When it comes to natural wonders and wide-open spaces, there’s plenty worth seeking out in Australia. With over 500 national parks, the problem isn’t finding them – it’s choosing just one or two to visit. Here’s where we think you should head once you’ve picked up your rental car at the nearest Enterprise Rent-A-Car branch.
Whether you’re in Sydney for a day, a week or even a month, there’s plenty to keep you entertained in the New South Wales capital, but you’ll be missing out if you never venture beyond the city limits. And with six Enterprise Rent-A-Car locations across Sydney, there’s no excuse not to jump in a rental car and explore the surrounding region on a day trip.
Pack your walking shoes – the Blue Mountains must do activity is an 800 step descent into the valley below the iconic Three Sisters Rock Formation. Thankfully, you can ride the scenic railway back to the top after taking in the Katoomba Falls, a historic train that rolls up and down the cliffs at a whopping 52 degree tilt. Once you’ve had enough of walking, take a slow meander along the scenic Greater Blue Mountains drive and stop in Katoomba for a bite before the 90 minute drive back to Sydney.
At just 25km north of Sydney, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is an easy way to escape the city without putting too many kms on your hire car. 100km of deserted coastline and hidden coves lie on the edge of dense forest, with plenty of easy to follow walking tracks crisscrossing the park. Take the 8km Resolute Track Loop to Resolute Beach for secret stretch of sand you’ll probably have all to yourself.
Vineyards, wineries and cellar doors just two hours from Sydney. Need we say more? Best find yourself a designated driver for this trip, because the Hunter Valley is dotted with some 150 wineries, most of which offer tours and tastings. On second thoughts, better make this one a two day adventure – we don’t forsee many volunteers coming forward to take the wheel and miss out on the vino.
Packing all the charm of rural New South Wales while being close enough to Sydney for a weekend excursion, Kangaroo Valley has it all – bushwalks galore, breathtaking waterfalls and freshwater swimming spots, endless antique shopping and plenty of gourmet food to uncover. After a visit to the impressive Fitzroy Falls, make a stop in Fitzroy for antiques and a pub lunch, followed by dessert at The Famous Berry Donut Van. On the two hour return drive, you can cool down at Nellie’s Glen, a secluded swimming pool with a trickling waterfall to duck your head under.
It may be a sleepy country town most of the year, but Bowral comes alive in springtime when the annual Tulip Time Festival takes over its gardens and parks, kicking off a fortnight long celebration of markets and musical performances. Of course, there’s plenty to do the rest of the year as well, from browsing the many galleries to hitting the vineyards and hunting for one-of-a-kind antiques. Cricket lovers should pay a visit to the Bradman Centre & International Cricket Hall of Fame, while foodies will be spoilt for choice on the town’s main street. Worth the hour and half drive from Sydney? We sure think so.