Armidale makes a good staging-post north through the New England Plains or east to the coast through some of Australia’s most beautiful national parks. The main access road, the sealed World Heritage drive Waterfall Way, travels to Coffs Harbour via hundreds of kilometres of rainforest roads, waterfalls and lookouts. The exceptional New England National Park, 85km east, and the several patchwork sections of the Oxley Wild Rivers, Guy Fawkes River and Cathedral Rock national parks around it are full of ancient ferns, towering canopy trees, gorges and spectacular waterfalls (although the falls can diminish to a trickle during prolonged dry spells).

The Wollomombi Falls are among the highest waterfalls in Australia, plunging 225m into a gorge just over 40km east of Armidale, off the road to Dorrigo. Nearby are the Chandler Falls, while Ebor Falls, a stunning double-drop of the Guy Fawkes River, can be viewed from platforms just off Waterfall Way, another 40km beyond Wollomombi.

Between Wollomombi and Ebor, Point Lookout in the New England National Park offers a truly wonderful panoramic view across the forested ranges – you’d be forgiven for thinking you were in the middle of the Amazon. The road to the lookout is unsealed gravel, but is usually in reasonable condition. The rest of the park is virtually inaccessible wilderness.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

Australia features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Solo travel in Australia: everything you need to know

Solo travel in Australia: everything you need to know

Australia remains a classic travel destination. A steady stream of gap-year backpackers, career breakers and round-the-world-trippers head down under to sample …

22 Nov 2016 • Shafik Meghji insert_drive_file Article
Road trip Australia: 6 of the best routes

Road trip Australia: 6 of the best routes

Pack your stuff, throw it in a camper van along with a surfboard and don’t look back… This might be an old cliché but it’s one for good reason: Australia…

18 Oct 2016 • Ros Walford insert_drive_file Article
Sydney or Melbourne: the great Aussie debate

Sydney or Melbourne: the great Aussie debate

Sydney and Melbourne have been battling it out for supremacy as long as Europeans have been setting sail for Australia. Both are capitals of their respective st…

03 Oct 2016 • Helen Ochyra insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month