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Sydney and coast recommendations

ra
Seattle
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17 posts
7 reviews
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Sydney and coast recommendations

Planning our first trip to AU for next Dec/Jan for the Sydney/Hobart race. Plan to spend a few days in Sydney-watch the race start and then we are free to explore. Would like to spend some time in the wine country and then somewhere on the coast. We have places we can stay in Port Stephens, Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbor, Flynns, Golden and Kirra Beach ~ but not knowing the area need some suggestions!

We will have between 10-14 days for the trip our trip.

Any suggestions are greatly appreciated!

CB

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Sydney
Sydney
New South Wales, Australia
Hobart
Hobart
Greater Hobart, Australia
Port Stephens
Port Stephens
Greater Newcastle, Australia
Port Macquarie
Port Macquarie
New South Wales, Australia
Avoca, Australia
Destination Expert
for Rusutsu-mura
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3,925 posts
10 reviews
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1. Re: Sydney and coast recommendations

I dont think it worth going to the Gold Coast in Dec/Jan (personal opinion here).

Hunter Valley, Port Stephens and maybe Forster/Seal Rocks area.

Central Coast is worth a look (Terrigal to Norah Head) as its on the way.

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Gold Coast
Gold Coast
Queensland, Australia
Hunter Valley
Hunter Valley
New South Wales, Australia
Port Stephens
Port Stephens
Greater Newcastle, Australia
Forster
Forster
New South Wales, Australia
Terrigal
Terrigal
New South Wales, Australia
Sydney Australia
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1,272 posts
9 reviews
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2. Re: Sydney and coast recommendations

Depends what you are looking for. The NSW school holidays start 21st Dec and it will be very busy everywhere from then on. Gold Coast will be crowded and full of families but is good if you want to go to theme parks etc and have shopping malls, casino etc available in case of wet weather. From your list I would pick Port Macquarie, having a choice of nice beaches or Port Stephens which offers calm water as well as nearby surf.Port Stephens is also very close to the Hunter wine region.

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Gold Coast
Gold Coast
Queensland, Australia
Port Macquarie
Port Macquarie
New South Wales, Australia
Port Stephens
Port Stephens
Greater Newcastle, Australia
ra
Seattle
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17 posts
7 reviews
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3. Re: Sydney and coast recommendations

Thanks for your input! it sounds like the beach areas will be crowded for the holiday and that the weather may not be the best? we are not much into shopping/casinos or theme parks. We really would like a spot that provides natural beauty and where we could see some wildlife as well. As stated earlier this is our first trip and would like to experience the best of what this area has to offer.

Avoca, Australia
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for Rusutsu-mura
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4. Re: Sydney and coast recommendations

This link is worth trying:

http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/parks.nsf/WebMgmt/HTMLPages+Homepage

Brisbane, Australia
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for Brisbane, Noosa
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5. Re: Sydney and coast recommendations

The places you mention are all beautiful spots and in between are many more. Yes it will be busy with our summer holidays however I would not let that deter me exploring.

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Business Travel, New South Wales
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6. Re: Sydney and coast recommendations

Hi ra,

here is another suggestion that is absolutely different and beautiful.

Discover the beautiful deep waters of the Hawkesbury River and the elongated graceful waterway of Pittwater, running from Newport to Palm Beach. Broken Bay is dominated by Lion Island with plenty of small inlets and coves to cruise your yacht, cruiser or house boat through. Set amongst four National Parks, Kur-ring-gai Chase, Marramarra, Dharug, Brisbane Water and Bouddi, there are gorgeous beaches, historic villages, mangroves, with abundance of flora and fauna.This area is similiar in scenery to the Whitsunday Islands in Queensland but is only one hour drive from Sydney.It offers beautiful scenery set amongst National Parks and sandstone headlands.

There are numerous ways to see Pittwater/Hawkesbury River, the best being hiring a houseboat and crusing the Cowan River and Berowra Waters.The other alternative is to take a cruise on the Hawkesbury River Cruises and spend a day enjoying the beautiful waterways, stopping off for lunch at Bobbin Head.Another suggestion is to get off at Cottage Point Inn and have lunch overlooking Coal and Candle Creek, they also have overnight luxury accommadation available but you need to book (612 9456 1011).The cruise leaves Palm Beach Wharf at 11.00am daily.

Another great way to see the river is to catch the Riverboat Postman, this is a service that delivers mail to isolated houses it takes approx 3 hours and runs Monday to Friday. Catch a train from Central Railway Station in the city at 8.16am to Hawkesbury River Railway Station in time to catch the mailman. (02 9985 7566) for more details.Palm Beach ferries also offers an unique way to see Pittwater which operates from Palm Beach Wharf (02 99182747) you can catch a ferry to Ettalong, The Basin, Patagona,Pearl Beach and Woy Woy.

If hiring a boat take the train to Brooklyn it has a railway station called the Hawkesbury River railway station. However, you must check that your train will stop at this station. On arrival at the Hawkesbury River station, just phone Ripples Houseboats, and they will come and pick you up free of charge. Or North Shore Airport Service takes you to door from the airport. Other companies do the same, or drive to Church Point/ Palm Beach 45 mins from Sydney and catch the ferry/ water taxi to location.

Waterfront Restaurants: Cottage Point Inn /Waterview Restaurant/Riverside Brooklyn/Peat’s Bite/Dangar Island Café/Berowa Waters/Cottage point kiosk/Forgotton Valley Restaurant/Newport arms Hotel/Akuna Bay/Newport Yacht Club/Newport Boating Club/Mooney Mooney Workers Club.

Places of Interests:The Basin /Refuge Bay/Smiths Creek/ Cowan Creek/ Kangaroo Point/ Cottage Point/ Dangar Island/ Bar Island/Milsons Island/ Berowa Waters/ Brooklyn/Akuna Bay/ Newport/ Palm Beach/ Church Point/ Scotland Island/ Brisbane Waters/ Ettalong Beach / Pearl Beach/ Patonga Beach/ Mackerel Beach.

www.clippercruises.com.au/

www.luxuryafloat.org/

www.yachtcharter.com.au

www.ripples.com

Or Stay at Headlands – Broken Bay. Voted the best small hotel in NSW, and catch ferries to explore other places.www.headlands.com.au a five star stunning hotel set amongst National Parks overlooking the beautiful waters of Pittwater. (Expensive)

For the budget traveller you can take the ferry to The Basin and camp in the National Park perched on the waterfront.You must ring and book a site, showers and toilets are available and a shop to buy essentials(opened only in summer)02 9974 1011.Another budget accommadation is Pittwater YHA (9999 5748) catch the 156 bus from Manly Wharf to Church Point and then a ferry to Halls Wharf.

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Hawkesbury River
Hawkesbury River
83 Reviews
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Brisbane
Brisbane
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Whitsunday Islands
Whitsunday Islands
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Cottage Point Inn
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Kangaroo Island
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Pittwater YHA
Pittwater YHA
27 Reviews
Morning Bay, Australia
Sydney Australia
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7. Re: Sydney and coast recommendations

ra, don't be put off. Yes it is the holidays and it's also summer. It can get very hot and with hot weather you can also get some rain. I just spent xmas and new year on the Gold Coast and every day was beautiful (really hot) and there was a bit of rain on a couple of nights. All along the coast will be crowded with holiday makers, which usually means more activities available at that time. Just make sure anywhere you do need accommodation, you book well in advance. The Hunter Valley is an inland detour on your way to Port Macquarie. There is everything from upmarket resorts to small B&B's and pubs. You can go to wine school and get educated on wines, go in a hot air balloon or take a horse drawn carriage amongst the vines. My suggested websites on the Hunter are:

www.winecountry.com.au

www.hunterweb.com.au

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Gold Coast
Gold Coast
Queensland, Australia
Hunter Valley
Hunter Valley
New South Wales, Australia
Port Macquarie
Port Macquarie
New South Wales, Australia
Sydney
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147 posts
13 reviews
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8. Re: Sydney and coast recommendations

Although the school holidays are crowded, everyone is in a good mood because they are on holidays. If you are in Coffs Harbour, Bellingen is a nice little town to have a look at - just a short drive inland. It's a bit "alternative" with nice restaurants. It's also very pretty country heading up into the hills a bit. If you want to go a bit further north, the hinterland around Byron Bay is gorgeous. Have a great trip!

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Coffs Harbour
Coffs Harbour
New South Wales, Australia
Byron Bay
Byron Bay
Byron Shire, Australia
Hayden Lake, Idaho
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9. Re: Sydney and coast recommendations

Ellemay was spot on with what she was describing...Pittwater, etc.

I spent Xmas eve on a deserted beach at Patonga...ferry ride from Palm Beach north of Sydney at Hawkesburry...enjoyed the hot weather, perfect water (on the harbour, not the ocean). Very relaxing...no crowds.

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Sydney
Sydney
New South Wales, Australia
ra
Seattle
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17 posts
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10. Re: Sydney and coast recommendations

Wow thank you all for your suggestions. The Pittwater/Hawkesbury area sounds amazing~thank you Ellemay for all the information. We are sailors is this an area where you could charter a boat for a few days?