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44 ways to explore New South Wales in 2020

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Keen as a bean to feel the sand in your toes again?

Can’t wait for your next road trip adventure? Want to support bushfire and drought-affected communities with your tourist dollars?

Here are some of the top reasons to take a trip to NSW now and in the coming months—from snorkelling with seals to fossicking for opals.

Australia Day Long Weekend (Friday 25–Monday 27 January)

From a South Coast road trip, to a Hunter Valley wine escape, a surfing safari along the North Coast or heading inland to the Tamworth Country Music Festival (17-26 January), the Australia Day Long Weekend is the perfect opportunity to jump in the car with your empty esky to stay locally and shop regionally.

Valentine’s Day (Friday 14 February)

Impress your true love with a romantic escape that gives back and book a weekend away at a cute bed and breakfast or Bubbletent, dine locally and stock the car with local produce and wine.

For a relaxing nature filled escape, be sure to book a stay out in the gorgeous mountain villages of Leura and Blackheath, a beach escape to Port Macquarie, Yamba, Bermagui or Mollymook or for a true wine escape head to the vibrant winemaking regions of Mudgee, Orange, Cowra, Lovedale, Southern Highlands and The Shoalhaven.

Easter Long Weekend, Friday 10–Monday 13 April

Jervis Bay. Photo: Tim Bean Photography for HerCanberra.

The South Coast areas of the Shoalhaven, Eurobodalla and Sapphire Coast are always a hit with visitors so take advantage of the four-day long weekend and explore the South Coast and its network of coastal villages.

Go dolphin watching in Jervis Bay, snorkelling with seals at Montague Island, paddle boarding in Tathra and explore the Killer Whale Trail in Eden.

Autumn escape

The Southern Highlands. Photo: Tim Bean Photography for HerCanberra.

The cooler weather is the ideal time to head to the Southern Highlands, Snowy Mountains, Blue Mountains and Hunter Valley.

Be it truffle and mushroom hunting in Oberon, apple picking in Batlow or Bilpin or taking in the autumn leaves at Tumbarumba, Katoomba or Bowral.

School Holidays

Relive the nostalgic family road trip these school holidays and pack up the family for a week or two of fun and adventure.

Explore Outback NSW, ideal in April, June and September—visit the Artesian Spa Baths in Moree, go fossicking for opals in Lightning Ridge and White Cliffs, stargaze in the Warrumbungles, take a camel ride in Silverton and explore the iconic Broken Hill.

Mother’s Day

Treat your mum to a weekend away, book a spa and wine-filled weekend in the Hunter Valley, high tea and chocolate tasting in the Blue Mountains, visit the Koala Hospital and wildlife parks in Port Macquarie or get lost in the history and heritage of Armidale.

Whale season

Credit: Tim Bean for HerCanberra.

Whale watching season kicks off along the NSW Coast from May to November each year.

More than 30,000 whales make their way along the Humpback Highway, and you can watch the spectacular show from clifftops, beaches and cruises.

At Coffs Harbour, you can swim alongside whales with Jetty Dive, while in Port Macquarie Port Jet gets you out into open-ocean in under 10minutes.

Further South, at Batemans Bay you can join Region X or Bay and Beyond for a sea kayaking tour, at Broulee Island you can enjoy a 360-degree view of the ocean and in Eden you can celebrate the whales at the annual Eden Whale Festival in November.

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