Described as Australis’s most beautiful valley, with magnificent and scenic country landscapes – Kangaroo Valley and the winding roads to it is a must-do experience. Heading from Sydney, enjoy sites that offer peacefulness, fun and adventure! Here are some unique gems to explore on this fantastic road-trip holiday!
Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, check sites before you visit, and for more information see the NSW Government website.
Nan Tien Temple
Nan Tien Temple near Wollongong offers a way to slow down – perfect for the beginning of your road trip. It is the largest Buddhist temple in the Southern Hemisphere. Here you can take part in a meditation session, or just drop in for a healthy bite to eat at the Dew Drop Inn, and then perhaps wander the peaceful grounds. It’s sure to get you started on the right track for your journey (also offers accommodation).
Illawarra Fly Treetops Adventure
Illawarra Fly Treetops Adventure, not only offers zipline tours, but there is also a great treetop walk and a fairy forest for the children. With a cafe on-site, you’ll work up a hunger after a walk or zipline tour. If you only have a light snack at Treetops, you may be in need of lunch later on, further on down the road try The Cool Room – A Country Emporium (see below).
The Cool Room – A Country Emporium
The Cool Room – A Country Emporium is a fantastic stop for a browse or to buy a unique gift. Also on the premises is a cheese factory and a cosy and fun cafe – The Whey House. Definitely worth a stop, even just to stretch the legs. Deceiving from the outside – with a few knick-knacks on display – there is a whole other world through those doors, with many items to browse, buy and enjoy.
Fitzroy Falls offers a variety of beautiful walks that surround a few waterfalls. There is a walking track to suit just about every ability level. Most of the walks are along the top of the escarpment, so views out to the waterfalls and valley are magnificent and captivating. If you love nature, this place can keep you busy exploring for hours.
Historic Kangaroo Valley has lured many celebrities from city living to a tree change. With its lush surroundings, it’s not hard to see why. From its lovely cafes, boutiques, craft and art shops, this is a place for a relaxing stroll.
Enjoy a wander and learn about the town, download the Historic Village Walk map. For the energetic, the Pioneer Village Museum offers insight into the area’s history, and there are also a couple of bushwalks too! Close by is Hampden Bridge, it’s the oldest and only surviving timber suspension bridge carrying vehicular traffic in the country, and was named after the Governor of NSW, Lord Hampden.
If you’ve worked up an appetite after a walk around the town, one of the most popular places to grab a drink and meal is The Friendly Inn. Built in 1891, not only offers a perfect place to sit, relax, eat and drink, but is another ideal spot to absorb Kangaroo Valley’s Georgian era.
Other activities for the discerning traveller are wineries to explore, bushwalking, mountain bike riding, horse riding, fishing, golf, canoeing and kayaking (see below website for further details).
For Kangaroo Valley events and things to do, Visit Kangaroo Valley website.
Hoping to stay in the heart of town then head to The Doll’s House, a charming country cottage, it’s an easy walk to all of the town’s main attractions. Or you may just want to sit back on the cottage deck and enjoy a BBQ in the north-facing sun.
Crystal Creek Meadows Luxury
For a little luxury head to award-winning Crystal Creek Meadows. This award-winning spa retreat is set on beautiful garden grounds, their sustainability philosophy; to reconnect guests with nature. It’s five star luxury with minimal impact on the environment.
Kangaroo Valley Glenmack Park is a perfect spot for the family. There is much to do on-site and includes; a pool, mini-golf, jumping pillow and a mini zoo. And with a 10-minute walk into town makes this an easy set up for a campsite.
Holiday Haven Holiday Park
And on the other side of the town is Holiday Haven Kangaroo Valley, this is the first campsite you approach arriving in the town, similar to Glenmack, but for those who’d like to spend more time on the water, this one has river access, and offers canoe and kayak hire.
Return Trip Home
Voted the NSW Top Tourism Town, 2021, historic Berrima is well known as the best-preserved example of a Georgian village on the Australian mainland. With cosy cafes, shops, boutiques, art galleries and a pub, The Surveyor General Inn is known as Australia’s oldest continuously licensed inn, this is another great town to wander.
An eclectic range of retail shops guarantees you’re sure to find that unique gift or something special for yourself. Also in the village is Berrima Courthouse, here you’ll not only learn about Berrima’s history, but with events such as ghost tours and a light and audio show, you’re sure to have a little fun too!
There is a heritage walk around the town, and just a short drive out of town in Berrima Reserve a historic river walk (includes a small campsite in this area). To get a better feel for the wonderful Berrima commnity, visit the Berrima Schoolyard Markets, held every 4th Sunday of the month.
It’s worth staying in this town to experience all it has to offer. This is one of the few historic towns where you can not only drive to, but with its well-preserved historic train station, a train ride here is also popular.
Explore Bundanoon village, eateries, Morton National Park (a variety of walks are well signposted and can be accessed from the campsite. It’s a 20-minute walk to town) the historic Bundanoon Hotel, is one of the most popular places to stay, however, requires early booking, and the Sunnataram Forest Monastery, which includes; outdoor meditation classes, lunch, which is provided for volunteer work in the garden, and retreats. This outdoor setting is beautiful. The monastery runs purely on donations. Access is via a 3-minute drive on a flat dirt road.
Foodies will love The Jumping Rock Cafe, The Primula Cafe, Bundanoon Hotel, and Little Jacks Style Thai. If you can coincide your trip – visit the Bundanoon Makers Markets and absorb this lovely community atmosphere. And one of the main yearly events is the Bundanoon Highland Gathering, held in April.
Moss Vale Showground
Moss Vale Showground. This showground offers many events during the year. The showground also has a campsite, watch the acts from the luxury of your home on wheels. From horse and alpaca shows to woodchopping and more, this showground highlights a close-knit rural community.
It’s worth stopping into Bowral, perhaps just to watch the queues of people who line up at the popular cake shops. As one of the larger towns on this trip, there’s a shop for just about everything! For those with a super sweet tooth – a ‘must experience’ is the Gumnut Patisserie, which also offers high tea options.
Mittagong’s multi-award-winning country cafe Shaggy Cow is also worth a visit, a booking will guarantee you a spot in this cosy and popular cafe. It’s the perfect breakfast or lunch stop for the trip home.Keep in touch!
Shelley has published a variety of online articles. With a master’s in special education, this has allowed her to write in the area of education, through platforms such as The Huffington Post. Being an outdoor enthusiast, she has written for The Weekender Travel and currently writes for Kombi Lifestyle. She is keen to share her knowledge and enjoys writing informative articles that help the discerning traveller prepare for road trip holidays in Australia. Shelley is the founder of Kombi Lifestyle.