There are limitless things to do in New South Wales, Australia but there’s just nothing quite like a good old road trip.
It’s my favorite way to explore literally anywhere, and of course I couldn’t do it without my supremely comfortable seat covers.
Road Trip Through New South Wales
When figuring out my next road trip, I stumbled across the Grand Pacific Ride, which is a bunch of connecting highways and roads along the NSW coast.
While the entire drive is only 140 kilometers, it’s the perfect gateway to NSW with plenty of optional detours and stops.
I somehow ended up using six days for this short but sweet drive, and wouldn’t have it any other way. Read on to find out exactly why this road trip along the coast is one you’ll never forget.
The start of the Grand Pacific Drive is less than an hour from Sydney, which made it incredibly easy to start the road trip (you could easily land in Sydney and rent a car to get your own road trip started).
Right away, you’re hit face-first with the beauty of the Royal National Park, which is where the Grand Pacific Drive starts. This park (the second oldest national park in the world) is well worth a leisurely stop, either to check out some of the insanely beautiful, untamed beaches like Wattamola Beach or the surfing paradise Garie Beach.
I made time for a quick hike along the coastal track from Bundeena to Otford, and was rewarded for my efforts with incredible views of migrating whales that were cruising along the Humpback highway.
If you’re feeling more ambitious, you could take on the Curra Moors Loop Track, which several hikers told me about while raving about the coastal views and Curracurrong Waterfall, but this 5-hour hike is not for the faint of heart.
I took a night to camp here, because I just couldn’t quite bring myself to leave. I kicked it old-school with a canvas tent in the Bonnie Vale campground, but you could also opt for a more luxurious cottage.
After the Royal National Park, you immediately segway into stunning coastal views. Make sure you hit up the lookout point Bald Hill for south-facing views of beaches while eating an ice cream cone!
After that break, you’re going to want to leisurely drive for the next hour and take in some pretty incredible views and charming little villages where an overnight stay is simply delightful.
I personally recommend renting an apartment for a day or two to really soak up the vibe of the villages like Thirroul. Make sure you see the famous Sea Cliff Bridge, because it’s absolutely all it’s cracked up to be.
Your next big stop is the city of Wollongong, famous for its beautiful beaches and lighthouse. Wollongong is huge and full of fun things to do, so I stopped here for two nights and took full advantage.
I hit up the Jamberoo theme park, the Symbio wildlife park for some exotic animals, and took surfing lessons (while failing miserably, I might add).
After Wollongong, there’s two different detour options that you can choose from; Mount Keira Lookout is stunning, but visiting the buddhist Nan Tien Temple was otherworldly for me and well worth the extra few hours.
After another hour or two of driving, you’ll come across the volcanic Cathedral Rocks which are a fascinating and mesmerizing formation of rocks worth stopping for a few pictures.
Kiama was my last stop and overnight stay, and it was both a lively and relaxed town that’s exactly what you picture when you think of coastal towns. Make sure you stop at the Blowhole (don’t worry, it’s completely family friendly) and the seaside markets for some souvenirs.
After Kiama, it’s smooth cruising through picturesque beach towns and Shoalhaven Heads to the drive’s bittersweet end at the town of Nowra. But don’t worry, you can luckily console yourself with the wine from delicious local wineries—trust me, it helps.
Eva is a musician and traveler, who’s highly enthusiast of anything withwheels. She has a passion about cars and writing, which sprung from her ability to create music. A bit of a stretch, yes, but it plays out for her as mycustomcar Content Editor. Follow her on twitter.
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November 6, 2018 4:12 pm Leave your thoughts