Discover museums, galleries and river cruises in Nowra, the largest coastal town in the Shoalhaven region. On the banks of the beautiful Shoalhaven River, enjoy a delightful centre that’s a stone’s throw from the stunning beaches of the NSW South Coast, and home to top food and wine experiences.

Nowra is surrounded by rich farmland and vineyards, and the river estuary is part of Australia’s Oyster Coast. Taste regional produce at cafes like The Deli on Kinghorn, try the coffee roasted at Hit N Run, or pick up fresh seafood from local fish shops. Visit cellar doors at Lyrebird Ridge Organic Winery and Cambewarra Estate Winery.

Couple ready to abseil off a clifftop in the Shoalhaven region near Nowra

For breathtaking panoramas of the river and hinterland, take the popular Bens Walk and stop at Hanging Rock. Shoalhaven Zoo has an extensive collection of exotic and native animals in a beautiful bushland setting. History buffs can see vintage warplanes at the Fleet Air Arm Museum and visit Meroogal, a colonial timber house.

The wide river is popular for fishing, boating, kayaking and river cruises. Shoalhaven River Cruise runs a variety of tours, including morning tea and twilight voyages. Soar through the treetops on flying foxes at Trees Adventure Nowra Park. Rock climbers will be thrilled with Climb Nowra’s adventure tours.

Couple enjoying a day of kayaking on the Shoalhaven River near Nowra

Up the river is the heritage-listed Bundanon Homestead, the former home of artist Arthur Boyd. It’s open to the public on Sundays 10:30am to 4pm. Take a guided tour of the house and Boyd’s studio, see changing exhibitions, and enjoy bush and river walks. Boyd’s works are also on display at the Shoalhaven Regional Gallery.

Nowra is a 2h 30min drive south of Sydney along the spectacular Grand Pacific Drive. There are plenty of places to stay including motels, serviced apartments, resorts, B&Bs, rental houses and holiday parks. The region has a vibrant events calendar with markets, shows, exhibitions and more on year-round.