Nature & Wildlife
Explore nature's playground in all its bountiful beauty ...
With such a botanically-blessed backdrop as the one we have in Kiama, it’s little wonder that it’s not just humans that enjoy this happy habitat. An abundance of animals inhabit the land, sea and air, framed (or sometimes camouflaged) by many distinctive native species of plants and trees.
Even the casual observer will find something unique in our diverse slice of coastal, swampy and rainforested landscape.
As for bird watchers and bona fide nature “frothers” – well, the Kiama area is a true garden of delights! Scan these pages for highlights to look out for during your stay...
Buena Vista is a family farm bought by Fiona’s great-great-grandfather in 1859, when, after renting it for almost twenty years, it came up for sale. He rode his horse into the auction at Kiama and successfully bid on it. It was a dairy farm until about fifteen years ago when Fiona’s dad, Malcolm, retired and put in a small coffee grove (you know, just for fun. Farmers, eh.) Almost three years ago Fiona and Adam moved back to the farm with the intention of building a small, sustainable operation which would support a young family. We started with laying hens and meat chickens and have gradually added bees, a small number of grass-fed beef, a market garden, a kitchen garden, free range pigs, geese and ducks and a commercial kitchen in which we make a range of fermented foods for sale at our local weekly farmer’s market. At the end of 2013 we began running cooking workshops, based around our passion for from-scratch food and wholefood cooking. Fiona’s parents still live on the farm too, in a house up the hill, which is terrific because Dad can usually fix things we break, and shout over the back fence when the pigs are out. We are on 18 acres of the original farm, which is big enough for us to get in way over our heads and in all sorts of trouble. And fun, lots of fun. We’re grateful to be here and to live in this beautiful community who are serious about their food and supportive of their farmers. Super lucky.Learn More
Eagle Rock Adventures is the highest rated adventure company in the Sydney region. We offer half or full day abseiling, canyoning, hiking and kayaking tours. Our fully qualified guides will take care of you and ensure that you have a fun and safe adventure! We can take you abseiling and canyoning in the Blue Mountains, canyoning in the Southern Highlands, and kayaking to the Sydney Opera House or to the Royal National Park. Our most popular tour in the Southern Highlands is of the scenic Maquarie Rivulet, located in one of Australia’s most southerly stands of subtropical rainforest and endangered warm temperate rainforest. This canyon features great views of the Illawarra Escarpment, the Pacific Ocean and local wildlife. The highlights of this canyon are a great variety of rock slides, big rock jumps (optional) and waterfall abseils. Whatever your experience, fitness level or confidence this canyon has something for everyone.Learn More
Escape Kayak Tours is a kayak adventure business operating on the beautiful Minnamurra River. We are the Illawarra regions exclusive guided sea kayak tour operation. Our aim is to introduce people to the pleasure of kayaking in a relaxing natural environment, paddling on one of nature’s most spectacular rivers on the South Coast of NSW. We are extremely passionate about all forms of kayaking & adventurous outdoor activities. We strive to offer all of our customers a fun, relaxing & enjoyable experience. Come & experience one of our 4 guided kayak journeys along the majestic Minnamurra River & the beautiful surrounding coastal area of Killalea State Park. Sunrise Adventure – 2 hours Mangroves Adventure – 1.5 hours Minnamurra Spit Adventure – 3 hours Half Day Adventure – 4.5 hours Discover the clear tidal waters of the sandy Minnamurra Inlet, explore the sheltered mangroves of Rocklow Creek, observe the diverse marine, bird & wildlife & explore the river’s natural beauty. See the spectacular Mystics Beach & the unique Rangoon Island. Come & learn the basics of kayaking. Specialising in individuals, couples & small groups of up to 8 people. Escape Kayak Tours fleet consists of a mix of single and double seated sea kayaks. Your Adventure includes: Fully qualified ‘Australian Canoeing’ kayak guide Single or double seated ‘Australis’ sea kayaks Paddles & PFDs (Lifejackets) Sunscreen & 600ml bottled water Light refreshments/snacks (3 hour & 4.5 hour tours only) Professional paddling tuition along the way FREE photos emailed to you after tour * Tours are suitable for people aged 16 and over. 'Special occasion gift vouchers available' NSW Maritime licence - HDO 830Learn More
Without doubt, one of the most spectacular waterfall sights in Australia. Gerringong Falls is about 550 metres above sea level and is between 150 and 180 metres high. Access to the top of Gerringong Falls is via Jamberoo Mountain Road. There is a gate and small car park on Budderoo Track/Budderoo Plateau Road. From here, access to the track is found after following a fire trail (no vehicles permitted) by either walking or mountain biking this 8.6km section. Continue to the end and turn right to Gerringong Falls Walking Track (Hersey Trail). At the end of the trail you’ll come to the river. Turn left and within 5 minutes you’ll come to the end of the falls. Note that there are no distinct lookout points or fences and is therefore extremely dangerous close to the edge. Return the same way you came in. Getting to the bottom of the falls is considered very dangerous and not recommended. This should only be attempted with an experienced guide with participants that are well-equipped and experienced.Learn More
The award winning Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventures is one of Australia's premier Treetop Walk and Zipline Tour experiences. The Treetop Walk is a 1.5km loop track that takes in native flora and fauna, with 500 metres of steel walkway some 20-30 metre above the forest floor. This walkway features two gently swaying cantilevered arms on both the Northern and Southern ends as well as a central tower, raised 45 metres high! Positioned 710 metres above sea level, the stunning views take in everything from the forest floor, into the canopy and out to the Pacific Ocean. Officially the highest zipline in Australia, the Illawarra Fly Zipline Tour involves flying on a series of cable spans and suspension bridges up to 35 metres above the forest floor! Experienced guides control all departures and arrivals, whilst providing you with an insight into the forest's history and its features. The Zipline Tour includes access to the Treetop Walk, creating a 2.5 hour experience where you can truly immerse yourself in the natural environment. Suitable for ages 4 and up, it’s the perfect “my first zip” experience and a great day out for the whole family! Café 106, situated in the visitors centre, offers delicious food and hot beverages and is opened every day during Summer and Thursday-Sunday during Winter. There is also a retail store for you to browse around with a range of different products for both kids and adults including clothing, candles and keep cups! The facility also has wheelchair and pram accessible and those with limited mobility can take advantage of the free courtesy cart to get them to and from the steel walkway. Additional Tours: Treetop Walk Sunrise Tour: Early birds on this tour are greeted with coffee on arrival, a guided tour on the Treetop Walk with stunning views of the sunrise and are welcomed back to the visitors centre with a hot buffet breakfast a Cafe 106. After Dark Zipline Tour: When the sun goes down, experience the After Dark Zipline Tour which included a stroll through the Treetop Walk as the sun is setting, then a Zipline Tour through the treetops in the dark! Get ready to experience the mystical rainforest of the Illawarra Region in a different light.Learn More
Illawarra Walks – what we do? Illawarra Walks provides guided and self-paced 1, 3, 6, 7-8 days walking holidays exploring the Illawarra region, which is arguably the most picturesque coastal and wilderness area in Australia. The best way to discover the ecological, historical and geological wonders of the Illawarra is on foot. Holidays with Illawarra Walks offers the active tourist a unique opportunity to enjoy the incredible landscapes beaches and wildlife, to create memories that will last a lifetime as they cross the Illawarra’s stunning mountains and coast line. Guests will be spoiled in guest houses and B&Bs in the picturesque coastal towns, and have the opportunity to dine at the local Illawarra restaurants. Guests luggage is transported to their accommodation while they enjoy walking between destinations. Illawarra Walks field guides are local geologists and environmentalists who are intimately familiar with the area's environmental, historical and geological aspects, and are passionate to share local stories with you along the track.Learn More
Into the Wild Nature Tours Australia is a nature tourism business based in Kiama on South Coast of NSW, Australia, offering small group wildlife tours. The business owner and operator, Darren O’Connell, is the Head Tour Guide and a Master’s Degree qualified Wildlife Ecologist, and has worked in environmental education for over 25 years. Darren started ‘Into the Wild Nature Tours’ to share some of most spectacular landscapes in Australia with overseas and other visitors, and to educate guests about the natural and cultural heritage of the region. With just a few tours on offer, it allows the company to focus on the best spots that guests would want to experience and return home with lifelong memories (and some amazing photos!!). Tours available include the stunning white sands and crystal clear waters of Jervis Bay, the challenging Kiama Coast Walk and the eye catching waterfalls and wildlife of Kangaroo Valley.Learn More
Jervis Bay Wild offers a range of breathtaking Whale Watching & Dolphin cruise options for you, your family and your friends to enjoy all year-round. Whale Watching and Dolphin Watching with us in beautiful Jervis Bay is a fantastic way to experience the excitement of pure nature like never before With a variety of cruise and adventure offerings, Jervis Bay Wild is the premier eco-tourism company in the region. Our most popular trips, our dolphin eco cruise and our whale watching tour, are some of the highest rated and most beloved experiences to be had on Jervis Bay. On your next holiday to this beautiful area, why not book a cruise with Jervis Bay Wild?Learn More
A rare tract of subtropical and temperate rainforests on the NSW South Coast. Part of the Budderoo National Park. Park entry fees: $12 per vehicle per day (Minnamurra Rainforest area only). Bus or taxi: $4.40 per adult and $2.20 per child. The Minnamurra Rainforest is a multi award winning attraction located in Budderoo National Park, a short fifteen minute drive west of Kiama past the village of Jamberoo (off Tourist Drive No 9)Visitors can experience the spender and beauty of this rare remnant of subtropical and warm temperate rainforests which is representative of the once extensive rainforests of the Illawarra region. Visitors regularly see first hand the fauna of the area such as the normally elusive Lyrebird, the Eastern Water Dragons, Swamp Wallabies and a host of bird species which make Minnamurra their home. Leading from the Information Centre, visitors commence their rainforest experience along a network of elevated walkways and paved tracks. Meandering through the rainforest is the Loop Walk, a 1.6km walk which is linked by suspension bridges across the Minnamurra Rivulet. The first 500m of this walk provides for assisted wheelchair access. Visitors should allow 45mins - 1 hour to complete this walk. Half way around the Loop visitors are able to deviate up the paved Falls Walk (2.6km return). This walk is a little more challenging offering the reward of spectacular views over the rainforest canopy and the gorge carved by Minnamurra Rivulet. The walk concludes with a viewing platform and rest area at the base of the Upper Falls. Total of both walks is 4.2km walk distance and visitors should allow 2 hours. Other facilities include visitor information services, a retail shop, a Cafe for light meals and refreshment, Picnic and BBQ facilities. Guided Tours are available by prior booking. No Smoking in Parks Policy As from 1st May 2016 smoking will prohibited in all national parks in New South Wales. The National Parks & Wildlife Regulations 2009 (NPW Regulation) prohibits smoking in parks, (clause 15A, effective from 1 May 2016). This Policy applies to all lands acquired or reserved under the NPWS Act 1974, including lands managed by National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) under Part 11 of the Act. Under the new regulation, a person can be fined up to $550 for smoking where the ban applies. Minnamurra Rainforest is proudly managed by the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service.Learn More
South Coast Journeys tours pack in a whole lot of fun – like fine wine, cheese, gourmet food and craft beer on one of our South Coast Winery or Brewery and Distillery Tours; to surfing, whale / dolphin watching, hiking and airport and cruise terminal transfers. We offer safe and reliable event transport and a responsible approach to learning about and caring for the sparkling aqua waters, spotless beaches, rolling hills, and temperate rainforests that make up the unique environment of South Coast NSW. Whether you’re an international or interstate traveller, a citysider looking for a break, or locals wanting to explore a little further afield, touring with South Coast Journeys has made unlocking the natural wonders of the South Coast easier than ever. Connecting people & natureLearn More