As is known, the Wollongong University

Wollongong: Flagstaff Hill, lighthouses & beautiful beaches

Wollongong is the third largest city in the state of New South Wales with a population of around 300,000. It is located approximately 85 kilometers south of Sydney and therefore still belongs to the Sydney area in Illawara. The multicultural population was attracted by the many jobs available in the steel mills, especially during the post-war period. The city also has over 30,000 University of Wollongong students, including numerous foreign exchange students. Wollongong has developed into a cosmopolitan, visitor-friendly city that attracts countless tourists every year, who enjoy the beaches, savor the extensive range of attractions or explore the surrounding nature.


Activities & sights



Originally the region around Wollongong was owned by the Dharwal Aboriginal people populated. 1796 finally came the first European. These were the explorers George Bass and Matthew Flinders, who arrived at Lake Illawarra. A short time later, around 1812, the first European settlers (woodworkers and cattle breeders) followed. Various military buildings were erected in the 1830s. 1834 one began with the town planning, which was finally responsible for the road construction. The infrastructure was constantly being expanded and greatly accelerated the urbanization of the region. In 1862 the telegraph line between Wollongong and Bellambi was completed. Patrick Lahiff built a coke plant and two coke ovens (now closed and are popular attractions) on Wollongong Harbor in the 1870s. Later that moved high coal volumes mainly large and heavy industry in the region. In the year 1902 it was in the Mount Kembla mine worst mine disaster in Australia recorded. 94 men between the ages of 14 and 69 died in an explosion.

1871 was that Breakwater Lighthouse - also known as the Old Wollongong Lighthouse - built in the harbor. Between 1890 and 1891 one built that Flagstaff Hill Fort, which should serve to repel a Russian attack that was deemed possible. Today is Flagstaff Hill with its legendary, almost 5 tons heavy "68-punder" cannons (the balls weigh 68 pounds, or 31kg) a popular attraction at Wollongong Harbor. The striking peninsula is also enhanced by the one dating from 1937 Head lighthouse embossed. The so-called Flagstaff PointWith its cliffs, beautiful green areas and the two lighthouses to the east of the city center, it is the most important attraction in Wollongong for many tourists.

Even if the Steel industry has risen to become the most important economic factor around Wollongong Education, art and tourism Nowadays it is impossible to imagine the region without it. Whether the University of Wollongong (UOW), founded in 1951, or the Illawara Performing Arts Center, which opened in 1988 in the presence of Prince Charles and Princess Diana, the city has always gained in importance due to its interesting history, striking landscape and proximity to Sydney.


Museums, culture & art

The city's multicultural society has spawned diverse art and cultural scenes. The music, painting, photography and traditional art can be found in numerous Cultural institutions but are also increasingly being demonstrated in the city's streets and malls, such as the Crown Street Mall. In the musical field, Wollongong is especially famous for its jazz ensembles that play in the Wollongong Conservatorium of Music teach and perform. Most of the acting takes place in the largest theater in the region - the one run by the Merrigong Theater Company Illawarra Performing Arts Center. At the annual Wollongong Eisteddfod Shows, the artists present the audience with a program consisting of music, theater and dance.

In addition, Wollongong offers a large selection of art galleries and museums with a variety of different styles. The Corn Mill Art Gallery showcases and sells local paintings from the region. The offer is similar in the Wollongong Art Gallery (Website). The temporary exhibitions each focus on local, national and international artists. Another highlight of the culture is the monthly exhibition of the Wollongong Traditional Arts Society Inc. Every third Sunday of the month, the local artists meet in the city's harbor and exhibit their works of art for visitors. The majority of the exhibits are also sold to interested parties, with part of the proceeds going to charity. When the weather is nice, the unique outdoor gallery is a real insider tip. The Illawarra Museum (11 Market Street) is located in a two-story Grade II listed house that displays a collection of furniture and items from the area. For a day trip that is Mt Kembla Mining Heritage Museum a good place to go. It commemorates the victims of the mine disaster of 1902. The mine, which has now been closed, has been restored accordingly and converted into a memorial. Visits are only possible by appointment or at the annual memorial festival organized by Mt Kembla Mining Heritage Inc. Other highlights for a short trip are the Nan Tien Temple (largest Buddhist temple in the southern hemisphere), the Wombarra Sculpture Garden in the rainforest of Illawarra or the Wallen Keelan Ocean Art Gallery with their impressive photographs of the surrounding south coast.


Shopping & Markets

Anyone looking for bargains or great souvenirs in Wollongong will surely find what they are looking for in the markets or in the shopping malls. The Crown Street Mall has everything on offer that you can wear or eat. For fashion it is Wollongong Central the focal point of the city and the PD Art Gallery Roy Jewelery sells handcrafted jewelry made from a wide variety of materials. At the same time, the colorful ones take place regularly Friday markets instead: You mainly sell local food and flowers. But there are also stalls selling soaps, clothes and jewelry. They are open weekly from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and are located in the Lower Crown Street Mall square. For a classic shopping tour, however, most people are drawn to the city center, where all the shops known in Australia are represented.


Culinary, restaurants, pubs & cafes

In the multicultural small town you can eat in restaurants of various cultures - from Thai to Mexican. At the same time, of course, there are also traditional Australian restaurants and steakhouses. The restaurants specializing in fish have set up shop on the beach and around the port area. A particularly high concentration of restaurants can be found on Memorial Drive and Grand Pacific Drive as well as along Princes Highway. The pubs can be found near the beaches and the cafes are mainly to be found on the coastline.



In terms of nightlife, Wollongong tends to have a small selection of venues. Concerts and sporting events take place regularly in the WIN Entertainment Center. If you want to have a classic drink, meet new people or dance, you will find what you are looking for in various clubs and pubs. These extend along Church Street, Keira Street, Corrimal Street and Princes Highway.


Nature & parks

The Royal National Park is located at the southern end of the Sydney metropolitan area and is the second oldest national park in the world. Dense rainforests alternate with heather moor and sandstone landscapes. On the beach, on the other hand, sheer cliffs formed up to the ocean. The park's most popular and impressive hiking trail is also located here. The paths meander through nature with a length of one to 26 kilometers and offer each hiker their own individually tailored route, which can be covered in an estimated time of half an hour to two days. It is a little closer to Wollongong Illawarra Escarpment State Conservation Area. The steep slope around the city ends at imposing sandstone cliffs overgrown by subtropical rainforests with eucalyptus plants and cedar trees. Mainly bird lovers get their money's worth here, because the colorful beauties feel particularly at home in the mountains of the region. In addition, there are ancient sights of the Aborigines who lived here several hundred years ago deep in the forests. Another attraction is the Blue Mile. It is the perfect starting point for day trips in the area - be it to the South Pacific Ocean or the breathtaking nature of the Illawarra region. At the same time, you can enjoy the sunset over the wide sea on the newly built beach promenade or try out one of the many restaurants.

The rises not far away Illawara Range with the mountains Broker’s Nose (440m), Mount Keira (464m), Mount Kembla (534m) and Mount Murray (768m). Here, nature is largely shaped by forests, which also include rainforest sections of the temperate latitudes. In the south of the range is the Albion Park with its salt water lagoon Lake Illawara, which flows into the Tasman Sea. The Five Islands Nature Resort off the coast of Port Kembla is an important retreat for various wild animals.



Many of the coastlines of the Illawarra region are surrounded by cliffs, but there are around Wollongong 17 official beaches. You can surf and swim at each of them. The main beaches near the city center are the North Beach in North Wollongong as well as the City Beach near Flagstaff Point. Other activities that can be enjoyed on the beaches and in the water include rock fishing or skimboarding. In addition, a 13-kilometer bike path leads north from Wollongong Beach to the Illawarra coastline. In addition to cyclists, there is also always a large number of joggers, skaters and walkers. Further highlights are the inner-city pools, which impress with their beautiful location overlooking the sea and a swimming pool built into the rocks.


Festivals & Events

The following events take place regularly in Wollongong:

  • January: Australia Day (National Day)
  • October to March: Twilight Food Markets of the World (music and food in the open air)
  • March: Seniors Week (activities for older residents and tourists in the area)
  • April: Anzac Day (street marches in memory of the Battle of Gallipoli in World War I)
  • April to Mai: Wollongong Heritage Festival (honoring local history)
  • November: Viva la Gong (Festival of Creativity and Cultural Diversity)

More activities & sights

A variety of activities for the adventurous and adrenaline fanatic are available in Wollongong. At the Hangglideoz in Stanwell Park you can enjoy the breathtaking view of the striking landscape with a tandem jump with a paraglider. You can go even higher with a parachute jump over the beaches of North Wollongong. in the Albion Park a real G-Force fighter jet lifts the occupants up and ensures pure adrenaline. But it doesn't get boring here either on water or on land. Canoe tours on the Minnamurra River are just as popular as visiting the Jamberoo Action Park. Both activities ensure pleasantly cool refreshment on hot days. There is also the opportunity to take a closer look at the surroundings using all kinds of exotic means of transport. Motorcycles (two and three-wheelers), sports cars or Segways can be rented at several locations. In addition, the residents of Wollongong are extremely active in sports. Sports centers for squash, tennis, football, basketball, etc. can be found on almost every street corner.


Popular tours & activities

Here you will find all typical local activities for every taste and budget. Browse through our extensive range and plan your dream trip today. Have fun!

Helpful information


Arrival & onward journey

Via the Princes Highway and the M1 you can get there with the automobile fastest from Sydney to Wollongong and at the same time enjoys fantastic views. However, there are usually tolls on the route. The journey is around 90 kilometers and takes a little less than 1.5 hours. From Canberra it is between 230 and 280 kilometers via the Hume Highway, depending on the route, which can be covered in 3 to 3.5 hours. The Sydney Trains operate daily from Sydney to the Wollongong Railway Station in Lowden Square. These trains also run to some suburbs and villages along the South Coast Line. The buses Premier Motor Service make a stop in Wollongong on the east coast route between Sydney and Eden. The company Murray's Coaches, however, connects the city to Canberra. From Wollongong Airport have regular direct flights to Melbourne and Brisbane. The airport is also connected to the state train and bus network. Once in Wollongong, you can use the free Gong Shuttle Bus as a Public transportation use. This shuttles back and forth in a ring between the main train station and the university. During the daytime on weekdays, the shuttle buses run every 10 minutes. In the evenings and on weekends, however, every 20 minutes. The bus companies Premier Illawarra, Dions Bus Service and Busabout also operate in the city. There are also rental car companies on site to choose from.


Tourist Information

The Wollongong Visitor Information Center is located at 93 Crown Street. It is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Further information

You can easily find supermarkets, gas stations, bank branches, hospitals and various shops.


Picture gallery: Great impressions of all highlights

You will find numerous motifs in our unique Wollongong picture gallery. Gain authentic impressions and enjoy a piece of Australia from home. We wish you a lot of fun!

First impressions in the video