Tuesday 10 February 2015


Years ago we stayed in Patonga on NSW's Central Coast. Pre-kids. When we thought we might be camping types. We weren't. Or at least not that time. We pitched our tents in the camping ground that runs alongside Patonga's lagoon and when we heard a torrential downpour during the night we feared that we might get swept away. We were right next to the water. The next morning, in pouring rain, we packed away the tent and drove to Pearl Beach to get coffee and Dutch pancakes and shortly afterwards gave away our camping gear. 

Last Friday we were asked by a friend if we wanted to stay at their shack. It had become available. Of course we did. We had always wanted to go back. Just not in a tent.

That afternoon we packed our bags and drove about 90 minutes north of Sydney. Even though it was a Friday afternoon the traffic was reasonable, and had none of the madness that usually goes hand in hand with school holidays. 

The shack was just that - a place renovated in the 1970s and barely touched since. The phone reception was terrible. It was perfect.

The next day the children played with some of the house's toys while we listened to vinyl on an old record player. Later they couldn't contain their excitement to go out on the lagoon on a paddle board. After lunch we went on a walking track alongside the lagoon until we reached what was supposed to be a waterfall. While no water was running that day, there was a rockpool and we found bird feathers and flowers along the way.

Patonga has the dual benefit of having a lagoon and a beach. Both are quite protected so there is no large surf, which is always my preference with little ones. If you lie on your back near the mouth of the lagoon you can enjoy the tide pulling you along. This was our son's favourite activity. The girls enjoyed collecting shells, as did I.

The town has a well-known pub and fish and chip shop. There's a general store too but not much else. There's also a kiosk in the camping ground. In front of it is a well-equipped playground, although the old swing set near the jetty has the better view.

There are walks you can take towards nearby Pearl Beach and plenty to explore in the area. Fishing is popular here too. 

If you're interested in cool accommodation, check out Koskela's Dickebush.

images the indigo crew  


  1. I love Patonga! I used to spend many a day there when family friends had a house on the lagoon. So many memories and lovely to see a blog post about it - so many years later, me now living far away from there - in Denmark! Thank you for helping me remember some happy times!

  2. Wow. What a journey. Yes, it's a pretty special laid-back kind of place. Glad you enjoyed the post. Now you have me thinking about Denmark...