On the 10th November 2012 we embarked on the Celebrity Solstice in Dubai (UAE) and cruised for 26 days, via several exotic (and some, not so exotic!) ports of call, to Australia. We disembarked the ship in Brisbane and then spent five days driving a hired 4x4 down the Pacific Coast Highway to Sydney.
This 1100 Km road trip is one which we would highly recommend, the scenery is breath-taking and it was an overall experience we would not wish to have missed.
We had instructed our travel agent to pre-book hotels at 4 star rating, or above, on a room only basis. This turned out be a little restrictive and, if we did this drive again, we would allocate an extra night at some of the locations we had chosen to stay at. In fact, an ideal timescale to allocate for this driving holiday would be 8 to 10 days (a stand-alone holiday itself).
This is a review of each of the hotels on that road trip – reviews will be compiled separately, under each hotel from the following list:
First night accommodation was in the Chifley at Lennons, Brisbane.
Second night was spent in the Byron resort Spa, at Byron Bay
Third night was at the Novotel Pacific Bay resort in Coffs Harbour.
Fourth night was at the Rydges in Port Macquarie
Fifth night was at Peppers Anchorage, Nelson Bay, Port Stephens
We completed our holiday with 3 nights at the Four Seasons, Sydney, prior to flying back to a cold, dismal UK!
This road trip was done instead of staying an extra two nights/one day at sea on our cruise ship from Brisbane to Sydney. It turned out to be a great decision and is a driving trip that ranks high on our lifetime holiday experiences.
Our personal top ranking of the hotels we used are Joint 1st, the Four Seasons Sydney and the Byron at Byron Bay.
1st place ranking of places visited this time would go to Port Macquarie.
One area of the drive I would by-pass in future would be the Gold Coast strip – Blackpool on Steroids!
Fourth night of Pacific Coast driving trip was at the Rydges in Port Macquarie
This is a town in which I dream of living permanently, and would hopefully visit again, for a longer stay. It is very scenic, with a splendid bay, great shops and restaurants/cafes .
The hotel gets similar accolades – we had a room with a view onto the foreshore, directly in front of the hotel. Our room was very tastefully decorated, clean and comfortable and, though not the cheapest we had stayed in, value for money.
The hotel is situated centrally and within easy walking distance of all facilities and attractions. It has excellent underground secure parking (at an additional nightly charge).
The hotel bar and restaurant supply high quality food, at reasonable prices and there are also many excellent restaurants and cafes around the hotel and town centre.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The location is the picturesque foreshore precinct filled with theatres, galleries, restaurants, boutiques and bars. With direct access to pristine swimming and surf beaches and only minutes to the amazing hinterland, Rydges Port Macquarie is the ideal destination for your next getaway on the water. Rydges Port Macquarie offers 103 contemporary and spacious rooms overlooking the water or CBD, complemented by 16 fully self-contained two and three bedroom apartments with private balconies. Also home to the award winning Zebu Bar + Grill. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Rydges Port Macquarie Hotel Port Macquarie
- Rydges Hotel Port Macquarie
- Port Macquarie Rydges Hotel