New South Wales. Apart from the bustling city of Sydney, how much do you really know about it? From breathtaking mountains, untouched beaches, wild flora and fauna and quaint, friendly little towns sprinkled in-between, every corner of this state holds a new surprise. Read on for my 5 reasons to escape Sydney.

I recently had the opportunity to escape the city and experience some of these great wonders. I discovered just how underrated the rest of NSW truly is. If you’re in the need for a break from the concrete jungle, I can assure you that there really is no need to look further than your very own backyard.

Here are 5 reasons to escape Sydney for yourself:

1. The Ocean

Yeah, okay, Bondi is great. But, when was the last time you had the beach all to yourself? Soft, white sand stretched as far as the eye can see and a deep blue ocean’s waves kissing the shore isn’t a rare sight along the coast of New South Wales and Port Stephens is one fab example.

Here you’ll find an abundance of things to do. Hit the beach (obviously), get up close and personal with dolphins on a cruise, climb Mount Tomaree and see the breathtaking view for yourself, or even give sandboarding the dunes of nearby Stockton Bight a try.

2. The Mountains

You’ve probably seen pictures of the noble peaks of the Blue Mountains on postcards, on T.V. or in movies, but believe me when I say nothing compares to seeing them with your own eyes. These magnificent spectacles are only a little over an hour’s drive out of Sydney, yet the tremendous peaks and valleys make it feel like an entirely different planet.

And if you think they look impressive in the day time, just wait ‘til you view them at sunset (did someone say, “perfect backdrop for a new DP”?)

reasons to escape sydney australia

Craving a cliff-hanger? If you’re feeling especially brave, abseiling is the perfect way to see the mountains from a whole new perspective.

Plus, there are plenty of quaint little towns scattered throughout the Blue Mountains if you’re in the need for a coffee at a cute little café or a refreshing drink at the local pub.

reasons to escape sydney australia

3. The Animals

Although we like to joke about kangaroos roaming the streets and the constant threat of the infamous “drop bears” being present in our day-to-day city lives, we all know that spending time with our very own native animals is a rather rare and special occurrence.

reasons to escape sydney australia

Kangaroos, wombats, dolphins, snakes, spiders, sharks – you name it, we’ve got it! The further you venture out of the city, the more apparent it becomes just how deprived of wildlife we can be.

Despite being born and raised in Australia, on my recent trip with a number of visitors from across the globe, I still found myself sharing the utter delight of the overseas visitors when we spotted a kangaroo or wallaby from the coach window as we journeyed through the countryside. Definitely up there with my reasons to escape Sydney.

4. The People

City life can get so hectic that we often forget what it’s like to just talk to people, sit and enjoy another’s company or simply smile at a stranger.

reasons to escape sydney australia

The quaint country towns dotted across NSW provide the perfect environment to do just that. The locals are friendly, the air is fresh and clean, and the atmosphere is just downright relaxed. You’ll find plenty of opportunities to unwind, chat with new friends and hear their perspective and experiences of Australia.

5. The Senses

One of the best things about being away from the city is that the senses always seem to come alive. The colours, sights and smells of nature are different and more pronounced, and you often find yourself paying much more attention to your surroundings than usual.

The wild, turquoise ocean’s waves crashing before you, the cool, soft sand between your toes, the sounds of a laughing kookaburra in the early morning, and the smells of dinner being cooked with fresh, local produce are all things you can look forward to experiencing when you visit NSW.

Read our reasons to escape Sydney and wanna come check out New South Wales for yourself? We’ve got the perfect trip for you

Explore what New South Wales has to offer with Destination New South Wales.

Emily Smith
Emily is a recent psychology-graduate-turned-travel-enthusiast, who loves nothing more than spending her days basking in the sun, chasing waterfalls and a warm, freshly-baked falafel. She is currently planning a trip to Hawaii and Mexico (where she will of course be doing all of the above activities!). You can find Emily’s photography on @em.peachy.