Wollongong is surrounded by beautiful landscape from all directions.
The area around Wollongong is known as Illawarra with the hilly Illawarra Escarpment making a perfect backdrop to the city and the Illawarra Lake to the south.
There are plenty of walking tracks around Wollongong in the Illawarra Escarpment with various lookout points.
You can get great views of the city and surrounding area from Mt Kembla and Mt Keira as well as from the Bulli Scenic Lookout which is situated just off of the Princess Highway to the north of Wollongong.
A tourist train operates during the weekend heading into the Illawarra Escarpment along a spectacular scenic route. To the south the beautiful scenery of the Morton National Park is worth visiting, as well as Lake Illawarra which offers various water sports. You then, of course, have some great surfing beaches on the coast.
The main street in Wollongong is Crown Street where you will find plenty of shops. There is also a mall between Kembla and Keira Streets. Around this area there are two Internet cafes, one on Kembla Street and the other inside the mall.
Wollongong also has numerous museums as well as an art gallery to keep you occupied. These include the City Gallery, The Illawarra Museum (telling the history of the area), the Illawarra Motoring Museum and the beautiful Nan Tien Buddhist Temple.
The harbour is in the centre of Wollongong with a large fishing area to the south of the harbour at Belmore Basin. Either side of this are two beaches, North Beach and South Wollongong City Beach. Although both are pleasant if you are looking at going surfing then head for the North Beach as generally surf is better here. Further north again other good surfing beaches include Austinmer, Headlands, Sandon Point and Sharkies.
There are various accommodation places based around the city, all at varying costs. These include both hostels and hotels. Campsites can be found about 10km out of the city, although the beautiful views that they offer make up for the distance. There are also a wide range of cafes and restaurants in and around the city, with a selection along the waterfront. Wollongong also offers a number of live bands in a range of its clubs and pubs.
There are plenty of buses that take you around the city as well as further north and south. Crown Street is where the main bus stop is so you should be able to get to most places from this point. The main bus station is on the corner Keira and Campbell Streets. From here you can catch the Premier Motor Services or Greyhound Pioneer to Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne. There are also frequent trains which take you to all of the nearby beaches. Trains also run daily to and from Sydney, also heading further south to Nowra.