Narooma and Montague Island a good side trip?

Nov 11th, 2005, 03:58 PM
  #1  
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Narooma and Montague Island a good side trip?

I stumbled upon this area when looking for less-touristy alternatives to the penguin parade outside Melbourne. They say that they have penguins on Montague Island (along with seals and whales, in season) and fabulous views, etc. and national parks around Narooma that are worth going to. Has anyone been there to confirm this? Is this a Sydney weekend place (it's three hours drive from Sydney)? Any information would be greatly appreciated.
Sally in rainy, chilly Seattle
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Nov 11th, 2005, 05:46 PM
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Sally,
I just topped a recent review for you about what was obviously a very enjoyable trip from Narooma - I am not sure when you would be visiting that area but certainly at this time of the year there are lots of dolphins, seals, an occasional whale and penguins to be seen.
We have often stayed in Narooma and it is a very pleasant seaside town - nice places to stay, good restaurants and of Montague Island and all it has to offer.
Needless to say, as with all the coastal towns, it gets extremely busy from Xmas to the end of January and prices go sky high, but any other time would be a great place to visit.
prue is offline  
Nov 11th, 2005, 05:49 PM
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I forgot to say that I think the 3 hours from Sydney might be a bit on the light side - the highway down can be very slow going and always seems to be busy so I would allow a little longer.
Hopefully some of the regulars who know the area better than I will chime in and give you more information.
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Nov 11th, 2005, 07:11 PM
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There used to be a good little restaurant at the marina on the river in Narooma - can't remember the name but we had a very good meal there one night. From memory the golf club's restaurant was OK too.

I agree that 3 hours is optimistic.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Nov 12th, 2005, 02:28 AM
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I recently spent a week in Narooma. It was paradise for me. I saw whales like you would not believe, full breach, over and over...so awesome. Dolphins, smelly seals and nesting seagulls on the island itself. The Island has some building from yesteryear but is now under control of the national parks government staff who love it to bits and infect you with their passion.

Dolphins and seals, but not little penguins because we went early am to Montague not pm. But go on the afternoon whale tour (in season) and you get the whole enchilada, whales, seals, dolphins and penguins!

We paid $258.00aud for a motel for 3 nights that included a dinner at Taylors boatshed and entry for 2 for to the cinema. The meal was about the best dinner I have had for yonks, and I eat well lol. It was first course a huge platter of cold seafood, oysters, prawns, crabs bugs and salad. Second course was same size platter but cooked seafood. I think I died and went to heaven that night. Was just basic motel accommodation.

We included in our week 3 days camping (yuk)to vist the Narooma Southern Blues and Rockabilly festival which was about the highest quality music festival I have ever been to in Australia.

So together I would say it was the best week I have spent on holiday in many years. And Narooma folk have attitude, no McDonalds, no Kentucky Fried, no big business at all, all local.

However, Narooma, as pretty as it is maybe not an international destination as beautiful coastal towns are not unique to Australia.

So I recommend 100% to locals but internationals maybe looking for something more unique. But if you look for typical Australia then it doesn't get any better than Narooma. Small town, big delivery!
Tassietwister is offline  
Nov 12th, 2005, 02:53 AM
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re : time

I took us about 5 hours from Sydney but we stop a lot, needs even more time if you want to veer off the highway now and then to see the drop dead gorgeous south coast.

I am biased however, that strip of coast has always given me pleasure but not everyone agrees . To me it is what Australians see as escape, holiday, weekend away.....so where the Aussies go but I have never figured why everyone else heads north? Never mind it keeps it free for the rest of us
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Nov 12th, 2005, 11:06 AM
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Dear prue, Neil, and Tassietwister, thanks for your responses. The area sounds great! Places to meet Aussies is ideal in this "international's" book, and to see what the country's people do. I am interested in the music festival, too. I clicked on the link (which said it was in October when we are planning on being there) but the link said June 2006. Do you have any other links for it? It sounds great, with local people, music, food and the natural scenery. An appealing mix. Would you think that seeing the penguins on Montegue Is. would be better than among the masses of tourists on Phillip Island? It seems so to me, but I have never been to either. Thanks for the heads up on the driving time. We stop a lot, too! I think we'll try for a weekday instead of a weekend, if this is a Sydneysider holiday place. The food description, tt, made me drool. We loved the food in Australia, esp. the seafood. Yum.

Sally (Randy is planting bulbs today)
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Nov 12th, 2005, 07:32 PM
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The music festival is on the Labour day weekend which is first weekend of October. You need to book accommodation ASAP if you need because many rebook soon as they check out for the next year. I would recommend just the last day (Sunday), best acts anyways then do the whale watching the following day when crowds are heading home. Good crowd, mainly older people and they do not oversell the event so you can move around easily. Read Russell crowe may make an appearence next year. Can't hardly wait lol. I think the date you saw is when tickets go on sale. We tried to get accommodation a couple of months before ..hence ending up in a tent.

For Taylors boatshed you need to pre order the hot and cold platter. Also it is BYO if you are a wine drinker. If not using the package deal and then pre order for you.

I will just say I went on a different cruise the one reported on this forum and it cost $99.00 so a bit more expensive. Only went on the one so cannot compare the two. To see the penguins you will need to the same one as us and it actually lands on the island.

I can't remember the boat capacity but maybe about 40 people? and not always full so there will not be the same people numbers as Victoria. Then again maybe not the same penguin numbers either..

Tassietwister is offline  
Nov 12th, 2005, 07:42 PM
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Just checked the dates

2006 Friday Sept 29th, Saturday Sept 30th & Sunday Oct 1st

http://www.bluesfestival.tv/where_when.html
Tassietwister is offline  
Nov 12th, 2005, 09:29 PM
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Tassietwister, thanks for the legwork, but it looks like the festival will be happening too early for us (we are looking at mid-October to coordinate with all the other places we are going.) Next visit. . . .
Sally
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Nov 13th, 2005, 11:06 AM
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Narooma sounds good. I've been through there only once, some time back - and recall having a good seafood meal somewhere.

Any tripping down the south coast of NSW (i.e. south of Sydney) is well worth the effort. There is seldom much in the way of crowds, (except in January), and there are some great quiet villages, and no glitz. And, of course, there's Pebbly Beach, and Greenpatch, to see heaps of great birds, and the kangaroos (or are they wallabies!)

I also don't think you could do it in 3 hours from Sydney (legally or illegally~!)
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Nov 14th, 2005, 08:09 PM
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Thanks, everyone, for the helpful posts. I have them printed and in an album which we are rapidly filling up with Oz trip #2 info. I sing the praises of this forum to everyone I meet. Wish it had a better search function, but you can't beat the great people on it!
Sally in cold Seattle
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