Sydney to Canberra road trip

The 285-kilometre, three-hour drive between Sydney and Canberra is an easy trip but can become dull if the only stops you take are to refuel at a servo. Knowing where to stop and what to do can make this drive an adventure in its own right.

Australian Traveller has recommended the four essential stops on the drive between Sydney and Canberra to bring fun and flavour to your trip.

Antique hunting
If you enjoy antique shopping and bargain hunting, then exploring the villages of the Southern Highlands are a must. Berrima, Bowral, Mittagong and Moss Vale are crammed with antique shops where you can find unique treasures including jewellery, furniture, musical instruments and fashion pieces. Dirty Jane’s Bowral, Lydie du Bray Antiques in Braemar and Mittagong Antiques Centre are great places to start.

Stop for a meal in Goulburn
Turn off the Federal Highway and head to Collector, where you’ll find the Bushranger Hotel, the Lynwood Café and the Trapper Bakery. If you consider yourself a foodie, a stop at the Lynwood Café is essential. London’s Guardian newspaper placed it in the world’s top five restaurants in great locations and it boasts a generous menu ranging from salads, polenta, bangers and mash, to tarts and duck liver pate. 

Once known for the shooting of Constable Nelson by Ben Hall and his gang of outlaws in 1865, the Bushranger Hotel is now a great stop for a local feed. If you’re in a rush, duck into the Trappers Bakery, where you can grab pastries, desserts, a coffee and, of course, a really good meat pie.

Race at top speeds
Have you ever wondered how fast your car can really go? If you have a need for speed that the 110km speed limit just won’t account for, head to Wakefield Park where you can race your own car at top speed around their racetrack on special No Speed Limit Days. This privately owned racing circuit is one of the few in the country, and is located just 13km south of Goulburn. If your car isn’t up for the high speeds, jump into the passenger seat and let a pro give you the racing experience of a lifetime in a V8 Supercar or V8 Auscar. 

Eat local
After a hard day of antique hunting, menu sampling and race car driving, there’s no better place to have a local meal than Gundaroo, nestled on the bank of the Yass River. The National Trust Royal Hotel now houses a Grazing restaurant, which has brought the historic town to life. It’s the perfect place to taste and celebrate local produce and wines.

Do you drive between Canberra and Sydney frequently? Are there any other stops you would recommend to readers?

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Written by Liv Gardiner

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