Nature, culture, history. The Belmont Lagoon Reserve Walk in Lake Macquarie has it all as well as being an interesting family walk. Connected to Lake Macquarie via Cold Tea Creek, Belmont Lagoon sits halfway between the lake and ocean and is great to explore with kids.
One of the things I love most about our region is the amount of accessible natural environments nearby. You never have to travel far to find a green and open space to enjoy with the kids and Belmont Lagoon Reserve is one such space.
The Belmont Lagoon walk officially starts at Belmont Lagoon, located off Beach Street, Belmont where there is a designated dirt car park. If you choose to park here, you can access the start of the walk by crossing the adjoining field and the small bridge which crosses over Cold Tea Creek.
However, on the day we visited, I chose to park in the car park at Ken Lambkin Reserve, located just off the Pacific Highway on the Belmont South Foreshore. I recommend parking here for two reasons. The first reason is simply that there is access to a public toilet, always an important factor with kids in tow. The second reason is that if we had started the walk at the footbridge, we would have missed one of the highlights of our morning, meeting the friendly ducks in Cold Tea Creek.
After carefully crossing the highway and heading south toward and along Capri Close you’ll join the track that runs parallel to Cold Tea Creek and here you’ll likely see a large flock of ducks swimming and playing happily. We spotted pacific black ducks, chestnut teal and mallards and spent at least half an hour making up names for the ducks and giggling at their antics. After much reluctance, the kids were dragged away from their new feathery friends to begin our walk.
Once you’ve passed the steel gate and park reserve sign, the gravel walking track that runs between the lagoon and the creek is straight and flat. Although the sign indicates no motorbikes allowed, a few riders on motorbikes did pass us and, even though they were respectful and slowed down when passing, it would be wise to listen out for them and exercise caution.
Dogs are prohibited as well but we did see many people walking dogs on leads. Recent rainfall meant that there were lots of large puddles all the way along the track so remember to pack gumboots. The kids, of course, loved the puddles and they just added to the adventure.
In between running and splashing in puddles, the kids loved stopping to explore the lake, the bush and the creek. There are several short, smaller tracks off to the side of the main walking track perfect for exploring. Naturally, as there is a lot of water, supervision of children is required at all times.
On our walk, we crossed paths with a friendly local who was eager to educate us on the history and cultural significance of the area. We learned that Cold Tea Creek was dug and dredged into an anti-tank ditch during World War II in anticipation that enemy tanks might land and attempt to proceed north to the Port of Newcastle. Look out for the memorial, containing more detailed information, located in the car park at the lake entrance to Cold Tea Creek.
We also learned that Belmont Lagoon is significant to Indigenous Australians as it is located at the end of a song line, or dreaming track, and to the Awabakal people it is known as The Teardrop of the Moon, formed the night the moon cried.
Belmont Lagoon is also a popular bird-watching site and we spotted a variety of birds, including black swans. The kids were also excited to hear kookaburras. Keen birdwatchers might like to visit early morning or evening when the birds are most active.
If you turn left at the t-junction where the main track ends you’ll soon come across the track to the Belmont Lagoon Spit. We didn’t make it all the way to the end of the spit as there was a large and deep puddle across the path, but the more adventurous might like to head out, making the complete walk approximately 4.3km in length.
Keep in mind that there are no picnic tables or undercover areas on this walk however we found a great clearing on the creek side, just before the t-junction to throw out a picnic rug, enjoy a packed lunch and listen to the birds.
You could also bring a picnic lunch at Ken Lambkin Reserve where you’ll find picnic tables and a kids playground. This walk, being a short walk, is suitable for all ages. I’d recommend bringing appropriate clothing for bushwalking and a big sense of adventure.
Good to know
Distance: Approximately 4.3km
Bring: Sunscreen, insect repellent, hats, water bottles and snacks or a packed lunch.
Dogs: Dogs prohibited.
Getting There: Park at Belmont Lagoon Reserve, Beach Street, Belmont or in the Ken Lambkin Reserve carpark.
Toilets: There are public toilets located at Ken Lambkin Reserve.
Meg is a stay-at-home mum whose interests include gardening, reading, writing poetry and not staying at home. A born and bred Novocastrian, Meg enjoys camping and travelling with her family and weekend road trips to discover new and interesting places. Meg has two energetic kids and is passionate about kids having the opportunity to be outdoors as often as possible.