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AUSTRALIA

Holidays to Regional New South Wales

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New South Wales beyond Sydney

If you’re planning a holiday to New South Wales, Sydney is probably already on your hit list – but what about the rest of this amazing area? Go exploring beyond the state capital, and you’ll soon see why this is Australia’s most popular state for holidays and multi-centre tours. 

Diverse is usually a good catch-all term, but it doesn’t even begin to describe the range of experiences, natural phenomena and things to do in New South Wales. Once you’ve seen all the major landmarks of Sydney, it’s time to head into the wild. You could visit Hunter Valley, for starters. This wine region is just a two-hour drive north of Sydney, and is home to over 120 wineries. Try rare vintages at a tasting masterclass or take an early morning balloon ride over the vineyards. Here you’ll also discover award-winning restaurants where regional wines pair perfectly with inventive menus. The Hunter Valley also has Australia’s biggest day spa, if you need some time to relax.

The Blue Mountains are another popular site in regional New South Wales. Head for the hills in this World Heritage Site and go bushwalking through eucalyptus forests – the leaves have a blue tinge, from which the area takes its name. This is where to explore the eerie Jenolan Caves, learn about local Aboriginal culture, and watch the sunset at the incredible Three Sisters rock formation. If you’re travelling during Australia’s winter, you can even celebrate a July Christmas at Yulefest in Katoomba. 

Meanwhile, Byron Bay on the far north coast of New South Wales gets the first sunrise every morning. It’s also part of the Cape Byron Marine Park and surrounded by lovely countryside, national parks, Gondwana Rainforests and remarkable beaches. 

But if you really want picture-perfect shores, travel south to Jervis Bay for some of Australia’s best beaches – the sand at Hyams Beach is some of the whitest you’ll ever see. The beautiful Aboriginal-owned Booderee Botanic Gardens are in this area, too. And it’s one of the only places in New South Wales where you can watch humpback whales migrating along the coast every year – you’ll see them in autumn, winter and late spring. 

Things to do

Beaches

Experiences

Best time to go

Things to do in New South Wales

New South Wales offers non-stop activity mixed with many reasons to stop and stare. Go to Hunter Valley wineries to sample and compare different vintages, and check out Hunter Valley Cheese Factory. You can also indulge with some therapeutic treatments at Spa Elysia and, if you’re there in summer, check out the annual Woolombi Valley Sculpture Festival.

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In the Blue Mountains, book a walkabout with an indigenous guide, or take a tour of the vast Jenolan Caves. Or take in the Jamison Valley views as you soar through the sky on the Scenic Skyway gondola. On the coast, Byron Bay is the place to watch the sunrise, go surfing, and try artisan gin from rainforest distilleries. Or head south to Jervis Bay, where you can swim with whales, hike the magical White Sands Walk, and discover Aboriginal heritage in Booderee National Park. 

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Beaches in New South Wales

With its long Pacific coastline, temperate climate and hot summers, regional New South Wales does great beach holidays. Go south to Jervis Bay and take your pick of 16 white sand beaches, ranging from long Callala to little coves like Barfleur and Orion. Or, if you travel almost as far north as you can go in the state, you’ll hit the shores of Byron Bay.

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The beaches here are flawless and offer everything from surfing and swimming to horse riding and yoga classes. Most of them fringe Cape Byron Marine Park, too, so the water’s are pristine. And it’s not unusual to spot dolphins and sea turtles, or migrating whales in autumn and winter. 

Show More
Show Less

Best experiences in New South Wales

New South Wales is an ideal self drive or motor-home holiday destination. With numerous vehicle options available to pick up from Sydney, start your New South Wales holiday here before embarking on an adventure exploring all that this diverse state has to offer.

In the Blue Mountains, witness the dramatic Three Sisters’ rock formation, and then visit Waradah Aboriginal Centre. Visit the colourful Hunter Valley Gardens for September’s Spring Festival, or head to Hope Estate at any time of year to hear live music.

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Show Less

Make for Jervis Bay in late spring and whale watch with the locals at Point Perpendicular Lighthouse. Make for Port Stephens to soak in the coastal sites or go out on an adventure on the largest sand dunes in Australia. In Byron Bay you can kayak with dolphins, relax on pristine beach or walk to the trail to Cape Byron Lighthouse, the most eastern point of mainland Australia.

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Best time to visit New South Wales

There’s not really a bad time to go to New South Wales. This part of Australia has a temperate climate with hot and sunny summers, mild winters, and pleasantly warm weather during spring and autumn. 

Naturally, if you want to catch fireworks over Sydney Harbour Bridge or have a barbecue at Christmas, the Australian summer is the time to go. From December to February, average daily temperatures hover around 26°C and the sea is a balmy 24°C. Although it tends to be quite humid at this time of year, coastal areas often have cooling breezes.  

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Between September and November, spring weather is warm and dry with highs of 24°C and plenty of sun. Autumn – from March to May – has similar weather to spring, but it can cool down to about 18°C later in the season. While the beaches may be a little chilly between June and August, average temperatures of 17°C make this a great time to explore the Blue Mountains and Hunter Valley. 

Show More
Show Less

Things to do

Things to do in New South Wales

New South Wales offers non-stop activity mixed with many reasons to stop and stare. Go to Hunter Valley wineries to sample and compare different vintages, and check out Hunter Valley Cheese Factory. You can also indulge with some therapeutic treatments at Spa Elysia and, if you’re there in summer, check out the annual Woolombi Valley Sculpture Festival.

Show More
Show Less

In the Blue Mountains, book a walkabout with an indigenous guide, or take a tour of the vast Jenolan Caves. Or take in the Jamison Valley views as you soar through the sky on the Scenic Skyway gondola. On the coast, Byron Bay is the place to watch the sunrise, go surfing, and try artisan gin from rainforest distilleries. Or head south to Jervis Bay, where you can swim with whales, hike the magical White Sands Walk, and discover Aboriginal heritage in Booderee National Park. 

Show More
Show Less

Beaches

Beaches in New South Wales

With its long Pacific coastline, temperate climate and hot summers, regional New South Wales does great beach holidays. Go south to Jervis Bay and take your pick of 16 white sand beaches, ranging from long Callala to little coves like Barfleur and Orion. Or, if you travel almost as far north as you can go in the state, you’ll hit the shores of Byron Bay.

Show More
Show Less

The beaches here are flawless and offer everything from surfing and swimming to horse riding and yoga classes. Most of them fringe Cape Byron Marine Park, too, so the water’s are pristine. And it’s not unusual to spot dolphins and sea turtles, or migrating whales in autumn and winter. 

Show More
Show Less

Experiences

Best experiences in New South Wales

New South Wales is an ideal self drive or motor-home holiday destination. With numerous vehicle options available to pick up from Sydney, start your New South Wales holiday here before embarking on an adventure exploring all that this diverse state has to offer.

In the Blue Mountains, witness the dramatic Three Sisters’ rock formation, and then visit Waradah Aboriginal Centre. Visit the colourful Hunter Valley Gardens for September’s Spring Festival, or head to Hope Estate at any time of year to hear live music.

Show More
Show Less

Make for Jervis Bay in late spring and whale watch with the locals at Point Perpendicular Lighthouse. Make for Port Stephens to soak in the coastal sites or go out on an adventure on the largest sand dunes in Australia. In Byron Bay you can kayak with dolphins, relax on pristine beach or walk to the trail to Cape Byron Lighthouse, the most eastern point of mainland Australia.

Show More
Show Less

Best time to go

Best time to visit New South Wales

There’s not really a bad time to go to New South Wales. This part of Australia has a temperate climate with hot and sunny summers, mild winters, and pleasantly warm weather during spring and autumn. 

Naturally, if you want to catch fireworks over Sydney Harbour Bridge or have a barbecue at Christmas, the Australian summer is the time to go. From December to February, average daily temperatures hover around 26°C and the sea is a balmy 24°C. Although it tends to be quite humid at this time of year, coastal areas often have cooling breezes.  

Show More
Show Less

Between September and November, spring weather is warm and dry with highs of 24°C and plenty of sun. Autumn – from March to May – has similar weather to spring, but it can cool down to about 18°C later in the season. While the beaches may be a little chilly between June and August, average temperatures of 17°C make this a great time to explore the Blue Mountains and Hunter Valley. 

Show More
Show Less

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