Getting to the Sapphire Coast from Canberra with a Family

Getting to the Sapphire Coast from Canberra with a Family

It’s time to plan your family trip to the Sapphire Coast. Just a short drive from Canberra, it makes for the perfect road trip with kids.


Fast facts:

Coastal route – Canberra to Bermagui via Batemans Bay, 250km/3hrs 20mins

Inland route – Canberra to Bermagui via Cooma, 275km/3hrs 35mins

We want to explore the Sapphire Coast – what’s the best time of the year to go there?

The Sapphire Coast’s temperate climate makes it a year-round destination. Summers are the time for swimming, surfing beaches and splashing around. The water stays warm right through autumn, and the cooler months are great for biking or biking the area’s many national parks. Come between September and November to enjoy superb whale watching – there’s a reason this region is one of the most famous stops on the Humpback Highway.


How long will it take us to drive there?

Whether you take the inland route, via the Snowy Mountains Highway, or the Princes Highway along the coast, it takes around three and a half hours to reach Bermagui, the northernmost town on the Sapphire Coast.


What is the best route to follow for a scenic drive to the Sapphire Coast from Canberra?

The coastal route takes you through lush bush-scapes and scenic coastal hamlets. Head east out of town along the Kings Highway to join the Princes Highway heading south. You may want to stop for a stroll or a swim at Batemans Bay, Moruya or Narooma.


We’ve got kids on board. Where could we stop along the way to entertain them?

Mogo Wildlife Park, just south of Batemans Bay, is a sure-fire winner with the kids. The Close Encounter packages include opportunities to play with meerkats or, for older children, the chance to feed a lion or a tiger. Take them on a glass-bottom kayak tour with Region X Tours to discover the stingrays, octopus, blue swimmer crabs and other sea life that makes its home in the Batemans Marine Park.


Best places for coffee and a bite to eat?

Stop in at Tribe Cafe at Batemans Bay for locally roasted coffee and organic teas, pea fritters and Moroccan lamb burgers. At Mossy Point, long-time favourite The Mossy Cafe has a vegan-friendly menu (try the vermicelli rainbow salad or the Middle Eastern bowl) that also caters to diners who are dairy-free and gluten-free. 


Any unmissable sights on the journey we might not know about?

Stretch your legs on the scenic Depot Beach Rainforest Walk near Bawley Point, a short but atmospheric walk which winds its way through a stand of 50-million-year-old littoral rainforest. Join one of Narooma Charters’ boat trips to Montague Island to discover the resident colonies of seals and penguins. On the way there you may spot dolphins, manta rays and other marine life.


What should we pack?

Don’t leave home without your swimsuit, your walking shoes, and a layer or two in case of temperature changes. Even in summer, nights can be cool in this part of NSW.