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THE BEST OF THE SOUTH COAST IN ONE DAY


Take a day trip to the South Coast for a relaxing break and be immersed in nature.


By Huy Nguyen

The South Coast of New South Wales is home to beautiful, dramatic landscapes and stunning greenery. It’s an easy drive from Sydney and is perfect for a weekend getaway or just a day trip. Here is a list of some must-visit places down south.

GETTING THERE

The South Coast is a two-hour drive from Sydney. You can either follow the M1 down to your destination or take Grand Pacific Drive for a more scenic route.

The Grand Pacific Drive is an amazing experience on its own - a whopping 140-kilometre coastal drive packed with beautiful scenery. You'll drive through the Royal National Park, then cross the iconic Sea Cliff Bridge, and cruise along the coastal cities of Wollongong, Shellharbour and Kiama.

I would recommend taking the M1 down and Grand Pacific Drive back toward Sydney.

 

MOUNT PLEASANT LOOKOUT

Mount Pleasant Lookout, Kiama Heights, New South Wales

After driving for over an hour, this is a great place to get out for a stretch. Take in a breath of fresh air while also taking in views of lush rolling hills resting along the Kiama Bends. From here you can see surrounding towns, beaches, and mountains.

 

BERRY SOURDOUGH CAFÉ

Berry Sourdough Café, Berry, New South Wales

Next up is Berry Sourdough Café. Opened in 2002, this place has since become a locals favourite, serving up scrumptious bread and pastries along with amazing breakfast and lunch dishes. The atmosphere is lively and the service is friendly. I had the poached eggs, grilled brussels sprouts, and avocado which arrived with perfectly cooked eggs.

 

HAMPDEN BRIDGE

Hampden Bridge, Kangaroo Valley, New South Wales

Located in Kangaroo Valley, Hampden Bridge is a suspension bridge over the Kangaroo River. Shaded by large pine trees, the riverbank underneath the bridge is ideal for an afternoon stroll or a dip in the cold, refreshing water. Kangaroo Valley is a river valley with pastoral scenery and lush rainforests. Kangaroo River flows through the valley and is also popular for kayaking and canoeing destination.

 

FITZROY FALLS

Fitzroy Falls, New South Wales

Fitzroy Falls is a few kilometres north of Kangaroo Valley. The waterfall stands 81m above the valley floor and drops its water from a stunning rugged cliff.

There are a couple of lookouts you can visit to experience this formidable beauty from different angles. The main lookout is right after the Visitor Centre, offering views of the waterfall from up above. The second lookout is Jersey Lookout where you're able to get a bigger picture of the grand waterfall and the surrounding forest and escarpment. To get to this lookout, take the West Rim Track.

 

ROBERTSON CHEESE FACTORY

Robertson Cheese Factory, Robertson, New South Wales

Robertson Cheese Factory is a cheese factory on one side of the building and a café on the other. Open for business since 1936, the factory is still going strong, offering a wide variety of dairy products, jams, relishes and pickles. The place also houses a specialty store selling vintage clothes, books and toys.

 

NAN TIEN TEMPLE

Nan Tien Temple, Berkeley, New South Wales

Nan Tien (meaning "Southern Paradise" in Chinese) Temple is the largest Buddhist temple in the Southern Hemisphere. Completed in 1995 by a team of Chinese craftsmen, the temple boasts a huge, intricate structure that showcases traditional materials and techniques. At Nan Tien Temple, not only can you experience the sheer scale of its architecture, you can also learn more about Buddhist culture and way of life.

Apart from the main temple, there are many more buildings, including a museum, two restaurants, conference rooms and several accommodation facilities. Together, they make up the Nan Tien Complex - a cultural and spiritual hub for local and international visitors.

 

SEA CLIFF BRIDGE

Sea Cliff Bridge, Clifton, New South Wales

A stroll along the Sea Cliff Bridge is the perfect way to end your trip. This 665m bridge is part of the Grand Pacific Drive and has become a regional icon since its opening in December 2005.
There are mountains on one side and ocean on the other - an incredible spot to catch the sunset. Park your car and take a walk along the pedestrian path to bask in the late afternoon breezes and enjoy the breathtaking panorama of the ocean.

This article originally appeared on Townske

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