The Illawarra region boasts many significant local attractions, such as Seven Mile beach,Minamurra rainforest National Park, Jamberoo Recreation Park, Kiama Blowhole, Beautiful Berry, Fishing and Surf School Camps.
For wine lovers, the area has an abundance of wineries such as, Crooked River Winery, Coolangatta Estate, Roselea Vineyard and many more.
For Golf lovers there are many diverse and picturesque golf clubs such as beautiful Gerringong Golf, Jamberoo Golf club, Russell Vale Golf Club, Shell Cove Golf Club and many more.
Park Ridge is associated with the Gerringong Golf Club, and we are happy to accommodate all golf lovers, individuals and groups.
List of Attractions:
1. Barren Grounds Nature Reserve
Barren Grounds Nature Reserve is located on one of the most southerly plateaus of the Sydney Basin and has been a protected area for over 40 years. Surrounding the reserve is an escarpment of sandstone approximately 230-250 million years old which forms the bedrock. The reserve contains a wide variety of native flora and fauna, including heath, woodland and tall forest. Excellent tracks give bush walkers fantastic views of the Illawarra coastline and surrounding countryside. Picnic facilities are located here.
Barren Grounds is home to a diverse array of wildlife including the threatened Ground Parrot, Eastern Bristlebird, the Long-nosed Potoroo and more than 500 species of plants.
Located at the top of Jamberoo pass this 1750 hectare nature reserve is an established bird watcher's mecca. Walks include Griffiths Track, an eight kilometre walk through woodlands and heath. Cooks Nose Lookout is a six kilometre return walk.
2. Take a walk through Bombo Headland
Take a walk through Bombo Headland, among the unusual basalt columns - it feels like you're on the moon! The basalt walls and columns are a legacy of blue metal quarrying in the 1880s and 1900s.
Take a look north and you will see the award winning Cathedral Rocks, Minnamurra Headland and Jones' Beach. Look south and you can see an impressive view of Kiama. Bombo Headland is a great surfing beach and is dog friendly. The beach is often featured in television commercials and photo shoots. It is located off Cliff Drive, take the Kiama Downs turn off from the Princess Highway, and cross under railway bridge at Bombo Beach.
3. The Boolarng Nangamai Aboriginal Art and Culture Studio
The Boolarng Nangamai Aboriginal Art and Culture Studio in Bergin Street, Gerringong is actively participating in a hands on approach to reconciliation in Australia.
Come and observe Aboriginal artists at work. The studio is dedicated to Aboriginal cultural awareness featuring artworks, weaving, painting, drawing, tool making, bush toy making, dance, didgeridoo playing, storytelling, Aboriginal art consultancy and Aboriginal sites consultancy.
The bush foods and medicine garden offers visitors a first hand look at available bush foods. A range of packaged bush tucker, handmade woven objects and artwork is available to purchase.
4. Budderoo National Park
Budderoo National Park is located on 7,120 hectares, five kilometres west of Jamberoo, and 30 minutes out of Gerringong. The park is home to Minnamurra Rainforest Centre, a multi award winning tourism destination which allows you to explore the rainforests that once blanketed the Illawarra region. Boardwalks and paved tracks take you along the forest floor and up through a range of rainforest environments, on your way to the magical Minnamurra Falls.
Up on the plateau above the rainforest, the park offers excellent walking tracks with views across sandstone heaths and woodlands and towards the Illawarra coast. The lookouts and picnic areas at Carrington Falls, where the Kangaroo River plunges over the escarpment, are well worth a visit. Carrington Falls has many lookouts and walking tracks which offer good views.
5. Carrington Falls
Carrington Falls - Jamberoo, a spectacular waterfall, drops 50 metres down into a gorge into Kangaroo Valley. Located in the Budderoo National Park, well developed walks exist with access to several lookouts including a track for the disabled.
The loop walk takes about 25 minutes to complete, and from the lower car park you can reach Nellies Glen picnic area, and walk a further 50 metres to a beautiful spot with a natural pool. A second car park is located on the northern side of Carrington Falls.
Loop Walk starts from northern car park off Jamberoo Mountain Road, 18 kilometres west of Jamberoo Post Office, follow tourist drive nine from Kiama.
Carrington Falls is located 50 minutes north west of Gerringong up the Jamberoo Mountain Road.
6. Cathedral Rocks
Cathedral Rocks are located three kilometres north of Kiama at the southern end of Jones Beach, this distinctive rock formation is part of the geologically fascinating coastline. Cathedral Rocks, has lured sightseers since 1890. These volcanic rocks, while intensely hard, have many joints. These joints have been eroded for many years, leaving these mysterious rock formations.
The rocks may be viewed from Cliff Drive or studied at close range by approaching from the north. These rocks are a photographer's delight, and definitely worth a visit!
7. Historic dry stone
There are many historic dry stone walls found throughout the area, more obvious in pastures west of Kiama. Some are still visible throughout the older residential parts of town. Most were built over 100 years ago as paddocks were cleared for farming and grazing. Many of these walls are the work of Thomas Newing, a prolific and skilled stone wall builder for over 60 years.
The building method developed by Newing uses the local volcanic stone, and consists of two wall faces leaning against each other capped by a continuous row of larger stones.
Nearly 400 stone walls have been listed as heritage items in the Kiama municipality. The walls that occur along the Saddleback Mountain Road have been repaired or reconstructed by volunteers using the traditional methods.
8. The Illawarra Fly Treetop Walk
The Illawarra Fly Treetop Walk, located in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales is one of Australia's premier rainforest experiences. The elevated steel walkway features two gently swaying cantilevered arms and a central spiral tower raised nearly fifty metres off the forest floor. Stunning views take in everything from the rainforest canopy to Lake Illawarra and out to the South Pacific Ocean.
The gentle 1.5 kilometre return walk starts on the rainforest floor and continues into the canopy and onto the steel walkway offering a unique experience that captures the beauty of the regions native fauna and flora.
Spectacular guided sunrise walks take place on the second Saturday of every month and early bird visitors are rewarded with a hot breakfast in the cafe on return.
9. Jamberoo Action Park
Jamberoo Action Park is a fantastic area set in rolling hills, where you can enjoy the thrills and spills of the two giant water slides and Surf Hill, the eight lane speed water slide. You can face the challenge of the hair raising mountain slide on toboggans, leap into deep water from the rock five metres above, play mini golf, race in go-karts and enjoy the spectacular views of the picturesque dairy village from the chairlift.
10. Kiama Coast Walk
Kiama Coast Walk: this spectacular 22 kilometre Kiama Coast Walk begins at Minnamurra and wanders past headlands, rivers, beaches, Kiama town centre (stop for a coffee!) up to Blowhole Point then on towards the Little Blowhole passing more beaches and bays before winding up at Werri Beach.
You will find route markers and interpretative signs frequently along the way. The last six kilometres between Loves Bay and Werri is particularly blessed with its own rugged and untouched natural beauty. Keep an eye out for whales (May to November) and sea eagles and hawks all year round.
This mostly easy walk can be done in a day but more fun to do in sections. Easy with railway stations nearby, parking, picnic areas and cafes offering natural breaks.
11. Coolangatta Wine Estate
Coolangatta Wine Estate has been in a twenty year partnership with winemakers' Tyrrell's Winery in the Hunter Valley NSW. The family-owned Coolangatta Estate has grown to become the largest wine producer in the Shoalhaven and the most awarded winery on the South Coast of NSW.
12. The Crooked River commercial winery
The Crooked River commercial winery produces over 100,000 bottles of soft wines and ports each year. The vineyard and location provide a perfect back drop to the surrounding mountains and ocean vistas around Gerringong.
Crooked River Winery and Vineyard is situated couple of minutes' drive from the Park Ridge.