Continuing my road trip with Jeep Australia and Empty Esky (Blue Mountains, Orange articles). The Central Coast is just over an hour north of Sydney and is known for its beautiful beaches, natural scenery, national parks and active adventures. Across the region, you will find a diverse range of restaurants, casually-cool eateries and cafes, fashion boutiques and chic little finds.
Norah Head Lighthouse
Norah Head Lighthouse was built from 1901 to 1903. Perched on a headland, the lighthouse takes in magnificent ocean vistas and is the Central Coast’s most spectacular icon. A walking track skirts around the side of the lighthouse and leads to stairs which climb down to the rock platform below and to Lighthouse Beach. The guided tours are currently suspended but the accommodation remains open. The Lighthouse Keepers Quarters are within walking distance to a patrolled beach and rock pools. There are three bedrooms and sweeping verandahs; sea views from every window, a fully self-contained kitchen, laundry, lounge room, beautifully furnished.
Recommended by locals and fellow travel mates. Glee Coffee Roasters in the Central Coast located in the beautiful historic Chapman Building. There is plenty of seating in the courtyard and inside for a great sip of coffee and taste their wholesome menu.
Brothers Ben and Chris Gleeson have their own house blend since 2009. ‘The Goods’ is the an all-rounder coffee (brown sugar, berry, cocoa, espresso blend), ‘Walk’n on Sunshine’ (passionfruit, apricot jam, espresso filter) and winner of the Golden Bean coffee roasting award, or my favourite (after two coffee down), ‘The Verve’ with rich caramel and jam vibes, a definite kick to start the morning with a hint a sweetness.
The Chapman Building, 14 Alison Rd, Wyong NSW 2259, Australia
Mercure Kooindah Waters
A golfer’s retreat only 90 minutes away from Sydney and 1hr from Newcastlem this affordable but luxurious getaway was such a treat in the Central Coast. During my stay here, I enjoyed the night in a One Bedroom apartment with views from my balcony to the 18-hole Kooindah Waters Golf Course.
With modern furnishing, the apartment includes a fully stocked Kitchen, plush queen bed, separate living area, WIFI and in-room laundry facilities.
Karinyas Restaurant and Wine Bar looks like it was recently refurbished and well thought out. With indoor and outdoor seating, overlooking the golf course, Karinya’s is the perfect spot for a meal or beverage with friends and family.
Other facilities include an outdoor pool, 20m indoor pool, state of the art meetings & events facility and of course the 18-hole championship golf course.
Do as much or as little as you like here. The beauty of the Central Coast is all round you from the hotel. Perfect for a weekend getaway.
40 Kooindah Blvd, Wyong NSW 2259, Australia
T: +61 2 4355 5777 | E: [email protected]
Treetops Adventure Park
A spontaneous morning to swing through the forest like George of the Jungle. There are few exciting experiences to try and although I am a big-kid at heart. This would be a fun trip with your kids or be the best uncle to siblings kids.
The Adventure Park: featuring flying foxes, cargo nets, Tarzan swings, twisted ladders and more.
Vertical Challenge: anyone over five can enjoy the various challenging climbing walls, polka dots and zig-zag ladder.
Crazy Rider: imagine the thrill of a rollercoaster on a zip line. The pioneer track is 330m long plus a 360 degree loop, and the extreme track is 1km long and four 360 degree loops, one 540 degree loop and two freecall drops. Let me just say, I had loads of fun during that 6-7mins, laughing and at not one, but two moments I thought I was going to hit the tree with my leg.
Networld: this is perfect for the young ones, all you need is to bounce, play and explore through the nets nd fun games (ps there are gigantic inflatable balls!).
Ourimbah State Forest, 1 Red Hill Rd, Wyong Creek NSW 2259, Australia
The Marshmallow Co
Marshmallow goodness people, marshmallow goodness! (clap clap). This cute little store complete with retro neon signage is packed with over 30 gourmet flavours, specialty shakes, hot chocolate drinks, desserts and s’mores.
This is a story where you need to come in and give these people a hug (due to Covid restrictions, best to order a ton of marshmallows and sit outside in the courtyard and watch the day go pass). But seriously, local Breah Mayer started making marshmallow since 2017, there was a bonfire and endless hours of imagination mixing flavours together. With Joel Twyman by her side, The Marshmallow Co was born.
With Covid-19 the store has just reopened in Wyong, however you can experience all the deliciousness by ordering online as they do ship Australia-wide.
It’s hard to recommend as we all have different tastes, I bought the mix gift bag (so that I can try six flavours). From the Lemon Meringue, Raspberry White Chocolate, Butterscotch Caramel White Chocolate, Birthday Cake, Passionfruit & Raspberry and the Caramel Maple & Pecan. Yes, they do have Dairy and Gluten Free ranges aswell, gift hampers and the s’mores kit is always fun when on a roadtrip.
Chapman Building Wyong
Shop 10, 14-16 Alison Rd, Wyong NSW 2259, Australia
Wyong Milk Factory
I didn’t spend much time here, as I was on a tight time schedule for lunch. But this is place that has a bit of everything and a whole lot of community.
Enjoy lunch or dinner at Wyong Milk Factory Cafe or Tavern, chocolate tasting at Luka Chocolates, cheese tasting at Little Creek Cheese, sweets and ice cream from Udderly Sweet Lollies and Gelato, doughnuts from The Daily Dough Co, to hiring kayaks, rowboat to a kids playground.
For the esky, I picked up a couple of local and award winning cheese from Little Creek. BBQ Cheese Halloumi, Goat Fetta marinated in Aussie Bush (Lemon Myrtle & Mountain Pepper). Had to pickup a couple of artisan handmade chocolates from Luka and a chocolate speckle. Luka Chocolates are gourmet delights using traditional Belgian methods using locally sourced ingredients, with a viewing window of the chocolatiers in-store and a display glass cabinet with too many delectable bites to choose from.
A hidden gem for lunch with a heartfelt history you need to hear. It’s a story about Manor House that had once had a grand reputation as a place of food, wine and laughter. It become rundown and was on the market for some time. Unti Aurora and her Husband Mathew who lived in the valley nearly 20 years and felt it needed to be revived. Following the ‘Angels Whispers’ and opened Angel Sussurri.
With six cosy boutique guest rooms, restaurant, cafe, deli, bottle shop, flower store and a venue for social events & weddings. In the gourmet deli you’ll find plenty of local items to purchase to make a great antipasto or grazing platter. I had to pick up one of their homemade Tomato & Pear Chutney.
For lunch, I had a Beef Beer & Bacon Pot Pie with a side salad and was substantial and filling (homely). On the rest of the menu, they offer Belgian Waffles for breakfast, a number of savoury crepes, burgers, fish basked for lunch and local favourite desserts.
The flower store is a bit of a mix of everything, trinkets for the garden, floral arrangements and a gift store.
1-4 Linga Longa Rd, Yarramalong NSW 2259, Australia
T: +61 4356 1066 | E: [email protected]
Regan’s Fine Foods & Butchery
Just down the round of Angel Sussurri is a place where you will find everything to cook up storm. Local find produce that tastes better and will have you licking for more.
You’ll find organic-certified veggies, prize winning honeys, relishes, pickles and of course meats. From pork sausages that combine slow-cured nitrate-free bacon with pure Canadian maple syrup – no artificial flavours, preservatives and emulsifiers.
1629a Yarramalong Rd, Yarramalong NSW 2259, Australia
T: +61 477 697 329
For my last night, I stayed in one of five self-contained cabins – disclaimer this was no ordinary cabin, but a luxury Deluxe Eco cabin. Set in the natural bushland and privacy. This cabin has two bedrooms and ensuite (one has a freestanding bath), separate lounge and kitchen, BBQ on the deck and a fire pit.
The alternatives to stay the night, you can bring pitch your tent and camp under the stars in the 200 acre secluded riverfront. You can also rent a four person Black Wolf Tent or rent a family size Tipi (four or eight person tent available), or upgrade to a glamping experience (note: preferred clamping services are available).
There is plenty of adventures to roll up your sleeve whilst at Glenworth Valley. From horse riding, quad biking, kayaking, abseiling, laser skirmish, axe throwing to certain events (such as outdoor cinema, cattle drive ride, etc)
Cooks Rd, Glenworth Valley NSW 2250, Australia
T: +61 2 4375 1222 | E: [email protected]
Have a little adventure and head to the Central Coast. There’s never been a more important time to show our support to local businesses. Travel safe and respect the Covid-19 restrictions.