4 weekend getaways for under $400
Get out of the big city with these wallet-friendly travel itineraries.
AS MUCH AS the city has its perks, there’s really nothing like ditching the nine to five and hitting the road. Armed with a tank full of petrol (or a topped-up Opal card), you’ll be surprised how far your dollar can stretch outside the big city. Stay seaside in Jervis Bay Budget: $250 Three hours south of Sydney is a little patch of paradise called Jervis Bay, and it’s here where you can take advantage of the great outdoors’ best features. The spectacular bay plays host to over 90km of natural beaches and a range of water-based pursuits, including dolphin and whale spotting ( www.dolphinwatch.com.
au. From $50), chartered sailing and kayak tours ( www.jervisbaykayaks.com. From $55) from what is claimed to be the world’s whitest stretch of sand, Hyams Beach. Pitch your tent right in the thick of it at Bristol Point Camping
Ground, located within the beautiful beachside Booderee National Park ( Jervis Bay Rd, Jervis Bay 2540. 02 4443 0977. From $17 a night). Afterwards, pop into Husky Bakery and Café and get a chunky steak pie for $5 ( 11 Currambeene St, Huskisson 2540. 02 4441 5015) or dig into a sizeable burger at 5 Little Pigs ( 64-66 Owen St, Huskinsson 2540. 02 4441 7056. 5littlepigs. com.au). Go caving in the Blue Mountains Budget: $300 Wander among the steep cliffs, eucalyptus forests, waterfalls and swimming holes in this rugged region of NSW and be rewarded by picture-perfect vistas prime for online bragging. Adrenaline junkies can get their kicks within the beautiful bushland on abseiling adventures with High n Wild, who run half- and full-day abseiling jaunts starting from $135 ( www.
highandwild.com.au). Then head over to the 400-million-year-old Jenolan Caves, a limestone labyrinth with more than 40 kilometres of cave passages to explore with your trusty headlamp ( 4655 Jenolan Caves Rd, Jenolan 2790. From $40). Keep things on the cheap by staying at the Blue Mountains YHA where there’s a log fire and easy access to Echo Point and the Three Sisters ( 207 Katoomba St, Katoomba 2780. 02 4782 1416. From $25 a night). Trawl for antiques in the Southern Highlands Budget: $350 Whether you’re a fan of antiquing, hiking or tucking into fish and chips in little beachside towns, it’s never a bad idea to head southwest to the Highlands. Most of this area is well serviced by train lines, so you can get there pretty cheaply without a car. Check in at the charming
Bundanoon Hotel; it’s warm and cosy just like an old pub should be ( 6-18 Erith St, Bundanoon
2578. 02 4883 6005. From $89 a night), then head to Dirty Jane’s in Bowral. This part-gallery, partmarket covers three warehouse spaces. Trawl through rows of well priced furniture, lighting, vintage clothing, jewellery and more, then finish it up with a high tea at Dirty Jane’s Tea Salon for $29 per person ( 13 Banyette St, Bowral 2576. 02 4861 3231. dirtyjanes.com). Take a culinary tour of Orange Budget: $250 Out over the other side of the Blue Mountains lie the western plains of NSW including Orange, a region famous for cold climate produce like truffles, nuts, berries and wine. Make spending an afternoon at De Salis Wines a priority ( 125 Mount Lofty Rd, Nashdale 2800. 0403 956 295. www.desaliswines.com.au). The next day, make a beeline for Factory Espresso ( 135 Kite St, Orange 2800. 02 6360 2858) for a shot of coffee and to Scrumptious on Summer ( 142-146 Summer St, Orange 2800. 02 6361 7200. www.scrumptiousonsummer.com.au) for a hearty brekky that’ll cure that hangover. Rest your head at 35 Kite St ( 35 Kite St, Orange 2800. 02 6361 8114. www.apartmentsonpark.com.au. From $135 a night), a cute two-person cottage opposite leafy Cook Park. ■
De Salis Wines