The Southern Highlands of NSW is a special and unique area. Often described
as a little piece of Europe, it is rare to find a region in Australia with
comparable landscape. Driving through some areas of the Highlands (this is a must do when visiting the region, especially around the towns of Exeter, Burrawang, and Robertson) one could
easily mistake it for English, Italian, or French countryside. It has been voted
the number one place to visit in country NSW by one of the
countries leading travel magazines, Australian Traveller, which featured
the ‘100 Best Towns in Australia’.
Bowral's the hub of the Highlands with its wealth of trendy cafés, restaurants,
and shops but still maintains its charming down to earth country dignity.
Bowral is also famous worldwide as the home town of Sir Donald Bradman
and also for The International Cricket Hall Of Fame. In fact, countless celebrities
including movie stars, rock stars, TV stars, writers, artists, musicians, sport stars, international designers, and some of Australia's biggest
business magnates have made the Southern Highlands either their main address
or their home away from the spot light. Examples would be Allan Jones, Nicole Kidman and Keith
Urban, David Leckie, Leona Edmiston, Jimmy Barnes, John Olsen, Kate Ritchie, Samantha Armytage, Collette Dinnigan, Tony Lockett, Brendan Nelson, Gai and Rob Waterhouse, Miriam Margolyes, Kyle Sandilands, Michelle Bridges and Steve "Commando" Willis, Leo Sayer, Andrew Denton, Jennifer Byrne, John Waters, Ita Buttrose and that's only the absolute tip of the iceberg. Also big international movie studios have exclusive "Highland houses" for their actors/actresses to stay at when here in Australia filming. So you never know who you might walk past down the street but best leave them be, after all that's why they are in the Highlands, to be treated like normal people.
Vineyards, olive groves, horse studs, and orchards are dotted around
the landscape, and the old deciduous European trees add a flare of colour
in autumn. The Highlands is also well known for it's local produce including
cheese, mushrooms, wine, olive oil, truffles, and meat.
With easy access from the M5 and the Hume Highway, the Southern Highlands
is only 70 minutes from Sydney Airport, making it an easy drive. It's
also a comfortable travelling distance from Canberra, the South Coast
and Illawarra. For all you Top Gear fans there are Top Gear roads waiting
for you. When you arrive in the area you'll also want to drive some of
the great country roads in Australia and take in the scenery. For example
take a drive out to Burrawang, Kangaloon, and Robertson, or drive the
Old South Rd between Bowral and Mittagong and Alpine, or drive to Fitzroy
Falls, and don't forget to take a trip out to Exeter and Bundanoon. There
are too many to mention, just get a map and drive around and explore,
it's a must do.
So for anyone interested in magnificent European gardens, old and new
world architecture, wine tasting, boutique and antique shopping, bush
walking, top class restaurants/cafes, colonial heritage, outstanding natural
attractions, as well as simply a great place to visit then the region
will be sure to impress. Who knows? You might like it so much you'll end
your very own piece of the Highlands lifestyle like many visitors end
Welcome to the good life and come and enjoy the Southern Highlands!
Find out more about the main Towns and Villages below...