For one semester, I am at University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) in Australia for my double degree in International Business Management. However, I am now going to stay longer to finish my master thesis here in Australia.
My road trip experience from the Sunny Coast to Sydney:
My friends and I decided to do a ten days’ trip to Sydney. Five days of driving down, and four days consisted of enjoying Sydney and with one day driving back to the Sunshine Coast.
Surfers Paradise/ Miami:
Our trip started with a highly extensive shopping trip to the Harbour Town Outlet Shopping Centre on the Gold Coast. Nice brands like Victoria’s Secret, UGG and Calvin Kleins were very cheap. After the shopping escalation, we drove to Miami next to Surfers paradise. In Miami, one of the most impressed views can be seen from the skyline of Surfers paradise (insider tip).
I love Byron Bay! During our first night there, wea decided to stay at the backpackers hostel which is a really nice hostel to stay at while exploring Byron. Byron is very beautiful and has a special vibe of feeling free and enjoying life to the fullest. Actually, the city is well known of as there are many tourists here and a popular surfing destination. This was our second time at Byron, and we decided to do the light house walk and went to every public beach. We searched for a lonely beach, which we found between rocks and after long hike, which was magic.
Our second night of our road trip was in Yamba. It is a small fishing townm, and at first, we were disappointed of Yamba. However, after walking around and seeing the calm and beauty of the nature at Yamba and Angourie Beach, it was absolutely stunning.
In Angourie, we went to the green and blue nature pools. I don’t recommend it as there were a lot of tourists there when we came, but there might be days to visit this place when it’s less crowded.
After Yamba, we drove down to Coffs Harbour. The city is known as the “banana town”. We decided to do our first stop to take a photo at the “Big Banana”, located in a fun park for children (can’t be overlooked). From there, went to the Forest Sky Pier, which is a plattform up in the mountains with an amazing view overlooking the city. If you drive to the platform, you have to stop at the self-service farmers food stalls to buy fresh avocados and bananas! Next to the pier, there are many options to do a rainforest track, keep an eye out for leeches!
The fourth night was at Port Macquarie. We visited the Koala Rescue Hospital, which I recommend! In Port Macquarie, there are also many koala statues in the city.
The last stop before Sydney was Newcastle. We did the short memorial walk close to the beach. In addition, we also had a relaxing day at the beach. One of my friends is passionate about surfing and Newcastle has some amazing surf spots.
My favorite city is Sydney! Sydney’s city district is never the same but each quarter is its own little town with their own story.
Short overview of our activities and my recommendations:
- Bondi beach:
Beautiful beach and amazing waves, but it is a tourist sight. The pool at Icebergs it is amazing for pictures, but the entry is about 6.50$ per person.
This is a shopping paradise and a nice city district. Tip: download the app Groupon for cheaper breakfast at amazing spots!
- Harbour Bridge and The opera
A must visit!
- Botanic garden
A very beautiful and calm place to be!
- Woolloomooloo Bay
Beautiful city district. We lived at the Asylum Hostel. I recommend the hostel, it was super clean, nice kitchen and smaller than others.
- Ferry to Manly
At Circular Quay, there are many private and public ferries everywhere: use the public ones (1,20$ a day!) to get to to Many in about 30min. You will have an amazing view of Sydney, the opera and the skyline. In saying that, we were a bit disappointed of our trip to Manly because tit was a very busy day, however this again depends on the day you decide to go (Weekends are normally the busiest).
Download the App Liven (Dining Rewards App) for free vouchers/cheap prices! There are heaps of nice boutiques for shopping, and the chinese garden is beautiful to relax by. You can also buy weird things, like kangaroo lucky balls (!).
– Lisa Wawrzinek @lisawawrzinek