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The ultimate south coast road trip itinerary

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Wild About Whales
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White Sands and Scribbly Gum track, Jervis Bay National Park. Photo: D. Finnegan/OEH

The serene south coast is the perfect place to enjoy a coastal adventure and spot whales as they travel south on their annual migration. We've mapped out an itinerary of travel tips and destinations to help you plan the ultimate south coast road trip!

Day 1

With its powder-white sands, crystal clear waters, forests, woodlands and wetlands, Jervis Bay National Park is the ideal place to start your south coast road trip. Venture out along the incredible White Sands walk and Scribbly Gum track, go swimming, fishing or snorkelling, or relax with a picnic.

Further south is Meroo National Park, which is located between Ulladulla and Batemans Bay and has some of the best vantage points for whale viewing on the NSW south coast. Don’t miss the panoramic views from Meroo Head lookout. For another great place to go whale watching, follow the walking track to Nuggan Point.

Stay: Meroo Head campground or Termeil Point campground.

Day 2

Myrtle Beach walking track, Murramarang National Park. Photo: Michael van Ewijk/OEH.

Myrtle Beach walking track, Murramarang National Park. Photo: Michael van Ewijk/OEH

Wander along a short and easy walking track at the southern end of Murramarang National Park and you’ll arrive at the secluded beauty of Richmond Beach. Ideal for families, it provides protection from most onshore winds, which makes for a peaceful day at the beach. Bring your fishing gear and try your luck from the beach or go swimming and snorkelling in the sparkling blue waters.

Myrtle Beach walking track is only a short drive from Batemans Bay and takes you through an incredible display of stunted spotted gum forest that has been warped and twisted by the salt air and coastal winds. Before you know it, you’ll step onto sandy shores and be surrounded by the high cliffs of Myrtle Beach.

Stay: Depot Beach Cabins and get three nights for the price of two until 30 November 2016.

Day 3

1080 Beach, Eurobodalla National Park. Photo: Christina Bullivant.

1080 Beach, Eurobodalla National Park. Photo: C. Bullivant

Stop off at 1080 Beach and Moruya Heads lookout, located in Eurobodalla National Park, to enjoy spectacular coastal views and watch the whales glide past on their southern migration. Don’t forget to log your sightings on the Wild About Whales app.

As you arrive at the north end of Tuross Head, take the time to walk the Bingi Dreaming track. The walk passes through different types of coastal habitat and offers great opportunities for birdwatching. You’re also likely to see kangaroos and wallabies relaxing in the sun. There are a number of vantage points along the way to spot whales, as well as panoramic views of Gulaga (Mount Dromedary) and Baranguba (Montague Island).

Finally, be sure to stop at Montague Island Nature Reserve, off the coast of Narooma. The protected waters of Montague Island are home to hundreds of playful Australian fur seals that frolic on the rocks, as well as more than 90 bird species. Little penguins migrate to their burrows on the island each evening as schools of local dolphins swim by.

To get a close-up view of this natural spectacle, join a day or evening tour and explore Montague Island with a guide. Enjoy a spot of whale watching, dive in and snorkel with seals or simply enjoy the remarkable 360-degree views from Montague Island Lighthouse.

Stay: Montague Island Head Lighthouse Keeper’s Cottage or Assistant Lighthouse Keeper’s Cottage and get three nights for the price of two until 30 November 2016.

Day 4

Bournda National Park. Photo: A. Brown/OEH.

bournda-656x388Bournda National Park. Photo: A. Brown/OEH

Mimosa Rocks National Park is an idyllic spot to spend a day whale watching. Head to Bunga Head to kick off your day with a beautiful sunrise, then take a short walk to Wajurda Point and relax on the rocks as you look out for passing whales.

The Mimosa Rocks walking track is great for kids and also wheelchair accessible. When you reach the end of the boardwalk, you’ll be rewarded with dramatic views over the rocks from the lookout.

If you're feeling the need to escape the crowds, drive to Bournda National Park and spend the afternoon picnicking by the beach in Wine Glass Bay.

Stay: Hobart Beach campground.

Day 5

Humpback breaching near Boyds Tower, Ben Boyd National Park. Photo: Warwick Kent.

Humpback breaching near Boyds Tower, Ben Boyd National Park. Photo: Warwick Kent

The Light to Light walk is one of the best walks on the far south coast of NSW, travelling from the historic Boyds Tower to Green Cape Lightstation. The walk is mostly easy and can be done in sections. Along the way you’ll enjoy stunning views that change from heathland to forest, tea tree groves to banksia woodlands, and sheltered coves to towering red-rock platforms. Don’t miss Green Cape lookout, which is a popular spot for whale watching, as well as bird and wildlife spotting.

Finish your road trip by exploring the nearby town of Eden, which is rich in maritime and whaling history. If you happen to be in town from October 28 to 30, you can enjoy the 2016 Eden Whale Festival. This fun, family-friendly festival combines whale watching from shore - celebrating the southern migration – with live shows, hands-on kids activities, street theatre, music, seafood and local produce.

Stay: Green Cape Lightstation Keeper’s Cottage

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Montague Island Head Lighthouse Keeper's Cottage. Photo: Justin Gilligan

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