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Short weekend getaways from Sydney

Free weekend? Cheeky mid-weeker? Full-fortnight blowout? We've handpicked great (and close-by) weekend getaways and short trips just for you. Race ya there...

Photograph: Visit Mudgee

Escape from Sydney to one of NSW (or the ACT's) relaxing retreats. From fantastic local food and wine to shopping, great art, spas or adventure, you'll return to Sydney a new human.

Best driving breaks from Sydney



It may be a diminutive country town, but Bowral is buzzing with restaurants, cafés and some of the most beautiful vintage stores in the state. Plus it’s got Biota Dining and Rooms: enough said.

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By: Freya Herring


Head to the chief city in the Blue Mountains for heritage-listed restaurants, spa resorts, steep cable car rides and late lunches in Leura.

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By: Dee Jefferson

Central Coast

From wild national parks and epic beaches to slices of suburbia, the Central Coast is Sydney's sprawling, sometimes strange and sometimes charming northern cousin.

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By: Time Out editors

Pokolbin, Hunter Valley

Plan a long weekend in the Hunter Valley with our guide to where to eat, drink, stay and play in Pokolbin.

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By: Time Out editors


Canberra used to be the punchline of jokes: known only for porn, politicians and legal fireworks. Now there are far more stimulating things happening outside the adult shops than on their shelves. Canberra in the twenty-teens boasts hipper hotels than Sydney, excellent cafés, some of the best galleries and museums in the country.

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By: Alyx Gorman


Winter is here whether you like it or not – so rather than complain about it – embrace it with awesome scenery and snowy fun.

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By: Jordan Kretchmer


Head west to the fertile plains, where wine is plentiful, people are friendly and winter frosts mean fresh black truffles on menus everywhere.

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By: Emily Lloyd-Tait

Port Macquarie

Things have changed in the Port since your parents dragged you there on a family holiday: a combination of seachange-type entrepreneurs and the realisation that having a location equidistant from Sydney and Brisbane may provide certain advantages.

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By: Time Out editors


A relaxed, rural uni town that's fast emerging as a proper food and wine destination. Plus: Australia's very own dinosaur!

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By: Time Out editors

Short flights from Sydney


From pristine wilderness sites to one of the most avant-garde galleries in the world (that'd be “submersive adult Disneyland” Mona, which owner David Walsh reportedly built from his gambling profits), there's a great deal to recommend Tasmania.

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By: Time Out editors

Byron Bay

From sleepy hippy towns, to music festival paradise, to Sydney's favourite beachside haunt, the Byron Bay region has much to recommend it.

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By: James Wilkinson

Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park

Escape the hustle and bustle of Sydney and journey to the country's red centre, where the skies are clear, the stars are out and the landscapes are spectacular.

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By: Jordan Kretchmer

Or stick around...

A guide to the Royal National Park

It's less than an hour's drive from the CBD, yet so many Sydneysiders haven't stepped foot in the pristine 15,091 hectares of bushland that lines the coast south of Sydney. Whether you want to swim, trek, picnic, swim, bike ride, swim or just GTFO of Sydney for the day, the Royal National Park will provide an outdoors, adventure-filled day out.

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By: Jordan Kretchmer