Newcastle is a harbour city in New South Wales. Packed with stunning beaches, hip bars, trendy cafes and many historical delights, there is enough to keep you entertained during your stopover. Named Lonely Planet ‘Best in Travel‘ top 10 city in the world and Nat Geo ‘Smart City to Watch’ there is a reason everyone loves Newcastle!
One of these reasons is of course Newcastle Famous Tram! The tram was in service in 1923 but you are now able to ride around the city in a purpose built (from scratch) replica tram. It’s a novel way to explore the city, the historic sites and the beautiful beaches.
If you’re looking for something more water based, head to either Newcastle beach, Nobby’s beach or the Merewether beach, all easily accessible in your campervan. At the Merewether Beach you will also find The Merewether Ocean Baths. The Merewether Ocean Baths is the largest Ocean Bath complex in the southern hemisphere and features two large swimming pools, one of which is perfect for the little ones!
For the history lovers out there, Fort Scratchley is a great place to visit whilst in Newcastle. Now open to the public as a museum, Fort Scratchley was built as a coast defence installation in 1882. It’s located in the Newcastle East suburb, just a short walk from Nobbys beach.
Drive 30 mins south of Newcastle and you will get to the city of Lake Macquarie. The lake itself is Australia’s largest coastal salt water lagoon, located in the Hunter Region. Fun fact: Lake Macquarie is twice as large as Sydney Harbour and is one of the largest salt water lagoons in the Southern Hemisphere. It is slightly smaller than Port Stephens, which is about 43 km to the northeast of the lake.
Just a short 25 min drive north of the centre of Newcastle and the main beaches, you will find Stockton Beach. Stockton Beach is a stunning stretch of beach spanning 32 kms that reaches all the way to Anna Bay. Over many years Stockton Beach has been the site of numerous shipwrecks and aircraft crash sites and it’s still possible to see the remains of some of the wreckages. Running parallel to Stockton Beach is Worimi National Park. A great place to visit if you enjoy whale watching, fishing and beach driving. It’s possible to drive around the park too, a one day permit is $30 and information on where you can access the park is available here (http://worimiconservationlands.com/permits-driving/).
If you decide to drive on towards Tomaree National Park you will drive past the stunning Samurai Beach. Samurai Point is worth a pitstop in your camper to take in the beautiful views but be aware that part of the beach is ‘clothes optional’, so don’t be surprised if you see some skinny dippers!
The Hunter Region, 2 hours drive north of Newcastle, is one of Australia’s major wine regions with a viticultural history dating back to the early 1800s. It’s the perfect place to stop by as you continue on your campervan road trip along the East Coast or a great getaway location if you plan on staying put in Newcastle for a couple of days. There are campsites available in the Hunter Region for you to spend a night or two in your camper, staying over is a great idea if you plan on sampling the local wines.
Newcastle has a humid, subtropical climate which is typical of the Australian east coast. Most rainfall is seen in January, February, March, April, June and November. If you’re not a fan of the rain, avoid March as it is the wettest month of the year with up to 9 days of rainfall. On average, January is the warmest month with highs reaching 25°C with the temperature dropping to only 20°C at the coldest part of the day. July wins at being the driest month of the year but is also the coolest, on average, reaching as low as 9°C.
If this has left you feeling inspired then get in touch today and find out how we can help you plan the campervan road trip of a lifetime!
- Stockton Beach Holiday Park – offers a range of beachfront sites and accommodation a stone’s throw from Newcastle
- Belmont Lakeside Holiday Park – 30 mins drive south of Newcastle, located in Belmont
- Paradise Palms Caravan Park – 30 mins drive south of Newcastle, Carey Bay
- Subo – excellent food and it’s advisable to book ahead
- Babbingtons Bar & Grill – popular dining venue for guests and locals alike
- The Lucky Hotel – a great spot if you’re looking for tasty food and good deals
- Ruan Kao Thai – super tasty thai food with great takeaway service or BYO if you want to dine in
- Mayfield West Kebabs – local cuisine at a great price, the charcoal chicken is a winner!
- Newy Burger Co – delicious burgers