Stretching from Coffs Harbour to Armidale, this spectacular 185km drive winds through five gorgeous national parks with breathtaking waterfall views. Drive through lush rainforest and woodland to enjoy the lofty lookout platforms at Ebor Falls, unpack a picnic at the dramatic Dangar Falls or see waters cascade an incredible 220m at Wollomombi Falls.
Dorrigo Rainforest Centre is the perfect place to discover ancient World Heritage wilderness and its wonderful bushwalking trails and many intriguing animals including lyrebirds, a native bird with the ability to imitate almost any sound. The Skywalk Lookout is breathtaking.
This drive takes you through to the picturesque Armidale area, where you can explore World Heritage national parks, marvel at Australia’s second-highest waterfall, and also enjoy wine tasting at cool-climate wineries. There are many wonderful things to do and see in the beautiful New England high country.
Begin in beautiful Coffs Harbour, home to the iconic Big Banana, following the Pacific Highway 25km south before turning inland toward Bellingen. This charming town is on the banks of the idyllic Bellinger River, a popular waterway for kayaking and canoeing.
34km from Bellingen is Dorrigo National Park, a sanctuary of World-Heritage listed rainforests. The Dorrigo Rainforest Centre has information on magnificent waterfall walks. Stroll above the rainforest canopy here on the stunning Skywalk, with views that reach Coffs Harbour.
Among Dorrigo National Park’s attractions you will find the enchanting Crystal Shower Falls. Hear the sounds of rainforest birds on the Wonga Walk, weave your way between 600-year-old trees and traverse the lovely suspension bridge. The full walk also takes in the beautiful Tristania Falls.
Near the Dorrigo town centre is Dangar Falls, a beautiful 30-metre waterfall. Stop at the picnic spot and enjoy the spectacular views. You can also follow a path from the viewing platform to the water at the bottom of the falls. The walk down takes around 10-15 minutes.
West of Dorrigo, on the way to Armidale, you can watch the Guy Fawkes River plunge 100m over two waterfalls at Ebor Falls. Three lookout platforms along the edge of the escarpment offer spectacular views. Nearby you can also hike through sub-alpine woodlands to the towering granite formations of Cathedral Rock.
Further attractions on en route to Armidale include one of NSW’s highest drops at the incredible Wollomombi Falls, where waters plunge 220m into the valley. Enjoy the view from the New England picnic area.
For those who wish to explore further, Orara Escarpment 4WD touring route is a short 80km round-trip from Coffs Harbour, through remote eucalypt forests and subtropical rainforests. A 10 minute drive from Coffs Harbour will also take you to the magnificent Sealy Lookout.
Enjoy other interweaving touring routes including Thunderbolts Way, named after the colonial bushranger Captain Thunderbolt, aka Frederick Ward, which joins with the Fossickers Way touring route paved with sapphires and gold. You’ll find plenty places to stay as well as delightful events and delicious food and wine experiences, from cellar doors to tours, farmers markets and festivals in and around Armidale.
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