9 Trending Towns In NSW You Must Visit

4 August 2016

Whether it’s a country road trip with the family to escape some city cabin fever or a much-needed holiday with your besties for fresh air, fun and laughter, these New South Wales towns have all the secret ingredients for a relaxing trip away.

Imagine stress-free drives through trees in every shade of ochre, sampling paddock-to-plate fare, and taking the time to find a hidden gem in that adorable antique shop. If that sounds just like the nourishment your soul needs, then pin these travel hot spots straight onto your dream boards, stat.

Cabarita Beach

The wide sweep of sand and blue-green water of Cabarita Beach in New South Wales. Spectacular views at Cabarita Beach. Picture: Getty Images

If you haven’t heard of the Tweed Shire’s Cabarita Beach (Hint: Halcyon House) in the state’s far northeast, then you have been living under an Instagram rock. Just a 45-minute drive south of the Gold Coast, this beach is hugged by a nature reserve and has a headland with picnic areas offering spectacular, uninterrupted views over the ocean. Don’t forget to hashtag!

Newrybar

 The Harvest Deli in Harvest Cafe, Newrybar. Picture: Destination NSW

A 15-minute drive inland of Byron Bay is this hinterland pearl, which is saaaah trendy right now, serving up artisan produce, antique shopping and boutique browsing. Harvest Cafe is where it’s at and is all about sustainability, serving up fresh organic farm fare to local hipsters and wanderers alike.

Mullumbimby

The rolling countryside around Mullumbimby in New South Wales. The rolling countryside around Mullumbimby. Picture: Getty Images

Also within easy reach of Byron Bay (just 20 minutes' drive northwest), Mullumbimby is a curious beatnik piece of paradise where many locals live an alternative lifestyle, surrounded by a nature’s wonderland of subtropical rainforest. The scenic town also offers popular craft and farmers markets, which are a patchwork of colour and fun.

Bowral

Sun sets on the picturesque town of Bowral in New South Wales The picturesque town of Bowral. Picture: Getty Images

You know you're in countryside perfection when the dearly beloveds are in town. Bowral is the largest town in the state's Southern Highlands and boasts rolling, green hills complemented by grand old estates, mountain views and delightful flower festivals. It's also home to the Bradman Museum and International Cricket Hall of Fame so don’t forget to bring your favourite cricket fanatic pal. Oh wait, that’s everyone in Australia.


More NSW inspiration:

Relaxed vibes: 7 Things To Do In Byron Bay For Kids

Effortless beauty: 10 Must-Do Experiences on NSW's North Coast


Orange

A city in the central west region, Orange is country wining, dining and shopping at its best. There's a much-loved farmer's market, heritage trail, serene lake, regional galleries and wineries galore. Social media addicts may recognise retailers Jumbled and Iglou in the main streets.

South West Rocks

 Smoky Cape Lighthouse stands against the sky near South West Rocks in New South Wales Smoky Cape Lighthouse near South West Rocks. Picture: Getty Images

Known for its grand old lighthouse, which offers sensational 360-degree ocean views and is a fantastic vantage point to spot whales and other sea life, South West Rocks is a quiet holiday retreat popular with families and couples. A five-hour drive north of Sydney, there’s an oceanfront pub on the main street and a campground right on the beach.

Scone

A little posh and old-fashioned like its mid-morning treat namesake, Scone is set amid the gorgeous emerald hills of the Upper Hunter shire, and has two national parks, walking trails, horse rides and an ancient Aboriginal site. It’s also where country folk from all over come dressed in their finest for Australia's biggest country racing carnival, the Emirates Park Scone Cup. Ladies, don’t forget your fascinators!

Berry

Vineyards and cows in the countryside around the New South Wales town of Berry. The rural town of Berry. Picture: Getty Images

Berry serves up country charm and has its own country fair, a good old-fashioned Australian pub, produce market and historic buildings, all in picturesque, leafy surrounds. Berry is 145 kilometres south of Sydney and also offers stunning nearby beaches and a national park, making it a great all-round trip.

Armidale

Famous for its rich, orange autumn leaves, Armidale has tree-lined streets featuring heritage buildings and grand cathedrals, located in the state’s New England region. There’s also a regional art museum and a fascinating Aboriginal cultural centre. With direct flights daily from Sydney there are no excuses not to stop here.
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Visit your local Flight Centre store or call 131 600 for more advice and the latest deals on travelling to New South Wales.

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Penny Shipway

Born into the balmy climate of tropical Queensland, it’s not surprising I’ve developed an obsession for all things beach. When I’m not swimming in the ocean singing Jimmy Buffet songs in my head, you will find me sipping colourful drinks with twizzle sticks or hunting for coastal vintage pieces. My dream is to retire on a sailboat.