Sydney is a magnificent attraction by itself with the Opera House, Harbour Bridge and Queen Victoria Building being among the most iconic landmarks to see in this Australian metropolis.
Millions of tourists visit Sydney each year and enjoy the fine dining, rich cultural scene and amazing beaches like Bondi and its ocean pool. But there are many other amazing places to visit around Sydney that will make your Australian adventure even more incredible and exciting.
So, here are some of the best day trips from Sydney you can find. You can even stay there for a while to fully experience their beauties.
- 12 Superb day trips from Sydney, Australia
- 1. Royal National Park
- 2. Southern Highlands
- 3. Blue Mountains
- 4. The South Coast
- 5. Palm Beach
- 6. Australian Reptile Park
- 7. Kangaroo Valley
- 8. Byron Bay
- 9. Nan Tien Temple
- 10. Hunter Valley
- 11. Mudgee
- 12. Kingscliff
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12 Superb day trips from Sydney, Australia
1. Royal National Park
Royal National Park is the first ever established national park on the continent so it definitely should be on your list of places to visit in Australia. The area is full of forests, cliffs, and waterfalls, so it’s perfect for people who like going on an active holiday and hiking.
Jibbon Beach and Marley Beach are secluded and perfect for some surfing and boat rides. Probably the most interesting spot here is Wedding Cake Rock which not only offers a magnificent view over the area but also is breathtaking on itself.
2. Southern Highlands
A one-hour drive from Sydney, visitors will enter the Southern Highlands area full of villages and smaller towns situated on the hills and in the forest. There is a cricket museum called the Bradman Centre at Bowral dedicated to the famous Australian player Donald Bradman.
If you are into antiques then the vintage market of Dirty Janes is something definitely not to miss, and afterward, you can have a tasty meal at Mill Café.
Surveyor General Inn in Berrima is also a nice place to rest from sightseeing. It is built in the early 19th century with historic significance to the Southern Highlands area.
3. Blue Mountains
The Blue Mountains is one of the most popular spots people visited by people from Sydney since it’s very accessible by train, bus or car. Besides going to Echo Point Lookout to see the Three Sisters rock formation, visitors also like to come here for superb cuisine like the one at Lochiel House.
Wentworth Falls is one of the most famous waterfalls which is 187 metres (614 ft) high and not far away from charming Wentworth town. The Blue Mountains are also perfect for hiking with numerous trails ranging from easy to hard like Grand Canyon Walk and Federal Pass.
4. The South Coast
The South Coast is famous for some of the best beaches in the country like Hyams Beach in Jervis Bay and Pretty Beach in Murramarang National Park. For those who love a good road trip, this is a perfect destination since it covers a large area full of coastal towns like Wollongong and Kiama, which are full of golf courses and kangaroos.
Kiama Coast Walk is considered as one of the best trails in Australia which can take two to three days to complete. The walk includes passing by the Minnamurra River, basalt columns of Bombo Headland, volcanic formations of Cathedral Rocks and Werri Beach is ideal for surfing.
5. Palm Beach
Although Sydney has its fair share of beaches, there is a gorgeous one just an hour away from the city by bus or car, Palm Beach. Palm Beach is a stunning little spot where you will also find a charming cottage housing The Boathouse, which is perfect for a coffee stop. If you’re there, don’t miss their signature buttermilk scones!
A walk from The Barrenjoey Head Aquatic Reserve to the lighthouse will take you along the beachside and then to two inland trails. One is easy and leads straight ahead while the other one is shorter but moderate called the Smugglers Track. Whichever one you choose, you will reach the lighthouse and enjoy an amazing view over Palm Beach and its surrounding area.
6. Australian Reptile Park
One of the most attractive spots to visit around Sydney especially for families is the Australian Reptile Park. Here you will meet Elvis the crocodile and Hugo the tortoise as well as many exotic reptiles, spiders and kangaroos, as well as pet koalas and take a picture with a very big python.
The area is also open for BBQs and has significant picnic area so you can make it a day-long trip. Australian Reptile Park is an hour and a half away from Sydney and you will discover all types of venomous snakes which live on the continent.
7. Kangaroo Valley
If you want to see Australian bushland and wildlife, then Kangaroo Valley should definitely be on your list of places to visit around Sydney. This is a green area (which many often compare to Irish scenery) where you will find lots of wombats grazing in the meadows.
Hampden Bridge, made of sandstone over Kangaroo River, is the central point of the town and considered the second most important one after the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Fitzroy Falls is a short walk away surrounded by the dense eucalyptus forest. Here, you can take a good look at the whole area from its top.
8. Byron Bay
Byron Bay may be an interesting spot for surfers from all over the world, but it’s more than a surfing destination. This is the place full of markets, arts and festivals with great food and retreats perfect for de-stressing from the city life.
Byron Bay Lighthouse Walk is best if started in the early morning since there is a lot of spectacular views along the way to see and even stay a bit to enjoy the scenery. Of course, beaches here are not to be missed, especially the Main Beach with events happening during the day and evenings. Wategos Beach is a great place to do some scuba diving, snorkeling and ride a longboard, as well as have a BBQ with friends.
9. Nan Tien Temple
Almost 80 km (50 miles) from Sydney, there is a Buddhist temple of Nan Tien which is also one of the biggest in the southern hemisphere. The temple was made from traditional materials fully respecting the principles of Chinese architecture and opened for visitors in 1995.
Here you can learn calligraphy, join meditation classes or practice tai chi. Nan Tien Temple attracts thousands of tourists each year, especially those who are interested in Buddhism and Chinese architecture.
10. Hunter Valley
Hunter Valley is the most famous for its wineries and vineyards with many wine tours available here like Unwind Hunter Valley, which is only a two-hour drive from Sydney. However, this is also a good place to relax and indulge yourself in some luxurious spa treatments and massages.
Lovedale Road Trail is lined with restaurants, chocolate factory and wine cellars where you can enjoy in the best Australian wines. This area also has mini golf and playgrounds, as well as lovely gardens and Mountain View Trail for those who like to hike.
Mudgee is another place besides the Hunter Valley every wine lover should visit. Besides the wineries, the town is full of heritage buildings and parks which make it a perfect destination for a relaxing day.
The Mudgee Brewery offers craft beers like wheat ones and pale ales, and with live acoustic music, this is an ideal spot to take a break from your sightseeing. Visiting the area with a camper trailer will give you more chances to better explore the area since you can stay at the Mudgee Riverside Caravan Park.
Kingscliff is a beach town with friendly locals and many cafés and restaurants just off the Pacific Highway. Cudgen Creek has a crystal-clear water and a playground close by so your kids will love it out here and never be bored. If you’re into retro stuff, then you shouldn’t miss visiting the local store House of Zebra divided into rooms offering different things for men, women, and kids.
The walk from Salt Beach to Kingscliff offers two trails and is a wonderful opportunity to witness the lovely landscapes of the area. The bridge on the way is the best place to take memorable photos especially in the sunset and posing with Mt Warning as a background.
All these amazing places to visit around Sydney offer diverse experiences that will help you get to know Australia better. No matter if you are a Sydney-sider or a tourist visiting Sydney, you should embark on adventures to hike eucalyptus forests, try the best Australian wines or meet the amazing wildlife. Without a doubt, you will take home wonderful memories and meet another more relaxing side of Australia.