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Kick back by the sea in Kiama

Kiama BlowholeCredit: Destination NSW

Couple watching the water plume from the Kiama blowhole.

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Kick back by the sea in Kiama

Kiama Blowhole Credit: Destination NSW

Couple watching the water plume from the Kiama blowhole.

#feelnsw #newsouthwales

Hashtags #feelnsw #newsouthwales

Marvel at the power of the ocean as it sprays up through the rocks in Kiama, less than two hours’ drive south of Sydney. Don’t plan on moving on too fast though, as there is plenty more to love about this laid-back coastal town beyond its famous blowhole. Here’s why you’ll be inspired to stay longer.

Uncover an energising coastal playground

Seek out the Kiama Blowhole’s lesser-known cousin, the Little Blowhole Kiama, just a 10-minute drive to the south. It might not be as big, but this impressive natural water cannon tends to be more consistent.

Pull on your walking boots and welcome the refreshing sea breeze as your constant companion on the Kiama Coast Walk, a 20km hike from the mouth of the Minnamurra River, south through Kiama to Werri Beach in the neighbouring town of Gerringong. Feel the ultimate sense of accomplishment by hiking the entire trail, taking in gentle hills, dramatic rock formations and panoramic ocean views, or get a taste on a shorter adventure   the route is conveniently divided into three sections.

Reward yourself with some quality beach time at Kiama’s Surf Beach, or get a buzz leaning how to surf with former big-wave surfer Rusty Moran at Gerringong Surf School. Or head to Gerroa, a few minutes down the road, where Surf Camp Australia offers lessons and multi-day camps.

Enjoy thrills and spills inland

Feel at one with the lush rainforest as you navigate gently swaying walkways 50m above the ground on the Treetop Walk at Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventure, a 30-minute drive inland from Kiama. Or for a change of pace, feel the rush of adrenaline as you fly through the air on a zipline tour that whisks you from one treetop platform to another, 35m above the forest floor. You’ll also learn about the stunning rainforest from your guide along the way.

Get wet and wild at the family-run Jamberoo Action Park, just outside the pretty village of Jamberoo, a 10-minute drive west of Kiama. Exciting water slides include the Perfect Storm, a vortex ride that sucks you and three friends into a giant twister to experience zero gravity.

Prepare to give your walking shoes another workout in the lush Budderoo National Park. Get your bearings at the Minnamurra Rainforest Centre, a 10-minute drive west of Jamberoo, then immerse in the beauty of the rainforest as you cross a suspension bridge and take an elevated walkway on the easy and shady 1.6km Rainforest Loop Walk. If you want to go further, continue on to the Falls Walk, which leads you to viewing platforms at the lower and upper Minnamurra Falls. Catch your breath as you soak up this serene slice of the South Coast.

When you can’t decide how to spend your day, leave your itinerary in the capable hands of South Coast Experiences, which can arrange bespoke adventures such as romantic beach picnics, art and floral art workshops, fishing charters, wellness workshops, pottery classes, yoga classes and more.

Surf Camp Australia, Gerroa Credit: Destination NSW

Surf Camp Australia is Australia's original provider of overnight learn to surf camps and operating since 1999.The Surf Camp is located a short walk from Australia's best learn to surf beach, two hours from Sydney at Seven Mile Beach, Gerroa, New South Wales.

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Surf Camp Australia, Gerroa Credit: Destination NSW

Surf Camp Australia is Australia's original provider of overnight learn to surf camps and operating since 1999.The Surf Camp is located a short walk from Australia's best learn to surf beach, two hours from Sydney at Seven Mile Beach, Gerroa, New South Wales.

#feelnsw #newsouthwales

Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventures, Knights Hill Credit: Destination NSW

Couple enjoying the scenic views from Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventures, Knights Hill.

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Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventures, Knights Hill Credit: Destination NSW

Couple enjoying the scenic views from Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventures, Knights Hill.

#newsouthwales #feelnsw

Delight in seaside dining

Drink in the sweeping coastal views at the Diggies Kiama café in Kiama, along with an energising coffee or a refreshing cocktail in this buzzy, light-filled venue just steps from the town’s famous blowhole. Enjoy more serene sea views from your table as you savour the freshness of the produce served at Silica opposite Surf Beach, much of which is grown on a community farm. Or order takeaway favourites from the restaurant’s to-go menu to enjoy alfresco with the sand between your toes.

Savour the moreish Middle Eastern offerings at Miss Arda, a casual dining destination where dishes like the sumac-crusted calamari and prawn-and-chorizo dumplings are perfect for sharing with friends. Pair your meal with zesty cocktails, topped off with a decadent serving of kanafeh, a sweet, spun pastry dessert. And relish the simple pleasure of sinking your teeth into a hand-crafted burger at The Hungry Monkey, a casual local dining institution which has expanded to the nearby towns of Berry, Bowral and Thirroul.

Trace local produce to the source at Buena Vista Farm, outside of Gerringong, and learn all about the small-scale, sustainable farming systems that are used to produce eggs, dairy, coffee, goat’s milk and more. Or roll up your sleeves and learn a new skill on your trip during a workshop on cheesemaking, sourdough baking, fermenting and more.

Sip the Shoalhaven Coast

Embrace Kiama’s location at the northern gateway to the thriving Shoalhaven Coast wine region, with several vineyards and cellar doors within easy reach. Take your first sip at Crooked River Wines in Gerringong, a 10-minute drive south of Kiama. Soak up the outstanding views as well as award-winning wines grown in the rich volcanic soil of the area at its cellar door. Make a day of it and enjoy a sumptuous lunch at its restaurant overlooking the vineyard, and perhaps also a night of it too, with a stay at the elegant Willowvale Estate House.

Enjoy award-winning local semillon at Coolangatta Estate, a 30-minute drive south of Kiama, where you can  savour wine tasting experiences with grazing boards, and a restaurant. You can also stay at the historic estate in convict-built (and lovingly restored) buildings, including the old dairy and blacksmith’s shop, all just a stroll from the cellar door.

Gaze out over the Pacific Ocean as you sip creative cocktails, craft beer and local wine from your elevated perch at The Hill Bar & Kitchen in Gerringong, which offers a daily happy hour from 3pm to 5pm. Stay on for a casual dinner, or move on to sister venue Gather by the Hill for an Asian-inspired feast.

Sleep in comfort and style

Uncover a new way to connect with Kiama at Cicada Luxury Camping, tucked up in the lush hills behind the town. Opened in 2022, this stylish glamping stay offers the choice of cosying up in a wheelchair-accessible bell tent, with a personal fire pit and a shared bathroom and kitchen in easy reach. Or treat yourself to a stay in a more spacious safari tent, which also comes with a fire pit as well as an ensuite bathroom, kitchenette and an inviting outdoor bathtub. Slide in and soak away your worries as you take in the sweeping valley views.

Delight in the easy access to Surf Beach from central boutique hotel Nova Kiama. Choose from a range of room configurations from queen and family rooms to executive suites with kitchens. Take a refreshing dip in the swimming pool, work up a sweat in the gym, and enjoy the convenience of purchasing coffee and snacks from a converted VW Kombi parked in the lobby.

Treat yourself to a luxurious sojourn at Dovecote, a stunning self-catering retreat rising above the lush green paddock of an oceanfront property between Kiama and Gerringong. Admire the bold, architectural angles of the main house, The Headland, with four bedrooms, an indoor wood-burning fireplace, enclosed courtyard with fire pit, swimming pool, gym and private beach access. Or get a little cosier in The Range, the equally photogenic two-bedroom stay also located on the property.

Bring your favourite people together at Soul of Gerringong, a pair of bespoke guesthouses thoughtfully designed by builder and interior design duo Ben and Simone Mathews. Choose from the Soul Farmhouse (sleeping up to 16 guests in a farmhouse, barn and cabana) and the Soul Cottage (sleeping up to seven). Both offer light-filled, open-plan, white-timbered luxury, and the option of in-house services including grazing tables, a pop-up bar, spa treatments, a personal trainer and an outdoor cinema.

Dovecote, Gerringong Credit: @dovecote @alexsprichard

Dining room at The Headland, Dovecote.

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Dovecote, Gerringong Credit: @dovecote @alexsprichard

Dining room at The Headland, Dovecote.

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Buena Vista Farm, Gerringong Credit: Destination NSW

Women enjoying a day learning about sustainable agriculture at Buena Vista Farm , Gerringong.

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Buena Vista Farm, Gerringong Credit: Destination NSW

Women enjoying a day learning about sustainable agriculture at Buena Vista Farm , Gerringong.

#feelnsw #newsouthwales

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