20 Jul 2020
Now’s the time to explore the treasures of our own backyard and what better way than packing the family into the car and hitting the open road! Family road trips are what memories are made of and the north coast of New South Wales packs a punch when it comes to family fun, adventure, and variety.
The legendary Pacific Coast Drive takes you through some of the states most spectacular scenery, including rugged coastline, chilled out beachside destinations, lush subtropical rainforests and mountains. We’ve got your itinerary sorted, with some top tips to drive more fun into your getaway…
Sydney to Forster (3.5 hour drive)
Start your road trip with an easy drive to Forster and experience the local charm of the beautiful Barrington Coast! Discovery Parks – Forster is right on the banks of the Wallamba River, so water babies will love the range of splashtacular activities on offer, from kayaking and paddle boarding to barefoot skiing. With the beach close by there’s the chance of dolphin spotting, or you can head out to spend the day playing at Big Buzz Fun Park.
Alternatively, add an extra 40 minutes to your drive and stay at Discovery Parks – Harrington.
The beach is on one side and the Crowdy Bay National Park on the other, packed with walking trails, lookouts and wildlife. Head to the lighthouse for the best views and, through winter, you might even spot some migrating whales!
Forster to Ballina (5 hour drive)
Heading into the NSW northern rivers region, you’ll love picturesque Ballina! Bring your bikes, scooters or skateboards to make the most of the epic pathways which wind along the river walking trails, or book a river cruise to explore the water. Stay at Discovery Parks – Ballina, where the little ones can burn of excess energy on the playground, games room or mini golf.
Ballina is home of the Big Prawn, so make sure you grab a photo and pick up some local seafood to cook up a storm for dinner.
Ballina to Byron Bay (45 minute drive)
It may be less than an hour from Ballina, but Byron Bay will make you feel a million miles away with it’s chilled out beachy vibes, so it’s worth adding a stop to your itinerary. The beaches are family friendly with great swimming and beginner surfing, there’s plenty to explore in the local markets, and with a walk to the lighthouse at Cape Byron you’ll be crossing Australia’s easternmost point off your list.
Just 2km from the town centre, Discovery Parks – Byron Bay is a destination in itself. Mum and Dad can indulge in some classic Byron Bay relaxation while the kids spend hours entertained by the water park, massive water slide, tennis court and more.
Byron Bay to Emerald Beach (2.5 hour drive)
Coming back down the coast, don’t miss the sparkling jewel that is Emerald Beach! Nestled between the bush and the beach just south of Woolgoolga, there’s an outdoor adventure for everyone, with family friendly, safe swimming beaches and plenty of local activities like horse riding, whale watching and surf lessons. Discovery Parks – Emerald Beach backs right into the beach, making it easy to explore the rockpools and headland where kangaroos bounce in the mornings and afternoon.
Don’t miss the famous Big Banana in Coffs Harbour, which is so much more than a roadside attraction! It’s worth spending a day here for theme park fun including mini golf, laser tag, ice skating, reptile park and heaps more.
Ready to hit the road? Explore our NSW parks now