Australia/visiting NSW and QLD

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Question
My wife and I (55 y-old) will drive a camper van from Melbourne to Brisbane starting in mid Nov and for 3 wks.  We don't plan to spend much time in the cities, we want to enjoy quiet beaches and visit iconic landscape attractions, nature trails, water falls etc.. We   

What attractions/locations would you recommend
Thanks
Michel

Answer
Bring your camera!
Bring your camera!  
I just spent half an hour doing this reply and lost it.  Here goes again!
All the following have many more details if you visit virtualtourist where my pages have pictures and more information.
First up don't leave Melbourne without visiting the Dandenongs, beautiful scenery, nice walks.
Then head up to the goldfields, any town beginning with “B” is good (as in Bendigo, Ballarat, Beechworth#.
Then try over the alps: Yarrangobilly caves are worthwhile, Jersey Cave is best.
If you can get to Charlotte’s Pass, I recommend the Blue Lake trail or Mount Kosciuzsko, though the latter suffers in comparison to anything Canada has!
Then travel to Canberra #war museum is excellent, amongst other things#, then Bungendore #don’t miss the gallery there#, then up to the Southern Highlands #Bowral etc., Berrima recommended# where you can do some waterfalls heading over to the coast.  Fitzroy has some good walks, Belmore is okay, Carrington is recommended and you last can camp there the night #as I did only last week!#.
As you meander to Sydney and up through the National Park, consider stopping in Sydney to do one of the harbourside walks; I recommend the Taronga Park to Balmoral or the coastal walk from Bondi to Coogee.
If you have time for the Blue Mountains, the Grand Canyon track #Blackheath# and the National Pass trail #Wentworth Falls# are two of the finest.
Further north, try skirting Lake Macquarie and possibly do the Green Point walk.  You can free camp anywhere around the Lake, Eleebana boat ramp is one of my favourites.
Next up, the Port Stephens area is excellent, from Anna Bay around to Nelson Bay.  Do the walk to Tomaree Headland for breathtaking coastal views.
The Forster area is pretty in regard to beaches but limited with walks.  If you do go in there, don’t miss the Blueys and Boomerang Beach area.
North of Taree, do the Laurieton #don’t miss the lookout# to Port Macquarie tourist drive.  You can free camp on the Dunbogan side of the river at Laurieton.
Next up head for Crescent Head, an iconic surfing spot if ever there was one.  Then turn south to Point Plomer for the finest stretch of beaches you’ll ever see.  You can overnight at Plomer.
Then head north and go up to Dorrigo, taking time for a cuppa at Bellingen.  Dorrigo has an excellent Rainforest Centre where you can purchase one of my calendars!  It also has a famous walk that takes in two waterfalls and you can get advice on other trails in the area.
Then head up to Coffs.  Try 0448 532371; if I’m free I’ll give you a day’s tour of a couple of nice beaches.
Then head north, stopping at Sharpe’s Beach just north of Ballina #no facilities though# before the drive through to Byron Bay #petty crime here, be careful).
When you cross the border, I recommend Lamington National Park, waterfall central and beautiful walks.  Tamborine Mountain is also worth a geek.  Avoid any cyclists in the area, one of them might be my eldest son training.
Hope this helps, and remember that virtualtourist site.
If you need any further help, just ask.  Cheers, Ian

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Ian Smith

Expertise

Very good knowledge of N.S.W. from beach to bush to Broken Hill. Have also travelled in a lot in Victoria, Queensland (to Townsville), Tasmania, South Australia and a few weeks in southern W.A. Used to be Hunter Valley Tourist Officer. Contact me for sights to see, not which disco or pub to recommend. Have also spent months in Europe, particularly the following: Italy, Germany, Spain, England, Scotland, Belgium, Holland, Austria and Czech Republic. I am a retiree and have a Winnebago Motorhome which I plan to use over the next few years (and have done some trips already).

Experience

I have surfed, raced motorcycles, ordinary cycles and a bit of fishing through much of the area as well as working there selling 5 days a week. I also have many photographs which I am currently working at putting on the computer. I have an extensive catalogue of where I've travelled at virtualtourist.com under "iandsmith".

Organizations
Hunter Valley Veterans Cycling Club

Publications
REVS, Surfing World, Soccer Weekly, Australian Motor Cycle News, Womens Weekly.

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