Central Coast NSWEconomic profile
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Central Coast Council area

About the area

Location and boundaries

The Central Coast Council area is located on the coast of New South Wales, between 60 and 90 kilometres north of the Sydney CBD, and about 80 kilometres south of the Newcastle CBD. The Central Coast Council area is bounded by Cessnock City, Lake Macquarie City and Lake Macquarie in the north, the Tasman Sea in the east, the Hawkesbury River and Hornsby Shire in the south, and Hawkesbury City in the west.

Included areas

The Central Coast Council area includes the suburbs and localities of Alison, Avoca Beach, Bar Point, Bateau Bay, Bensville, Berkeley Vale, Blackwall, Blue Bay, Blue Haven, Booker Bay, Bouddi, Box Head, Budgewoi, Budgewoi Peninsula, Buff Point, Bushells Ridge, Calga, Canton Beach, Cedar Brush Creek, Central Mangrove, Chain Valley Bay, Charmhaven, Cheero Point, Chittaway Bay, Chittaway Point, Cogra Bay, Colongra, Copacabana, Crangan Bay (part), Daleys Point, Davistown, Dooralong, Doyalson, Doyalson North, Durren Durren, East Gosford, Empire Bay, Erina, Erina Heights, Ettalong Beach, Forresters Beach, Fountaindale, Frazer Park, Freemans, Glenning Valley, Glenworth Valley, Gorokan, Gosford, Green Point, Greengrove, Gunderman, Gwandalan, Halekulani, Halloran, Hamlyn Terrace, Hardys Bay, Holgate, Horsfield Bay, Jilliby, Kangy Angy, Kanwal, Kariong, Kiar, Killarney Vale, Killcare, Killcare Heights, Kincumber, Kincumber South, Kingfisher Shores, Koolewong, Kulnura, Lake Haven, Lake Munmorah, Lemon Tree, Lisarow, Little Jilliby, Little Wobby, Long Jetty, Lower Mangrove, MacMasters Beach, Magenta, Mangrove Creek, Mangrove Mountain, Mannering Park, Mardi, Marlow, Matcham, Moonee (part), Mooney Mooney, Mooney Mooney Creek, Mount Elliot, Mount White, Narara, Niagara Park, Norah Head, Noraville, North Avoca, North Gosford, Ourimbah, Palm Grove, Palmdale, Patonga, Pearl Beach, Peats Ridge, Phegans Bay, Picketts Valley, Point Clare, Point Frederick, Point Wolstoncroft, Pretty Beach, Ravensdale, Rocky Point, San Remo, Saratoga, Shelly Beach, Somersby, Spencer, Springfield, St Huberts Island, Summerland Point, Tacoma, Tacoma South, Tascott, Ten Mile Hollow (part), Terrigal, The Entrance, The Entrance North, Toowoon Bay, Toukley, Tuggerah, Tuggerawong, Tumbi Umbi, Umina Beach, Upper Mangrove, Wadalba, Wagstaffe, Wallarah, Wamberal, Warnervale, Watanobbi, Wendoree Park, West Gosford, Wisemans Ferry (part), Wondabyne, Woongarrah, Woy Woy, Woy Woy Bay, Wybung, Wyoming, Wyong, Wyong Creek, Wyongah, Yarramalong and Yattalunga.

Land use

The Central Coast Council area is a rural and residential area, with some commercial and industrial land use. Rural land is used mainly for farming, timber-getting and coal mining for electricity generation. The Central Coast Council area encompasses a total land area of about 1,800 square kilometres, including more than 80 kilometres of coastline. More than half of the Council area is national parks, state forest, bushland, open space, nature reserves and aquatic environments (beaches and waterways). The population is dispersed across a variety of urban settings, including towns, villages and neighbourhoods. The largest centres are Gosford, Tuggerah-Wyong, Erina, Woy Woy and The Entrance.


The Central Coast Council area is served by the Sydney-Newcastle Freeway, the Pacific Motorway, the Central Coast Highway, the Pacific Highway, the Sydney-Newcastle railway line and Warnervale Airport.

Settlement history

European settlement dates from the 1820s, with development mainly along the coast, particularly around the waterways. Land was used mainly for farming and timber-getting. Ship building industries were also important. Growth was minimal until the 1860s, aided by the establishment of several shipyards and citrus orchards. Growth took place in the 1880s and 1890s, spurred by the opening of the railway line and the expansion of tourism. Growth continued in the early 1900s, with subdivision of land along the waterways and beaches for holiday villages and resorts. Significant development occurred in the post-war years, aided by improvements in access and the expansion of metropolitan Sydney. The population continued to grow rapidly from the 1960s to the 1980s, rising from about 50,000 in 1960, to about 85,000 in 1970, and then to 191,000 in 1986. Agriculture and horticulture began to decline in importance as Gosford and Wyong developed as commuter, holiday and retirement centres. The population continued to increase during the 1990s, rising from about 229,000 in 1991 to nearly 285,000 in 2001. Growth continued from 2001, although at a slower rate, with the population increasing to about 308,000 in 2011.

Indigenous background

The original inhabitants of the Central Coast Council area were the Darkinjung, Guringai and Awabakal Aboriginal people.