There are some things in life that you just gotta love. One of them is finding a reasonably priced but very fine motel in a sensational location. Hard to find in these days of high-end luxury buy-outs of the best beach and resort locations. Knock down the ’60s style motels that are comfortable and affordable and replace them with ‘luxury’ accommodation with the mandatory high price tag: that’s the trend.
But here in Port Macquarie in New South Wales (about a five-hour drive from Sydney), the trend has been bucked to some degree. There are many older-style motels – some sitting on the most valuable real estate in the place.
Take the Mid Pacific Motel – it’s a gem. Perfectly located in the very heart of Port Macquarie on the Hastings River and with all the charm of a 1960s motel. It’s a stone’s throw from the fish co-op, restaurants, cafes, shops, pubs and the Glasshouse Arts centre in Clarence Street, and an easy walk along the riverfront to Town Beach for a surf.
Speaking of beaches, Port Macquarie has some of the most stunning in Australia. If you’re into surfing, Flynn’s Beach proved the most reliable for a good wave over Easter 2011. Rainbow Beach at Bonney Hills, 20 miles south of Port also has a reliable surf break, easy parking and is quite beautiful.
Still feeling energetic after a surf? Take the walk from Town Beach to Lighthouse
Beach along some truly spectacular coastline over headlands and across some pristine beaches like Miners. Allow four hours for the round trip.
Back at the Mid Pacific, what’s so great about this motel? The 60s style motel-style rooms have comfortable beds, tv, kitchenette including fridge, microwave, crockery and cutlery to prepare basic meals, and a separate bathroom. There’s a barbecue area, pool and spa room and under cover parking. What more do you need!
The flashing neon sign that welcomes visitors is pure 1960s. For those who remember the TV series, 66 Sunset Strip, the Mid Pacific is in the same genre. The interiors have been upgraded but the ambiance is pure 60s and the location on the river provides guests with some spectacular water views. The sunsets are glorious.
Best of all it is affordable which puts this motel in the price range of most Australians. Motels such as the Mid Pacific symbolize a fairer, more relaxed Australia where people matter ahead of overdevelopment and profit. The friendly welcome from the owners and staff mean that we’ll be coming back.