Forget Origin: 7 Things NSW Still Has Over QLD

2 June 2016
Read Time: 2.1 mins

It's been a tough day for anyone who calls New South Wales home. Following last night's State of Origin match, where many 'Blues' supporters were left lamenting missed opportunities, it's easy to wonder if it's another year, another heartache.

But having almost 24 hours to reflect, it seems time to forget about rugby league for the next three weeks and focus on everything else Queenslanders miss out on by living too far north.

And guess what. It's quite a list.

1. Central Coast

Queensland might rate the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast, but if you're looking for a place where the laid-back beach-town traditions haven't been lost to tourism, you'll find it in the Central Coast.

Towns such as Terrigal, Gosford and Wyong all have a cosmopolitan side gleaned from Melbourne, while still boasting excellent surf and fishing, along with family-friendly adventures few states can match.

2. Hunter Valley

The Hunter Valley isn't just a collection of wineries. With heritage buildings (Maitland Gaol), horse riding, golf, go-karts, artisan retailers, hot-air balloons, spas, and galleries and museums, this cherished region is now a cultural institution.

Of course, the wineries are still the highlights. With such Aussie favourites as McWilliams', Tullochs and Tyrrells, along with the annual Hunter Valley Wine & Food Month in May, lovers of vino have a new home.

A man and woman dining at an winery in the Hunter Valley Immerse yourself in award-winning wineries throughout the Hunter Valley (Image: Anson Smart/Destination NSW)

3. Broken Hill

Australia's first city to be listed on the National Heritage register, Broken Hill is synonymous with Outback traditions and history.

Tours of actual mine sites, museums and art galleries, and scenic bush walks all highlight this quintessential country town.

More New South Wales holiday inspiration

The Great Lakes Of New South Wales

Family Adventure In New South Wales' Central Coast

4. Snowy Mountains

Own a snowboard or skis in Queensland? They won't be any use unless you venture south of the border. New South Wales' Snowy Mountains turn into a winter playground come June with two of Australia's best resorts in Perisher and Thredbo.

Australia's largest, Perisher actually includes four resorts with snow tubing, night skiing and terrain parks to go with its 1,245 hectares of skiable terrain.

A snowboarding riding down a slop at Perisher Perisher boasts some of the best slopes in Australia (Image: Perisher)

5. Lord Howe Island

With only 400 people allowed at one time, Lord Howe Island is a veritable island sanctuary. This crescent-shaped slice of paradise includes stand-up paddle boarding, hand-feeding fish at Neds Beach, snorkelling with turtles and more water-based pursuits.

Back on land, the challenging 875-metre-tall Mt Glower will make you earn the breathtaking views of Australia's coastline. Exquisite retreats on the beach and in amongst the forest are also prime real estate for relaxation.

6. Blue Mountains

Slightly further from Sydney than the beach, but even more impressive are the Blue Mountains. Rise to staggering heights and admire the patchwork of greens and browns as dense forest and rocky plateaus meet the horizon.

Not just a natural attraction anymore, musicians and artists flock to the Blue Mountains Music Festival of Folk, Blues and Roots every year in March for three days of music, food, craft and poetry.

A group of people admiring the Blue Mountains Sometimes Australia can surprise you. In the Blue Mountains, it's an every-day occurrence (Image: James Horan/Destination NSW)

7. City Beaches

You almost feel sorry for Brisbane, thinking an artificial beach can come close to the coastal bliss of Sydney. Bondi, Maroubra, Cronulla, Manly, Freshwater, Tamarama, Bronte and Clovelly – and you don't need an hour to drive to any of them.

With such an abundance close to the city centre, it's easy to find a great surf break without having to fight off the crowds.

Visit your local Flight Centre store or call 131 600 for more advice and the latest deals on travelling to New South Wales.

Ben Stower

I love the kind of travelling that is one part strategic planning and two parts spontaneous adventure. Whether I'm exploring my local city or a small town in the middle of nowhere, I'm always hoping to find something no one else has discovered.