Michael McFadyen's Scuba Diving - Point Stephens Lighthouse Sponge Garden
Fingal Head is really an island that is sometimes connected to the mainland by a sand spit. It is located about three kilometres south of Port Stephens. The Point Stephens Lighthouse is on Fingal Head and to the north is a small island or rock that creates a channel. This is the location of a really great sponge garden.
From Port Stephens, you head out the heads and head south-east or so. Aim for GPS mark of 32° 44' 33"S 152° 12' 5"E (Note that this is a very approximate reading and may not be very accurate) You should also note that all my GPS Readings are using AUS66 - if you use any other datum, you will need to convert the reading - see my GPS Page for more details.
Anyway, from memory (I am writing this in 2006 and I last dived this site in 1993) bottom was rocky with some sand in between. The site consists of a large gutter that runs parallel to the shore and a couple of shallower areas. There are some canyons that run off at right angles to this main gutter. The rocky bits have excellent sponge and other fixed marine life.
Fishlife here was also very good, on the couple of dives I did here I saw fiddler-rays, moray eels, bream, diamond fish, silver sweep, old wife, white ear, one-spot pullers, red morwong, blue groper, combfish, crimson banded wrasse, surgeonfish, six-spinned leatherjackets and long finned pike. I even saw a turtle here.
Well worth many dives.