New South Wales road trip: 5 top planning tips

Taking a trip through any place with your car is going to be a refreshing experience. When it comes to road trips, New South Wales is king. You have a huge number of beautiful and scenic roads that you would find difficult to say no to. Here are five top planning tips for a New South Wales road trip.

The Grand Pacific Drive

A distant view of Sea Cliff Bridge on the Grand Pacific Drive, New South Wales road trip
A distant view of Sea Cliff Bridge on the Grand Pacific Drive: Photo World4srk / CC BY-SA 4.0

There’s nothing quite like a scenic coastal drive. You would be hard-pressed to find a longer, more scenic drive than the Grand Pacific Drive. It’s one of the most incredible coastline roads in the world. It stretches from the Royal National Park all the way to Victoria. You never drift far from the water, since the road basically hugs the shoreline for much of the trip.

The Pacific scenery never ends, which is great because you will never find a view like this again. If you like enjoying the same trip twice, rest assured that you won’t easily get sick of this path. There are lots of small diversions that could lead you to even more interesting places. Along the main path, you should definitely check out places like Kiama, Wollongong, Shellharbour, and the ever-charming Shoalhaven.

Right after you leave Sydney, you can take a break from the sea view and check out the famous Sea Cliff bridge, a spectacular marvel of engineering that is almost five hundred meters long. If you’d like a break from driving, you could always kayak in Jervis Bay; people say that it’s quite the experience. Both relaxing and exciting.

For this New South Wales road trip back, you could take the Southern Highlands route. Most people prefer continuing into Victoria to explore the beaches and clean, sparkly water. The Sapphire coast has a lot to offer beyond that point as well.

The New England highway

New England Highway, NSW
New England Highway, NSW

The Grand Pacific Drive might be the most popular choice of road trip in NSW, but experienced drivers know there is another wonderful gem hidden in there. The New England highway is a less-frequented, but just as amazing New South Wales road trip. One of the highlights of the trip is that the highway stretches through the Hunter Valley wine region.

There’s hardly a place quainter than this. You will probably pass through amazing locations like Maitland, which is known as the first place where European settled in NSW. It has a rich history and tons of heritage buildings that will make any amateur historian drool. After you leave Maitland, you’ll pass by the riverside town of Singleton, which is going to be a heavenly location if you like sampling the finest delights of the vineyard. The wine cellars here are legendary.

Once you reach the Upper Hunter Valley, things take a turn for the amazing. The town of Muswellbrook is the epicentre of fine cheese and olives in the region. If you are an avid equestrian, you’re going to adore the nearby town of Scone, which is famous for its many stud farms. The road continues to wind through the countryside and you will end up reaching the town of Tamworth, which is known as the country music hub. If you decide to make your trip in January, you could get there just in time for the 10-day music festival.

However, if country music isn’t your thing, you could always check out the scenic waterfalls and mountains of Armidale. If you like camping, water rafting, and bushwalking, you’re going to find that this is the place for you.

The Greater Blue Mountains Drive

Panoramic view of the Blue Mountains, New South Wales road trip
Panoramic view of the Blue Mountains and the 3 sisters: Photo Damienkeffyn / CC BY-SA 4.0

The Blue Mountains have tons of intertwining roads that travellers adore driving through, but the Greater Blue Mountains Drive is the crème de la crème. This vast 1,200-kilometre path is undoubtedly one of the most rewarding drives you will ever see.

The UNESCO-recognized Blue Mountains are covered by this route, but the road stretches outside the mountains as well. The surrounding region is covered quite a bit. Trust that you will never get bored with this area, considering that there are also eighteen different Discovery trails that branch out from the main route.

The enormous size of the route lets you pick out how you will explore it. You can pick a one-day trip that encompasses one portion, or you can spend weeks on an epic journey to explore every nook and cranny of the Blue Mountains.

Along the main path and the 18 Discovery trails, you will find an extraordinary amount of attractions. You’ll find no shortage of amazing mountain scenery and look-outs that are to die for. There’s nothing these mountains can’t offer you in terms of clean, unadulterated nature. Rivers and lakes are plentiful here and they’re just as scenic as the mountains in the backdrop.

Be prepared for these kinds of trips

Car broken down on country road

Taking on some of the enormous road trips is going to need some preparation. You can’t just take a week-long trip around the mountainside without giving it some forethought. First of all, you’re going to need some mental preparation. Travelling by vehicle can be an exhausting ordeal and you need to be in the right kind of mindset. Try to finish up all of your most important bits of work so you don’t have to worry about them during the long trip.

Your vehicle needs to be ready for this kind of journey. Whether you’re driving in a van or car, you might want to check if the technical parts are all up-to-date and ready for the long drive. If your car breaks down in the middle of nowhere while you’re on your way to the top of a mountain, you won’t have a pleasant trip.

Any number of things can go wrong. You could have a flat tire along the way, which is why carrying a spare might be wise. If your battery runs out, you might have to call for emergency car batteries from Sydney. Driving without a tire or batteries isn’t an option, which is why you have to prepare accordingly.

Keep your insurance up-to-date

Car keys

Going on a road trip usually means you’re going to spend quite a while driving. It might mean a couple of sleepless nights and driving through dark roads at dusk and dawn. Unfortunately, this could lead to an accident once in a while. It isn’t very likely, but you can never be too sure.

You should always keep your insurance papers on you and make sure everything is up to date. Some insurance companies don’t cover inter-state travel and you might need to add some premiums.

In the event of a collision on the road, you’re going to need a legal expert to help you in case you get injured. Sometimes you can get compensation for collisions on the road. If you’re out of work because of the injury you might be entitled to some form of paid leave during your recovery process. You need to consider all of these things before spending large amounts of time on the road.


If you ever find yourself taking a New South Wales road trip, you’ll find it hard to resist coming back. The charming roads are filled to the brim with epic views and towns that will be etched into your memory. No matter where you go afterward, you’ll always long for the New South Wales road trip experience.

About Liam Smith

Liam Smith is a young and aspiring Australian blogger with a passion for everything related to home improvement, design, and style. He has a B.Sc. in Interior design and is an avid reader.

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