplate the sea and its life.
Just north of Tathra, within Mimosa Rocks National Park you’ll find many easy walks through forests of spotted gum and over inlets and sands to isolated coastline; like the Bithry Inlet to Middle Beach walk of around 2kms each way. Throughout the site are remnants of the property’s past, seats and windmill bases, plus wildlife and beautiful vistas.
There is also the secluded Gillard’s Beach Camping Ground, where you can pull up a caravan, trailer or van (no powered sites) and enjoy a stay very near town, yet completely isolated. You can walk and explore our hidden coastline north towards Middle Beach from this point. Or head south for a longer hike to serene Nelson’s Lagoon.
After a day of hiking the wilds of Tathra, head in to the Tathra Hotel or one of our other wonderful eating houses for a heart-warming beverage, a cocktail or a house-brewed beer by an open fire. When you’re ready, enjoy a fine meal of local beef or oysters, seafood or pasta.
Fat Tony’s Bar & Grill host Ant Little grew up in Tathra and has many stories to share. His restaurant is in the historic Harbourmaster’s House, conveniently situated next to his brother’s bottle-shop. The recently re-furbished, landmark Tathra Hotel sits atop the headland with sweeping views of the ocean expanse, always great viewing for diving seabirds and the whales of the humpback highway. You can sit and watch the sun go down from the terraced front verandah of the hotel or view the ocean from the contemporary comfort of the dining room.
Perhaps you just want to head back to your accommodation or camp site laden with gourmet ingredients for a grazing feast, from Blend Providore or Friendly’s Grocer? At Blend, you can even get your hands on coffee-making jugs and equipment, as well as fresh coffee beans. Or lash out and visit Mimosa Meats and chat to Emma & Josh about their dry-ageing cabinet. They often have beef that’s been aged for up to 90 days, meltingly delicious when cooked over coals.
If you feel like soaking up some local culture, jump in the car and spend a day exploring nearby. Create your own art experience on the northern Tourist Drive, starting right in town at The Wharf Local, or give artist David Mills a call, he’s open most days…then on to Tanja and the ceramic studio of Rainchair Ceramics. Tanja is also home to the reputable Ivy Hill Gallery. From there, take the scenic ‘Dr George’ route to Bega and visit our Bega Valley Regional Gallery, returning by way of Jellat Jellat’s farming country.
But you don’t really have to go anywhere. We have everything you need in Tathra. There is music in the pub every weekend and if you forgot your book, or your favourite winter woollens, there’s an opportunity shop that could deck you out as well as provide some holiday reading. There’s a pharmacy in Tathra, and a bakery for your insatiable sausage roll fix, a stationers and video hire shop up at the top, right next to our friendly post office where you can send that postcard “We won’t be back!”
Fancy a game of golf? Tathra boasts an 18 hole Kel Nagle designed course of kikuyu fairways, bent greens, gentle and undulating, with water on three sides. The dress code is pretty relaxed and there are men’s and ladies competitions throughout the week. Visitors to the club are always welcome so for more info go to the Tathra Beach Country Club. There are tennis courts too, so throw the racquet in with the clubs.
Here’s an idea, why not drop the fur babies off at our local Sapphire Coast Kennels & Cattery at Kalaru, so they too can have a holiday while you’re out and about exploring the National Parks. You won’t have to worry about them getting themselves into trouble or having to be tied up.
Of course there is always fishing. If you like a session of beach fishing, you could do well at Tathra Beach, long and lonely Bournda Beach in the south, and Middle Beach in the North. And if lures and fly fishing are more your thing, on the beautiful waters at Mogareeka, where the Bega River meets the sea you can fish for whiting, bream, yellowfin, blackfin and pump for nippers and bloodworms. Perhaps some sweet flathead will be on the camp menu, accompanied by a local white wine? That’s Tathra in Autumn.
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