The Legendary Pacific Coast is one of the most popular tourism drives stretching about 900 KMs from Sydney to Brisbane along the Pacific Coast. For almost every backpacker visiting Australia, it is worth buying or renting a vehicle, and spend some good money on exploring the coastal bushlands, rolling green hills, spectacular beaches, experiencing local people, visit beach communities, and surf incredible waves.
I, and some of my friends spent around 6 weeks campaign along the Legendary Pacific Coast from Woy Woy to Byron Bay. It gave us a chance to see a lot more of this exceptional Australian region. In this post, I’ve pointed out some highlights along the Pacific Coast Drive, and places worth spending your time.
This place is just an hour from Sydney. Unfortunately, most tourists keep driving on the freeway, and don’t visit this beautiful region. If you visit this place, you will be mesmerized by the beauty of Bouddi National Park. The sandstone cliffs create exceptional coastal views.
The place also provides great opportunities for beach camping and hikes. If you want something quieter, you can visit MAcMasters Beach. We spent most of our time in Terrigal, the upmarket and trendy beach area.
Newcastle / Port Stephens / Hunter Valley
I consider myself fortunate to get a chance to explore this region. Port Stephens was a dream come true with beautiful beaches, incredible fishing and snorkeling opportunities, driving lessons, dolphin and whale watching, and more. The main town in the region is Nelsons Bay. I have always loved wines. Thus, visiting Hunter Valley was a great choice. While you’re here, try not to miss the Hot Air balloon ride, and a delicious lunch at the Harrigan’s restaurant.
Sitting beside the Hastings River, Port Macquarie is an unspoilt and vibrant town. The spectacular coastline makes this place perfect to spend some quiet days. I just fell in love with the coastal ambiance. Rent a car at Sydney Airport and visit this place anytime of the year include gorgeous National Parks, calm waterways, beautiful beaches, bountiful fishing and more.
If you’re driving straight from Sydney to Queensland, Coffs Harbour will be a good halfway resting point. With the rolling green hills, you will love this stretch. We set camp north of Coffs near the Emerald Beach. In this place, you will notice Goannas roaming freely. Thus, if you’re scared of lizards, be prepared for some unrest.
A lot of tourists consider Yamba to be the best town in Australia. It is located near the Clarence River. This place has exceptional beaches for swimming. Near the Shelley’s Beach, you can walk through the National Park, and enjoy the beauty of nature. We took our time on the walk, and returned after almost 4 hours. This places gives beautiful views of the Coastline. Just a short drive away is located Angourie. It was the first surfing reserve in Australia.
Lennox Head has the reputation of being among the Top 10 surfing breaks down under. Most surfers consider it to be the “Mecca” of surfing. It is a funky and laid back place with numerous cafes, restaurants and boutiques.
Byron Bay has been famous for its surf, sheltered beaches and laid back lifestyle. We took a coastal cliff walk to reach the Cape Byron Lighthouse. It is the furthest Eastern point of Australia. When you visit this place, make sure you don’t miss Nimbin. It’s a hippie enclave famous of its exquisite lifestyle. It can open your mind about some exceptional alternative lifestyle trends. We also spent an hour at the Hemp Museum. The locals will present multiple offers to buy home grown weed.
My journey ended with our last destination, Coolangatta. It is the gateway to Queensland and the Gold Coast. For many years, I had wanted to visit the place. Never did I imagine that it would be on a 900 KMs road trip with some of the best friends in my life. Coolangatta offers everything you expect from a beach community.
It has world class surfing breaks, beautiful beaches, chilled out lifestyle, cafes and restaurants, warm climate, access to theme parks and more. For the perfect Gold Coast experience, choosing this place as your last stop will be perfect. You might even want to extend your trip for a few more days, and enjoy everything that Coolangatta offers. I had always wanted a road trip, but never thought that it would be such a perfect experience.