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Nelson Bay

(4.1/5 based on 3,400+ reviews for top 20 attractions)
Things to do: sightseeing, historic sites, water activities
Nelson Bay is a suburb of the Port Stephens local government area in the Hunter Region of New South Wales, Australia. It is located on a bay of the same name on the southern shore of Port Stephens about 60km by road north-east of Newcastle, its nearest rail link. At the 2011 census, Nelson Bay had a population of 5,396. It is a major tourism centre, particularly for dolphin and whale watching, surfing, diving, fishing and other recreational aquatic activities.The eastern boundaries of Nelson Bay lie within the Tomaree National Park while the southeastern section is almost entirely within the park.Nelson Head Light, an unusual lighthouse built in 1875, is positioned on the northeast corner.Early settlersEarly settlers included the Dalton family, the patriarch being Captain John Dalton who sailed his ship SS Kingsley to Sydney with fresh marine produce from Port Stephens. He built a house "Westward Ho" in 1882 on the hill overlooking the modern town, on 40acre. He donated land from his holding for the Methodist Church, and for a school.
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