The 140km Grand Pacific Drive starts in the Royal National Park, located just outside of Sydney, about an hour's drive from both Sydney's CBD and Wollongong. Experience the 15,000 hectare expanse of bush, beaches and waterfalls at one of the world's oldest national parks. Highlights in the park include; Audley, Wattamolla, Garie Beach, The Coast Track, Governor Game Lookout and Bonnie Vale Campground. Tip: Follow the Grand Pacific Drive directional signage from Farnell Avenue, at the start of the National Park, and it will direct you along the entire drive passing through Wollongong, Shellharbour, Kiama en route to the Shoalhaven region.Discover Royal National Park
Glistening beaches, a spectacular green backdrop, a brand new city centre, several vibrant eating and entertainment zones . This dynamic changing city is just the perfect size. You'll see skydivers descend to the beach, surf schools and hang gliders. Enjoy 17 amazing patrolled beaches, beautiful botanic gardens, a spectacular historic harbour and the beachfront 'Blue Mile', the entertainment centre, art gallery, small bars and now a brand new world class shopping centre and city mall. The Illawarra escarpment is the Great Dividing Range as it adjoins the coast with its dramatic cliff faces, spectacular lookouts and many moods and colours. The northern villages of Bulli, Thirroul, Austinmer and Coledale are beachside playgrounds with great food and shopping.Discover Wollongong
You'll marvel at the shades of blue, green and yellow as the Grand Pacific Drive takes you across the Lake Illawarra estuary, the start of our aquatic playgrounds.You're soon in one of Australia's most forward-looking and fastest growing communities, a leader in urban design and planning. The latest shopping and community services are alongside lovingly preserved nature along our beaches and coastal reserves with an outlook that embraces the past and builds an innovative future. The city is building a marina to complete its excellent array of facilities that include a stunning golf course and other sporting venues. At the Illawarra Regional Airport an aviation museum features flying examples of historic planes as well as an F-111 and the first ever Qantas 747. You can often sit in the pilot's seat for a selfie!Discover Shellharbour
The first settlers called it Kiama for 'the Place where the sea makes a noise' but today the noise comes not just from the famous Blowhole and its cousin the Little Blowhole, but from a picturesque caf scene set amid historic buildings housing unique shops, the maritime atmosphere of our harbour and famous lighthouse and attractions such as the breathtaking coastal walking tracks around places like Bombo and Jamberoo Village with its awesome action park. Kiama is surrounded by coastal beauty in areas like Gerringong, Gerroa and the cool tranquillity of Minnamurra Rainforest and its roaring waterfalls and soothing streams. The rolling hills around Kiama offer picturesque drives along lanes lined by dry stone walls past classic dairies and farmhouses. Saddleback Mountain lookout allows you to get a bird's eye view of the entire district and coastline.Discover Kiama
When George Bass named the 'Shoals-haven' he couldn't have imaged it would become so loved as a holiday destination. The very names of the dozens of towns and localities of the Shoalhaven conjure up images of great vacations ranging from placid relaxation at beaches or national parks to some of Australia's best fishing, to wineries and restaurants. Think places like Kangaroo Valley, Berry, Shoalhaven Heads, Coolangatta, Greenwell Point, Culburra, St Georges Basin, Bendalong, Manyana, Lake Conjola, Milton, Narrawallee, Mollymook, Ulladulla, Burrill Lake, Dolphin Point, Durras - all holiday favourites.Accommodation ranges from various styles of camping or cabins, to Australia's first 'glamping' resort, to luxury stays with dinner like Rick Stein's Bannisters.Discover Shoalhaven
The Southern Highlands is an atmospheric destination where magnificent homes and gardens dot the rolling hills and towns like Bowral, Mittagong, Berrima, Moss Vale, Bundanoon and Robertson have a character all their own. Bowral is famed for its boutiques, gourmet restaurants, gardens, galleries and Tulip Time Festival. It's aptly the site for the Bradman Museum as young Don grew up in the town, practising his cricket against a water tank. The highlands have some of Australia's best country accommodation from magnificent manor houses to cosy B & Bs. Natural treasures include Fitzroy Falls, the Illawarra Fly Tree Top Walk and Wombeyan Caves with their surrounding wilderness area. The town has some of the most interesting shopping and galleries. The area has many quality wineries with welcoming cellar doors and top restaurants.Discover Southern Highlands
The Clyde River is one of Australia's most beautiful with a backdrop of green hills, national parks and state forest. It runs through the famous resort town of Batemans Bay with its endless attractions from great food (especially oysters), accommodation from luxury to camping. From beaches to the famous foreshore walk, to world class fishing, to diving and snorkelling in Bateman's Marine Park to family attractions like Birdland Animal Park-Eurobodalla has it all!Discover Eurobodalla
The Sapphire Coast on the NSW South Coast is the ideal adventure landscape where you can reconnect with nature. All year round the national parks are natural playgrounds and the lagoons and seas are our wonder-filled aquarium. Explore artisan galleries, taste the freshest of produce from the land and the sea, sample local wine, study Aboriginal history and culture, and the history of the pioneers. Or lose yourself in nature, in whatever way you choose.Discover Sapphire Coast
The Southern Highlands is an atmospheric destination where magnificent homes and gardens dot the rolling hills and towns like Bowral, Mittagong, Berrima, Moss Vale, Bundanoon and Robertson. Bowral is famed for its boutiques, gourmet restaurants, gardens, galleries and Tulip Time Festival. It's aptly the site for the Bradman Museum as young Don grew up in the town, practicing his cricket against a water tank.
The highlands have some of Australia's best country accommodation from magnificent manor houses to cosy B & B's. Natural treasures include Fitzroy Falls, The Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventures and Wombeyan Caves with their surrounding wilderness area.
Berrima boasts Australia's oldest continuously licensed pub, the stone Surveyor General with its wonky angles and colourful history.The town has some of the most interesting shopping and galleries.
The area has many quality wineries with welcoming cellar doors and top restaurants for you to enjoy.
The stunning Fitzroy Falls is located in the Morton National Park and is one of the region’s drawcards.
With a timber boardwalk, lookouts over sandstone escarpment and waterfalls cascading into rainforest valleys, it’s certainly not one to miss! There are 15 lookouts from which you can view the Falls, 6km of constructed walking tracks with interpretive signs and environmental and cultural heritage displays.
Go mountain biking, walking or enjoy a picnic lunch. If you’re looking to stay the night, Gambells Rest campground is a popular spot located near Bundanoon, if offers spectacular scenery amongst the tranquillity of the National Park.
Turn this beautiful landmark into a fun day out for everyone.
If you’re looking to take a step back in time and delve into the past, Berrima is just the village to visit.
Home to Australia’s oldest continually licensed Inn - the Surveyor General, amazing colonial sandstone buildings (one of which houses Eschalot, a hatted restaurant) and even a ghost if you look hard enough!
No trip to the Southern Highlands is complete without a visit to Bendooley Estate.
Enjoy this magnificent 200-acre property boasting established cool-climate gardens and the iconic Berkelouw Book Barn. It’s a place to relax and unwind making you forget about the every day.
Take in the beautiful vistas while you enjoy lunch in the restaurant, wine tasting in the Cellar Door or even coffee and cake in the Berkelouw Book Barn. It truly is a unique place to stop on your travels through the Highlands.
Prepare yourself for the experience of a lifetime, exploring some of the caves located at Wombeyan.
Wombeyan Caves is an extensive series of beautiful limestone caves situated in a 417 hectare reserve. Guided and self-guided tours are available ranging from 60 to 90 minutes.
Nearby accommodation ranges from unpowered camping sites to cabins and self-contained cottages.
The Highlands is made for cycling. Whether you prefer a motorbike, mountain bike or a road bike, there are lots of quiet country roads and lanes meandering through picturesque villages for you to cruise along and enjoy.
There are also good mountain bike trails, including the Bong Bong Track, a winding cycling track suitable for all ages which follows the Wingecarribee River.
So much to discover on the journey
The Box Vale Walking Track follows the formation of an historic railway line and passes through cuttings, along embankments and through a tunnel 84 metres is length.
Discover what the German merchant seamen built along the Wingecarribee River while interned in Berrima for four years during during WW1. The 1.8km signed walk commences in the Berrima Picnic and Camping ground.
The Best of Bowral and The Bong Bong Track is approximately 26 kms of on-road and off-road cycling and or shared walking track. A map (downloadable) will direct you along this fascinating and beautiful area of the Southern Highlands.
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