When Captain James Cook
first saw the eastern coastline of Australia
he saw sheer ragged sandstone
cliffs, blue bays of calm water fringed by beaches and lush bushland.
Today, the east coast is fully populated with each settlement linked by major highways (the Princess Highway runs south of Sydney
to the Victorian border, and the Pacific
Highway runs north of Sydney
from the end of the F3 Freeway at Hexham to Tweed Heads on the Queensland
Along the NSW coast lay both major and minor towns including the cities of Sydney
, Newcastle, Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour and Ballina.
But it is the smaller towns in between these major centres that attract the local tourist who want to get away for a while. Little holiday villages are plentiful where the focus is on finding your own fun in nature's playground. With long summer days, excellent surf beaches, quiet rivers and shady trees the NSW coast is teeming with treasures.
Fishing, boating, sailing, scuba diving and swimming are all major activities on the east coast of Australia
. The temperate waters are safe from stingers, there are no crocodiles and most beaches have surf patrols. Water temperatures range from 18 degrees Celsius in winter to 22 degrees in summer. Coastal National Parks are plentiful where there are excellent walking trails, camping areas and lookouts.
To the west of the coastal highway you'll find a great variety of landforms including rainforests and rugged wilderness containing gorges, limestone caves and waterfalls.
The NSW coast is abundant in possums, wallabies, cockatoos, parrots, rosellas and the not so nice critters such as funnel web spiders, tiger snakes, red-belly black snakes and red-back spiders although it is usually rare to spot
any of these.