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5 autumn road trips in NSW for a family getaway

Summer might be over, and whilst many Aussies will need to bid adieu to daylight savings and extended days at the beach, Autumn certainly has its benefits. In New South Wales you’ll find golden foliage, wonderfully cooler days, and plenty of delicious country fare. So give one of these autumn road trips in NSW a try.

Whether you’re in need of a day trip, a weekend away, or a week-long break, here are five family-friendly NSW destinations that you need to road trip to this Autumn as recommended by Thomas Mooney, Managing Director – Pacific, Avis Budget Group.

“As we’re heading into the cooler seasons, we strongly encourage NSW residents to support their local, regional towns on their road trip getaway. Buy local produce, visit the town’s eateries and make sure you let your friends and family know of the great time you’re having,” says Mooney.

1. Blue Mountains (approximately 1 hour from Sydney)

The Blue Mountains are an iconic NSW destination, and between the Three Sisters, Scenic World, and Katoomba Falls, there’s no shortage of things to see and do during autumn. Get your hiking shoes on and make the trek down to Wentworth Falls, or if you’re feeling daring, the Grand Canyon Walk is an Instagrammer’s dream – but be warned, you’re in for a 3-4 hour adventure.

sunset over the Blue Mountains rock formation 'The Three Sisters'
The stunning Three Sisters is a great backdrop for a family photo! Credit: Shutterstock

Read more: Blue Mountains: the ultimate family guide

2. Southern Highlands (approximately 1.5 hours from Sydney)

The Southern Highlands are a beloved destination, and whilst many visitors flock to well-known towns like Bowral and Berrima, Sutton Forest provides a tranquil and historic escape. Roam the grounds of a grand manor house, sip wines at boutique cellar doors, and take in the sights of the foliage. You’ll feel as if you’ve been transported to the English countryside.

When the kids are ready to burn off some energy, head to Lake Alexandra reserve in Mittagong. Everyone can stretch their legs amongst the autumn leaves.

family walking on the path at Lake Alexandra Reserve, Mittagong, with autumn leaves falling all around then
Take the kids on a walk around Lake Alexandra Reserve, Mittagong in the Southern Highlands. Credit: Destination NSW

Read more: 28 best family activities in NSW

“Buy local produce, visit the town’s eateries and make sure you let your friends and family know of the great time you’re having”

Thomas Mooney, Managing Director – Pacific, Avis Budget Group.

3. Bathurst (approximately 3 hours from Sydney)

Autumn is truly a magical time in Bathurst. If the kids love chasing those orange and gold leaves, this is the perfect destination. Enjoy the explosion of colours but also take the time to delve into Bathurst’s rich and fascinating past – heritage listed buildings and world class museums and galleries are only a part of the rich history on offer.

Autumn leaves in one of the many parks in Bathurst, NSW
Run through the falling leaves in one of Bathurst’s many parks. Credit: Bathurst Region

Read more: What to do in Bathurst on a long weekend with kids in tow

4. Orange (approximately 3.5 hours from Sydney)

Did you know a dormant volcano lies half an hour away from Orange? Mount Canobolas provides this little town with soil rich in minerals, making Orange a terrific destination for foodies. Take advantage of the food and wine scene at Orange’s award-winning restaurants, or shop at the Farmers Markets and have your own picnic amongst the stunning landscapes.

A road running through an orchard in Orange during autumn,
The orchards and vineyards glow golden in Orange during autumn. Credit: Destination NSW

Read more: The best wineries in Orange with kids

5. Batlow (approximately 4.5 hours from Sydney)

The Snowy Valleys encompass many towns, and while each town celebrates their own local show, Aussies can’t help but love Batlow and its CiderFest in Autumn! A colourful street party celebrating the end of apple harvest, visitors can treat themselves to boutique ciders, gourmet food and tempting homemade treats. Better yet, this year’s event is set to make its grand return in May.

Read more: The ultimate family guide to the Snowy Mountains

Aerial overlooking the grounds of Wilgro Orchard, Batlow
Aerial overlooking the grounds of Wilgro Orchard, Batlow. Credit: Don Fuchs; Destination NSW

No car to road trip in? Consider grabbing a ride-share or renting a car so you can hit the road on one of these road trips. If you’re booking a rental car, book early with confidence under Avis Australia’s Risk Free Bookings, which lets change or cancel reservations, without fees, for rentals due to start before 1 July 2021. Risk Free Bookings are available across Avis Australia locations.  


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