Family Travel: Top 5 NSW Road Trips within 2 Hours of Sydney
Road trips offer a much more relaxed way to travel with kids than flying does. There’s no need to deal with airport security or expensive tickets, and you can make frequent stops to stretch your legs and take in the sights.
Travelling by road has many advantages when you are bringing young children along. First, it can be less expensive than flying, especially if you have a large family. Second, it allows you to travel at your own pace and make stops along the way. This can be a great way to break up a long trip and explore different parts of the country. Third, it gives you more control over your environment, which can be helpful when travelling with young children. You can choose to stay in hotels or campgrounds that have amenities that appeal to kids, such as playgrounds or pools. Lastly, travelling by road can be a great opportunity to bond as a family and create lasting memories. So if you’re planning a trip with your kids, consider all the benefits of taking a road trip.
There are so many great places to visit in NSW, it can be hard to know where to go for your next road trip!
Whether you are a single parent or a family looking for some inspiration, here are five of the best road trip destinations within 2 hours of Sydney. From coastal towns and stunning national parks, to historical villages and charming wine regions, there’s something for everyone in NSW.
So pack up the car and get ready for an adventure!
1. Blue Mountains
The Blue Mountains are a great destination for families, with plenty of activities to keep everyone entertained.
Take a hike
There are tons of great trails to explore in the Blue Mountains. You can find a trail for any level of hiker, from easy to strenuous.
The scenic trekking path leading to the three Sisters from Echo Point in Katoomba may be brief, but there are several scenic lookout points to enjoy.
Leura Cascades is one of the most popular trails in the area. This trail offers a variety of scenery, from waterfalls to rainforests. The trail is well-marked and easy to follow. It is a moderate hike, with an elevation gain of about 1000 feet. The views from the top are well worth the effort!
Visit a waterfall
The area is home to many beautiful waterfalls, including Wentworth Falls, Katoomba Falls, and Leura Cascades.
Wentworth falls are adjacent to the Jamison Valley and are part of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area and can be accessed via a number of walking tracks. The most popular track is the Charles Darwin Walk, which takes approximately two hours to complete.
Katoomba Falls is a magnificent natural wonder and plunge over 100 metres into the Jamison Valley below. They are surrounded by lush rainforest and native bushland. Visitors can take in the stunning views from several lookout points along the walking track, which winds its way through the surrounding wilderness.
The Leura Cascades are a beautiful series of waterfalls fed by the Everglades Creek and plunge over a series of rocks into the valley below. The cascades are a popular spot for both tourists and locals alike. The easy walking track and stunning scenery make it the perfect place to relax and take in the natural beauty of the area.
Explore a cave
The Jenolan Caves are one of the most popular attractions in the Blue Mountains. The stone structures were formed by natural erosion over thousands or even millions year and they make up one out every five sites that are heritage listed on this area’s register.
Guided tours are available, or you can explore on your own if you’re feeling adventurous.
Have a picnic lunch
There are plenty of scenic spots perfect for a picnic lunch in the Blue Mountains. Just make sure to pack some food and drinks!
The Blue Mountains is a place of natural beauty with many lookout points that offer stunning panoramic views. One such point in the region can be found at Mount Walker, which offers expansive scenery from its height above sea level atop an extinct volcano!
The Elizabeth Lookout Picnic Area in Blue Mountains is a great place to enjoy the scenery and get some fresh air. The lookout offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains, valleys and forests. There are plenty of picnic tables and benches to relax on, as well as a playground for the kids.
Wentworth Falls picnic area is the perfect place to enjoy a day out with family and friends. With beautiful views of the waterfall and plenty of space to set up a picnic, it’s no wonder this spot is so popular.
For those who love the outdoors, there are ample opportunities for mountain biking and horse riding.
For a more relaxed day out, families can explore the many art galleries and museums, or take a scenic drive through the mountains.
And of course, no visit to the Blue Mountains would be complete without taking a ride on the world-famous Katoomba Scenic Railway. With so much to see and do, the Blue Mountains are sure to provide a memorable family road trip.
Places to Stay
Wollongong is a great destination for a family road trip. With plenty of things to do and see, it’s the perfect place to spend a few days exploring. Some of our favourites include:
The Royal National Park
The Royal National Park is one of Australia’s most popular tourist destinations, attracting visitors from all over the world. Located just outside of Wollongong, the park offers a variety of activities for everyone to enjoy.
For those who love the outdoors, there are plenty of hiking and biking trails to explore, as well as a variety of scenic lookouts.
The park is also home to a number of historical sites, including an old jail and a lighthouse. And of course, no visit to the Royal National Park would be complete without taking a dip in one of its many beaches. With so much to see and do, the Royal National Park is the perfect place to spend a day or two.
The Wollongong Botanic Gardens
The Wollongong Botanic Gardens are a haven for plant lovers, with over 22 hectares of gardens to explore. Highlights include the Rose Garden, which features over 200 varieties of roses, and the Native Garden, which is home to a diverse range of Australian plants.
Other attractions include the Peace Garden, the Bonsai Collection, and the Wetland precinct. Visitors can also take a leisurely stroll along one of the many walking trails, or relax in one of the picnic areas.
There’s also a playground and cafe on site, making it the perfect place to spend a day with the family.
Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventure
The Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventure is one of the most popular attractions in the area. Located in the rainforest of Wollongong, the adventure features a series of zip lines and suspended bridges that allow visitors to experience the forest from a whole new perspective. The course is designed for all ages and abilities, and there are plenty of staff on hand to help with anything you need. The views from the top of the trees are absolutely breath-taking, and it’s an experience you’ll never forget. If you’re looking for an unforgettable day out, the Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventure is definitely worth a visit.
Wollongong is home to a number of stunning beaches, each with its own unique character. From the family-friendly sands to the surfer’s paradise, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. So whether you’re looking to relax in the sun or catch a few waves, be sure to check out Wollongong’s beaches including.
North Wollongong Beach
This wide, sandy beach is perfect for swimming, surfing and sunbathing.
This popular beach is known for its great waves, making it a favourite spot for surfers.
If you’re looking for a quieter beach, Bellambi is the perfect choice. With plenty of picnic areas and a playground, it’s perfect for a day out with the family.
Places to Stay
3. The Entrance
The Entrance on the Central Coast is a great spot for a family holiday. With its wide beaches, great fishing and abundance of activities, there’s something for everyone. Our favourites include:
Vera’s Water Garden
The Water Garden is a popular attraction for children, who can wade around in the wading pool, run through the water sprays, and climb all over the brightly coloured fountains. Vera’s Playground has plenty of sheltered areas with outdoor seating and free WiFi to allow parents to just sit back and take it easy while the kids play.
Pelican feeding at The Entrance is a must-see for any visitor. The pelicans are so tame that they will come right up to you for handouts!
Take a stroll along the Boardwalk
The Boardwalk is one of the most popular attractions in The Entrance, and for good reason! The beautiful walkway runs along the waterfront, offering stunning views of the ocean and coastline.
The Entrance Skate Park
The Entrance Skate Park is a great place to enjoy some time outdoors. The park is located on Tuggerah Parade, and it offers a variety of features for skateboarders of all levels. The skate park is free to use, although skaters are required to wear helmets, and pads are strongly recommended.
The Entrance Beaches
There are several great beaches to choose from, so whether you are looking to relax or go surfing you’re sure to find one that suits your needs. Check out Toowoon Bay Beach, Shelly beach, The Entrance Beach
The Tuggerah Lakes are a series of large freshwater lakes located just outside of town. These lakes are perfect for fishing, swimming, boating, and more, and are a great way to spend a day in nature.
Places to Stay
Kiama is a beautiful coastal town located in the Illawarra region of New South Wales. The town is famous for its picturesque beaches, rolling green hills and quaint, heritage-listed buildings. There are plenty of things to see and do in Kiama, so here are just a few ideas to get you started.
One of the most popular attractions in Kiama, the blowhole is a natural rock formation that shoots water up to 20 metres into the air when waves crash against it.
Walk along the coastal path from Kiama harbour to Jones beach – this stunning coastal walk takes you past some of Kiama’s best-loved beaches, including Blowhole beach and Collins beach.
Explore this large nature reserve, which is a home to an abundance of native plants and animals, as well as walking tracks and picnic areas. The town is renowned for its stunning beaches, which are perfect for swimming, surfing and other water sports.
Held on the first and third Saturday of each month, Kiama farmers markets offer fresh local produce, handmade arts and crafts and live music.
This serene rainforest setting is the perfect place to take a leisurely walk, enjoy a picnic lunch or simply sit and admire the tranquil surroundings.
Jamberoo Water Park
The water park features a wide range of water rides, slides and pools, as well as a lazy river and beach area. Jamberoo is perfect for a day out with family or friends, as it has something for everyone, with rides suitable for both young and old. And if you’re looking for a thrill, there are plenty of adrenalin-pumping rides to get your heart racing. So whether you’re after a relaxing day by the pool or an action-packed day of fun, Jamberoo water park is the perfect place to cool off and have a great time.
Places to Stay
Bundeena is a secluded beach town located south of Sydney, New South Wales.
Visitors to Bundeena can enjoy a variety of activities such as swimming, fishing, kayaking, bushwalking and picnicking. There are also several cafes and restaurants in the town centre where you can enjoy a meal or coffee with views of the water.
Bundeena is a beautiful seaside town located just south of Sydney. Although it is only a short drive from the city, Bundeena feels like a world away. The town is situated on the edge of the Royal National Park and is surrounded by stunning coastline and bushland.
There are plenty of things to do in Bundeena including:
Bundeena Beach is a stunning stretch of sand that’s perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and relaxing. There are also plenty of restaurants and cafes nearby if you get hungry.
The Royal National Park
The Royal National Park is home to numerous walking trails, including the popular Coast Track. The scenery is simply breathtaking, and you’re likely to spot some native wildlife along the way.
Jibbon Beach can only be accessed by ferry, making it a bit of a hidden gem. It’s well worth the effort though, as the beach is absolutely stunning. Be sure to bring your camera!
Bundeena village is home to several quaint shops and galleries selling local arts and crafts. There’s also a delicious ice cream shop if you need a sweet treat!
Hire a kayak or stand-up paddleboard and explore the area. The calm waters make it ideal for beginners, and you’re sure to enjoy the stunning views of the surrounding area.
Places to Stay
If you’re looking for an adventure, but don’t want to travel too far from Sydney, there are plenty of road trip options available. Just a short drive away, you can find stunning beaches, lush rainforests, and winding mountain roads. So what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and get ready to explore some of the best that NSW has to offer.
Before you set on your trip, you may find the following articles helpful
Ivana Katz is a Sydney based website designer and travel blogger. Having her own business has given her the freedom to explore the world. She believes travel is the best teacher and her passion for adventure, writing and photography has taken her and her son to some amazing places, including Hawaii, Canada, Fiji, Greece and Czech Republic. Ivana’s favourite thing about travelling is learning, discovering hidden gems and creating memories. She loves nothing more than inspiring other women to chase their dreams and explore the world with their families and friends.