Royal National ParkSapphire CoastEurobodallaShoalhavenKiamaShellharbourWollongongSouthern Highlands
1Royal National Park
2Bustling Wollongong
3Seaside Shellharbour
4Beautiful Kiama
5Stunning Shoalhaven
6Serene Southern Highlands

Classic Grand Pacific Drive takes you through Royal National Park, to Wollongong and Shellharbour with their beaches and city attractions and then to the coastal gems of Kiama and Shoalhaven and further. For a country contrast the Southern Highlands is an easy detour. 

You can stop for wonderful natural experiences such as walks or camping, or city attractions like cafes, small bars, restaurants, art galleries or shopping. And then there are about 100 beaches plus coastal lagoons and estuaries to explore. Wineries abound along parts of the drive and if you choose to stay, there are plenty of options from cosy B & Bs to luxury hotels and resorts.

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196.0KM / 3 HR 19 mins
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Wollongong

1st stop:

Royal National Park

This 15,000 hectare natural playground was the first national park named in the world and includes over 100 kilometres of walking tracks, cycling trails, spectacular beaches, coastal scenery and many picnic and barbecue areas. The most popular walk is the 30 kilometre Coastal Walk which can be approached in sections. 

In season, Royal National Park is the perfect location for whale watching and highlights include Wedding Cake Rock and Eagle Rock. Swim at Garie or North Era patrolled beaches. 

At Audley you can hire rowboats and kayaks from the historic boatshed. Wattamolla offers a beautiful lagoon, patrolled beach and picnic ground. Bundeena and Maianbar are the twin villages surrounded by the national park. There are camping sites at Bonnie Vale, North Era and Uloola Falls. 


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Continue on to Bustling Wollongong
52.8 km45 mins

Wollongong

2nd stop:

Bustling Wollongong

Wollongong is home to 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, hang gliders. Enjoy 17 amazing beaches, beautiful botanic gardens, a spectacular historic harbour and beachfront 'Blue Mile', the entertainment centre for international acts, 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. Mount Kiera is directly west of the city and provides sweeping views and a variety of walking tracks. Mount Kembla is a beautiful historic village with an amazing story. The northern villages of Bulli, Thirroul, Austinmer and Coledale are beachside playgrounds with great food and shopping.


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Continue on to Seaside Shellharbour
21.6 km28 mins

Shellharbour

3rd stop:

Seaside Shellharbour

You'll marvel at the shades of blue, green and yellow as the Grand Pacific Drive takes you across the Lake Illawarra estuary and into Shellharbour, 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 on 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!


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Continue on to Beautiful Kiama
14.4 km16 mins

Kiama

4th stop:

Beautiful Kiama

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 café scene set amid historic buildings housing unique shops. 

The maritime atmosphere of the 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 have made Kiama a popular place for visitors for many years. 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.


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Continue on to Stunning Shoalhaven
41.4 km41 mins

Shoalhaven

5th stop:

Stunning Shoalhaven

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. Kangaroo Valley is a lush sanctuary offering gentle natural experiences as well as rafting and outdoor pursuits. Cambewarra is a characterful first settlers village with award-winning winery and resort.


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Continue on to Serene Southern Highlands
65.7 km1 hour 10 mins

Southern Highlands

6th stop:

Serene Southern Highlands

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, practicing 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 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.


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