Waterfall Way NSW Australia

Celebrating the in-betweeners on Waterfall Way

Last year I went on a road trip with my family through Waterfall Way, the most beautiful drive in New South Wales. I have been in awe of the beauty of Queensland for years, but before this trip I’d never given regional New South Wales too much thought.

I’ve done a few posts about the highlights of the trip, the Queensland section of the trip before we could start Waterfall Way, and Tenterfield, the town we spent a night in en route.

Today I want to share photos of the beautiful countryside and pretty small towns that we visited during our travels. These aren’t big ticket destinations, even by Waterfall Way’s standards, and in fact, I couldn’t pinpoint exactly where most of these photos were taken. These are photos of the journey, and apart from a couple of small towns at the end of this photo series, aren’t destinations at all.

Read more about Waterfall Way:

Highlights of Waterfall Way

Country Queensland: On the road to Waterfall Way

Itinerary: Brisbane to Waterfall Way

One night in Tenterfield, NSW

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Bellingen, NSW

Bellingen is a sleepy, laidback town in the valley beside the Bellingen River. We didn’t spend a lot of time here, just popping in for lunch with enough time to wander down the tree-lined main streets and pop our head into a few shops. I loved the old department store, Hammond & Wheatley, adding a bit of old-world elegance to the facade of the main street.

It reminded me a bit of an inland Byron Bay, because despite it’s laidback atmosphere, it was quite popular with day trippers and local travellers, making the streets quite busy and parking hard to come by. Despite this, like Byron, it maintained a laidback atmosphere.

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Dorrigo, NSW

Dorrigo is another small town in northern NSW, but feels much more like an “Outback” country town, despite of course, being nowhere near the Outback. The dusty main street feels like it is a million miles from anywhere, in contrast to the artsy community spirit that is palpable in Bellingen. I enjoyed stopping in Dorrigo and chatting to the owners of Dorrigo’s Red Dirt Distillery, which I’ll share a post about on the blog soon.

Curiously, Dorrigo is home to one of the most comprehensive collections of steam trains and railway memorobilia in the world, yet the “Dorrigo Steam Railway & Museum is “not yet open to public.” It was open to the public briefly in the 1980s, and has not been since. We drove past the field where much of the collection is kept, and saw long lines of steam trains parked bumper to bumper. Bizarre.

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Have you driven Waterfall Way, or would you like to? What small towns have you found on trips to bigger destinations?

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5 thoughts on “Celebrating the in-betweeners on Waterfall Way

      1. such a great area to explore, we are waterfall junkies. If you ever get a chance to visit Mount Field in Tasmania there is an amazing tiered cascading waterfall that was just breathtaking, its in one of more recent blog posts 🙂 happy travels

      2. Cool, thank you for the tip! I spent a weekend in Hobart for the first time this winter, but am really keen to see more of Tassie’s natural envionrment, it’s so beautiful. Enjoying your blog! 🙂

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