Brisbane is no longer the country cousin of Sydney and other cities, but is a bold, modern, up-and-coming centre of commerce and culture. the city is located on the Brisbane River and is warm year-round, hot in summer. The CBD and South Bank areas are great for wandering, having a coffee and doing a spot of shopping. The City Botanic Gardens are right near the CBD in a loop of the river, and Brisbane has many museums, a planetarium, a koala sanctuary and is home to the Queensland Cultural Centre which includes a number of organisations dedicated to conserving art, music, history and knowledge.
by eGuide Travel Flickr Creative Commons
Directly south of Brisbane you will come across the famous Gold Coast. This part of the seashore is a wonderland of sandy beaches, inland waterways, high rises, cafes, restaurants, shopping and nightlife. Several suburbs are strung out along the coast, centered around Southport, Surfer's Paradise and Broadbeach. The main drawcard is the beaches, but the Gold Coast is also home to several large amusement parks- Dreamworld, Movie World and Wet n Wild. Don't come to the Gold Coast looking for peace and quiet- it's a place to party, people watch and and enjoy the sun, surf and sand.
by Herry Lawford Flickr Creative Commons
After the Gold Coast, you will cross into the state of New South Wales. The Highway One does not follow the coast but with a short side trip you can visit the many beach towns of northern New South Wales. Byron Bay is a relaxed and lovely town with lots of beaches, a great place to spend a few days. Nearby is Arakwal National Park, a beautiful coastal area which is home to native birds and frogs. It has a 3km stretch of untouched (and unpatrolled, so be careful) beach for strolling.
Ballina is the next big coastal town, on the Richmond River estuary. Here you will find great shopping, beaches and opportunities for watersports in the estuary. You can also take a guided tour of the historic Ballina Manor, and there is a maritime museum in the town.
Lighthouse Beach, Ballina
by Tiger Benji Flickr Creative Commons
Highway One passes through a part of New South Wales that is thick with National Parks. One of these is Bundjalung National Park, which has not only greenery but rivers, lagoons and beaches. You can camp there in beachside camping grounds. Also in the area are the Devil's Pulpit State Forest, Double Duke State Forest, Broadwater National Park, and further south, Yuraygir National Park which has some absolutely stunning coastline.
Bundjalung National Park
by Chris Flickr Creative Commons
The forests and parks continue down the coast, where you will also come across Coffs Harbour. It is a popular family holiday destination between the mountains and the shore. All tourists should have a picture taken at the Big Banana, the original Big Thing, and check out the kitschy banana-themed souvenirs. Off the coast there is a marine park which is great for scuba diving, the Solitary Islands. Whale watching and dolphin watching tours are available from the town, as the sea-going mammals are common along this coast.
Coffs Harbour Jetty
by tim Flickr Creative Commons
Down the coast towards Sydney the beach towns, parks and forests continue. Nambucca Heads is a short detour off Highway One, and you will find amazing landscapes, beaches, foreshore boardwalks, rainforest walks and the Headland Historical Museum where the Nambucca River meets the sea. Further south and also off the highway is Hat Head National Park, a coastal area of wetlands, rainforest and sand dunes. Port Macquarie is a large town with plenty to see and do, be it shopping, eating, cultural or natural attractions.
by Tim Keegan Flickr Creative Commons
The highway passes several more towns including Taree and Forster before entering Newcastle and then Sydney. Australia's biggest city, Sydney is full of art, fashion, commerce, cuisine and stunning beaches. From the central Circular Quay you can take a ferry across the harbour to the beachy and laid-back Manly, and on the coast south of the harbour mouth the famous Bondi Beach is to be found. Inland is the historical neighbourhood of Parramatta. The Harbour Bridge and Opera House are Sydney's landmarks, and nearby you will find the Royal Botanic Gardens and Luna Park, a theme park. The Taronga Zoo is worth a visit, especially for families.
by Kaplan International Colleges Flickr Creative Commons
Sydney is a bustling and modern city, so take some time to explore and enjoy! There are plenty of holiday parks and campgrounds around the place so you can park up and visit the city.
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Author : Rohan Marx+