The Pacific Coast Of Australia in 5 Days – Part 1
Pack the car and your sense of adventure, drive the kids into the sunset and experience one of the best family-friendly road trips in Australia.
The scenic Pacific Coast of Australia is arguably the most beautiful route to explore with kids. The route includes some of the best NSW beaches, charming small towns, plenty of roadhouses, unlimited adventure experiences and eating options.
Must Do From Brisbane to Sydney Road Trip
I have broken the 5-day family-friendly road-trip into two separate posts (see Part 2 here) because there’s a LOT to cover! I took tons of photographs, so think of these pics as the ‘highlight reel’ as it is impossible to include all of them. The posts are a glimpse of each destination with a guide to where to eat, stay and things to do for the whole family.
Byron Bay Accommodation For Groups
Although, the purpose of this blog was to create the ultimate family road trip, this family road trip itinerary is ideal for those travelling in a group.
Group and family accommodation can be found at Oasis Apartments and Treetop Houses. Apartments are located just 400 metres from Tallow Beach, Byron Bay and a 5-minutes’ drive away from the Byron Bay restaurants, bars, shopping precinct and main beach.
Oasis Apartments and Treetop Houses is set on 6 acres of natural bushland. Guests can relax beside the heated swimming pool, play some tennis or unwind in the sauna. The poolside BBQ pool is perfect for socialising with friends and family.
The Oasis apartments sleep 5 and Treetop Houses sleep 8-10 guests. Apartments and Houses are air-conditioned with fully equipped kitchen, laundry facilities, lounge area, free internet and cable TV. There is on-site parking for 1 vehicle per room, and bike and surfboard rental service.
Byron Fork Talk
The Farm is set of an 80-acre farm in Ewingsdale, 10k from the heart of Byron Bay NSW. The restaurant ‘Three Blue Ducks’ work closely with The Farm community and ethical local growers and producers to deliver tasty, interesting dishes that reflect the goodness of the produce they source. Take a look at The Farm menu here.
Picnic hampers are house-made goods of locally sourced cheeses, charcuterie, parfait, dips, fruit, sweets, dried fruits, nuts, berries, and bread from onsite bakery, ‘The Bread Social’.
Things to Do at Byron Bay NSW
The Farm caters for kids with a childrens’ playground, animal farm and farm trail. Bring your own picnic blanket and wander along the farm trail past the pigs in their mud bath, the large brood of happy chickens that lay the hundreds of eggs used each day, past the macadamia orchard and the fields planted with produce that are served in the restaurant.
11 Ewingsdale Road, Ewingsdale, NSW Australia –
The World’s First Solar Train | Byron Bay Train
Most people are familiar with Byron Bay, the tourist destination. But did you know that the Byron Bay Train is home to the first solar train in the world. The solar train was officially launched on 16 December 2017. The $4-million project was the brainchild of multi-millionaire businessman Brian Flannery, who owns Elements of Byron resort in the area.
The train runs a return shuttle service for the 3-kilometre journey between North Beach Station in Sunrise Beach and the Byron Beach Platform in Byron Bay township. Both stations have seating, shelter and bicycle racks.
Byron Bay Lighthouse Walk
The Cape Byron walking track is a 3.7km loop that leads you across clifftops with outstanding views of the Pacific Ocean and hinterland. You will need to allow at least 2 hours to fully experience the Cape Byron walking track. It is one of the most beautiful stretches along the NSW coastline.
The pinnacle is reaching the Cape Byron Lighthouse with its breathtaking 360-degree views of picturesque beaches, mountain escarpments and lush rainforest. Keep an eye out over the water for dolphins, stingrays, turtles and, in season, whales. If you’d prefer an easier walk, the track can be accessed at numerous points and walked in shorter sections.
Byron Bay Fact
Did you know that Byron Bay is the most Easterly point on Australia’s mainland? Situated in Northern New South Wales, 166km South of Brisbane & 772km North of Sydney.
Where To Stay In Byron Bay?
Best Family Accommodation in Byron Bay
Discovery Parks Byron Bay is 2 kilometres from the chic town centre. The park has a wide range of accommodation styles, from 3-bedroom houses, deluxe 2-bedroom cabins, single cabins, safari tents, powered and unpowered sites and camping area. For the kids, there are playgrounds, pool, waterpark, tennis court and free WiFi. The park is the perfect base for families with accommodation to suit every budget. Discovery Parks Map
Get back on the A1 and head South to Grafton NSW
Grafton Fork Talk
Things to Do at Grafton NSW
Grafton sits on the banks of the Clarence River featuring Victorian and Edwardian architecture. The riverside city is famous in Australia for its 2,000 Jacaranda trees that bloom in spring creating a carpet of mauve. The Grafton Jacaranda Festival runs from the last weekend in October to the first weekend of November every year. It is the longest running floral festival in Australia with activities for the whole family.
You can explore the beautifully preserved sandstone commercial buildings around the CBD on the Grafton Heritage Trail. Over 25 historical sites including the Grafton Regional Gallery, Clarence River Historical Society, Schaeffer House Museum, a magnificent federation homestead, Fig Tree Avenue in Briemba Street and much more. Many buildings have been classified by the National Trust including the notorious Grafton Gaol and the Christ Church Cathedral.
See Park on Pound Street is one of Grafton’s premier parks with mature rare and exotic trees that provide ample shade and ideal for picnics. The park facilities include a water feature, childrens’ playground, public toilets, BBQs and access to power.
Located 20 kilometres from Coffs Harbour, Emerald Beach is a great family holiday destination with plenty of options for swimming, water sports and picnicking. There are loads of nearby cafes and accommodation options to suit any budget.
Emerald Beach is an excellent spot to learn to surf, fish, swim, birdwatch and beach walk. It’s also a great place for whale watching in winter and birdwatching in spring.
Take the Solitary Islands Coastal Walk past superb beaches, rocky headlands and lush rainforest. ‘Look At Me Now Headland’, (yes that’s its name) is part of the Moonee Beach Reserve. It is an easy walk with panoramic views of the ocean, South Solitary Island, village of Emerald Beach, Mount Coramba and Coffs Coast.
Where to Stay At Emerald Beach?
Discovery Parks Emerald Beach is an award-winning family-friendly holiday park with some of the best accommodation facilities around. Accommodation styles include villas, cabins, powered and unpowered sites plus large swimming pool and waterpark. For the kids, there are games and movie room, pedal kart hire, ‘Jungle Jive’ indoor soft play, baseball, tennis and beach volleyball courts.
Beautiful Emerald Beach is a stone’s throw to a perfect spot to swim, surf, snorkel and play in the ocean. Local rivers and creeks are popular SUP, kayaking and canoe locations. Or enjoy the simplicity of the green grass and shady trees that surround your accommodation.
Emerald Beach Fork Talk
Located 12 kilometres from the Pacific Highway and 15 minutes east of Taree. The seaside town of Old Bar is a hidden gem boasting some of Australia’s best surf, kite boarding, swimming, fishing and National Park attractions. Golden beaches stretch along the gorgeous coastline of Manning Valley. It’s the idyllic base for families looking for a traditional coastal holiday. You can be as busy as you like or kick back and unwind on uncrowded beaches whilst enjoying the hospitality of the locals.
Old Bar Annual Event
Hundreds of Kombi van enthusiasts flock to the 2-day Old Bar Beach Festival held on the last weekend of September, with market and food stalls, local wines, children’s activities and live music.
The Manning Valley Summer Festival is held during the month of January, with Old Bar Beach the location for the popular sand-modelling competition.
These and other fabulous events attract thousands of people every year who are able to experience what the Manning Valley has to offer during their stay.
Things to Do at Old Bar NSW
Pick up some local produce and head to Saltwater Picnic Area. Take a walk along Five Islands Walking Track and keep your eyes open for the local wildlife, including carpet pythons, monitor lizards and red-neck wallabies.
The nearby, Headland Walking Track is a short stroll through rainforest to the headland with views out over Saltwater Beach, Khappinghat Creek and Pacific Ocean. You can swim, surf, relax and fish at the adjacent Saltwater beach, Khappinghat Creek or the nearby Wallabi Beach.
Where to Stay at Old Bar NSW
Boogie Woogie Beach House is boutique accommodation inspired by the world’s most initiative and influential musicians. Each unique guest room is individually styled and designed with modern amenities, free movies and fully stocked minibar.
Situated 100 metres from the beach, inside a historic building, the Boogie Woogie Beach House offers a unique style developed by artists and designers.
Blonde Family Room inspired by the great rock goddess ‘Blondie’ with bath, balcony, kitchenette and sofa. One queen bed and a bunk bed with two king single beds, comfortably sleeps 4 people.
Surf Shack Room inspired by sea born adventures with balcony, kitchenette and sofa. One queen bed and two bunk beds each with two king single beds, comfortably sleeps 6 people.