Best family holiday destinations NSW
Our top picks of where to go in New South Wales with your family for beaches, adventure and more.
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No matter your agenda, we’ve found the most fun-filled family-friendly destinations and the activities and experiences to do once you get there.
These New South Wales destinations are ideal for upcoming school holidays to ensure your little one is kept entertained all holiday long.
Start booking these babies into the itinerary now. Or, if you're jumping into the car check out these short road trips you can take with the kids.
Far North Coast
Nearing the border of NSW and Queensland, the Far North Coast is a dynamic environment of coastal beaches and hinterland. Quiet coastal towns are rife and the possibility of adventure amongst World Heritage Sites is standard.
- Includes: Byron Bay, Ballina, Yamba and Lennox Head.
Best for: Getting away from the big city and enjoying nature
- Where to stay: The Lord Byron or The Cove Yamba
- What to do: Horse riding tour and Brunswick River kayaking tour
Couple a harbour-town holiday with a relaxing vineyard stopover by exploring the Hunter Region. Port Stephens and Lake Macquarie are ideal for marine life encounters and a coastal retreat while the Hunter Valley provides an inland sojourn complete with wines for the adults and chocolates and fudge for the children.
- Includes: Port Stephens, Lake Macquarie, Newcastle, Cessnock, Wiseman’s Ferry, Hunter Valley
- Best for: Foodies and animal lovers
- Where to stay: Chateau Elan At The Vintage or Branxton House Motel
- What to do: Hunter coastline tour and Port Stephens sandboarding and 4WD tour
Go against the grain and head south for a holiday with a bit of everything. Expect a smattering of environments when you do. From the cityscape of Wollongong and the inner sanctuaries of Kangaroo Valley and Bega, you'll be spoilt for choice on a holiday to the South Coast.
- Includes: Kiama, Wollongong, Kangaroo Valley, Jervis Bay, Batemans Bay, Bega
Best for: Peace, quiet and cheese
- Where to stay: Coolangatta Estate Berry or Corymbia Batemans Bay
- What to do: Illawarra Fly Treetop walk experience and Boom netting dolphin cruise
A perennial favourite for families, the Coffs Coast is nestled comfortably between ocean and mountain. It's a piece of coastal paradise that showcases 90 kilometres of beaches, islands and reserves and more activities that you can shake a stick at.
- Includes: Coffs Harbour, Grafton and Nambucca Heads
- Best for: Beach holidaymakers
- Where to stay: BreakFree Aanuka Beach Resort or Ambience Holiday Apartments
- What to do: Coffs Harbour all-terrain segway tour and children's treetop adventure
Located in the mid-North Coast of NSW the Port Macquarie region is a water baby's dream destination. Water activities include high speed boating, river cruises and kayaking while on land you can enjoy horse riding, coastal walks and camel safaris.
- Includes: Port Macquarie, South West Rocks, North Haven, Diamond Beach and Forster
- Best for: Adventurous types
- Where to stay: Sandcastle Apartments or The Mid Pacific
- What to do: Port Macquarie coastal walk and visit Billabong Koala and Wildlife Park
With its calm, shallow waters and historical coastal attractions, it's little wonder that the Central Coast is part of practically every Sydney child's holiday memories. Drive up and stay over at one of the many campervan parks available to make it a truly memorable holiday.
- Includes: Wyong, Terrigal, The Entrance, Avoca, Copacabana, Gosford, Bateau Bay
- Best for: A beachside escape not far from Sydney
- Where to stay: Pullman Magenta Shores Resort or Mercure Kooindah Waters Central Coast
- What to do: Tree Top Crazy Rider 'Xtreme' flying experience and quad biking experience
Think charming seaside towns and picturesque hinterland villages with a UNESCO World Heritage rainforest right on your doorstep.
You can fill your days learning to surf, hiking the challenging Mount Warning, indulging in the local cuisine or relaxing on a river cruise.
- Includes: Tweed Heads, Murwillumbah, Kingscliff and Hastings Point
- Best for: A beach vacation without the crowds
- Where to stay: North Star Holiday Resort or Mantra Twin Towns
- What to do: Tweed River and Rainforest cruise and food farm and scenic arts tour
If the water gods are calling then you've got all the rivers, lakes and beaches to whet your appetite on the Sapphire Coast. Start with whale watching, fishing or diving at Eden's natural harbour, indulge in fresh oysters on the Pambula River and then canoe or cruise your way around Lake Merimbula.
- Includes: Eden, Merimbula and Pambula Beach
- Best for: A low-key escape with buckets of overwater and underwater options
- Where to stay: Discovery Parks - Pambula Beach or Eden Gateway Holiday Park
- What to do: Sapphire day tour and kayak tours on a coastal estuary
Get away from it all at this off-the-beaten track beachside escape. Sail up the Myall River on a kayak, pick a remote island for a family picnic or swim beside wild dolphins near Tuncurry's rock pool.
- Includes: Tuncurry, Tea Gardens, Hawks Nest
- Best for: Tranquil seaside towns and pristine national parks
- Where to stay: Sunrise Luxury Apartments Tuncurry or Boathouse Resort Water Front
- What to do: Visit Davidson Whaling Station and The Foxglove Spires Gardens
This diverse region has something on offer for everyone in the family. The adults can indulge in some wine tasting, while the kids can get the adrenaline going with a visit to Bathurst's Mount Panorama and the whole family can enjoy the sunrise view with a hot air balloon flight.
- Includes: Orange, Bathurst, Mudgee, Dubbo
- Best for: An outback getaway
- Where to stay: De Russie Boutique Hotel or Best Western Plus Ambassador Orange
- What to do: Family hot air balloon ride and 60-minute flight over Bathurst and Blue Mountains
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