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Copacabana Beach and Central Coast Attractions

June 12, 2018 by Central Coast Holiday Homes
Copacabana Beach is one of the best Central Coast Attractions. The beach itself is one of the best Copacabana Attractions.a Beach on the Central Coast on a nice sunny afternoon. Tudibaring Head and the Rock Pool are in the background. Not far for Copa Beachside which is a great spot for family accommodation. Pet friendly. Captain Cook Lookout is excellent for Whale Watching

Copacabana Beach, one of the best Central Coast Attractions. Whale Watching is excellent from the top of the cliff on the left.


The Central Coast is part of Greater Sydney and is under a “Stay at Home” lockdown. Presently (09/08/21) the situation appears dismal but we all hope that by Christmas (this year) our situation will have improved. We look forward to Copacabana once again going back to its normal popular and vibrant self.

Copacabana and other Central Coast Attractions

For decades we have explored the Central Coast Attractions and have decided that Copacabana Beach is one of the best attractions on the Central Coast NSW. Firstly we appreciate the peace and tranquility associated with Copacabana Beach. Secondly, here is a beach which is not only clean, protected, has an excellent surf but is also patrolled by life guards. Thirdly,  in contrast to its northern cousins, it is still  undeveloped and retains that village charm (very important in this virus prone time)! However others may prefer the more hectic lifestyle associated with other Central Coast attractions such as Avoca or Terrigal beaches.

The aim of this section is to describe the wide range of attractions, not only in Copacabana, but also around the Central Coast. Specifically, this will alert you to the local attractions and enable you to make the very best of your next holiday. In order to set the holiday mood we will start with a description of a typical day for a holidaymaker staying in Copacabana.

Map of Central Coast (Click Here)

Daybreak on Copacabana Beach

This is daybreak at Copacabana Beach. The beach is one of the best Copacabana Attractions and Copacabana is one of the best Central Coast Attractions. The northern end of the beach is excellent for whale watching.

Copacabana Beach at Dawn

On Del Monte Place, the main street back from  Copacabana Beach, activity is starting shortly after sunrise. The kookaburras and then the  magpies  have had their singsong. Initially the early walkers and a few runners are active. Likewise, others are struggling up the steep hill to the Captain Cook lookout (good for whale watching). Being elevated, it is undoubtedly, on of the best spots on the Central Coast to spot whales. Furthermore, the steep climb has to be good for cardiac health. Conversely, a few people are taking a more leisurely approach walking their pets along the beach.

In the background is the soft sound of waves breaking on Copacabana Beach. Above all, the air is usually clear and fresh except for occasional sea mist.

Meanwhile the Newsagent is open. Copaccino’s  and Waves Cafe  are putting their tables and chairs onto the footpath. A few patrons have  gathered in order to enjoy an early coffee while reading the paper. At the same time, back on the beach,  board riders are out and enjoying  waves at the Point and on the main beach. In addition, an occasional person is walking or running the 1.4 Km to Macmasters. There are always a few fishermen trying their luck on the beach while a couple of diehards are taking an early morning dip in the safe rock pool.

Things to do in Copacabana include having coffee and snacks outside one of the local cafes. One of the Copacabana Attractions is the village atmosphere not seen with some of the larger Central Coast Attractions. In front of the shops is a beachfront lookout good for whale watching.lookout

Copacabana Shops

Copacabana Attractions – Midmorning

By mid-morning Del Monte is humming with holiday makers enjoying a late breakfast. Meanwhile, surfers are getting out in numbers and the sunbakers are laying  out their towels.  Artie’s Café  has an ideal position on the side of the Surf Club overlooking the beach, Thus it is a particular Copacabana attraction and highly recommended. It is now open and patrons are relaxing with coffee and snacks.

Families  have gathering around the adjacent Cochrane Lagoon. This is a great Copacabana attraction because it is a shallow, warm and protected body of water ideal for young children. Dogs are also permitted to join in the fun (parts of the Beach and Lagoon are pet friendly). Later on, a few canoes and possibly an occasional paddleboard make their appearance. At the same time the sandhills are being populated by sunbakers and readers. Others have climbed to hill to enjoy some whale watching.

Central Coast Attractions Away from Copacabana

Some people are seeking attractions beyond the village. Usually, they will be off  sight-seeing, bushwalking in the Bouddi National Park, Shopping, Horse Riding or Boating. However in addition, some travel even further away to visit Treetops, the Reptile Park or have gone to  Glenworth Valley. People particularly flock to the Gosford Regional Gallery because  they will be charmed, not only by the art displays, but also by the beautiful Japanese Gardens and Café.

Some people are whale watching because May-Oct. is the time for the Humpback Whale Migration. The Captain Cook’s Lookout is quite high and consequently provides excellent whale watching opportunities. Incidently, on some really exciting days the whales will play close to the beach or even directly below the lookout.

By lunchtime it may be getting too hot for the beach and consequently people are leaving. However the Cafes are packed while others are home enjoying a quiet siesta. Therefore  little outside activity occurs during the heat of  day.

Copacabana and Central Coast Attractions – Afternoon Activities

Later in the afternoon the beaches and lagoon are re-populated. Copacabana’s local Lady Pizza starts to throb. Subsequently by late afternoon, there are people queuing outside for Pizzas and craft beer. In addition the bottle shop next door is doing a roaring trade from people stocking up for nightly festivities. There is also an unofficial hotel across the road where surfers finish the day with a can of beer under the “No Alcohol” sign.

Copacabana Information confirms that Lady Pizza is a very popular place for Pizza and craft beer. You can also look across to the bay for some whale watching.

Lady Copa


Usually, the evenings are quiet because most people are either dining with family and friends or out at a restaurant. Hugo’s, which was the only other Copacabana restaurant is now the Ocean Bar Cantina  Consequently most people travel to adjacent Avoca  where the is a feast of restaurants.

Loud disturbances and late night parties are unusual in this village so most holiday makers are able to get a sound night’s sleep ready for the next day.

Topography (Click Here for Map)

Copacabana Attractions – Beach and Surfing

Copacabana Information on local beach conditions and the best way to enjoy your holiday. The supurb beach will always be one of the main Copacabana Attractions. Up at the Captain Cook Lookout, behind this photo, is an excellent area for whale watching.

Copacabana Beach

A special Copacabana attraction is the surf because Copacabana is one of the best surfing spots on the Central Coast and “rarely disappoints”. In addition to being a long clean beach it is protected on each end by rocky headlands. Furthermore, if the predominantly south facing beach is blown out, it takes only 5 minutes to drive to  Avoca Beach  which has an entirely different orientation. Thus Avoca and Copacabana beaches are complementary.  Copacabana surf is at it’s best when there is a  northerly swell strengthening the left hand break at Copacabana Point.

Rock Pool

Copacabana Information describes the local rockpool which is a safe and enjoyable place for young children. It is one of the good Copacabana Attractions. Next to this pool is a high cliff which is excellent for whale watching.

Copacabana Rockpool

Young children and parents love Copacabana Beach because, in addition to being  clean and well patrolled, it has a child-perfect rock pool. Large rocks around the pool produce a wave-break so that for the most part the waves are  gentle and  non-threatening to tiny tots. The bottom of the pool is soft sand. In addition, young children love finding the multitude of small creatures which lay hidden in rock crevices between the surrounding boulders.

Copacabana  Surf Club

Another Copacabana Attraction is the well designed and multicoloured Surf Club seen here. Arti'es Cafe is in the foreground. Several neighbouring beaches also have simiar pleasant Suf Clubs. Thes can be considered one of the Central Coast Attractions. From here you can look out across the bay - good for whale watching.

Artie’s Cafe

Copacabana Beach is also popular because it has a gentle slope with sandbars on which one can stand. Moreover , it is patrolled by lifeguards and consequently relatively safe. Copacabana Surf Life Saving Club stands guard over the whole beach. It is a particularly attractive and colorful building. Under the building is Artie’s Café which opens  onto a flat, grassy area. It is in a shady area with gentle breezes, and has a good view down the beach. These features combined with excellent coffee and snacks at a reasonably price add to its appeal.

Central Coast Attractions – Whale Watching

The Humpback Whale Migration  commenced early this year (2019) with sightings from early March.  Migration usually occurs between May and October. Presently (July)  whales are still migrating northwards, but soon we will see the southward migration of whales with their newly borne babies.

A perfect spot for whale watching is from the elevated The Captain Cook Lookout. In addition to the height, it provides a wide view both up and down the coast. This panoramic view extends from Norah Head in the north to Sydney Heads in the South. A a result of the wide view it is common for whale watchers  to spot 2-5 whales at any one time. Furthermore, pods of dolphins are sometimes seen playing in the adjacent surf. A plaque outlining Cook’s visit to the area is on display. There is a car-park at the Lookout otherwise you have a quite steep walk up the hill. It can be thought of as a “get fit” exercise.

 Whale Watching and Drones

A common channel for whales watching appears to be about 2 Km out from the Lookout but occasionally they come much closer – even adjacent to the rocks just below the Lookout. People are obtaining amazing photos of whales using Drones launched from the lookout. As a reference point for such activity the deck of the Lookout is allegedly at 127 M above mean sea level.

The clubhouse  also has viewing platforms on the upper level for whale watching. Bonnie’s Lookout in front of the shops, is a handy viewing platform.

Cochrane Lagoon – One of the Best Copacabana Attractions

A special Copacabana Attraction is the shallow and usually warm Cochrane Lagoon. Here we see children playing on the edge of the Lagoon. The area is also designated pet Friendly. Don't forget whale watching from Captain Cook Lookout a little further to the north.

Playing at Cochrane Lagoon – a great Copacabana Attraction.

Cochrane Lagoon is a large body of water separating Copacabana Beach from  Macmasters Beach. It is intermittently tidal but mostly the entrance is closed by a sand bar. A proportion of the lagoon is quite shallow and therefore usually warm whereas sailboarders, and kayakers make good use of the deeper areas. Some successful fishing is done at night thus providing another interest for children.

The lagoon can be seen as a multi-purpose area, particularly for young children but also for pets because of designated areas for dogs. There are even areas where they can be off the leash.  Some of the rental properties are on the edge of, or across the road from, the Lagoon.  Copa Beachside is only one example.

A Major Copacabana Attraction  – Watch the Lagoon being Opened

You may, if lucky,  be visiting Copacabana when the Lagoon is opened. After heavy rains the water level in the Lagoon rises and periodically floods backyards. When this happens the Lagoon has to be drained.

Digging a small trench to the beach is the initial procedure. At the start there is only a small trickle of water but within a few hours the outflow becomes a raging torrent many meters across. This is a particularly exciting time for board and boogie riders who, for long periods, are able to ride the standing waves formed by the torrent. It is truly a very spectacular and exciting time for all present.

While it remains tidal the lagoon gets a good wash-out after which a sandbar reforms and another cycle commences.

Pet Friendly Areas Around the Beach and lagoon.

Why board out your pets when they can also enjoy the holiday? Check the adjacent map to see where pets can roam on or off the leash. What could be more enjoyable for the whole family than playing on the beach with their pet chasing sticks and balls? Also a lot cheaper!

Map of Copacabana Beach showing pet friendly areas. These consitute a major Copacabana Attraction. The best area for whale watching is from the cliff at the northern end.

Copacabana Pet Friendly Areas (from CoastCommunityNews)

Down the Beach

Macmasters Beach occupies the area southwards from Cochrane Lagoon to Two Points Headland. This beach is a mirror image of Copacabana Beach with both terminating in towering hills with ocean pools and Surf Clubs below. The area is strongly developer resistant and as a result the Surf Club and associated Bare Foot Cafe are the only commercial sites in town. Outside the town is the Coffee Shack. Consequently this, together with the Surf Club, provides the best (only) coffee in the area. They are also the only source of provisions before Kincumber township (or a walk along the beach to Copacabana shops).

Accordingly the whole  area is residential with approximately 900 homes surrounded by bush, the beach and lagoon.


Information on Copacabana Shops

A Central Coast as well as Copacabana Attraction is the Lady Pizza at Copacabana Beach. Known for their Pizzas and craft beer. During the daytime you can look across the bay for a little whale watching.

Lady Copa

The Copacabana Village Shops provide essentials and include a mini market, ice cream shop, bottle shop, news agency (with post office) and two hair salons (Snips and Havana Hair and Beauty).

There are now four coffee shop/bistros on the main street (Copaccino’sWaves Cafe and IceCream and Havana Cafe) and, recently, a cafe/bakery – Burnt Honey Bakery. Additionally there is another further on at the Surf Club (Artie’s Place). Besides providing essential provisions the local mini market also hires surf boards. Hugo’s Restaurant has now been sold and Ocean bar-cantina is open Tuesday 11AM till Sunday evening.  Luca’s Discount chemist, Lady Copa Pizzeria e birra  and a local Medical Centre are three new additions to the centre. There are also 3 real-estate agents in Copacabana – Stone, LJHooker and George Brand.

All four cafes can be considered Copacabana Attractions. Here we see the Cabana Cafe underneath the stately pine tree.

Cabana Cafe on a Busy Day

Other Central Coast Attractions – Local Shops

Hardy Bay’s Mooch Inside is very popular because of its eclectic treasure trove of clothes, gifts and décor items sufficient to satisfy the shopping urge. The Mousehole at Avoca also has an interesting array of gifts. Furthermore there is Erina Fair which is a huge shopping complex/mall only 15 minutes drive away.

Local Dining and Provisions – More Copacabana and Central Coast Attractions

Cafes and Restaurants

For snacks go to Copaccino’s, or to Artie’s at the Copa Surf Club  because both have excellent coffee and café meals at good prices.

New Coffee Shop Bakery. Another good spot for whale watching.

Burnt Honey Coffee/Bakery

Lady-Copa-Pizzeria-e-birra is very popular because of its Pizzas and craft beer. it is open from midday into the evening.

The previous Hugo’s restaurant has now opened under new management as Ocean Bar-cantina. It is fully licensed and has excellent meals at reasonable prices as well as drinks on tap. Highly recommended.

Woy’s Fishermans’s Wharf also has fresh seafood meals . Besides dining in the air-conditioned restaurant, you can dine more cheaply in the outside kiosk. Alternatively you can buy fresh or cooked take-away food.

Bells at Killcare is a quality restaurant situated in lovely grounds and consequently very suitable for that special occasion. Accommodation can also be provided.


Sea-Coast Fishing on Scenic Drive, has locally caught and therefore, very fresh seafood. Accordingly it is a great spot to obtain seafood, plus a few oysters and prawns, for the evening BBQ.

George’s Fruit Barn is number one for fresh fruit and vegetables . Additionally he has a good selection of French cheeses and organic meats. Driving from Copacabana takes no more than fifteen minutes.

Copacabana Information indicates that Bell's at Kilcare is one of the best local dining sites. It is a particularly one of the Central Coast and Copacabana Attractions.

Bell’s Killcare


Central Coast Attractions – Exploration

Walking and Hiking

Walking to beautiful Maitland Bay and along other tracks in the Bouddi National Park is one of the best things you can do while in Copacabana. Accordingly take a particularly charming walk from Macmasters Beach to Putty Beach (8.6Km). The track is well formed, in places has boardwalk and the views are nothing short of spectacular. It is not a physically difficult treck. If you still want more, continue to the nearby Surf Club at Killcare for lunch.

There is also a 5 Lands Walk which extends along the beaches from Macmasters through Copacabana and Avoca Beaches to Terrigal (10 Km). The segment between Copacabana and Avoca involves climbing a fairly steep road to Captain Cooks Lookout followed by a grassy path, concrete steps, board-walk and beach.

Another picturesque walk is from Shelly Beach (Tuggerah) to Crackneck Lookout. Apparently the views are more than spectacular.

Entertainment and Educational Parks

This glorious view from the Maitland Bay trail is describes in Copacabana Information. it is a major Copacabana and Central Coast Attraction.

Maitland Bay – glorious views.

The Reptile Park at Somersby  is a special attraction for the Central Coast. In the first place it has reptiles from around the world in addition to having native Australian animals, themed exhibits and scenic tours. It is the only place in Australia that provides snake anti-venom and accordingly it has a large supply of snakes in safe-keeping.

Wildlife Sanctuary at Calga is also not that far from Copacabana. You can spend a pleasing and enjoyable day in the Australian bush with friendly animals. Furthermore you will learn about  breeding and saving endangered creatures.

A Trip to Amazement Farm and Fun Park could be a enjoying excursion. It features a large maze of hedges as well as friendly farm animals, play areas and a bird sanctuary. Reputably it is one of the best attractions on the Central Coast  for young children. It is near Wyong Creek and best to check the opening days and times before going.  The Amazement Farm and Fun Park, Treetops, Glenworth Valley and Wildlife Sanctuary are all west of the motorway and may be easiest accessed coming or going from the Central Coast.

The Arboretum at Pearl Beach is well known for the 5 hectares of native bush-land with established pathways which have been opened to the public.

Other Central Coast Attractions – Adventure

Safe Tree Climbing

TreeTops Central Coast, near Wyong, is a safe climbing experience for young people (we can highly recommend the site).


Horse Riding is available at Bensville Riding School and also at Glenworth Valley Outdoor Adventures. The latter also has Kayaking, Quad bike Rides, Abseiling and Camping.


Central Coast Attractions. Flying over Copacabana and the Central Coast in a microlight has to be a very memorable adventure and one of the best Central Cost Attractions. Maybe this is also a good method for whale watching.

Microlight Adventures

Joy Flights over Copacabana and the rest of the Central Coast are available from Microlight Adventures, Central Coast Aero Club and from Coast Helicopters. One of these could be used as an exciting present for a special occasion. Maybe this is good for keen whale watchers.

Scuba Diving

Take one of the Scuba Diving courses or go on a supervised trip.  For example, Pro-Dive Central Coast has an exclusive licence to dive on the wreck of HMAS Adelaide off the Terrigal coast.

Central Coast Surf Lessons

Copacabana beach has Centralcoastsurfacademy lessons for all ages.  This could be useful for your children. Similar courses are available at Terrigal, Avoca, Wamberal, Umina, Macmasters, and Shelley Beach.

Multiple Hedge Mazes

These can be found at Amazement Farm and Fun Park. it has a large maze of hedges as well as fiendly farm animas, play areas and a bird santuary. Reputably one of the best attractions on the Central Coast  for young children. It is near Wyong Creek and best to check the opening days and times before going.  The Amazement Farm and Fun Park, Treetops and Glenworth Valley are all west of the motorway and may be easiest accessed coming or going from the Central Coast.

Fishing – a given Central Coast Attraction

Useful fishing areas for the children include the rocks in Cochrane Lagoon, the wharfs at Hardy’s Bay and Wagstaff as well as in the gutters off Copacabana Beach.

Several firms offer charters for game fishing including Central Coast Reef and Game Fishing Charters (which has good reviews). A further firm,  at Terrigal, is Terrigal Bluewater Fishing Charters.  You can hire a 4 seat “tinnie” with sunshade (and bait) at Killcare Marina for about $14/hr. Great for fishing or exploring the Brisbane Waters (recommended).


Copacabana Beach has a Sports Venue. This is adjacent to the public school and has two tennis courts which can be booked online or through the Newsagency/Post office.  Tennis courts are also available  next door at  Avoca.

Movies around the Central Coast

The restored Avoca Theatre is an iconic Central Coast Attraction. It is a must visit for all holidayers. Only 5 minutes from Copacabana.

Avoca Theatre

Visit the historic Avoca Picture Theatre housed in a rambling wooden cottage (seating 280). The sixty-year-old cinema won Australia’s Best Regional Cinema award. In summer it features an outdoor performance.

Cinema Paradiso at Ettalong is another local movie house. For the latest releases go to the Hoyts complex at Erina Fair.

Golfing is definitely a Central Coast Attraction

Missing golf? Then try the Public courses available at Gosford and  Woy Woy A pleasant nine hole course at nearby Terrigal/Wamberal is suitable for an evening bash. The Magenta Shores course on the edge of the Tuggerah Lakes is particularly challenging.  Shelly Beach, running along the coastline, has to be one of the most picturesque courses on the Central Coast (book early). A little further inland is the championship Kooindah Waters course which is also quite challenging and has a lovely clubhouse. Near Kincumber is an excellent driving range with grass tees-ups. One could also stop at The Springs (Calga) on the way up or back from Sydney. it is also a challenging and appropriately named course


A competitor to the Avoca Theatre is the Deco Art theatre at Ettalong. It is also one of the well known Central Coast Attractions.

Cinema Paradiso Ettalong

Gosford Regional Gallery at East Gosford has great Japanese Gardens, coffee shop and of course, gallery and gift shop.

Meet local artists in their studios. Details are on 5 Lands Art Studios.

Ferry Trips and Canoeing – Central Coast Attractions

A Ferry Trip from Wagstaff or Ettalong to Palm Beach is a pleasant distraction for a rainy day. it provides good views of the Hawkesbury, Broken Bay and Lion Island as well as Palm Beach.

An interesting trip can also be had on the River Postman.

A half day Kayak up the Patonga Creek is a beautiful thing to do. Morning tea is provided.

Skateboard Park and Children’s Playground

Near the Copacabana Beach parking area is a good Skateboard Park which could keep your children happy while you play with the tiny tots in the adjacent  Shaun Brinklow children’s playground.

Or Just Relax

Simply take time off to have a BBQ in the back yard or drive around and inspect the local area,

Summary of the Best Copacabana and Central Coast Attractions

Surfing is the ultimate Central Coast Attraction (Click Here for Map).

To obtain the beat conditions try surfing Copacabana Beach Point, mid-beach Copacabana, or Avoca.  Forresters Beach off-shore reef may tempt the experienced.


Take a trip up to the hill from Copacabana Beach to Captain Cook Lookout or explore other  Central Coast attractions such as the Bouddi National Park– particularly Maitland Bay. If you are fit try walking The  5  Lands Walk but only after you have arranged a return lift.

Golfing – Something to Do on the Central Coast

If you are into Golfing improve your game with a lesson at the Kincumber Driving Range (highly rated) or play Magenta Shores.

Dining – Copacabana Information

For a great experience try Lady-Copa-Pizzeria-e-birra or Ocean Bar Cantina in Copacabana although for that special occasion a trip to to Bells at Killcare is highly recommended.


It’s hard to beat Treetops for children’s climbing adventures (one of the very best things to do in Copacabana). Alternatively, Bensville Horse Riding and Glenworth Outdoor Adventures  have excellent reviews.


If you are interested in shopping for odds-and-ends, clothes or home décor go to Moochinside at Hardy’s Bay. Similarly, for more serious  shopping, the huge complex at Erina Fair should satisfy your needs.

Movies – A Central Coast Attraction for Wet Days

For those who enjoy movies  take a trip to the iconic refurbished Avoca Theatre.  Conversely, for the very latest releases go to the Hoyts Movie  complex at Erina Fair.

Fresh Fish – A local Copacabana Attraction.

Seacoast Fishing on Scenic Drive (a short distance from Copacabana Beach) has the Freshest Fish on the Central Coast. Consquently it is the perfect place to pick up fish, prawns and oysters for the evening BBQ.

Fresh Fruit and Vegetables    

 You will find George’s Fruit Barn  a very useful place, not only because of the amazing  range of Fresh Produce but also because of the extensive supply of Delicatessen foods.

Art and Culture – Another Central Coast Attraction.

For those interested in Art and Culture, a visit to the Gosford Regional Gallery is something to do in Copacabana. It is a very pleasant surprise because of the Japanese Gardens as well as quality exhibitions and an excellent gift and coffee shop.

Central Coast Attractions – Additional Tip

Finally,  on the way to Copacabana or Macmasters stop at the Kincumber Post Café.  Besides being an absolutely charming place with great coffee and good snacks it has a child’s playground. In additionall, on the trip back to Sydney, consider stopping at the Mooney Mooney Club (near Hawkesbury Bridge) for an evening meal or alternatively, stop at Saddles ( Mt. White) for lunch.

Copacabana Holiday Homes