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Illawarra, NSW Map
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Fast Facts

Distance & Driving times from major cities
Sydney to Stanwell Park
54 Kms - 1:00 hours
Sydney to Wollongong
81 Kms - 1:20 hours
Sydney to Gerroa
125 Kms - 2:00 hours
Canberra to Wollongong
232 Kms - 2:55 hours
Melbourne to Wollongong
825 Kms - 10:15 hours
Closest Capital City:
Sydney NSW
Closest Airport:
Sydney International Airport
Activities: Golf, Tennis Bush Walking, Swimming, Surfing, Sailing, Fishing, Hang Gliding, Steam Train Rides, Abseiling, Para-Sailing, Ultra Light Flights, Horse Riding, Bird Watching, Art Galleries, Shopping, Antique Browsing, Mountain Biking.
Illawarra Featured Holiday Accommodation Properties
Illawarra Tourism Information

About Illawarra

The Illawarra region stretching along the New South Wales coast from the Royal National Park to the Shoalhaven River. It is and ideal place for touring and weekend retreats due to its close proximity to Sydney. The beaches and national parks provide ample opportunities for outdoor activities.

The Illawarra can be viewed from some spectacular lookouts on top of the Eastern Escarpment as you approach Wollongong from Sydney at Bulli Pass. This is where the Illawarra escarpment meets the ocean.

The main towns of the Illawarra region are located along the coastline and include Stanwell Park, Thirroul, Wollongong, Shellharbour, Kiama, Gerringong and Gerroa.

The beautiful clean beaches, superior services, shopping, boutique accommodation makes the Illawarra an ideal destination all year round.

The Illawarra region offers festivals, events, and a variety of cultural, activities and entertainment for all the family. Alternately there is a huge range of outdoor activities for families or the adrenaline junkie ranging from bush walking, abseiling, hang gliding, para-sailing, ultra light flights, steam train rides, relaxing at the beach, shopping or enjoy one of the numerous local pubs.

There are townships and country villages hidden off the main roads. They are filled with treasures just waiting to be discovered by art, crafts and antique lovers. Wonderful, arts and crafts including pottery, prints, paintings, furniture, antiques, and a variety of collectables await.

Places to visit

Gerringong is a coastal village, which offers amazing ocean views and clean sandy beaches.

Gerroa like Gerringong is a coastal village also offering fabulous views, and beaches. South of Gerroa is the famous Seven Mile Beach. This superb beach is located in a National Park and is backed by an exquisite forest.

Illawarra Escarpment
The Illawarra Escarpment stretches from Bulli Pass in the north to Bong Bong Pass in the south. The escarpment gives Wollongong a unique backdrop and includes a wide variety of flora and fauna.

The Blowhole at Kiama is well known and attracts visitors from around the world. As well as the Blowhole Kiama is also famous for its amazingly rugged coastlines and the rolling green hills that stretch towards Jamberoo Valley. Read More.

The City of Wollongong is approached via dramatic cliffs from the north through Stanwell Park, to the lighthouse at Flagstaff Point. Wollongong is a working fishing harbour and is a city of contrasts from North Beach to the magnificent Nan Tien Temple.

Shellharbour, located below the spectacular coastal escarpment, is a water enthusiast's dream with its rugged coastline and sheltered beaches. Surfing, boating and fishing are popular. Read more.

Stanwell Park
Stanwell Park is considered the jewel in the crown of the beautiful Illawarra region. Famous for its hang gliders which take off gracefully from Bald Hill, and glide majestically over the Pacific Ocean. Read more.

Originally named Thurrural, by the local aborigines, which means "The Valley of the Cabbage Tree Palms". The cabbage tree palms although diminished in numbers can still be viewed on either side of the Bulli Pass.

National Parks

Royal National Park
The Royal National Park is New South Wales oldest national park and is the world's second oldest national park after Yellowstone in the USA, established in 1879. The Royal National Park is one of the region's most popular destinations. The park covers more than 15,000 hectares and includes rugged sea cliffs, swamps, heaths, rainforests and eucalypt woodlands. It offers visitors beautiful picnic spots next to rivers, fabulous surf beaches, heath land bush walks, rainforest cycle tracks, and much more.

Seven Mile Beach National Park
Seven Mile Beach is rimmed with sand dunes as well as a variety of coastal sand forests, some of which are listed as endangered ecological communities. A viewing platform is located at Beach Road and provides easy beach access to all, including the disabled. There is a large picnic area with barbecues in a forest setting.


The Illawarra region has a very similar climate to Sydney with a mild, sunny, coastal climate. Winter temperatures average 17 degrees Celsius and summer averages 27 degrees with afternoon sea breezes. The water temperature drops to around 15 degrees Celsius in winter and can go as high as high as 21 degrees Celsius in summer. Swimming is usually pleasant from mid November to mid March. Most rainfall occurs between February and June.

The Illawarra region's highest recorded temperature is 42.3°C and its lowest recorded temperature is -0.5°C.

Getting there

By Car
The Illawarra Region is easily accessed by car from both Sydney and Canberra. It is about a 1 hour drive from Sydney via the F6 freeway. Canberra is about 2.5 hours drive via the Hume Highway to Moss Vale then the Illawarra Highway.

By Train
Trains depart approximately every hour from Central Station in Sydney for the Illawarra and South Coast. For timetables please visit the CityRail website at

By Coach
Coaches travel through the Illawarra region connecting with Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra on a daily basis. For more information on coach services visit, or

By Air
The Illawarra Regional Airport is located at Albion Park Rail. Commercial flights operate weekdays from Melbourne. Sydney International Airport is located about 1 hours drive from the centre or the Illawarra region.


The Illawarra region offers a varied range of accommodation types to suite all budgets and tastes including luxurious rural retreats and guesthouses, small Bed & Breakfasts, hotels and motels, cabins or cottages, self contained holiday units and apartments, beach houses and caravan parks.

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