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The ultimate south coast road trip itinerary

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Wild About Whales
White sands walk, Chinaman's Beach, Jervis Bay National Park. Photo: D.Finnegan/OEH

The sparkling south coast is the perfect place to enjoy a coastal adventure and spot whales as they travel south on their annual migration. Here are a few ideas to help you plan your 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. Try 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

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 and makes for a peaceful day at the beach. Bring your fishing gear and try your luck fishing from the beach, or go swimming and snorkelling in the sparkling blue waters.

Myrtle Beach walking track is 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 2015.

Day 3

Stop off at Moruya Heads lookout, located at the south end of 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 smartphone app or with twitter using the hashtag #whaleon.

As you arrive at the north end of Tuross Head, take the time to walk the Bingo 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).

Your final stop is 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 after a busy day of fishing and swimming, 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 splash of whale watching, dive in and snorkel with seals or simply enjoy the 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 2015.

Day 4

Mimosa Rocks National Park is an idyllic spot to spend the day whale watching. Head to Bunga Head for 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. At the end of the boardwalk, you’ll be rewarded with dramatic views over the rocks from the lookout. To escape the crowds, drive to Bournda National Park and spend the afternoon picnicking by the beach in Wine Glass Bay.

Day 5

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. 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, rich in maritime and whaling history. If you’re in town on November 1 and 2, you can enjoy the annual Eden Whale Festival and celebrate the southern migration of whales in NSW.

Stay: Green Cape Lightstation Keeper’s Cottage

Don’t forget to share your best pics on Facebook or Twitter using the hashtag #whaleon during your south coast road trip!

For more coastal activities and school holiday ideas, subscribe to the Naturescapes e-newsletter and go in the draw to win a coastal holiday to Myer House in Mimosa Rocks National Park.

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