Things to do in Yamba | Australia’s best town

Recognised as Australia’s best town in 2009, Yamba is known for its’ beautiful climate, laid back lifestyle, stunning beaches, food scene and stunning natural environment. While I have many places I consider home, Yamba is home. This guide will give you all you need to know about what to do in Yamba, where to eat, stay and play. I’ve shared all I know so you will know all the things you need to do in Yamba. As you’ll read below, you’ll see that change is constant in Yamba, from business name changes, relocations and businesses completing reinventing themselves. One thing is constant though, great food and warm smiles in a little slice of heaven. Welcome to this local guide of all the things to do in Yamba.

Pippi Beach, Yamba

Where to eat and drink in Yamba:

There’s no better place to start the guide to Yamba than with all the places to eat in Yamba! Yamba’s food scene is impressive and you need to work your way through this list!!!

Beachwood Café

Beachwood Cafe draws in the crowds for it’s fresh local seafood and Mediterranean-Middle Eastern inspired dishes. Open for breakfast and lunch, you’ll be struggling to choose from the menu. Some of my favourites – braised broad beans with garlic yoghurt, Yamba prawn pasta or salad and always, always leave room for dessert!

The Kiosk, Main Beach Yamba
The Kiosk

The Kiosk

The Kiosk is conveniently located at Main Beach, meaning it’s the perfect place for breakfast and a morning dip in the ocean. Best known for their acai bowls, bacon and egg rolls and their occasional ramen special – which has to be the best I have ever tried. 

Yum Yum Café

With a recent move from Angourie into Yamba, Yum Yum still brings it’s delicious menu. It’s highly rated as one of the local favourites.

Drift

This dog friendly, casual breakfast favourite offers classics with a twist. Drift is also open at nights for pizza, in a lovely little outdoor setting under the fairy lights.

Where to eat in Yamba
Summi’s Yamba (VisitNSW)

Summi’s

This beautiful space is a little oasis on Yamba Hill. Come for a coffee and croissant and admire the locally designed fashion and homewares.

Good Days

Formerly known as Lone Rock Café, this local hot spot is no longer just a health food store. Good Days is now known for it’s great coffee, acai bowls, salads, smoothies and cold pressed juices. You can also stock up on your favourite bulk wholefoods and health food treats.

Brgr Spot

Open for lunch and dinner, Brgr Spot is your place for a fun vibe, good time and of course yummy burgers.

Karrikin dessert and cocktail

Karrikin

Previously Leche Café and a local brunch favourite, Karrikin has recreated itself to become a North Coast hot spot offering a unique Australian cuisine experience.  You won’t be disappointed with the selection of cocktails and inspiring menu.

Barbaresco

A necessary stop on any Yamba visit. Barbaresco is a truly Mediterranean experience where you’re best to come in a group just so you can sample more of the menu! The menu changes seasonally but it won’t disappoint. The wine list is just as inspiring as the food menu and make sure you leave room for a dessert or two!

Sand Bar

A tapas menu close to Main Beach offers a beautiful selection of seafood dishes and relaxed vibe.

Paradiso

With a cocktail in hand, chic décor and Asian fusion menu, it’s not hard to feel like you’ve teleported out of Yamba and into a bar in Bali.

Pacific Hotel

You really can’t beat the view from the Pacific Hotel. It’s a great place to meet friends for an afternoon drink to take in the views, particularly during whale season (June to October). If you’re looking for a late night, the pub is opened the longest and has a band Friday and Saturday nights.

Brewery

Another recreated wonder, formerly the Yamba YHA is now the home to Yamba’s first brewery.

The Duke

New to the Yamba scene – The Duke is Yamba’s gin bar which has opened in the Industrial Estate. Gin tastings are available.

Places to eat around Yamba

Palmers Island General Store – Palmers Island

Pop into Palmers Store for great coffee or to stock up on wine and gourmet foods before continuing onto Yamba

Places to eat, Maclean
On the Bite – Maclean

On the Bite – Maclean

One of my absolute favourites for breakfast and lunch, On the Bite is definitely worth the drive. The Baked Eggs for breakfast and Sticky Pork Ribs for lunch are some of my favourites. Open Monday to Friday.

Botero Roastery and Cafe – Maclean

It’s a pretty unique experience to be able to sit in a café and watch as the team roast the coffee beans which will be served on site and all over Northern NSW. 

Sanctus Brewery Co. – Townsend

Bringing something new and different, Sanctus Brewery Co has been a breath of fresh air for the Clarence Valley. Sanctus offers burgers and woodfired pizzas with beer brewed on site.  A courtesy bus will pick up groups with 6 people or more.

Heart and Soul – Grafton

Following the Clarence River south, if you find yourself in Grafton, Heart and Soul is the place for a nourishing and nutritious meal, juice or smoothie. Open Friday afternoons for cocktails and tapas.

Things to do in Yamba

Looking for some additional things to do in Yamba that doesn’t include eating?! Yamba is a nature lovers paradise so the list below will give you a good start for what to do in Yamba.

Things to do in Yamba
Main Beach Pool, Yamba

Yamba beaches

Yamba is known for its stunning beaches and awesome surf breaks. With five beaches in Yamba itself and double if you consider the neighbouring village of Angourie you are spoilt for choice. No matter the wind direction, surfers are blessed with at least one option, usually more.

Catch the ferry to Iluka

Catching the Clarence River Ferry to Iluka can be a fun day out. Consider walking to the Iluka Rainforest reserve or go on the first Sunday of the month for the Iluka markets. Sedgers Reef Hotel is also an option for lunch.

Angourie, NSW

Angourie

Angourie is famous for its surf breaks and beaches. In recent years it’s also become a favourite for Barbaresco – an Italian restaurant and bar serving up cocktails, wood fired pizzas and other Mediterranean fare.

Farmers and Producers Market

Sample local produce and support local farmers from 7-midday at the Wednesday morning farmers market. The Yamba Farmers and Producers Market bring in locals to buy their local fruit and veggies and that includes restaurant and café owners. You’ll also find a fine selection of gourmet goodies, coffee and breakfast options. The Farmers Market can be found in the Turners Beach car park. 

Yamba Riverside Market

The fourth Sunday of every month brings the Riverside Market. Drawing in stall owners from all over the Northern Rivers, you can find local entertainment, food, art, clothing, plants, books amongst other things. You can easily spend a few hours if you stay for lunch and the entertainment (the dumplings and cinnamon dough nuts are my favourite).

Walks in Yamba, NSW
Yamba break wall

Walks and hiking

Whether you’re looking for a leisurely walk along the water or something a bit more challenging, Yamba has you covered. Some of my personal favourite walks include a wander along the break wall, along the river towards Turners Beach (particularly late in the afternoon when the dolphins are feeding), walking up the lighthouse or along any of the beaches. The surrounding National Parks have some beautiful walks too.

Whale watching

Whether you take a local whale watching charter or just watch from the beach, the watch the whales migrate between June and October is an incredibly special experience.

Fishing

A town known for its seafood, Yamba is the place to go fishing. Taking a trip on a fishing charter will further your chances of taking home a feed.

Nicholson Fine Foods – tasting tours

Nicholson Fine Foods talk and taste tours are a great way to sample a number of the products

Things to do in Yamba, fruit picking
Peach picking at the Peach Farm

Things to do around Yamba

The Peach Farm

Located in Mororo, about 20 minutes from Yamba is The Peach Farm. Relatively new to town, The Peach Farm offers the full farm experience with animals and peach picking from September to November. Dine in or bring a picnic rug to chill on the lawn under the trees

Coming soon – yoga, chill zone, playground, wine and cheese nights, wood fired pizza and local beer on tap, sunset outdoor cinema!

Explore neighbouring coastal villages

The Clarence Valley is spoilt for choice when it comes to beautiful beaches and coastal villages. You could spend weeks exploring the Clarence Coast from Wooli, Minnie Waters, Brooms Head and Sandon in the south to Iluka, Woody Head in the north.

Things to do around Yamba, Maclean
Clarence River at Maclean

Explore inland villages

Our inland villages are quaint and offer a completely different experience. Many of our inland villages have pubs making them the perfect place to stop for lunch – Maclean, Lawrence, Brushgrove and Ulmarra.

Grafton Jacaranda Festival

From late October to early November the streets of Grafton are lined with of purple. It’s during this period the jacaranda trees are in bloom in Australia’s jacaranda city. The Jacaranda Festival runs for a week every year – with the main day of the festival being Jacaranda Thursday, the first Thursday in November.

Grafton Jacaranda Festival
Jacaranda season in Grafton

Where to stay in Yamba

There’s plenty of choice when it comes to places to stay in Yamba – and on everyone’s budget from holiday homes, hotels and the local caravan parks.

Yamba Holiday Rentals – for all your beach house options

Angourie Rainforest Resort – for those looking to indulge and be pampered in a rainforest oasis

Calypso Holiday Park – for those on a budget

The Black Ace – for large groups of 16+ in the centre of town

Where to shop in Yamba

Shopping is amongst tourist’s favourite things to do in Yamba. For a small coastal town, there is quite a bit of choice.

Belinda’s Store

Belinda’s Store has been in business for over 10 years bringing high end fashion to Yamba. Stocking Elms + King, Mela Purdie, Binny, Ginger and Smart, Mavi, Jac and Jack to name a few. I personally love Belinda’s beautiful selection of coffee table books, candles, purses and shoes!

Island Collective

For tropical island furnishings, home decor, art and jewellery. The Island Collective features brands like The Beach People, Kawaiian Lion, Byron Bay Hanging Chairs – now located in town.

Beaches of Yamba
Pippi Beach, Yamba

Co-working spaces in Yamba

Blanc space – Yamba’s very own co-working space.

End notes

Thank you for visiting my home slice, supporting our local businesses and community. Please travel responsibly taking your rubbish with you and leave nothing but your footprints.

Stay tuned – more posts on Yamba coming soon!

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