Weekend getaways from Sydney

Posted by on Jan 15, 2015 in Australia, Oceania, Travel | 0 comments

Weekend getaways from Sydney

Sydney is a beautiful city, but sometimes it’s nice to getaway for a few days.  Here are some of my favourite places to escape for a weekend.


Forster / Smiths Lake

Located about 300km north of Sydney, you can get to Forster in less than 4 hours.  Head up after work on Friday and wake up there Saturday morning.  Forster has lakes and beaches and is a great place to spend a weekend out in the sunshine.

We originally went to Forster to go diving with grey nurse sharks which is a big draw card for Forster, unfortunately our dive got cancelled due to large swell.  We still had a great weekend away, having breakfast overlooking the beach at Beach Bums Cafe, and lunch overlooking Smiths Lake (about 30 mins from Forster) from Frothy Coffee Boatshed where we also hired catamarans.

We stayed in a lovely house at Smiths Lake that we booked through Stayz (pictured above), it has beautiful views and was so relaxing to sit out on the deck.



Sailing on Smiths Lake


The Hunter Valley

The Hunter Valley has always been a favourite weekender for Sydney siders, and it’s no wonder when it’s full of wineries, restaurants and spas.  There are winery tours available, or you can assign a designated driver and do your own.  Don’t let anywhere make you feel pressured to buy wines, the whole point is to try lots of different ones at different places and only purchase the ones you really like.

My absolute favourite winery is a small boutique called Lucy’s Run, family owned and named after their old blue heeler Lucy.  When Lucy passed away they did a special edition bubbly rose aptly called “Lucy in the sky” (Wayne proposed to me over a bottle of this).

Again I would recommend hiring a house because it gives you your own space and to cook, sip wine and relax.  We stayed here which was so gorgeous and tranquil – you could feel the serenity!  If you’d rather be somewhere more central Pokolbin is a cute village with good accommodation options.


Lucys Run

Lucy’s Run


Ballabourneen Wine Co









Manyana is a small town on the south coast about 200km from Sydney (between Jervis Bay and Mollymook).  This is a great area if you want a relaxed weekend away with lots of good surf spots and a laid back vibe.  You can rent a house for the weekend like we did, we spent our time doing yoga, surfing, reading, walking on the beach, swimming and just relaxing.

Nearby in Bendalong at the boat ramp (just down from Bendalong Tourist Park) you can also get up close with large sting rays that come in close to shore to feed on scraps thrown to them by the fishermen.


Manyana surf

Getting ready for a surf

Enjoying lunch with a view









Only 120km from Sydney Kiama is an easy drive and offers a great beachside getaway.  Take a leisurely stroll around and see the famous blowhole and lighthouse.  Make sure you get something to eat at Table for Amy which has really delicious and healthy food.  The Little Blowhole Cafe is also a great spot to enjoy a coffee before you wander down to the little blowhole.

The Kiama markets are held on the third Sunday of each month and the Kiama Produce Markets on the fourth Saturday of each month, both at Black Beach near the town centre.  We stayed at Surf Beach Holiday Park in one of the cabins overlooking the beach which was a great location to walk down to the beach for a swim and to walk along the coast.  The cabin had a deck perfect for lazing about reading a book.


Kiama cafe

At Table for Amy


The view from our deck








The Blue Mountains

Not too far from Sydney the Blue Mountains can be done as a day trip or a weekend away.  There’s nothing quite like escaping the hustle and bustle of the city and getting back out into pure nature.  There are plenty of options for accommodation, during winter it’s great to rent a place with a cosy fireplace and make some mulled wine.

Leura is always a great spot, and you can start your day with a delicious breakfast and coffee at the Red Door Cafe on the main street.  My favourite hiking trail is the National Pass, it follows along the cliffs and takes you past several stunning waterfalls.  Make sure you wear comfortable shoes and take a water bottle.  On your way back to Sydney be sure to stop in at Pie in the Sky at Bilpin for the best homemade pies out!

Another great option if you want to spend a day in the bush is to head south to the Royal National Park, Heathcote and do the Karloo walking track which is absolutely gorgeous, park a picnic and your swimmers and enjoy!


Blue mtns

Stopping to take it all in, Blue Mountains


Karloo Pool, Heathcote

Karloo Pools, Royal National Park











A bit more of a commitment because you’ll need to fly, it’s always nice to visit our southern neighbour Melbourne.  Great for a luxurious weekend of shopping, eating and drinking, Melbourne always turns it on.  Wander through the laneways, enjoy a coffee from one of the many cafes on Degraves St., take a tour of the old gaol and get a spa treatment at Botanica Day Spa.

Do yourself a favour and head to Cumulus Inc. for something to eat and enjoy a rooftop beverage at Madame Brussels.  If you’re looking for a sweet treat make your way to Acland St. in St. Kilda and you’ll be spoilt for choice.


Melbourne laneway

Graffiti street art – Hosier Lane

Madame brussels

Enjoying the view at Madame Brussels


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