The Illawarra area stretches from the northern-most boundary of the Royal National Park through the coastlines extending south 80 kilometres to Gerroa, south of Kiama. Following the coast road you will witness a variety of landscapes. The rugged cliffs and beaches of the coal districts from Stanwell Park down to Bulli, following down through the industrial regions of Wollongong and Port Kembla. Lake Illawarra offers a stunning contrast to the industry the thrives around this icon. Heading south the land opens up with rolling hills, the stunning hinterland of Kangaroo Valley and the coastal towns of Shellharbour, Kiama, Gerringong and Gerroa where you can surf and fish.
Walking trails abound in the Illawarra region. You can spend time at the Dharawal State Recreation and Nature Reserve doing the Maddens Falls walk. An easy 2km return walk following a narrow path through upland swamp, to Maddens Falls. You can also do the Mt Keira Ring Track. This walk takes around 3-5 hours and is a 5.5km track. Its rated easy but moderate in places. Minnamurra Rainforest in Budderoo National Park has 2 walks to choose.The first, a 1 hour circular board walk (1.6km) with disabled access over the first section. Or an additional 2 hour return walk (2.6km) to the stunning Minnamurra Falls. The extended walk takes the views of the falls, as well as various flora and fauna.
Wollongong visitors can spend their leisure time skydiving, hang gliding, windsurfing, fishing, sailing or scuba diving. They can climb a mountain or soar above the escarpment under a colourful hang glider and gracefully glide to the earth below. Bald Hill is arguably Wollongong's most well known and most popular lookout. Not only are the views unsurpassed, the area is also internationally known as a major hang gliding centre. Or climb aboard an aeroplane and do a tandem skydive from 14,000 feet over Wollongong harbour, landing on the beach next to Stuart Park.
An excellent cycleway network skirts the famous coastline. Starting at Thirroul, the cycleway winds its way through spectacular scenery. The city boasts over 60 kilometres of shared cycleway. Not only is cycling an excellent recreational pursuit, it's a great way to explore the region.Wollongong's superb beaches are an excellent source of adventure, including swimming and surfing. With the numerous headlands producing top surfing conditions year round, the Illawarra has developed a reputation as being a top surfing spot . Scuba diving and snorkelling are also well established. The Wollongong coastline offers 17 surf beaches that are patrolled by lifesavers from September to April.
Lake Illawarra, a large natural saltwater lagoon is popular for fishing and watersports boasts a thriving sailing community with participation from small dinghies up to 7m trailer sailer yachts. I popular fishing estuary, Lake Illawarra supports local bream, flathead, blackfish, whiting and prawns. Macquarie Pass National Park is home to a magnificent rainforest, impressive waterfalls, walking tracks and natural swimming holes.
Marlin, yellowfin tuna, kingfish, mulloway (jewfish), snapper, flathead & morwong are all within easy reach along the Illawarra coast. Other activities that are offered in the Illawarra region include horse riding, reel & game fishing, cycling, learn to surf, motorcycle tours, scuba diving, tandem microlight flights, hang gliding, outdoor rock climbing, abseiling, helicopter rides, windsurfing in Lake Illawarra, And lastly, why not drop into North Wollongong... literally, with regular skydiving every weekend landing in North Wollongong.
Getting to the Illawarra region couldn’t be easier. City Rail runs a regular train service to Wollongong along the South Coast Rail line with country services running to Gerringong and on to Norwra. Take the F6 from Sydney to Wollongong then join up with the Princes Highway for the run down to Kiama, Gerringong and Gerroa.
- Albion Park
- Port Kembla
Imporant Illawarra National Parks & Reserves
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- Budderoo National Park
- Dharawal State Recreation & Nature Reserve
- Illawarra Escarpment State Recreation Reserve
- Macquarie Pass National Park
- Minnamurra Rainforest
- Royal National Park
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