Cockle Creek is a place of tranquil coves and sandy beaches. Distant mountain peaks, sometimes capped with snow, make a spectacular backdrop to the calm waters of Recherche Bay. It is here that tannin-rich streams meet the ocean, ending their meandering journey through buttongrass plains. The sheltered coastline and forested hills are home to an abundance of wildlife including shorebirds.
A rich cultural history exists, being the homeland of the Lyluequonny Aboriginal people, the location of a French expedition in 1792 and 1793 led by Bruni D'Entrecasteaux and later British settlement and whaling, timber and coal industries.
More information on the history of Cockle Creek and Recherche Bay can be found at the entrance to each reserve.
All walks listed below, except to the cemetery, can be accessed from across the bridge at Cockle Creek.
Cockle Creek Cemetery
5 minutes return
Located near the Cockle Creek campground, this historic cemetery gives an insight into the hardships endured by the community that once lived here.
5 minutes return
This impressive bronze sculpture of a southern right whale is located at Adams Point. You can walk or drive to the end of the road, past the Ranger Quarters and Boltons Green campground.
2 hours return, 4km return
From the whale sculpture carpark, it's an easy coastal walk through heathland and spectacular views to distant Adamsons Peak, Southern Ranges, Bruny Island and the Southern Ocean. At Fishers Point, explore the ruins of the 1843 pilot station and lighthouse. Consider tides and coastal conditions before undertaking this walk, as sections of beach may be restricted during high tides.
South Cape Bay
4 hours return, 18km return
South Coast Track
6-8 days one way, 82km one way
At Cockle Creek there are two separate camping areas and each provide a number of campsite options. Dogs are permitted on lead in the nature recreation area, but not in the national park.
The Southwest National Park is a fuel stove only area, campfires or fire pots are not permitted.
Camping in Southwest National Park
Camping in Recherche Bay Nature Recreation Area