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WHERE THE Great Lakes, just three hours’ from Syd­ney, are a net­work of wa­ter­ways that in­clude the Myall, Smiths and Wal­lis lakes and sit be­tween Nel­son Bay and Forster, north of New­cas­tle.

MAPS HEMA Maps’ Aus­tralia Easy Read Road and 4WD At­las (9th edi­tion) is use­ful. The Myall Lakes, Booti Booti and Wallingat Na­tional Parks’ vis­i­tor guide is avail­able from tourist in­for­ma­tion of­fices.

CAMP­SITES THE Mungo Brush camp­ground is a well-known camp­ground near Hawks Nest. There are more than 22 camp­grounds within the Myall Lakes. The Sand­bar and Bush­land Park camp­ground can be found some 20km south of Forster. There are two idyl­lic camp­sites in the Wallingat Na­tional Park: the Wallingat River camp­ground and the Ferny Creek camp­ground.

FUEL AND SUP­PLIES THE area is ser­viced by the towns of Hawks Nest, Forster and Bu­lahde­lah.

KEY CON­TACTS WALLINGAT Na­tional Park is op­er­ated by Great Lakes (Pa­cific Palms), phone: (02) 6591 0300; (02) 6554 0489. Sand­bar and Bush­land Car­a­van Park, phone: (02) 6554 4095 www.sand­

RE­STRIC­TIONS AND PER­MITS 4WD beach per­mits are re­quired to drive along the beach north of Hawks Nest. Gen­eral park en­try and camp­ing fees also ap­ply. The per­mit al­lows ac­cess to beaches in the Great Lakes and Greater Ta­ree City Coun­cil ar­eas. Fish­ing per­mits are also needed. The lakes, in­clud­ing the Myall Lakes Na­tional Park and the Wallingat Na­tional Park, are al­ways open but may have to close at times due to poor weather or fire dan­ger.

TRIP STAN­DARD SUIT­ABLE for stan­dard 4WDS. All tracks are well graded, par­tic­u­larly around Myall Lakes. Be sure to pack re­cov­ery gear, as things can get in­ter­est­ing if the tracks are wet.

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