We were blessed to meet up with Win, who drove us around to visit some of the most spectacular and beautiful beaches, cliffs, lighthouses and coastlines along the Grand Pacific Drive just 1 hr south of Sydney. The Grand Pacific Drive, a spectacular drive spanning from Sydney’s Royal National Park (the second oldest in the world) to Nowra, is a 2-3 hours non-stop drive and passes through Stanwell Park on its scenic route to the South Coast.
1. Stanwell Park and Stanwell Tops
Stanwell Park is a picturesque coastal town, offering an amazing day trip outside Sydney for family picnics, hang gliding or simply enjoying the awe-inspiring views from the Bald Hill Lookout. The forested hills that rise from the coast to the steep cliffs and strong winds makes Stanwell Tops the perfect location for hang gliding.
2. Sea Cliff Bridge
The highlight of the Grand Pacific Drive has to be the iconic 665 metre Sea Cliff Bridge – an engineering marvel. To solve the problem and hazard of rocks avalanche, the bridge was built to swerve out from the falling rocks and cliffs, extending slightly into the sea beyond. By December 2005, construction was completed at a whopping cost of around $50 million.
The bridge was also New South Wales’s answer to the Great Ocean Road in Victoria. We enjoyed the experience of walking along the Sea Cliff Bridge and took many great photos!
3. Kiama’s Blowhole
Kiama’s famous blowhole is the largest in the world! The excitement and momentum build as you wait for the ocean to enter the blowhole and then watch the spray shoot up high with a thundering noise. We didn’t have to wait long for the next one.
It is best viewed during high tides and you simply had to be there to experience this natural wonder! The area around it was very walkable and the light house atop the hill set against the backdrop of blue skies was simply beautiful to behold.
4. Wollongong Foreshore Park & Wollongong Beaches
The Sydney Wildlife Tours also goes to the above places and more. You can check out their website here.
Our heartfelt thanks to Win, who took leave from work just to show us around and took great care of us. You had made our Sydney trip an exciting and memorable one!
5. Featherdale Wildlife Park
We booked the Blue Mountains tour with Activity Tours Australia and they brought us to Featherdale Wildlife Park (entrance fee is included in package) to get really up close and personal with the native kangaroos, wallabies, koalas and other animals. You get to feed, touch and watch the tame, free roaming animals.
6. Blue Mountains
Our guide brought us to Echo Point by taking the Leura Cascades Track, where we passed through little streams and waterfall and a fair bit of stairs climbing.
The guide then brought us to Katoomba for lunch (at our own expense) before we went up to Blue Mountains. At this point, you can choose whether to continue trekking in Blue Mountains to another waterfall with the guide or explore on your own. We choose to leave the group to take the Railway and walked through the rain forest as we were rather tired from the previous trek. We then took the Cableway to come back up.
The Three Sisters at Katoomba
Our guide returned late with the rest of the group and a few of us waited for them for 45 mins at the stipulated place. As a result, the bus need to rush to the next destination (Kings Tableland) and we could not stop by the Olympic Site for a visit and also missed the river cruise ride back to the city.
7. Kings Tableland
8. River Cruise From Homebush Bay to City
The guide also told us the wrong timing for the next river cruise ride and we had to check the cruise timetable ourselves when we realised we missed another ride! We waited 45 mins to board the 3rd river cruise back to the city.
It was quite late when we returned to Sydney due to all the unnecessary waiting but we thoroughly enjoyed the experience of taking the river cruise with the winds caressing our faces and going under the Harbour Bridge with stunning views of the City and Opera House.
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