Thirroul Travel Guide
Thirroul is where the taste makers, hipsters, artisans and cool folk of the coast gather. The escarpment makes its presence felt on one side and Thirroul beach provides a lovely breeze on the other. The main vein of Thirroul is a strip along Lawrence Hargrave Drive. It starts at George Street and goes all the way up to Bergie's Fish Shop. The buzz of Thirroul was what attracted us to move here from Sydney. It offered a little urban vibe with a peaceful beach and a friendly feel.
There are three main options in terms of Thirroul accommodation;
Thirroul Holiday Homes: you can of course check out Emerald + Aqua, Airbnb or Stayz which have a great range of holiday homes. The bonus of holiday homes that are private and offer the chance to experience life like a local.
Thirroul Beach Motel: Is famously where artist Brett Whitley met his demise. The traditional old red brick roadside motel on the outside, inside the rooms have been renovated and are comfortable.
Ryan’s Pub: Offers affordable, simple rooms above the pub that will put you in the centre of town. You will be within walking distance of everything you need.
Thirroul Accommodation: What to Bring
- Coastal Cool: Thirroul has a certain distinctive style and you will want to dress your best. The locals boast an effortless coastal cool style.
- Sunglasses and sunblock: Always a must as you are likely to spend the whole day out and about in the sun.
- Large brimmed hat: Don't end the day with a red face and painful sunburn.
- Water bottle: Reduce plastic and be prepared for where ever the day takes you.
- Beach Towels: You often can't take towels from hotels or holiday homes to the beach so it’s best to bring your own.
- Camera: I know every ones uses their phones now. But the beach and coastline are breathtaking so take some shots you might actually want to frame. Otherwise Instagram the hell out of everything.
- Comfortable shoes: Include a cool pair of sandals for wandering around, thongs for the beach, hiking boots and runners. A thigh busting run along the coast will earn you all the cake you want to eat.
- Swimsuits galore: more than one pair so you can shake it up a bit and let them dry out between swims.
- Beach toys: Thirroul beach has a wide expanse of sand for the kids to build a whole fort if they want to.
- Books: There isn't a book shop in sight until you hit Wollongong so bring your own. There is a newsagent in Thirroul that has a great selection of magazines.
Thirroul Accommodation: Getting Around
By car from Sydney CBD it will take you about 1 hour and 20 minutes.
From Parramatta about 1 hour and 18 minutes.
On the train from Sydney Central you are looking about 1 hour and 30 minutes.
Thirroul train station is in the centre of town and once you are here walking is the best way to get around. On weekends the one road leading in and out of Thirroul - Lawrence Hargrave Drive gets packed and parking can be an issue. You can't hire bikes in Thirroul but you can contact South Coast Bike Hire and rent some for the day. They will bring the bikes to you (if you hire two bikes the cost is about $45.00 each). But realistically if you are getting out of Sydney then the traffic and parking is probably a dream in comparison.
Thirroul Accommodation: Where to Eat
Coffee: For the caffeine fiends Thirroul offers no end of opportunities to tank up and taste coffee from every corner of the globe and made in every new fashion. The team at E+A rate Finbox, Honest Dons, Buck Hamblin and Bread and Espresso and the best in town.
If healthy and hearty are more your speed then smashed avocado, spicy beans and whole grains can be had at Honest Dons.
Lunch: Cucina offers a great range of salads, pasta, savory tarts and pies all made at the premises.
But if you are on a budget I would hit Saffron’ s milk bar where you can get a sandwich, hot chips and a milkshake and still have change left over.
The IGA at Thirroul also has a great fresh food, deli and cheese section as does the Thirroul Fruit Barn.
Dinner: If you are feeding a family then Ryan’s Pub, The Deck and Beaches offer huge meals and reasonable prices at a good standard.
Asian fare can be found at Arawan Thai which is next to Anita’s theatre however Dragon Bay offers a trip around Asia with their menu.
For something bit fancier then Samuel's and The Post Masters Quarters offer varied and interesting gourmet menus.
Looking for a water view? Then the newly refurbished Thirroul Pavilion offers good food with a fantastic view.
And new comer Jose Jones offers a cool bar, modern menu complete with Buddha bowls.
For the best fish and chips in town head to Bergie’s plan to eat in side garden where they have live music on the weekend or head across the road and watch the waves.
Thirroul Accommodation: Where to Shop
Thirroul Accommodation: Fashion
Plume: Offers a curated selection of brands that are on trend but timeless. The space is open and bright and lovely to shop in.
Babes 2: Began as an off shoot of its popular Wollongong store but is now so popular it stands on its own. Savvy buying means the store is an eclectic mix of Australian and international brands, quirky finds and budget pieces to top up your wardrobe.
fabrik: This pop store offers ethical fashion with natural fibre's such as linen, cotton and silk. Catering for women from new born upwards and even has products for the home.
SALLT Collective: If you want to blow into town and immediately get that coastal cool look then pop into SALLT Collective directly from the train station. Stock up on a few items and you will look like a Thirroul local in no time.
Thirroul Accommodation: Home
Nest Emporium: The original home wares mecca is still the best – always a little ahead of trend and full of interesting pieces this small space has everything from furniture to kids clothes and gifts.
Cocoon Trading: Has a huge collection of global art works, furniture, decorative pieces, and beautiful handmade soaps. Give yourself time to really look around and find that special piece for your home.
Fundamentals for Living: While plush cushions might be all the rage, I would highly recommend checking out this kitchen accessories and cookware store. The owner sources products that are of the highest quality to make your kitchen more elegant and your cooking more enjoyable.
Thirroul Accommodation: Gifts
Oat and Honey: Packed from top to bottom with clothes, shoes, bags, jewellery, candles, fragrances, journals and just about everything in between. You will be hard pressed to leave this shop without a few items in hand.
The Living Hearth: Offers beautiful French linen bedding in a range of colours and finishes as well as linen clothes, hand made blankets, quirky gifts, objects, home wares, art and jewellery.
Thirroul Accommodation: Something Special
Egg & Dart: Is a framing gallery which showcases some of the best art on the coast. This is a place to pick up something completely unique and special.
Retro Wombat: Is a vintage store with a wild and varied collection of Bric-a-Brac as well as mid-centre modern furniture and art.
Thirroul Accommodation: What to Do
- Walk, run or ride the coastal track; going South you can go all the way to Wollongong or going north all the way to Coalcliff.
- Go for a swim at the Art Deco ocean pool and earn yourself an extra slice of cake.
- Book a show at Anita’s theatre – not only is a live show great fun but the theatre is a beautiful old building that has been restored.
- Have a massage at the Touch of Thai for a little bit of a tropical feel while on a coastal holiday.
- Take a bike, scooter and picnic and head to Thirroul park which is one of the best kids playgrounds in the northern suburbs.
Thirroul Accommodation: 2 Day Itinerary
Thirroul Accommodation: Day 1
- Wake early and catch the sunrise on the beach grab a coffee at the Thirroul Beach Pavilion.
- Swim a few laps in the art deco ocean pool to start the day with a bounce in your step.
- Hit Honest Don’s but unbeatable and wholesome breakfast.
- Head in the Thirroul Fruit Barn across the road and stock up on supplies for lunch.
- Pack a picnic and head north towards Austinmer on the coastal track or south towards Sandon Point refuel when you are ready.
- Head back to your Thirroul Holiday house or hotel for a snooze.
- Get ready for dinner and head to the Jose Jones.
Thirroul Accommodation: Day 2
- Take the bike path to the edge of Austinmer and head to Bread and Espresso for a coffee and croissant
- Spend the morning browsing through the shops and stop for lunch at Cucina.
- Enjoy a quick dip in the ocean before heading to Touch of Thai for a massage.
- Walk off the calories by walking to Sandon Point for a breathtaking view of the coast line.
- Have a sun downer at Beaches before heading to a show at Anita’s theatre.
Thirroul Accommodation: Things to Know
The Thirroul Local List
Supermarket: IGA or Coles in Thirroul – Lawrence Hargrave Drive, Thirroul.
Butcher: Pure Bred Meats Thirroul – Lawrence Hargrave Drive, Thirroul.
Chemist: Barry Navins Pharmacy – Lawrence Hargrave Drive, Thirroul.
Newsagency: Thirroul Railway Stationers & Newsagency is on the southern side of the train tracks or
Thirroul Newsagent is in Thirroul Plaza.
Pizza Delivery: Crust Pizza – Lawrence Hargrave Drive (they get very busy so order early).
Medical Centre: Thirroul Medical Centre – Lawrence Hargrave Drive, Thirroul.