Overlooking Gerroa from my accommodation’s balcony.
The New South Wales South Coast has many seaside gems, one of them being Gerroa. Now if you blink while driving down the South Coast you will probably miss Gerroa. You really need to know that it is there to want to visit. My aim with this blog post is to help you want to visit or holiday at this beautiful gem on the New South Wales South Coast.
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Where is Gerroa?
Gerroa is a quiet little seaside village about 230km south of Sydney’s CBD. It can take around 2.5 hours to reach depending on which part of Sydney (or elsewhere) you are coming from. Often overshadowed by the local South Coast towns of Kiama, Gerringong, Berry and Nowra, Gerroa has a lot to offer those seeking a weekend or longer escape.
How to Get to Gerroa?
The best way to get to Gerroa is to drive. Follow the Princes Highway from Sydney or north from Nowra and take the road that says to Gerringong and Gerroa. You can also get there by train and bus but it will take a lot longer. Catch the South Coast train to Kiama, then the 126 bus to Gerroa.
The Best Time to Visit Gerroa
Anytime is a good time to visit Gerroa. However, if you want to spend your day lazing on the beach, summertime is the best time to visit. This is also when loads of holiday makers visit so there will be lots of people around. Lucky there is plenty of room at the beach as it is huge – seven miles long in fact! Even in winter you will see people in the water usually surfers in their wetsuits. And fisherman visit everyday at various times. And walking along the beach mid-winter can be as magical. You could even see dolphins catching the waves and whales breaching in the deeper waters as they migrate north or south.
What to See and Do in Gerroa?
Hit The Beach
The best thing about Gerroa is hanging at the beach. Gerroa sits at the north end of Seven Mile Beach that seems to stretch forever. The beach is great for swimming, surfing, fishing and all sorts of water sports. There is plenty of clean golden sand to enjoy. Taking a walk along the beach while the crashing waves lap your feet is a must. Or perhaps build a sandcastle. Or check out the rock platforms at the northern end of the beach to explore the little rock pools.
Behind the surf beach is a sheltered inlet from the ocean currents and wind and is the mouth of Crooked River. This area is great for those with small kids who do not want to jump in the surf. It’s also great for people who want to kayak or stand-up paddle in the calmer waters yet, still be at the beach. And don’t forget to bring a picnic lunch as there are plenty of picnic spots, particularly Beach Road picnic area and the shaded Gerroa picnic area.
At low tide people pump for bait on the sandbars so bring a fishing line to throw in either in the ocean or the river.
Walk across the bridge over Crooked River linking Gerroa and the beach.
Swim, fish or kayak the calm waters of Crooked River, Gerroa.
Seven Mile Beach with the waves lapping the golden sands seems endless.
Seven Mile Beach National Park
Running the length of Seven Mile Beach between Gerroa and Shoalhaven Heads is the small Seven Mile Beach National Park. If you get sick of the beach you can walk through the national park along the Sand Track. This unique coastal track walks you through forest where you can admire local wildlife and contains the largest areas of natural coastal dune vegetation on the New South Wales coastline. If lucky you may see the rare orchid Dipodium hamiltonianum that thrives in sandy soils. On the western side of the park is a large semi-permanent freshwater wetland with Eurasian coots and hoary-headed grebes to name a few. The walk only takes an hour or two and then you can return to the beach.
Walk to the Headland and Black Head Reserve
At low tide you can walk along the rocky shore out to the Gerroa Headland and Back Head Reserve. Or you can drive out along Headland Road. It can be quite windy here on the headland so take a jacket with you while you enjoy stunning views over the ocean, up the coast to Kiama and beyond and down the coast to Shoalhaven Heads and Jervis Bay.
Discover the History of Gerroa
At Seven Mile Beach, unbeknown to many, the beach is steeped in aviation history. It was here, along the beach Sir Charles Kingsford Smith took off in his aircraft, the Southern Cross on January 11, 1933 bound for New Zealand. This history making Trans Tasman crossing is commemorated at the Sir Charles Kingsford Smith Memorial Lookout which can be found across the road from the Fishermans Club. The memorial lookout at 1 Headland Drive has the shape of the Southern Cross on the ground in concrete and offers fabulous views over Gerroa, Seven Mile Beach and over to Mount Camberwarra in the distance. Once done discovering the history, sit on the seat and watch the sunset over Gerroa and Seven Mile Beach or pop across the road and enjoy a meal at the Fishermans Club while the sun sets.
Enjoy a Meal at the Gerroa Fishermans Club
Food is limited in Gerroa, there is a coffee shop, the Blue Swimmer that is only open at certain times. It’s opposite the park and great for a take away coffee or sit in and enjoy an all-day breakfast or something from their seasonal menu. It once was a petrol station servicing the coastal road before the Princes Highway bypassed this little town. There is the take-away shop at the local caravan park however, I suggest for a good meal head to the Fisherman’s Club. This club on Crooked River Road offers great Australian Pub food and also has spectacular views over Gerroa and Seven Mile Beach.
Discover Gerroa’s Aviation History at Kingsford Smith Park.
See the sunset over Gerroa before a meal at the Fisherman’s Club – or enjoy the sunset there!
End Your Day in Gerroa With a Meal at the Fisherman’s Club.
Where to Stay in Gerroa?
Gerroa is a sleepy little seaside village with no hotels, hostels or high rise apartments. Your accommodation options are in holiday homes along the hilly area offering great views overlooking the beach and the mouth of Crooked River. If there are a few of you renting a beach house can be quite economical. There are two caravan parks where you can park your van or rent a cabin. Check out the Kiama Coast Seven Mile Beach Holiday Park or the Gerroa Discovery Park which can be booked via Booking.com. I actually house sat for two weeks, which is how I discovered Gerroa. I found it through Aussie House Sitters.
What to take With You When You Visit Gerroa?
As Gerroa is a beachside town take your swimmers, beach towel, sunscreen and insect repellent and whatever else you need for a day at the beach. Don’t forget your picnic! If visiting during the winter months, it can be quite cold at the beach so bring a jacket. Also take walking shoes to walk along the Sand Track. And a change of clothes so you can visit the Fisherman’s Club for a meal.
Are You Ready to Visit Gerroa?
Gerroa on the south coast of New South Wales is a wonderful, quiet little spot able to be visited year round. I hope you get the chance to visit. If you have I’d love to hear from you. Or if you have questions feel free to ask in the comments following.