South Coast

6 NSW South Coast accommodations perfect for your next escape

Whether you're after breezy vistas, a peaceful oasis or country comforts, these New South Wales South Coast accommodation options are perfect for your next escape from the city.

For family escapes within easy reach of Sydney, the South Coast of New South Wales (NSW) spoils visitors for choice with its winding beaches, wildlife-rich rainforests and friendly surf towns. You can wiggle your toes in the whitest sand in the world at Hyams Beach, then cruise by local oyster farms for a slurpy, satisfying lunch with a chance to spot humpback whales and bottlenose dolphins. From the untouched beaches, tumbling surf and crystal-clear waters of Shoalhaven to the breathtaking panoramas of the Sydney Basin, all are just a few hours’ drive from Sydney.

Ripe for the picking are world-class hotels and B&Bs in the South Coast’s most famous spots, from Wollongong all the way down to Batemans Bay. Choose from stylish studios and lofty penthouses overlooking the Pacific, sweet heritage homes-turned-B&B and clifftop spa suites. We’re talking cool Scandi-style interiors, on-site beer gardens, hip in-house cocktail spots with live music and fancy spa services; not forgetting the classic sells like wraparound decking and infinity pools over the ocean. You could set off from Sydney in the morning and be dining on fresh seafood in an award-winning restaurant by noon.

Cocktails and cool accommodation


Just north of Wollongong, Headlands Austinmer Beach is the ideal friends’ getaway. Modern charcoal and crisp whites form the palette for fresh interiors brightened with live plants. Bask in sunlight streaming in from huge windows that reveal an epic view of Austinmer’s expansive blue waters.

Headlands offers different levels of accommodation depending on your budget, from self-contained studio apartments through to spacious penthouses – all stocked with natural local toiletries, Netflix and a fully equipped kitchen for whipping together your morning granola. The pool area is something to behold, with riveting views of the ocean and scarcely a separation from the salty seaside. When it comes time to dine, on-site chef, Murray Hickey serves up fresh produce and cocktails at Headlands Brasserie, where you’ll also find a sunny beer garden for cracking into a cold pint on a hot afternoon.

As the third largest city in the state, Wollongong – known locally as ‘The Gong’ – has quirky delights to fill an afternoon like coastal bike tracks and a kid-friendly science museum. If you feel like getting back to nature, hike up to Mount Keira’s panoramic summit or tap into your inner thrill-seeker by jumping from the cliffs at Wattamolla Falls.

Headlands Austinmer Beach

Top rated
9.0 Excellent (1086 reviews)

Country comforts in luxury accommodation


Part of the respected Sebel Group, The Sebel Kiama Harbourside delivers country-style comforts in 87 immaculate rooms furnished in tones of warm reds and highland check prints. On top of air-con, Appelles toiletries, sparkling en-suites and uninterrupted views, the hotel also has alliances with local clubs. That means sea fishing and golfing are amiable options for sunny afternoons.

For post-putt nibbles, you can hit up the hotel’s Blue Diamond Bar & Bistro. Plating up delectable lunches and dinners seven days a week, the bar also provides toe-tapping live music on the weekend. Peruse the generous list of gourmet pizzas for drool-worthy creations like cider-braised pulled-pork, all with a complementary view of the harbour.

Music lovers should head into the groovy seaside town of Kiama for its annual Jazz and Blues Festival in March – a tradition of over 30 years. Kids will be delighted by the Kiama blowhole – a basalt tunnel that during high tide can propel surges of water 25 metres into the air … and back down onto unsuspecting bystanders.

The Sebel Kiama

Top rated
8.8 Excellent (2175 reviews)

Home-grown charm in Jervis Bay accommodation


If it’s country charm drawing you to the South Coast, look no further than the Huskisson Bed and Breakfast set in a laidback surf town. A great hub for exploring the buzzing area, this heritage home from 1913 has space for the whole family. Character pieces like freestanding clawfoot baths invite leisurely soaks with a glass of chardonnay while the kids romp in tropical gardens or sit down with a puzzle in bright, whitewashed living spaces.

Generous, airy interiors are crowned with quality alinens and fluffy towels. Electric blankets and under-floor heating keep winter visitors snuggly and content. WiFi and TVs stocked with a library of DVDs will keep you connected and entertained, though you might prefer the option of an in-room massage to turn your mind off for a while instead.

Friendly hosts serve fresh breakfasts sourced straight from the garden. Happy to accommodate dietary requirements with a bit of notice, they’ll put out a mouthwatering spread of homemade jams, creamy yoghurts, cereal and eggs with still-warm bread and pastries. In terms of accessibility, the B&B is a mere 10-minute drive from Hyams Beach and a five-minute walk to Huskisson and Jervis Bay beaches.

Huskisson Beach Bed And Breakfast

8.0 Very good (92 reviews)

Rooftop living in cliffside accommodation


Ruling rugged, windswept cliffs is the impressive Bannisters by the Sea in coastal Mollymook. In stark contrast is the clean-lined infinity pool surrounded by teakwood decking and padded sun loungers, made for long afternoons in the South Coast sun.

Slow-paced days can be complemented by a fresh sea-inspired lunch plate from the hotel’s restaurant, Rick Stein. Fresh-off-the-boat, locally sourced seafood is the centrepiece of this celeb restaurant – try a fragrant salmon curry or buttery, garlicky mussels for mains, followed by a delicate mousse for dessert and topped with a bottle of wine crafted in local cellars.

Full with shrimp and champagne, wander back to your room for a nap on your terrace daybed under a mountain of blue-and-white pillows. Chic rooms are dressed in soothing coastal tones and range from ocean-view doubles to jaw-dropping clifftop penthouses. Ease into an oval spa bath complete with waterfall shower in a spa suite, or upgrade for a deep tub made of iridescent mosaic tile in the luxury suite. To end the evening, we recommend cracking open a bottle of bubbly on the balcony.

Bannisters By The Sea Mollymook

Top rated
9.2 Excellent (638 reviews)

A peaceful oasis in Ulladulla accommodation


With soothing, clean lines and modern décor, Harbour View Serviced Apartments are built to eliminate stress. Minimalist oaks, greens and charcoal tones colour the spacious rooms to create an on-trend but cosy vibe. Wrap-around verandas and vast windows invite the outside in so you and the family never miss a sunset.

The award-winning, well-positioned apartments have all the amenities you could wish for, from a spacious lounge and dining area to barbecue facilities for big family fry-ups. With WiFi and Apple TV, you’ll be connected to home comforts when you feel like a little downtime. They’re also located within a secure, gated complex, so the kids can run around at will without you having to look up from your book.

Your apartment is just a 10-minute walk to Rennie’s Beach, where you’ll also find an eclectic mix of restaurants and bars. Don’t miss Tony’s Italian Ristorante Bar & Seafood (the spaghetti marinara is delectable). For family activities, Ulladulla is also home to Funland – a tri-level extravaganza of video games, dodgems and laser skirmish courses to occupy the kids while parents chill out. Kids are also welcome at Gondwana Guided Fossil Walk, where volunteers with a passion for geology will take the whole family on informative walks through nature.

Harbour View Apartments

9.6 Excellent (1501 reviews)

Breezy vistas from Batemans Bay accommodation


Perched on the south bank of the Clyde River, The Bay Breeze Boutique balances privacy and accessibility. The quiet promenade is comfortably away from highway traffic and boasts views over the estuary and the ocean beyond. Grab a free bike (or as many as your family needs) and head out for a day of exploring the town. Nature lovers will find a tranquil oasis in the Eurobodalla Regional Botanic Gardens, while nearby Birdland Animal Park is a great option for kids wanting to mingle with wombats and koalas.

Back from your action-packed day out, rooms take on an aura of peace with neutral decor and Scandinavian styling. With a seat overlooking the water, grab a cup of tea and take in the ocean horizon dotted with swaying yachts. Package deals cater to couples’ holidays and celebratory getaways, with available extras like champagne on ice, massages, animal encounters and bespoke kayaking excursions.

All rooms come with fully equipped kitchenettes should you be in the mood for a homemade family lunch. If you want to fit in with the locals, try an Aussie brunch on for size at nearby Nourish on North. Cool kids will order healthy açai bowls topped with strawberries, bananas, pumpkin seeds and puffed oats, washed down with a classic flat white.

Bay Breeze Boutique Accommodation

Top rated
Batemans Bay
9.4 Excellent (740 reviews)