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NSW's must-visit regional spots

 

Pack the car and take the road less travelled through regional NSW this winter.

 

Country NSW

Country NSW has such a wide range of quality produce and stunning scenery on offer. And all while being such a short drive from Sydney and Canberra! Home to three designated wine regions (around Orange, Mudgee and Cowra) and countless celebrated restaurants, cafes and pubs, you're sure to find something delicious to feast and sip on.

The best way to explore everything the region has to offer is to travel at your own pace along one of the famous epicurean routes. The Murray River food and wine trail begins in beautiful Deniliquin and meanders south to Echuca-Moama (famous for its paddle-steamers). The trail then follows the river east towards Tocumwal (home of the Big Murray Cod), the golfers’ paradise of Mulwala, and also Corowa, which is a popular swimming and fishing spot. The trail then ends at Albury, the cultural hub of the region.

Or you can make your way along the Riverina to Snowy Valleys Way drive. Start in the multicultural Griffith, known for its Italian heritage, world-class wineries and gourmet produce. From here, drive through Leeton, known for its Art Deco architecture, and on to Narrandera and Wagga Wagga, the hub of this dynamic food and wine area. Heading west, this trip ends at Tumbarumba, home to a cool-climate wine region in the foothills of the Snowy Mountains.

 

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Hunter

 

The vines in the Hunter Valley’s rich soils produce some of the world’s best wines and the Broken Back Range makes for a spectacular backdrop. As Australia’s oldest wine region, and with more cellar doors than anywhere else in the country, there's plenty to see, do, and taste. 

Your southern gateway to the Hunter is Cessnock, which is a two-hour drive from Sydney. From there, you can find plenty of wine-tasting tours from here to help you discover your new favourite tipple. Northeast of Cessnock are the towns of Maitland, Morpeth and Paterson, where you can explore the fascinating history of Maitland Gaol, enjoy a riverside picnic in heritage-listed Morpeth, or see Paterson’s colonial buildings. The stunning landscapes also allows for a great opportunity to get yourself a healthy dose of fresh air. Hire a bicycle and take a pedal through the charming villages of Pokolbin, Lovedale and Rothbury, or head west to the hamlet of Broke or south towards Wollombi, where you can take a guided tour of indigenous rock paintings.

Newcastle is a vibrant cosmopolitan city with a rich maritime history and a world-famous surfing destination, Merewether Beach.  You'll discover cool bars, quality restaurants, and a lively arts and music scene in NSW's second-biggest city, just two hours' drive north of Sydney.

 

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Snowy Mountains

 

The adventure wonderland of the Snowy Mountains is less than three hours from Canberra and a five-and-a-half-hour drive from Sydney. The region is brimming with fun experiences, from thrilling downhill runs on pristine snow to music festivals, wine tastings, fascinating heritage and much more.

There are many more wonderful natural attractions that let you make the most of the wide open spaces, including beautiful limestone structures, the Tuross Falls and a special platypus reserve in Bombala. From Tumbarumba in the west to Tumut in the north to Jindabyne and Cooma in the east, you’ll find beautiful scenery, intriguing heritage and marvellous events. Then it’s time to make your way higher into the mountains.

All located within Kosciuszko National Park, each of NSW’s four snow resorts has its own style and personality. Perisher is the colossus, with a huge interconnected web of runs, lifts and on-snow action. Thredbo, steep and forested, has a European-style village and a reputation for its après-ski fun. Charlotte Pass, Australia’s highest resort, is only accessible over-snow and is a favourite with families and club skiers, while Selwyn Snow Resort is relaxed, friendly and outstanding value for families and beginners.

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Kiama, Gerringong and Gerroa

 

A beautiful seaside destination, Kiama is famous for its blowhole a natural rock formation that spouts seawater 20 metres or more into the air. But there are many more intriguing and spectacular things to do and see in Kiama, from the gorgeous beaches to the exhilarating Kiama Coast Walk. Surf Beach is the main beach with a park and children’s playground. For adventurers, there are a number of tours for kayaking and fishing, and the estuary of the Minnamurra River is great for kayaking.

A short drive from south of Kiama you will also discover a charming seaside town of Gerringong perched on a dramatic headland. The town is equally enticing with beautiful beaches, superb surf breaks, verdant countryside and delicious food and wine experiences. A little further south is the wonderful seaside escape of Gerroa. It's a charming village in the Kiama region with marvellous views of the sparkling blue ocean. Water sports are also popular in Gerroa, which is at the mouth of the Crooked River and the northern end of beautiful Seven Mile Beach.

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