12 Adventures To Love In NSW
While the bushfires and drought have brought some tough times, many parts of NSW are as beautiful as ever. Right now, one of the best things we can do to help our regional communities is enjoying a holiday in NSW. So why not make 2020 the year you try the adventure activity you’ve always dreamed of doing?
From outback off-roading to Blue Mountains abseiling, here’s 12 exciting ways to give back:
#1 Treetop walk in the Illawarra
You’ll be an exhilarating 30 metres above the ground on the steel walkway of the Illawarra Fly. This 1.5-kilometre walk begins on the rainforest floor and leads you up to a treetop canopy, where you’ll get a bird’s-eye-view of the Royal National Park, Lake Illawarra and South Pacific Ocean below. To really get the blood pumping, you can even fly through the trees on a zipline.
#2 Stand-up paddle board in Jervis Bay
Jervis Bay’s calm, pristine waters make it the perfect place to try stand-up paddle boarding. The diversity of marine life here means you may even see dolphins, gropers, seals or whales from your board, as well as hundreds of bird species.
#3 Learn to surf in Byron Bay
For decades, surfers have flocked to the warm waters of Byron Bay. There are more than 10 beaches here but the smaller swells of laidback Clarkes Beach make it perfect for beginners. If you’re an experienced wave rider, you can sign up with one of the town’s many surf schools. At Surf Camp Byron Bay, you’ll get daily lessons and accommodation at a local hostel — with the option to stay as long or as little as you want.
#4 Dive at Lord Howe Island
Its crystal clear waters, vast coral reefs, marine life and underwater trenches have made Lord Howe Island one of the best places in the world to scuba dive. You can explore more than 50 dive sites here, including the volcanic sea stack of Balls Pyramid. There are plenty of dive tours for beginners but if you’re not ready to go all the way down, Lord Howe is also a great spot for snorkelling.
#5 Abseil in the Blue Mountains
Where better to get vertical than the dramatic cliff faces of the Blue Mountains? You can start your day with a small abseil and build up to a full 60-metre overhang, or set off on a guided rock climb. However extreme you choose to go, the views will be incredible.
#6 Ski in the Perisher Valley
There are more than 25 ski runs specially designed for beginners at Perisher, nestled in the Kosciuszko National Park's Snowy Mountains. Daily ski lessons will help you master the slopes, while you can also tackle the calmer cross-country trails or learn to snowboard here. Kids will love the designated tobogganing area.
#7 Kayak the Hawkesbury River
The Hawkesbury River is a tranquil place to spend an afternoon kayaking. But in a full two or three days you could explore the waterways all the way from Windsor to Brooklyn, gliding past mangroves, historic towns and national parks as you go. You can hire your own kayak or join a guided tour, while thrillseekers can even waterski, wakeboard or go tubing here.
#8 Hike through Oxley Rivers National Park
You can experience the satisfaction of completing a multi-day hike at Oxley Rivers National Park in the Northern Tablelands. The 65-kilometre Green Gully Track can be conquered in four or five days and will take you past gorges, rivers and rainforest as you go. The trail is currently closed but will reopen on 30 March 2020.
#9 Skydive in Wollongong
For 60 hair-raising seconds, you’ll freefall at a speed of over 200 kilometres an hour on a skydive over North Wollongong Beach. Then, you’ll float under canopy for a further five or seven minutes, taking in the incredible coastal views below as you go. It’s a thrill you’ll never forget.
#10 Mountain bike in Thredbo
During the warmer months, Thredbo’s snowfields become the site of one of Australia’s best mountain biking tracks. The Kosciuszko Flow Trail ascends 1930 metres high, giving you beautiful views of the valley below. There are options suited to beginners and you’ll get special training before you set out.
#11 4WD through Outback NSW
There’s nowhere better to get off-road and explore the path less travelled than in Outback NSW. In a 4WD, you can explore towns like Broken Hill, the striking landscapes of Mungo National Park with Mungo Lodge & Tours and learn more about rich Aboriginal culture. To make it truly memorable, bring a tent and camp under the stars.
#12 Go rafting on the Murray River
You can find an incredible adrenalin rush on the mighty Murray River. It’s not for the faint of heart but white-water rafting here will let you descend between intricate rock formations for up to six kilometres, before taking a relaxing dip in the river’s rock pools. Guides will accompany you and teach you everything you need to know about this high-octane activity.
For more information on each adventure check out www.visitnsw.com/love-nsw.
*All images courtesy Destination NSW.