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One of the prettiest spots that we came across during our travels down the South Coast of New South Wales were the twin towns of Ulladulla and Mollymook. Strange names – I know! But it’s definitely worth visiting Ulladulla and Mollymook in the Shoalhaven region.
Ulladulla and Mollymook are vibrant coastal towns that are about 230 kilometres south of Sydney, half way between Batemans Bay to the south and Nowra to the north. With Ulladulla being the commercial and entertainment centre of the southern Shoalhaven region.
The name Ulladulla means “safe harbour” in aboriginal language, so this pretty much sums up the place with its picturesque harbour in the middle of the town. We took a stroll around the harbour area where there are many fishing boats and trawlers. There’s also a public ocean swimming pool and rock pools around to the point.
We discovered that eating fish and chips fresh from the Fishermen’s Co-op on the wharf at Ulladulla Harbour is a very popular past-time for locals and visitors alike.
Afterwards we took the short drive out to Warden Head Lighthouse at Ulladulla to take in the sensational views. Here you can go for a swim, snorkel or fish in the rock pools at the bottom of the lighthouse. There is also a walking track around the head through coastal vegetation ending with gorgeous views over Rennies Beach.
Just before you reach the lighthouse turn off down a dirt road to Rennies Beach where there is a boardwalk and viewing platform before you hit the beautiful sandy beach. This beach is very popular for surfing and fishing.
Ulladulla is a great central location to explore the surrounding lakes of Lake Conjola to the north and Burrill Lake to the south. We took a drive out here to check out the area around Burrill Lake where the shallow waters are ideal for families with little kids.
During our stay it was my birthday so we decided that a special lunch was in order and decided to try out the restaurant at Cupitts Estate. With spectacular views of rolling green hills, vineyards and to Burrill Lake it was the perfect place to wile away an afternoon indulging in fine food and wine! Cupitts Winery and Restaurant also features a winery, brewery, and fromagerie, and is a short drive inland from Ulladulla.
Lying just north of the town of Ulladulla is Mollymook. It is believed that the name Mollymook is a derivation of Mollymawk, the name given by sailors to a small Albatross that lives in the Southern Ocean.
We spent some time exploring this stunning coastal village with its fabulous 2 kilometres stretch of golden sanded beach between Bannister Point and the southern headland where Mollymook Golf Club is located.
The Mollymook Surf Club sits proudly near the point, where there is a fabulous cafe for coffee after you’ve done the 4 kilometre return walk. The grassy knoll behind the beach is perfect for picnics, kicking a football or sunbaking.
There are two excellent lookouts on the cliffs to the south of the main beach, plus there is a large natural rock pool, called the Bogey Hole. The shallow tidal pool is great for swimming and snorkelling.
For a special occasion dine at the famous Rick Stein at Bannisters restaurant in Mollymook, but you need to book ahead.
We made a surprising discovery during our expeditions to the north of Mollymook, where there are mangroves and mudflats forming the inlet to Narrawallee Creek. The inlet lies at the southern end of Narrawallee Creek Nature Reserve that stretches north for 5 kilometres along Buckleys and Conjola Beaches. This nature reserve boasts excellent fishing, walking and birdwatching and is definitely worth checking out.
A short distance away from Mollymook is the National Trust listed town of Milton set on a ridge between green valleys and the Great Dividing Range. We actually stayed here in our caravan on our first visit to Ulladulla and Mollymook at the Milton Showgrounds.
We set off on foot to explore this little historical town and discovered it had many interesting buildings having been discovered in 1860. Milton boasts art galleries and antique vendors, alfresco cafes and fine-dining restaurants, fashion boutiques and home-ware stores.
To the west, the landscape is dominated by the rock spire of Pigeon House Mountain, one of the most striking features of Morton National Park. The ascent to the top of the mountain involves a final demanding climb up ladders, but the reward is the sublime view.
We thoroughly enjoyed our two day stay in Ulladulla and Mollymook. As one of the locals said to me, when I remarked on the beauty of the Shoalhaven area, “Shush, don’t tell anyone about this place, we like to keep it all to ourselves”. As if this is going to happen!
Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 6 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now in her early 60s. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Tweed Coast of New South Wales, Australia. Kathy enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, photography, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.
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Michelle Weaver (@pinkypoinker)April 25, 2016
I believe that all of that area is one of the most beautiful in Australia. I used to work as a sales rep travelling up and down the coastline there. It’s heavenly.
KathyApril 25, 2016
Yes the South Coast of NSW is spectacular. I think I have included a few places in my A to Z challenge. But then again there isn’t really a bad spot in all of Aussie as far as I’m concerned!
Nilanjana BoseApril 26, 2016
Magnificent photos, thanks for posting. Here from the A-Z and wish you all the best for the rest of the challenge,
Ninja Minion, A-Z 2016
KathyApril 26, 2016
Thank you so much. Australia does have a prolific amount of gorgeous coastal towns and beaches. :)