Where the Locals Go: Your Local Guide to the Shoalhaven Region

Located on the New South Wales coast, Shoalhaven is a region renowned for its stunning natural beauty, from the pristine beaches of Jervis Bay to the quaint country towns dotted throughout, like Berry, Kangaroo Valley, and Milton. Whether you're a local rediscovering your backyard or a visitor keen to explore, Shoalhaven offers a treasure trove of experiences, from boutique stays and gourmet eats to unique drinking locales and shopping havens.

If you're an outdoor enthusiast, Shoalhaven won't disappoint. With over 100 beaches, countless hiking trails, and scenic drives, there are endless opportunities to immerse yourself in nature and soak up the stunning landscapes. And for those seeking a bit of adventure, try your hand at kayaking, surfing, or even skydiving – all available in this diverse region.

Shoalhaven is also known for its rich culture and history. Take a step back in time with a visit to historic buildings and museums, or immerse yourself in the local Aboriginal culture by joining a cultural tour. This will not only provide a deeper understanding of the region but also support and preserve the traditional custodians of the land.

Whether you're savouring a gourmet dining experience, enjoying a glass of local wine under the stars, kicking back in a tranquil retreat, or shopping for unique finds, Shoalhaven is a region that captivates and charms. This guide is your key to exploring the very best of what this picturesque and friendly region has to offer.

Worrowing Estate Jervis Bay

Jervis Bay
Shoalhaven Region

Worrowing Jervis Bay

Discover the serene beauty of Worrowing Estate, a historic 250-acre coastal farm in the heart of nature, just minutes from the pristine white sands of Jervis Bay. This tranquil retreat offers guests a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in wilderness and wildlife, all while being surrounded by the estate's rich history and natural charm. From its picturesque paddocks and rolling hills to its serene dams, Worrowing stands as a testament to tranquility and beauty.

Offering secluded, self-contained lodging perfect for couples, families, and groups, each retreat and beachside location combines rustic heritage with modern living essentials. Ideal for those seeking a private escape, the estate also serves as an exquisite backdrop for weddings, functions, and events. Just a stone's throw away from the world-renowned Hyams Beach and close to national parks and quaint villages, Worrowing Jervis Bay is an unparalleled sanctuary accessible from Sydney by a scenic drive or convenient public transport options, ensuring your journey to this secluded paradise is as memorable as your stay.

Paperbark Camp

Jervis Bay
South Coast New South Wales

Tucked away in the bushland of Jervis Bay, Paperbark Camp offers an idyllic retreat for those seeking to blend the beauty of nature with the comforts of luxury. This unique destination redefines the camping experience, offering seclusion and serenity amidst the rustling eucalyptus and rich scent of paperbark.

The camp's African-inspired canvas safari tents provide an opulent escape, featuring deluxe accommodations elevated among the trees to enhance privacy and capture the cool sea breeze. Each tent has a wrap-around deck, outdoor furniture, and an open-air en suite with a freestanding bath, ensuring a blend of wilderness and indulgence. With its commitment to eco-friendliness, without the distractions of modern technology, guests are invited to a true digital detox, immersing themselves fully in the beauty of the surroundings.

The Gunyah serves as the communal heart of Paperbark Camp, offering seasonal dining experiences that connect guests with the rhythm of nature. From relaxing with a massage on your private deck to exploring the area with a bike or canoe, Paperbark Camp offers both leisure and adventure. Just a 2.5-hour drive from Sydney, it's the perfect luxurious camping destination for reawakening to nature's refined beauty.

Bangalay Luxury Villas

Shoalhaven Heads
South Coast New South Wales

Bangalay Villas stands as a luxurious retreat in Shoalhaven Heads for those looking to escape the city's hustle and immerse themselves in the calming grace of nature. Just a mere two hours from Sydney, this idyllic haven offers a retreat experience like no other, with its stunning setting against a coastal national park and the elegant expanse of the Shoalhaven Heads golf course.

Each of the 16 luxury villas serves as your private sanctuary, with scenic views of either lush gardens or the sprawling golf course. Guests are invited to cosy up by their personal fireplace or soak up the sun on the north-facing decks, which present an ideal spot for relaxation or deep contemplation. The all-year-round retreat charms its visitors with a heated swimming pool, a unique gift store, and unparalleled dining experiences at the critically acclaimed Bangalay Dining.

The villas themselves feature expansive interiors that are elegantly furnished, climate-controlled rooms complemented by air conditioning and ceiling fans, and a sun-drenched private deck. The attention to detail extends to a fully equipped kitchen, in-villa laundry facilities, and a luxurious bathroom with underfloor heating and exquisite Aspar skincare products. Families are warmly accommodated with complimentary cots and high chairs, while environmentally conscious provisions like electric vehicle charging stations and mobility aids underscore the retreat’s commitment to accessibility and sustainability.

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Flour Water Salt 

Artisan bakery meets café in this beloved spot known for its organic sourdough, delectable pastries, homemade family pies, jams, and preserves. You can find this bakery in the seaside villages of Milton, Kiama, and Hussikson. 

Gwylo | Mollymook Beach 

Gwylo is not just a restaurant; it’s a vibrant tapestry woven with flavours, melodies, and stories from Malaysia. What sets Gwylo apart is its rootedness in heartfelt experiences and unforgettable culinary adventures that its founder, Matt, encountered during his travels, where his colleague Dave gave him the nickname Gwai lo, meaning "white ghost."

This unique establishment transcends the conventional dining experience by inviting its guests into a world where Asian street eats, classic tunes, house brews, and cocktails are not only consumed but celebrated. It’s a place where each dish tells a story of friendship, discovery, and the pure joy of sharing good food.

The essence of Gwylo lies in its ability to create an atmosphere that’s both fun and moody, perfectly designed for those impromptu nights out where you find yourself lost in the flavours, the music, and the company.

Ponte Bar and Dining | Nowra 

With a focus on local produce and wines, Ponte offers a relaxed dining atmosphere with a waterfront view perfect for unwinding and sampling the region's best, found alongside the southern bank of the stunning Shoalhaven River.

South on Albany | Berry 

A favourite among locals, this cosy bistro in the quaint village of Berry was established by a Sydney duo 12 years ago, Sonia and John, a former chef from Merivale’s Bistro CBD, Est and Three Weeds. Their menu is a celebration of the beautiful region, providing honest food that is driven by the seasonal produce that surrounds them.


Dangerous Ales | Milton

Dive into the local craft beer scene with a visit to Dangerous Ales, where the vibe is as laid-back as the tasty brews on tap. The perfect pit stop for an icy cold beer! 

Silos Estate | Berry 

Silos Estate presents a captivating blend of history and modern indulgence. This exquisite estate is renowned for offering visitors the chance to sample award-winning wines, immersing them in a sensory experience that highlights the region's rich viticultural heritage. Beyond the vineyards, Silos Estate showcases an array of local products and crafts, inviting guests to take a piece of Berry home with them. The estate doesn't stop there; its on-site restaurant provides a gastronomic journey with dishes that perfectly complement the estate's wines, all set against the backdrop of the estate's historic charm and natural beauty. 

Cupitt's Estate | Ulladulla 

With views of the Budawang Ranges and Lake Burrill, Cupitt’s Estate makes for the perfect destination to wine and dine in the beautiful restaurant, enjoy a private wine tasting with the winemaker himself, or explore the charming estate grounds. 

Tara Distillery | Nowra Hill 

Explore the art of distillation and sample unique spirits at Tara Distillery, a true embodiment of craft and passion. Positioned in the scenic locale of Nowra Hill, Tara Distillery offers an intimate glimpse into the meticulous art of spirit making. Each visit unfolds as a fascinating venture into the world of traditional distillation techniques, intertwined with contemporary craftsmanship. Tara Distillery stands out for its dedication to producing small-batch spirits that capture the essence of its surroundings. From the rich, layered complexity of their whisky to the botanical depth of their gins, every sampling is an invitation to explore the subtleties that make this distillery a beacon of craft and passion. At Tara Distillery, each spirit tells a story of heritage, craft, and the unyielding pursuit of quality.

Tea Journeys | Nowra 

For a non-alcoholic treat, indulge in a tea tasting and exploration that promises to be exceptional, showcasing teas from around the globe, located in the town of Nowra.


Ramox Cafe and Museum, Bundanon, Illaroo

Take a trip to the culturally rich Ramox Cafe and Museum Bundanon, located in Illaroo, which not only serves local cuisine but also houses an inspiring collection of artworks. This is the perfect spot to enjoy a leisurely brunch, followed by an afternoon steeped in art and history.

‍Martins Ridge Farm, Conjola

For those interested in sustainable farming and fresh produce, Martins Ridge Farm offers an insightful look into farm life in Conjola. Engage with local farmers, experience the rural lifestyle, and enjoy a taste of freshly harvested goods that highlight the region's agricultural bounty.

‍Booderee National Park

An adventurer's retreat, Booderee National Park is teeming with coastal walks, pristine beaches, and abundant wildlife. It's an idyllic spot for camping, fishing, or simply relaxing amidst nature's beauty.

Willinga Park

Not just for equine enthusiasts, Willinga Park holds the accolade of being the number one equestrian facility in the world. Get a firsthand look at equestrian excellence, with events and accommodations that set this spot apart as a premier equine destination.

‍Grotto Walk

For breathtaking views and an invigorating walk, the Grotto Walk will lead you along the rugged coastline and through some of the region's most picturesque landscapes. It's a must-do for any nature lover and the perfect opportunity for that essential Shoalhaven selfie.

‍Jervis Bay Maritime Museum

Take a deep dive into the maritime heritage of Jervis Bay at this informative museum. With exhibits that span from the rich naval history to the ecology of the marine environment, it's a treasure trove of knowledge for all ages.

‍Kitty Beach, Jervis Bay

Kitty Beach is an enclave of tranquility within Jervis Bay, ideal for swimming, snorkelling, and simply soaking up the sun. With crystal-clear waters and soft white sands, it's a slice of coastal heaven.

Each of these spots provides a unique experience of Shoalhaven, making it apparent why the region is an attractive destination for tourists and locals alike. Whether you're looking for cultural enrichment, natural enlightenment, or just a peaceful place to unwind, Shoalhaven has something for everyone. 


Kangaroo Valley General Store and Antique Shop

This General Store and Antique Shop is like no other. It’s a charming treasure trove, and this beloved local landmark serves as both a portal to the past and a provider of modern conveniences. It's not just any store; it's a place where you can discover an eclectic mix of antiques and collectibles alongside an assortment of locally-sourced produce, cheeses, deli meats, and fresh BBQ-ready meat from the renowned Maugers Meats at Burrawang. Fresh bread, handmade cakes, and sweet treats satisfy any culinary craving, while the in-house coffee keeps the community and visitors alike coming back for more. Open 7 days a week, the Kangaroo Valley General Store and Newsagent invite you to step inside and explore a world where the charm of yesteryear meets the tastes of today.

Main Street, Berry, Huskisson, and Milton 

Stroll through these charming towns to discover an array of boutique stores offering everything from fashion to homewares, artisanal goods, and local produce.

Bunya Wholefoods, Vincentia 

For the health-conscious, Bunya Wholefoods is a one-stop shop for organic groceries, eco-friendly products, and nourishing eats.


The Shoalhaven region, known for its stunning natural beauty, is also home to a vibrant market scene that comes to life with the unique charm of each locality. From the rustic allure of Berry to the seaside serenity of Culburra Beach, the market scene in Shoalhaven is a treasure trove of local produce, artisan crafts, and unexpected finds. Here’s a peek into what makes each market a must-visit destination.

First Sunday of the Month: Berry Markets and Culburra Beach Markets

Berry Markets draw visitors into a world where local produce, handmade crafts, and gourmet food converge amidst the historic buildings of Berry. Stroll through rows of stalls under the canopy of mature trees, where you can find everything from fresh fruits and vegetables to artisanal cheese, bespoke jewellery, and home décor. It’s the perfect spot to source unique gifts or indulge in the local flavours and crafts of the Shoalhaven region.

Simultaneously, the Culburra Beach Markets offer a more laid-back vibe, reflecting the coastal lifestyle. Set against the backdrop of Culburra Beach’s stunning surf and sand, these markets are a haven for those looking to find fresh seafood, surf-themed apparel, and locally-made artwork. It’s an idyllic setting for a leisurely Sunday browse, providing a taste of the local culture and community spirit.

Second Sunday of the Month: Ulladulla Wharf Markets and Huskisson Markets

Ulladulla Wharf Markets are a bustling hub where the community and visitors come together by the seaside. Expect to find fresh local produce, plants, and tantalising food stalls, along with entertainment that adds a lively atmosphere to the picturesque wharf setting. These markets are a great place to discover hidden finds and enjoy the local maritime charm.

In contrast, Huskisson Markets take place in the heart of Jervis Bay, offering a delightful blend of arts, crafts, and clothing. With an emphasis on sustainability and handcrafted goods, it's a gathering place for environmentally conscious shoppers and those seeking unique pieces, from eco-friendly homewares to handmade soaps and vintage clothing. The Huskisson Markets are not just about shopping; they’re about experiencing the vibrant heart of the community.

Fourth Sunday of the Month: Pyree Markets

Located in a rural setting, the Pyree Markets stand out with their art and craft theme, especially highlighting local pottery. This market provides a platform for local artisans and craftsmen to display their work, from exquisite pottery pieces to handmade textiles and fine art. Visitors are treated to a rich tapestry of creativity, where they can meet the makers, learn about their craft, and take home a piece of Shoalhaven’s artistic heritage. The Pyree Markets are a testament to the region’s thriving arts scene and are an essential visit for anyone passionate about the arts and crafts.

The Shoalhaven region’s market scene offers something for everyone, from the foodie and the art enthusiast to the eco-conscious shopper and the treasure hunter. Each market, with its own unique set of attractions, captures the essence of its locality and the diversity of the region. Whether you’re looking to spend a leisurely Sunday exploring local crafts and produce, meeting local artisans, or simply soaking up the vibrant market atmosphere, Shoalhaven’s markets promise memorable experiences filled with discovery and good times.  

Simone Ramjee

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