From World Heritage rainforest to amazing animals and breathtaking views, national parks on the North Coast are wonderful attractions. Dorrigo Skywalk, near Coffs Harbour, is above a rainforest canopy. In marine parks, see dolphins, turtles and whales in the wild.
Getting to the magnificent North Coast
The beautiful North Coast of NSW is easy to explore and enjoy with a range of travel options. The enchanting stretch of coast between Sydney and Tweed Heads is well-serviced by good roads, trains, buses, airlines and tours. You'll find car rental companies at major regional airports too.
If you're driving, follow the Legendary Pacific Coast route through national parks and charming towns and along the spectacular coast. The road trip is best split into four days if you're planning to drive the entire route - the drive between Sydney and Byron Bay, for instance, is nine hours.
Major domestic airlines Jetstar, Qantas, Rex Regional Express and Virgin Australia fly to destinations on the North Coast. These include Newcastle, Taree, Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour, Grafton, Lismore and Ballina. Take advantage of fly/drive packages to get out and explore the diverse regions.
The train between Sydney and Newcastle, NSW's second-largest city and home to the iconic Merewether Beach, is about three hours. You can take a bus from Newcastle to Nelson Bay in Port Stephens, where you’ll find dolphin-watching cruises such as Moonshadow Cruises.
Check with NSW TrainLink for train and bus services. Port Macquarie is five hours' drive from Sydney or you can fly with Virgin Australia and Qantas. Coffs Harbour is 6.5 hours' drive from Sydney. Virgin Australia and Qantas fly to Coffs, while NSW TrainLink has three trains a day from Sydney.
Travel to Byron Bay via Ballina Airport with Jetstar, Virgin Australia or Rex Airlines. Regular NSW TrainLink rail and bus services also operate to Byron Bay and Tweed Heads, via Casino. Tweed Heads is two hours' drive from Brisbane and minutes from Gold Coast Airport.