Jervis Bay

The beach at Huskisson

Jervis Bay is a large protected bay on the South Coast of New South Wales 120km south of Sydney and 20km south of Nowra. Famous for its white sand beaches (reputedly the whitest in the whole world), safe swimming and snorkelling. It also contains the Jervis Bay Territory, a part of the Australian Capital Territory on the coast.

Understand

The area is one of the most beautiful parts of the South Coast and is an extremely popular summer destination, making it very busy in peak periods. Accommodation may be fully booked out months in advance of the Christmas/New Year period. Opportunities exist to scuba dive, fish and engage in many other water sports, beach activities, walking, and hiking as well as appreciate the diverse flora and fauna.

Huskinsson is the largest town in the Jervis Bay area. It's one of those towns that would be a sleepy little village if it weren't for the short term visitors who in summer comprise about two-thirds of the population.

Vincentia is a small town in the region. It is the holiday-home capital of the South Coast, with rental cottages lining the beaches. In summer families, bikes, swimming and barbecues are the order of the day. If you expect to stay in Vincentia in the summer school holidays, it pays to be thinking about where you are going to stay the proceeding year. The best places are booked out by the same families year-on-year.

A curiosity is that Jervis Bay Village, and the nearby beach area of Murrays Beach and parts of the surrounding bay are actually not in New South Wales at all. They are actually in a Commonwealth administered territory known as Jervis Bay Territory - originally planned as a grand Pacific City and the port of the nation's capital. This vision was never realised, and most of the territory is designated as a national park. This anomaly may be noticed from the separate entrance fees that apply to the parks, and the fact that New South Wales parks passes aren't valid in Jervis Bay Territory.

The area has significant cultural and historic interest to both the Commonwealth and Aboriginal people of Australia. In 1995 parts of the Jervis Bay National Park were granted to the Aboriginal peoples and this land was designated Booderee National Park and Booderee Botanic Gardens

Jervis Bay Marine Park covers 100km of coast and adjacent waters, from Kinghorn Point in the north to Sussex Inlet in the south which encompasses Jervis Bay, Crookhaven Bight to the north and Wreck Bay to the south. The waters in Jervis Bay from Captains Point to the northern tip of Bowen Island are part of Booderee National Park.

The bay waters are themselves a national park, protected because of its natural beauty. Dolphins & seals are a regular sight in the bay, and it is also home to a colony of fairy penguins.

Get in

By car

You can visit the area by car on a day trip from Sydney, although it takes about 3 hours on the road each way. Canberra is slightly closer at 2 and a half hours distance. It is however the perfect distance for a weekend away from these cities. Huskisson is about 10-15 minutes south of Nowra on the New South Wales south coast. The turnoff is well sign posted - on the left as you travel south on the Princes Highway. If you are worried about being on the wrong road, look for an Emu Farm on the RHS about 3 minutes along this road. After about 5 km, you will see the sign for the next turnoff - it's on the left. That takes you straight into Huskisson.

By train

  Bomaderry (Nowra) Station is the closest train station, and journeys take about 3 hours from Sydney Central Station. From there it is a further 30 minutes by car or taxi to Huskisson. Nowra coaches do operate a few services from station on weekdays, and a single service each way on weekends.

By plane

  Jervis Bay Airport is in Jervis Bay Territory itself, but as of April 2016 has no scheduled flights. Sydney and Canberra airports are the closest options.

Get around

By boat

See

Jervis Bay is renowned for its white sand beaches, most notably Hyams Beach which has an official entry in the Guinness Bay of Records for the whitest beach in the world. Whale watching is also popular in Jervis Bay, as humpback whales come into the bay to rest during both their northern and southern migration. Many dolphins live in the bay.

Do

Buy

Eat

Huskisson has several good eateries and a couple of ordinary ones!

Drink

Sleep

There are also many camping sites around the bay.

Booderee National Park

See the national park website for further details, costs, etc There are three campgrounds in the national park. You must reserve a campsite in advance, and also check in at the Visitors Centre before setting up your site. The Christmas and Easter periods are booked as much as four months in advance. The peak period fees apply from the beginning of December until the end of the New South Wales Easter school holidays. To reserve a campsite, contact the Visitors Centre.

Go next

Ulladulla is about 45 minutes south of Jervis Bay.

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Saturday, April 02, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.