Wollongong and Surrounds

Wollongong & Surrounds

Discover Wollongong and the Illawarra region, where beautiful beaches and lush rainforest set the scene for outdoor adventures, and artistic, cultural and historic discoveries. Find chic coastal towns, unique attractions, and inviting eateries and small bars, all only a short drive south from Sydney along the Grand Pacific Drive touring route and over the spectacular Sea Cliff Bridge.

Cities & towns

Wollongong is NSW’s third-largest city and home to the University of Wollongong, making it a bustling hub of technology, art, food and entertainment. The Keira Street ‘eat street’ is a short walk from the impressive Wollongong Art Gallery, which has one of Australia’s best regional collections of Aboriginal art. Or stroll through the Wollongong Botanic Garden, home to exotic and indigenous native plants.

Spend time at the state’s only dedicated immersive science experience, the Science Space museum. Or admire the picturesque gardens and intricate architecture at the peaceful Nan Tien Temple, the largest Buddhist temple in the Southern Hemisphere. Check out the events calendar for festivals, shows and markets.

Surrounding Wollongong are charming seaside towns with postcard-perfect beaches. Thirroul and Austinmer both have ocean pools and are great spots for surfing, whether you are advanced or a beginner. Bulli is a village that retains its colonial and mining heritage. Call into the cliffside Scarborough Hotel, which opened in 1886 and offers ocean views you won’t believe, or enjoy boutique shopping and a visit to the local orchard. At Stanwell Park, an internationally acclaimed hang gliding spot, strap yourself in for a tandem ride soaring from the cliffs and over the sparkling ocean.

Short breaks

A recognised area for cycling, bring your bike and explore the region’s scenic coastal pathways or take on rugged mountain bike tracks. Alternatively, embark on bushwalks through the stunning rainforest of the Illawarra Escarpment. The Sublime Point walking track near Austinmer leads to a lookout with incredible views. Hike to the top of Mount Kembla, a significant site for the indigenous Wodi Wodi people.

Tour the spectacular area by car or on a Harley Davidson with Just Cruisin’ Motorcycle Tours. Then make friends with koalas, meerkats and dingoes at Symbio Wildlife Park. Or learn about the area’s industrious past at Flagstaff Hill and Wollongong Harbour, and walk along the Blue Mile. 

If you have time to linger longer, keep exploring the NSW South Coast on a road trip, taking in fantastic destinations such as Shellharbour, Kiama, Shoalhaven and Jervis Bay.

Getting there

The Wollongong area is located just south of Sydney and the drive takes around 90min. You can catch the train from Sydney, which also takes around 90min and stops off at most coastal towns in the region.

Illawarra Regional Airport

Fly into Shellharbour Airport 

Shellharbour Airport is located at Albion Park and is the gateway to Shellharbour City.

Flying to Shellharbour is the fastest way to enjoy everything the region has to offer from surfing at a National Surfing Reserve or enjoying a round of golf, to spectacular beaches, beautiful scenery, bush walking and more.

Link Airways operates direct flights from Shellharbour to Melbourne five days a week and Shellharbour to Brisbane five days a week.

Plan your trip