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New South WalesAustralia

Arakwal National Park which includes a beach

See Sydney’s world-famous attractions, then discover the rich diversity of “the First State,” known for its attractive beaches and breathtaking national parks.

New South Wales’ major attraction is its impressive coastline that includes the white sands of Jervis Bay, the rolling waves of Sydney’s Bondi Beach, the popular Central Coast and the endless golden beaches of the far north. The hinterlands are marked by majestic mountains, rivers and waterfalls in vast forests, while the Outback desert has its own surprises in store.

Dubbed “The First State,” this is where Australia’s colonial history began in 1788. In the state capital Sydney, climb the Harbour Bridge, tour the Opera House and visit the Royal Botanic Gardens. Swim or watch the surfers at famous Bondi Beach or Manly, which you reach by taking a scenic ferry ride from bustling Circular Quay.

In the Blue Mountains, see the peaks of the Three Sisters jutting out from a dense rainforest. Australia’s highest peak is Mount Kosciuszko in the Snowy Mountains. Ski the slopes around the resort town of Thredbo in winter.

In summer, tour the Hunter Valley to sample eclectic food paired with fine wines. Just to the north of Newcastle, the state’s second-largest city, snorkel or dive with the marine creatures of the Port Stephens-Great Lakes Marine Park.

Nature also abounds in scenic Port Macquarie. Spot sleepy koalas in the eucalyptus trees that line the city’s tranquil bays or visit the Billabong Zoo.

Cross the Great Dividing Range to see another side of New South Wales. Tamworth is a farming hub and Australia’s “Country Music Capital.” All the way west, look out over the mining area of Broken Hill from the sculpture trail in the Living Desert Reserve then camp out in the desert in Mutawintji National Park.

Back at the coast, join the partying youth in trendy Byron Bay or visit the mellow seaside town of Yamba to experience a real surfer’s paradise.

Explore the state’s many national parks, with abundant rainforests, scenic rivers and waterfalls. Spot kangaroos, cockatoos and other precious wildlife in the New England Tableland, Northern Rivers and Tweed Valley regions.

All the way north, climb Mount Warning just before dawn to see the sun rise over the azure Pacific Ocean for a lasting memory of your New South Wales vacation.

Popular cities in New South Wales

Sydney featuring night scenes, a bridge and a river or creek
Sydney
Known for Seafood, Ports and Shopping
Blessed with more than 100 beaches and buzzing with youthful vitality, when it comes to the good life it’s hard to beat the Harbour City.

Reasons to visit

  • Sydney Harbour National Park
  • Circular Quay
  • Oxford Street
Cape Byron Lighthouse featuring a sunset and rugged coastline
Byron Bay
Known for Beach View, Walking and Swimming
Duck into a quirky store to pick up some hippy gear, hike through national parks, or grab a board and get surfing at one of Australia’s favourite beach towns.

Reasons to visit

  • Seven Mile Beach
  • Wategos Beach
  • Tallow Beach
Coffs Harbour which includes swimming, a beach and general coastal views
Coffs Harbour
Known for Beach View, Family-Friendly and Ports
Enjoy beautiful beaches, excellent surf breaks, and see whales or dolphins at one of the east coast's most popular towns.

Reasons to visit

  • Big Banana Fun Park
  • Park Beach
  • Coffs Harbour Marina
Batemans Bay which includes a sandy beach, general coastal views and rocky coastline
Batemans Bay
Known for Beach View, Swimming and Recreation
Discover excellent seafood, secluded beaches, native wildflowers and diverse wildlife at this bay where the Clyde River meets the South Coast.

Reasons to visit

  • Pebbly Beach
  • Surfside Beach
  • Caseys Beach
Booderee National Park featuring a beach
Jervis Bay
Known for Beach View, Walking and Relaxing
On the south coast of New South Wales is a fascinating region full of wildlife-spotting opportunities on land and at sea.

Reasons to visit

  • Hyams Beach
  • Jervis Bay
  • Booderee National Park
Nobbys Head Beach which includes rocky coastline, a lighthouse and a bay or harbor
Newcastle
Known for Beach View, Family-Friendly and Ports
Soak up the history of one of Australia’s oldest cities, hit the beach, or head out into the countryside to spot local wildlife or explore wineries.

Reasons to visit

  • Glenrock State Conervation
  • Newcastle Beach