Nowra, a hidden gem nestled on the stunning South Coast of New South Wales, is a haven for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. With its breathtaking landscapes, pristine waterways, and a wealth of outdoor activities, Nowra beckons adventurers, hikers, and nature enthusiasts alike.
In this article, we’ll explore the town’s natural beauty and the plethora of outdoor activities it offers.
The Shoalhaven River, meandering gracefully through Nowra, is a liquid jewel that defines the town’s natural beauty. The river’s azure waters reflect the lush greenery that lines its banks, creating a picturesque setting for a range of water-based activities. Whether you’re into kayaking, fishing, or simply enjoying a riverside picnic, the Shoalhaven River offers a tranquil escape.
As you embark on a kayaking adventure along the river, you’ll be greeted by a serene and untouched environment. The gentle current carries you through a corridor of towering eucalyptus trees, their branches casting dappled shadows on the water’s surface. Birdsong fills the air as you paddle, and it’s not uncommon to spot graceful waterfowl and even a curious platypus or two.
Fishing enthusiasts will find the Shoalhaven River a paradise for angling. Cast your line from one of the many designated fishing spots, and you might reel in Australian bass, bream, or flathead. The river’s healthy ecosystem supports a variety of fish species, making it a prime destination for both novice and experienced anglers.
For those seeking a more leisurely experience, the riverbanks offer idyllic picnic spots. Spread out a blanket, savor a picnic lunch, and let the soothing sounds of the flowing water and rustling leaves lull you into a state of relaxation. There’s a sense of timelessness here as you watch the river meander lazily on its journey through Nowra.
For those seeking panoramic vistas and a taste of adventure, Cambewarra Mountain Lookout is a must-visit. Perched atop the Cambewarra Range, this lookout offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. Hiking up to the lookout provides not only a physical challenge but also an opportunity to immerse oneself in the unique flora and fauna that call this mountain home.
The journey to Cambewarra Mountain Lookout begins with a scenic drive through lush forests and winding roads. Upon reaching the lookout, you’re rewarded with sweeping views that stretch as far as the eye can see. To the east, the vast expanse of the Pacific Ocean sparkles on the horizon, while to the west, the rugged terrain of Morton National Park unfolds.
As you explore the walking trails around the lookout, you’ll encounter a rich diversity of plant and animal life. Keep an eye out for native birds like lyrebirds and king parrots, and if you’re lucky, you might spot a wallaby or echidna among the eucalyptus trees.
Sunrise and sunset visits to Cambewarra Mountain Lookout are particularly enchanting. The changing colors of the sky, combined with the tranquility of the natural surroundings, create a meditative atmosphere that’s perfect for reflection and appreciation of Nowra’s natural beauty.
If you’re intrigued by history and architecture, Meroogal House offers a fascinating journey back in time. This heritage-listed property boasts an eclectic mix of architectural styles and beautifully landscaped gardens. Guided tours provide insights into the lives of the women who lived here, making it a cultural and historical gem in Nowra.
Meroogal House, with its distinctive combination of Victorian, Edwardian, and Arts and Crafts architectural elements, stands as a testament to the changing tastes and lifestyles of its occupants over the years. Its charming verandas, stained glass windows, and carefully preserved interiors transport visitors to the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
One of the highlights of a visit to Meroogal House is exploring its lush gardens. The carefully tended gardens feature an array of heritage plants and flowers that evoke a sense of nostalgia. Strolling through these gardens, you can imagine the women who once lived here tending to the same plants and enjoying the tranquility of this historic oasis.
Guided tours of Meroogal House provide not only a glimpse into the architectural and design history of the region but also a deeper understanding of the lives of the women who called this place home. Personal stories, family traditions, and the challenges of daily life in the late 19th century come to life as you explore the rooms and artifacts of this remarkable house.
Amidst the urban bustle, Nowra surprises with hidden natural gems like Ben’s Walk. This picturesque trail winds along the Shoalhaven River, offering a lush oasis of greenery and tranquility. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful stroll or a family-friendly outing, Ben’s Walk welcomes all with its accessible pathways and serene atmosphere.
Ben’s Walk is a testament to Nowra’s commitment to preserving its natural beauty even within the town limits. As you meander along the well-maintained trail, you’ll be enveloped by the sights and sounds of nature. The gentle rustling of leaves in the breeze, the chirping of birds overhead, and the occasional splash of a fish in the river create a harmonious symphony.
The trail is flanked by a lush riverbank forest, which provides shade and a refreshing coolness, especially on warm summer days. Interpretive signs along the way offer insights into the local flora and fauna, making it an educational experience for both adults and children.
One of the notable features of Ben’s Walk is the easy access to the river. There are designated spots along the trail where you can pause, dip your toes in the water, or simply sit and take in the river’s beauty. It’s a place to recharge, reconnect with nature, and appreciate the simple joys of life.
For an encounter with Australia’s iconic wildlife, Nowra Wildlife Park is a must-visit. Home to a diverse collection of animals, including kangaroos, wombats, and native birds, the park offers interactive experiences like feeding kangaroos by hand. It’s not only a fun day out but also an educational opportunity to learn about Australia’s unique fauna.
Nowra Wildlife Park is a place where visitors of all ages can get up close and personal with some of Australia’s most beloved creatures. The kangaroo enclosure is a favorite spot, where these gentle marsupials hop freely about, allowing you to feed them and observe their behaviors up close.
In addition to kangaroos, the park is home to a wide variety of native and exotic animals. You can marvel at the colorful plumage of lorikeets, watch playful wombats, and even meet some of the world’s most dangerous reptiles in a safe and educational environment.
One of the park’s highlights is the opportunity to hand-feed kangaroos and wallabies. It’s a unique experience that allows you to connect with these iconic Australian animals in a meaningful way. As you offer them food, you’ll discover their gentle nature and inquisitive personalities.
Nowra Wildlife Park also places a strong emphasis on conservation and education. Visitors can attend informative presentations and talks about the animals and their habitats. These educational experiences not only entertain but also inspire a sense of responsibility toward protecting Australia’s precious wildlife.
Jervis Bay Marine Park, a short drive from Nowra, is a paradise for marine enthusiasts. Beneath its crystal-clear waters lies a vibrant underwater world teeming with marine life. Snorkeling and scuba diving here reveal coral reefs, colorful fish, and even encounters with dolphins and sea turtles. It’s a marine adventure like no other.
The marine park encompasses a diverse range of habitats, including seagrass meadows, rocky reefs, and open water. This diversity creates an ecosystem that supports an abundance of marine species, making it a hotspot for underwater exploration.
One of the most popular activities in Jervis Bay Marine Park is snorkeling. With its calm waters and excellent visibility, the park is an ideal destination for both beginners and experienced snorkelers. The protected bay provides a safe and tranquil environment to discover the beauty of the underwater world.
As you don your snorkel gear and glide into the water, you’ll be greeted by a kaleidoscope of colors. Brightly colored fish dart among the coral formations, and graceful rays glide effortlessly along the sandy seabed. Keep an eye out for the resident sea turtles, which often make appearances in the park’s waters.
Scuba diving enthusiasts will find Jervis Bay Marine Park equally enticing. The clear waters allow for excellent visibility, making it possible to explore the park’s intricate reef systems and encounter a wide variety of marine life. Dive sites like Drum and Drumsticks, located within the park, offer unique underwater landscapes and the chance to spot schools of fish, including the iconic eastern blue groper.
One of the highlights of visiting the marine park is the possibility of encountering dolphins in their natural habitat. Jervis Bay is home to a resident population of bottlenose dolphins, and it’s not uncommon to see them leaping and playing in the bay’s waters. Boat tours and cruises are available for those who wish to get a closer look at these intelligent and playful creatures.
Drawing Room Rocks, a hidden natural wonder, showcases nature’s artistic prowess. The unique geological formations here create an otherworldly atmosphere. A hike to the viewpoint unveils these remarkable rock formations, and the late afternoon light bathes the rocks in a warm, ethereal glow, making it a photographer’s paradise.
The journey to Drawing Room Rocks begins with a hike through lush eucalyptus forests, where the scent of the gum trees fills the air. The trail is well-maintained and offers a moderate level of difficulty, making it accessible to most hikers. Along the way, you’ll encounter a variety of native flora and fauna, including wildflowers and wallabies.
As you approach the main attraction, the rock formations come into view, and you’ll understand why they’re called “Drawing Room Rocks.” These naturally sculpted sandstone rocks resemble an artist’s easel and offer a unique canvas for the play of light and shadow.
The late afternoon is the best time to visit Drawing Room Rocks, as the setting sun casts long shadows and bathes the rocks in a warm, golden light. This creates a magical atmosphere that’s perfect for photography and simply taking in the natural beauty of the landscape.
The view from the rocks is equally captivating. From this vantage point, you can see the undulating hills and valleys of the surrounding landscape, which is often shrouded in a soft haze. It’s a place of quiet contemplation and awe, where you can reconnect with nature and appreciate the artistry of the earth.
Berry Mountain, just a stone’s throw from Nowra, is a paradise for hikers. The mountain is crisscrossed with walking trails that cater to various fitness levels. As you explore these trails, you’ll encounter lush rainforests, cascading waterfalls, and an abundance of wildlife. It’s a place to reconnect with nature and revel in its unspoiled beauty.
The hiking trails on Berry Mountain are as diverse as the landscape itself. Whether you’re seeking a leisurely stroll or a challenging hike, you’ll find a trail that suits your preferences. One of the most popular trails is the Drawing Room Rocks trail, which we mentioned earlier, offering both scenic beauty and a unique geological experience.
For those looking to immerse themselves in the heart of the rainforest, the Three Views Track is an excellent choice. This trail takes you through a subtropical rainforest that feels like a world unto itself. The dense foliage, towering trees, and lush ferns create a green cathedral that’s both serene and awe-inspiring.
The reward at the end of the Three Views Track is a series of lookouts that offer panoramic vistas of the surrounding landscape. It’s a place to catch your breath, take in the fresh mountain air, and savor the beauty of the world below.
Other trails on Berry Mountain lead to hidden waterfalls, where you can cool off in the refreshing spray of cascading water. The sheer tranquility of these natural wonders, set against the backdrop of the mountain’s rugged terrain, creates an unforgettable hiking experience.
Morton National Park, a sprawling wilderness expanse enveloping the Nowra region, is an enticing call to adventurers and nature aficionados seeking respite from the clamor of urban life. This park isn’t just an oasis of tranquility; it’s a sanctuary where one can submerge themselves in the raw beauty of the Australian bushland.
Morton National Park is a tapestry of rugged landscapes, dense eucalyptus forests, and meandering waterways. For outdoor enthusiasts, it’s a playground where they can indulge their love for the great outdoors. The park’s extensive network of bushwalking trails offers something for everyone, from leisurely strolls suitable for families to challenging hikes for the intrepid souls.
Among the most popular routes is the Pigeon House Mountain Didthul walking track. This track takes you through towering forests, past cascading waterfalls, and up to the summit of Pigeon House Mountain. The reward for your efforts is a sweeping panoramic view that stretches to the coast, where the ocean meets the sky in a mesmerizing display of blue.
Camping within Morton National Park is an experience like no other. There’s something incredibly soothing about falling asleep to the gentle rustling of leaves and waking up to the chorus of native birds. Several campgrounds are sprinkled throughout the park, offering varying levels of facilities to cater to different camping styles.
While reveling in Morton National Park’s natural beauty, it’s essential to tread lightly and respect its aboriginal heritage. The park holds deep cultural significance for the local indigenous communities. Visitors are encouraged to acknowledge and appreciate the rich aboriginal history of the area while exploring the wilderness.
For those who crave a deeper connection with nature, Morton National Park beckons with its rugged landscapes, ancient forests, and the promise of adventure. It’s a place where time seems to slow down, allowing you to savor every moment in the embrace of the Australian wilderness.
Greenwell Point, a quaint coastal village nestled near Nowra, is a harmonious blend of seafood delights and serene natural beauty. This charming village is renowned for its fishing culture, where life revolves around the rhythm of the tides and the bounty of the sea.
A leisurely stroll along the waterfront promenade of Greenwell Point reveals a captivating scene. Here, fishing boats sway gently in the harbor, their hulls painted in weathered hues from years spent on the water. It’s a reminder of the village’s deep connection to the sea, where generations of fishermen have cast their nets and sailed into the open waters.
Seafood aficionados will find themselves in culinary heaven at Greenwell Point. The village is celebrated for its oysters, often regarded as some of the finest in the region. These plump, briny gems are harvested from the pristine waters of the Shoalhaven River, delivering a taste of the sea in every bite.
For those who enjoy a hands-on experience, you can try your hand at catching your own seafood. The riverbanks provide ample opportunities for fishing, crabbing, and even prawning. It’s a chance to connect with the timeless tradition of the village and savor the thrill of catching your own dinner.
However, the true seafood extravaganza unfolds at the local seafood restaurants. Here, you can feast on a smorgasbord of ocean treasures, from freshly shucked oysters to succulent prawns and flaky fish. The dishes are often served with a dash of lemon and a sprinkle of sea salt, allowing the natural flavors to shine.
As you dine at one of the waterfront eateries, you’ll be treated to a mesmerizing view of the river and the distant horizon. It’s a tranquil tableau that soothes the soul, where time takes a backseat to the rhythm of the tides and the gentle lapping of the water against the shore.
Greenwell Point isn’t just a culinary delight; it’s a coastal retreat that offers serenity in abundance. The pace of life here is unhurried, allowing you to savor the moment, whether you’re enjoying a seafood feast, casting a line into the river, or simply watching the world go by along the waterfront. It’s a reminder that sometimes, the most profound experiences are found in the simplest of pleasures, like savoring the catch of the day in the embrace of serene natural beauty.
Nowra’s natural beauty and outdoor activities are a testament to the town’s allure for nature enthusiasts. Whether you’re exploring the Shoalhaven River’s tranquility, hiking to panoramic vistas, or encountering wildlife in the heart of town, Nowra offers a diverse range of outdoor experiences. So, pack your sense of adventure and immerse yourself in the natural wonders that await in this South Coast gem.
At the George Bass Motor Inn, we are dedicated to assisting you in selecting the ideal accommodation for your visit to Nowra. Whether you’re in Nowra for business or leisure, we can provide the perfect blend of amenities to ensure your stay is comfortable and hassle-free.
So why not get in touch with us and discover everything that the George Bass Motor Inn has to offer? Contact us today on +61 2 4421 6388.