For a true taste of the wilderness, a journey through the Budawang Ranges is a must. Offering rugged peaks, tall rainforests and an abundance of native wildlife, this National Park is a haven for adventurers looking to take a break from civilisation.
Read on to discover the best things to do and see in the Budawangs or find and book accommodation in the Budawangs today.
The Budawangs mountain range extends from the Budawang National Park to the Morton National Park. The region offers fascinating landscapes and natural wonders, and all within range of interesting townships. The hills and valleys of the area are also colourful in industrial history, from pioneers and gold rushes to the logging and whaling industries that began in the early 1830s.
Hikers and nature lovers are well catered for in the Budawangs. The National Park offers a variety of walking trails, some easy some only for the fanatics. The ranges allow access to a series of National Parks in the area, and therefore make for a wonderful camping destination.
However, getting there is also part of the fun, with the Budawang Circuit taking you through a number of interesting towns and sites that are all well worth a slight detour.
If you’re heading down from Sydney, a nice place to stop off at is the Shoalhaven Zoo, located along the river 4km north of Nowra. Book ahead to experience a tree-top adventure with flying foxes, cargo nets and rope bridges to challenge you among the treetops.
Another potential pitstop on your journey is the Fleet Air Arm Museum on Albatross Road near the airport. This is Australia’s largest aviation museum, with over 30 airframes including a range of static aircraft displays, such as the WWI Sopwith Pup and A4 Skyhawk jet, as well as other allied and foreign aircraft. There’s also a flight simulator so you can get a “virtual” pilot’s experience.
Braidwood is a heritage listed town that offers an abundance of galleries, cafes, pubs, churches and antique shops. The Clarke brothers of Braidwood are local legends, with Clarke’s Lookout on the Majors Creek Road marking the place where they would hold up the gold shipments coming out of Araluen. The £1500 reward offered on the Clarke brothers, which resulted in their capture in 1867, was the highest in its time until £2000 was offered for Ned Kelly. At Nelligen on the Clyde River you’ll see the “prison tree” they were tied to near the playground.
Batemans Bay is a stunning spot to stop off at, with beautiful seascapes that are ideal for swimming and snorkelling. A further 10km south of Batemans Bay is Mogo Zoo, which is privately owned, well-run and offers plenty to see, while remaining relatively compact in size. Mogo itself is a picturesque and historic gold mining village that is overflowing with cafes and specialty shops.
The nearby Point Perpendicular peninsula contains numerous caves and blowholes. The historic lighthouse stood guard here from 1889 to 1993. At a height of 75m above the ocean, this site offers expansive views across Jervis Bay and is an ideal vantage point to watch the whale migration between May and November. Look out for bottlenose dolphins in the bay, which is a designated marine park. You might even see a naval frigate (or a submarine if you’re lucky!) on exercise from HMAS Creswell.
A trip to Jervis Bay National Park will uncover beaches of powder-white sand and crystal clear waters, as well as woodlands, forests and wetlands. The park is also a fantastic destination for bird watching, as it is home to a diverse range of threatened bird species.
Avid bush walkers will relish the challenge of the Mount Budawang Trail. While only 4km to the summit, the trail is taxing, and threads through a diverse landscape of grassy woodland, wet gullies and montane forest. The reward for reaching the peak is phenomenal, with spectacular views of Pigeon House Mountain, the Clyde River valley and Mount Gillamatong.
The average temperature in summer ranges between 10.5 degrees Celsius and 25.4 degree Celsius, while the winter averages between 0.4 degrees Celsius and 12.1 degrees Celsius. The wettest month on average is January, while the driest is July.
Located in the south east pocket of New South Wales, the Budawangs are about 184km south of Sydney.
Sydneysiders need to come down the A1. The Budawangs themselves are only accessible from gravel roads, so care needs to be taken after rainfall.
Autumn is the best time of year for walking to the top of Mount Budawang, While spring is the ideal season to take advantage of Long Gully campground.
Long Gully campground is located beside Yadboro River, and provides only pit toilets and picnic tables. For more accommodation options in and around the Budawangs click here.
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