SYD­NEY TO MEL­BOURNE COASTAL DRIVE

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From Syd­ney head­ing south to Mel­bourne, the routes are jam packed full of un­spoiled beaches and bays, vast green hin­ter­land of forests and moun­tains, creat­ing the per­fect drive through hol­i­day on the South Coast of New South Wales and through the di­verse coun­try­side of Vic­to­ria. Stretch­ing from Syd­ney’s Royal Na­tional Park to Eden, near the Vic­to­rian bor­der, the South Coast re­gion of­fers a myr­iad of fun for the whole fam­ily and with the ma­jor­ity of the re­gion within three hours from Syd­ney it’s eas­ily ac­ces­si­ble and is one of the most beau­ti­ful drives you can take in Aus­tralia.

The South Coast re­gion in­cludes an abun­dance of ac­tiv­i­ties, from wa­ter sports such as fish­ing, div­ing and snorkelling, sail­ing, ca­noe­ing and kayak­ing, right through to fine gourmet din­ing, art gal­leries and an­tique shops. You will also find a seem­ingly end­less sup­ply of walks through the re­gion’s na­tional parks, marine parks and na­ture re­serves and you will never be lost when it comes to good ac­com­mo­da­tion and fresh food, par­tic­u­larly the lo­cal sup­plies of sweet Clyde River oys­ters, tuna, mus­sels and king­fish, all of which hail from the rivers, estuaries and seas.

Shell­har­bour; in the heart of the Illawarra re­gion sits be­tween the sparkling wa­ters of the Tas­man Sea and the Illawarra Es­carp­ment, with Lake Illawarra to the north and the Min­na­murra River in the south. Fur­ther south, fa­mous for its blow­hole and light­house, Kiama over­looks the coast­line and has sev­eral pop­u­lar surf­ing beaches, as well as nu­mer­ous car­a­van parks, cafes and restau­rants. Kiama has an in­ter­est­ing his­tory, hav­ing been the site of two vol­canic flows, the Ger­ringong Vol­canics.

The blow­hole was formed as part of the ero­sion process of more re­cent rock and the re­gion was orig­i­nally the home of Abo­rig­i­nal tribe Wodi Wodi, with ev­i­dence dat­ing back more than 17,000 years.

Less than 30 kilo­me­tres from Kiama lies Shoal­haven. The town’s at­trac­tions in­clude a con­trast of forests and beaches and it is home to the fa­mous Jervis Bay, the Kan­ga­roo Val­ley, Et­trema Wilder­ness, Bu­dawang Ranges and Mor­ton Na­tional Park.

It is a pop­u­lar van­tage point to watch the whales as they make their an­nual mi­gra­tion, com­ing within just three kilo­me­tres of the coast­line. Seven Mile Beach, part of the Shoal­haven River delta, is a fish­er­man’s haven and an­other pop­u­lar sight is the Ham­den Bridge, a sus­pen­sion bridge across the Kan­ga­roo River which is a medieval style bridge and the old­est sur­viv­ing sus­pen­sion bridge in the coun­try.

Con­tinue to travel fur­ther down the coast to ex­plore the Euro­bo­dalla re­gion, and along the Sap­phire Coast. As you cross the Vic­to­rian bor­der you will en­ter the tran­quil coastal town of Mal­la­coota, and the lakes of Mal­la­coota Inlet. You can pad­dle a ca­noe up the Genoa or Wal­la­ga­raugh rivers to Gipsy Point, or see one of the world’s largest colonies of lit­tle pen­guins at Gabo Is­land. At Cape Con­ran Coastal Park a camp­ing spot be­tween heath­lands, wild ocean beaches and banksia wood­lands makes for a great overnight stay. Head­ing south through ex­ten­sive dairy coun­try you can con­tinue to the gold rush vil­lage of Wal­halla, sur­rounded by dreamy forestry on the south­ern edge of the Vic­to­rian Alps. Mine tours are pop­u­lar here, and the town’s gold mining his­tory is very dis­tin­guished and in­trigu­ing. Wal­halla is also lo­cated on the thresh­old of the Baw Baw Na­tional Park, which is very pop­u­lar for bush­walk­ing, scenic drives and pic­nics. Snorkelling and div­ing at the gran­ite cliffs is also very pop­u­lar, and the nearby dairy town of Fos­ter has many beau­ti­ful in­lets and bays to do this.

From Fos­ter, drive through the fish­ing and pel­i­can haven of San Remo and over the bridge to the fa­mous Phillip Is­land, where you can visit the Pen­guin Pa­rade, see fur seal colonies or go to the Phillip Is­land Grand Prix Cir­cuit. The fi­nal stretch of the jour­ney is short, there are beaches, winer­ies and berry farms to visit, and at the penin­sula of Sor­rento, you can swim with dol­phins. The di­verse beach town of Morn­ing­ton boasts all year round sea­sonal pro­duce, glo­ri­ous gar­dens, sparkling golf greens, vine­yards and cap­ti­vat­ing new ex­pe­ri­ences. From here the only place left to go is Mel­bourne where you can soak up her labyrinth of laneways, mag­nif­i­cent bars, elite restau­rants and hid­den bou­tiques for weeks.

Imag­ine this – You wake up on a Satur­day, head to a lo­ca­tion not far from home, don a hel­met, a race suit, and hop into the driver seat of a Chevy V8 pow­ered Race Buggy. You click to­gether your race har­ness, start it up, put it in gear, drop the clutch, put your right foot to the floor and do 20 of the most adren­a­line pump­ing laps of your life, on of one of the best off-road tracks in the coun­try. With an in­struc­tor rid­ing along as your nav­i­ga­tor of­fer­ing en­cour­age­ment and some handy tips on car con­trol, you will be drift­ing and rac­ing over our pur­pose built jumps, and your con­fi­dence and speed will grow as each lap goes by.

If driv­ing it is not your cup of tea, and you’d pre­fer to take the pas­sen­ger seat in a Race Buggy with a V8 en­gine full of grunt, this dream can now be a re­al­ity. Hot Laps are an ex­cel­lent way to ex­pe­ri­ence the tracks and cars to their full po­ten­tial while a pro­fes­sional drive trills you to no end! Off Road Rush Syd­ney is the only ad­ven­ture of its kind in Aus­tralia. The choices are not lim­ited to V8 Off Road Bug­gies, but in­clude WRX Turbo Rally Cars, or the new Yamaha YXZ1000R, or a com­bi­na­tion of them all. Off Road Rush Syd­ney has lo­ca­tions in Syd­ney, Mel­bourne & Ade­laide and all have tracks with th­ese op­tions avail­able, and are open most week­ends for book­ings.

Off Road Rush Syd­ney has been run­ning since 2002. Off Road Rush’s Syd­ney aim is to give you the op­por­tu­nity to drive a V8 Bug­gies, WRX Turbo Rally Cars, or the New Yamaha YXZ1000R in the most ex­treme dirt track con­di­tions, just like a real race driver! Their in­struc­tors are the best you will find and their pri­or­i­ties are sim­ple, they want to keep you safe and have a heap of fun! They are all off road rac­ers that have a pas­sion for off road and love to share their knowl­edge and ex­pe­ri­ence to en­sure the best ex­pe­ri­ence pos­si­ble. Off Road Rush Syd­ney com­bine pas­sion for off road rac­ing to give a spec­tac­u­lar (yet safe) ex­pe­ri­ence. Get your­self be­hind the wheel of a V8 Race Buggy, WRX Turbo Rally Car, or the new Yamaha YXZ1000R. Dis­cover the se­crets of th­ese awe­some cars, get side­ways, and have a load of fun!

Phone: 1300 HOTLAP or 02-4730 7131 www.of­froad­rush­syd­ney.com.au

The epit­ome of wildlife in Vic­to­ria all seems to merge into one amaz­ing des­ti­na­tion and if you’ve never been, Phillip Is­land is by far one of Aus­tralia’s best ad­ven­tures. Just a 90 minute drive from Mel­bourne, Phillip Is­land is an ideal place for na­ture lovers and ad­ven­ture junkies. From pen­guins to koalas, race tracks to coastal cruises, there is some­thing for ev­ery­one.

Phillip Is­land Na­ture Parks is a non-profit or­gan­i­sa­tion ded­i­cated to bring­ing you the best the re­gion has to of­fer, in a way that is eco ef­fi­cient and ed­u­ca­tional.

One of the most pop­u­lar at­trac­tions by far is the Pen­guin Pa­rade where you can watch as th­ese tiny crea­tures cross the beach, from the icy wa­ters to their homes among the sand dunes, where they are known to play, chat­ter and so­cialise: in full view of an au­di­ence. For an­other tour op­tion to get you up close and per­sonal with one of our iconic mar­su­pi­als, the Koala Con­ser­va­tion Cen­tre has you walk­ing amongst the tree top board­walks through their world, al­low­ing you to come face to face with koalas in their nat­u­ral habi­tat, the Aus­tralian bush.

New to Phillip Is­land is the Antarc­tic Jour­ney, a vir­tual tour that takes you into the world of the South­ern Ocean and Antarc­tica. It in­cludes three lev­els, from the story of the con­ser­va­tion of the Sum­mer­land Penin­sula and its pen­guin pop­u­la­tion; to the in­ter­ac­tive and in­for­ma­tive ex­pe­ri­ences at The Lab; and fi­nally an au­dio visual spec­ta­cle that puts you in the heart of the ac­tion. You’ll feel as though you’re float­ing on ice, and you’ll want to reach out and pat the pen­guins or stroke a seal. An amaz­ing ex­pe­ri­ence like this is found nowhere else in Aus­tralia.

A tour of Churchill Is­land Her­itage Farm takes you back in time and al­lows you to ex­plore the dairy farm, and get in­volved in wagon rides, sheep shear­ing and whip crack­ing; while an Ecoboat tour will speed you along Phillip Is­land’s spec­tac­u­lar coast­line to see Aus­tralia’s largest fur seal colony at Seal Rocks. If you want to ex­pe­ri­ence all of the above, Phillip Is­land Na­ture Parks pro­vides a 4 PARKS PASS bun­dle pack­age that gives you the best of all worlds! Find out more on their web­site.

https://pen­guins.org.au

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