5 New England High Country Road Trips

No matter how you decide to explore New England High Country, there are plenty of scenic adventures waiting for you and a road trip is the best way to experience them!

Here are five road trip routes to inspire your next visit.

Waterfall Way

This beloved route was voted one of the best scenic drives in NSW. From the beaches of Sawtell, just 20 minutes south of Coffs Harbour, this route winds through Bellingen’s lush farmland to the Dorrigo Plateau, before heading onwards to Armidale. Picturesque waterfalls and five national parks are just a few of the sites along this iconic drive. Take a full day to explore it thoroughly, or if you’re short on time, just add Wollomombi Gorge, Point Lookout, Ebor Falls and Dorrigo National Parks to your must-visit list.

Thunderbolts Way

If you’re entering the region from the south via Walcha, Thunderbolts Way climbs to 1400m and offers unbeatable vistas of rolling farmland. This 290km route extends from beautiful Gloucester in the midnorth coast, winding over the Great Dividing Range, and ends in Inverell, a picturesque valley town on the Macintyre River.

Gwydir Highway

Connecting Grafton on the coast and Glen Innes and Inverell where the various national parks cover some 92,400 hectares. Some highlights along the Gwydir Highway include World Heritage-listed Gibraltar Range, Washpool National Park and Raspberry Lookout, the latter of which offers breathtaking views of the gorge country.

Oxley Highway

One of Australia’s most famous motorcycling routes, the Oxley Highway stretches from Port Macquarie to Walcha. Visit the magnificent World Heritage-listed national parks that adorn this winding road and be sure to stop and see both the Tia and Apsley Falls.

Bruxner Highway

A route to take slow and steady, the Bruxner Highway begins in the NSW Northern Rivers region before winding up through the Great Dividing Range and heading west to Tenterfield. Overall, the Bruxner Highway climbs over 800 metres and will lead its travellers through farmlands, rolling hills, quaint villages and woodland forests. Sit back and enjoy the views as you cross over the Clarence River and drive alongside the Cataract River and Gorge.

Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the New England High Country region and recognise their continuing connection to land, water and community. We pay respect to Elders – past, present and emerging – and acknowledge the important role Indigenous Peoples continue to play within the New England High Country community.