A range of recreation and education activities are allowed within the Park. Please consider all other users of the Park. Some activities are only allowed in designated areas. For the safety of all users, you must obey the signage throughout the Park. Rangers and NSW Police regularly patrol the Park. As with any natural area, you are responsible for your own safety and well being.
There are many walking tracks through the Park to explore the natural beauty of the wetlands, sand plains and endangered ecological communities.
These vary from the well formed and sealed Fernleigh Track to the quiet sandy Wildlflower Walk.
Sand Plains Loop - A long walk through the central dunes, mostly sand, and a medium to difficult walk. It is not suitable for strollers and wheelchairs.
Wildflower Walk - This short walk runs parallel to the Fernleigh Track. The surrounding vegetation provides a beautiful display of flowers during parts of the year. This walk is flat and easy however it is sand so not suitable for wheelchairs or strollers.
Fernleigh Track - The famous Fernleigh Track is managed by Lake Macquarie City Council and follows a disused coal rail line. It is sealed and suitable for all users. The track is a dual use so bicycles and walkers share the track. No motorised vehicles are permitted on the track. _
Gilbey Track - The short walk provides a beautiful close vies of the Jewells Wetlands. It has a wide diversity of animals and vegetation. It is fairly flat and can be walked by all users. Uneven terrain would make it difficult for a wheelchair however sturdy strollers can be used on this track.
Jewells to Dunes - this is a longer walk of moderate difficulty for walkers wishing to head to Nine Mile Beach. It extends from the Gilbey Track and heads up into the sand dunes surrounded by a variety of dune vegetation. It has excellent views of Nine Mile Beach. This track becomes very hot in summer and precautions should be taken including sun protection and water.
Camping is permitted only on the beach and dune areas of the Park. Camping is primitive with no toilets, water or rubbish disposal. You need to take your rubbish with you, bring your own water and dispose of human wastes appropriately. Please consider other users of the Park when camping and keep noise to a minimum.
The Park is very busy in peak times and a permit system was be implemented in 2015.
With 240 hectares of wetlands there are numerous bird species in the Park. There are three bird hides in the southern area of the Park, located on the Airshaft Peninsula.
Swimming, surfing and kite surfing
9 Mile Beach is popular for many activities. It is NOT a patrolled beach and users must take all precautions and care. The nearest lifeguards are seasonal and based at Redhead Beach Surf Life Saving Club. Check conditions before you head to the beach.
4 Wheel Driving
Registered, 4 Wheel Drives are allowed in the Park. All vehicles must comply with NSW Road regulations as well as all regulations outlined in the Permit Guidlines, including speed limits, blood alcohol limits and licensing of drivers.
4WDs need to take particular care for pedestrians, dogs and children within the Park, especially on the sand dunes where families walk and picnic. Locked gates, blocked walkways and signage must be complied with.
Please remember to lower your tire pressure for sand driving and carry appropriate recovery equipment. Vehicle recovery is your responsibility and cost. Take care of rising tides and avoid submerging your vehicle.
All vehicles need to stay off regenerating sand dune and bushland areas.
Sand Dunes are highly sensitive environments. Please stay on cleared tracks and do not drive into vegetated areas or make new tracks.
Horse riding is permitted in the park on fire trails and the beach front south of the Beach Access Track. Registration is required prior to entering the park.
Download Horse Riding flier and read the Guidelines for registration. Email the completed Registration form to firstname.lastname@example.org
Dogs are allowed within all areas of the Park. Dogs must be on leash, well behaved and avoid native wildlife. NO HUNTING is allowed in the Park.
There is a leash free area at Second Creek to Third Creek. Council regulations for off leash areas apply.
Please take care with your dog due to the high number of 4WD vehicles in the park at peak times.