My Most Loved Holiday Destination on the NSW South Coast of Australia
From the age of three, my family and I had the joy of using a friend's holiday house in the little town of Gerringong on New South Wales' South Coast in Australia. At the time this beautiful gem was a very well-kept secret. The house was located just across from Werri Beach and we spent countless summers playing in the sand and swimming in the surf. We always had fish and chips from the local fish 'n chip shop opposite the beach itself and loved taking long walks after dinner.
Located only two hours from Sydney, Gerringong, along with most of the South Coast of New South Wales, is a wonderful holiday destination with many beautiful beaches and attractions to choose from. It holds a special place in my heart because of the memories there, however many people who have visited Gerringong on our recommendation have not been disappointed.
Werri Beach in Gerrringong is a very popular surf beach, and has a large natural rock swimming pool at one end of the beach (as well as a smaller one for children) while at the other end there is a beautiful lagoon surrounded by luscious green rolling hills. It is a beautiful beach that does not tend to get overly busy (comparative to Sydney beaches at least). The sunsets and sunrises are amazing and one of my favourite things to do is to go for a walk along the sand and watch the sun set.
Seven Mile Beach is located only a minute or two south from Gerringong itself in the little town of Gerroa. If you are willing to travel another half an hour or so further on, you will find the beaches of Jervis Bay and Huskission are just incredible with sparkling clear waters and clean white sand. Green Patch is a beautiful little beach within Jervis Bay where the friendly native wildlife, including rainbow lorikeets and wallabies, often come to take a look at the visiters. Green Patch also has some beautiful nature walks you can enjoy and unwind with.
There is nothing like a visit to a good winery to help you relax on your holiday. Indulge yourself in some wine tasting and buy a bottle or two to take back to your beach house and enjoy. The South Coast is home to some fabulous wineries and many of them have beautiful restaurants where you can enjoy an amazing meal matched to just the right glass of wine.
The Silos Estate Winery is absolutely gorgeous. The property was a originally a dairy farm from 1870. The current owners have run it since 2007 and it offers a beautiful restaurant, accommodation, and wine tasting. With spectacular rolling green hills and beautiful views over the vineyard, this winery is worth a visit.
We visited Cupitt's Winery about a year ago which is located a further south from Gerringong near the historic town of Milton. This winery has an exceptionally beautiful view of the surrounding National Park. We had lunch at the restaurant and enjoyed some wonderful wine tasting, served by a very nice young man from France, which made the experience all the more enjoyable. The restaurant itself was awarded the South Coast Tourism Restaurant of the Year award for 2010 and 2011, and we can see why.
For a full list of wineries on the south coast click here.
Attractions Around Gerringong
The Illawarra Fly Tree Top Walk is a must see and do, located at Robertson, just under an hours drive from Gerringong. We walked it with our two children (who are both under five years of age) and my parents. We even managed to take a small stroller with us to push our two year old daughter around in for some of the time. 500 metres of this walk is within the tree top canopy and some of it is approximately 30 metres above the ground. The walk does not take too long, but you will want to stop and soak up the view regularly. For those of you who are not great with heights, there are parts of it you can enjoy without having to leave the ground, however the best views are from up in the canopy. There is also a cafe to come back to and grab a bite or a coffee to recover if need be!
Jamberoo Recreation Park is NSW's biggest theme park, located in Jamberoo, and is only about a 15 minute drive from Gerringong. If you want somewhere to let your kids burn off some energy (or release the child within) then this is the place to go. General admission is $39, seniors and children aged 4 -12 years are $31 (children under 3 are free).
Kiama Blowhole is located within the thriving holiday town of beautiful Kiama which is only about 10 mins north of Gerringong. If you can see it at its best, under the right conditions, the blowhole is magnificent to watch. There is also a great park located in the centre of Kiama which our children love to visit whenever we holiday down the South Cost. The park is surrounded by many fabulous coffee shops with scrumptious food and fantastic coffee.
My most loved place to shop down the South Coast is the historic town of Berry which is located about 15 minutes from Gerringong. There are so many beautiful little unique shops and you can literally spend all day there with no need to go anywhere else, thanks to the abundance of good cafes. My most loved place to eat is The Emporium Food Co. located right in the centre of town. The Berry Tea Shop is a relatively new shop in an area tucked away off the main road. It has a selection of beautiful teas and gorgeous tea sets to match. The last place I must mention is The Treat Factory which is located just out of town. If you love chocolates and other yummy handmade treats then this is the place to go. You can actually see the treats being made while you shop and there are plenty of nice giftpacks - especially for Christmas and other special occasions.
For other great shopping experiences Kiama and Gerringong are wonderful too. Gerringong boasts Australia's largest independent surf shop, Natural Necessity, which is very popular. There are also plenty of smaller boutique shopping experiences within Gerringong too, so if you are just wanting a quiet stay without much travelling there is plenty to see and do within Gerringong itself.
And like I said, it really is my most loved holiday destination in Australia.