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Myall Lakes to the Hunter Valley

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Myall Lakes to Hunter Valley

208 km | 3 hrs drive time

Give yourself at least a day to explore Port Stephens and Newcastle and second day to explore the Hunter Valley. The best place to stay is the NRMA Stockton Beach Holiday Park near Newcastle.
port stephens
Port Stephens

Port Stephens

Port Stephens is an hour north of Newcastle and its main town Nelson Bay is known as the ‘dolphin capital of Australia’. Embracing the south of the harbor, Tomaree Peninsula has deserted beaches, national parks and sand dunes. On its tip sits Nelson Bay. On the south side of the peninsula is Sumarai Beach where clothing is optional and One Mile Beach with gently sloping sand and incredibly blue water. 

Things to do

  • Ride camels on the beach
  • Learn to surf
  • Climb Tomaree Mountain for great ocean views
  • Explore the waterways in a kayak at Ezy Kayaks or Lazy Paddles
  • Hire a boat at Port Stephens Marine.

Camping

  • Fingal Bay Holiday Park
  • Halifax Holiday Park
  • Port Stephens Beechside Holiday Park
  • BIG4 Soldiers Point Holiday Park
  • Bays Holiday Park
  • Active Holidays One Mile Beach
  • Jimmy's Beach Holiday Park

Newcastle

With its good surf beaches, laid back vibe, historical architecture, hip bars, many dining options and thriving art scene, Newcastle is worth a day of your time. 

  • Learn about the military history of Newcastle and explore the underground tunnels at Fort Scratchley
  • Spot birds and wildlife at Hunter Wetlands Centre
  • Walk the 5 km scenic and historic coastal walk known as Bathers Way
  • Enjoy the soaring architecture, stained glass and peace in Christ Church Cathedral
  • Learn the history of Newcastle from its Indigenous origins at the engaging Newcastle Museum
  • Walk Nobby's Head to the lighthouse to surround yourself with ocean views and fresh salt air. 
  • Climb Queens Wharf Tower for commanding views of the city. 
  • Visit the 'lock up', a police station turned artists' studios. Its padded cell is still in tact. 
  • Feed emus and cuddle a wombat at the Blackbutt Reserve.

More information 

Camping

  • NRMA Stockton Beach Holiday Park

Newcastle view
Newcastle

Hunter Valley

The Hunter Valley is Australia’s oldest wine growing region and it is choc-full of wineries – more than 150 to be precise. Nestled in the fertile valleys 2 ½ hours north of Sydney and two hours inland from Port Stephens, you can enjoy attitude-free wine tasting. Stop in at the Hunter Valley tourist information centre in Maitland and grab some winery maps for a self-guided tour. If you don’t fancy driving, tours are available in vehicles, horse drawn carriages, and on bikes. Time Out put together a top ten wineries list and CNN did a top seven. A personal favorite is Wyndham Estate.

More Information

wyndham estate
Wyndham Estate Winery, Hunter Valley.

While the wine in the Hunter Valley is a draw card in itself, the region has even more to offer. It is a foodie’s heaven with food and wine schools, world class restaurants, cheese makers, olive oils, smoked fish, and a range of local produce. The region is perfect for hot air ballooning. There are day spas, activities for the kids, antiques, gardens and historic villages. 

hunter valley wine tours
Hunter Valley wine tours


Gold Coast to Sydney: an overview
Part 1: Brisbane - Gold Coast 
Part 2: Gold Coast - Byron Bay | 200 km 
Part 3: Byron Bay - Dorrigo National Park | 373 km 
Part 4: Dorrigo National Park - Myall Lakes | 362 km 
Part 5: Myall Lakes - Hunter Valley | 208 km 
Part 6: Hunter Valley - Sydney | 165 km or 388 km 

The Gold Coast to Sydney drive is just one of Australia's iconic road trips. For a complete list of road trips, see our Australia Road Trip guide.

Next Step

  Hire a campervan in Gold Coast

  Hire a campervan in Sydney

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