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Family-friendly Neighbourhoods: 6 of the Best Suburbs in Regional NSW to Raise a Family

Leave the big smoke behind – these are some of the best areas in NSW to raise a family.

With spacious properties, excellent community facilities and backdrops of natural beauty, these pockets of NSW are perfect for family living.

Wagga Wagga

In the heart of the Riverina, Wagga Wagga lures families seeking greater affordability, better work-life balance and a friendly atmosphere. This vibrant city is home to excellent education facilities, including more than 20 primary schools, and a good choice of preschool and childcare centres. Nestled on the banks of the Murrumbidgee River, families can stretch their legs on meandering walking trails or take a dip at its sandy beach. There are picturesque Botanic Gardens, replete with a free zoo, and a jam-packed calendar of community festivals and events. The region is well known for its epicurean delights, which span the gamut from trendy cafes to fine diners and cellar doors. 


With rolling country on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other, beautiful Berry is one of the most sought-after towns on the South Coast. This fashionable, tightly held spot is easily accessible from Sydney, yet feels as though it’s a world away. Nature-loving families will find rainforest walking trails, horse riding and the pristine Kangaroo River all within easy reach. Cool off at Seven Mile Beach, just a 10-minute drive away, or keep kids busy at the sensational Boongaree Nature Play Park in town. Families can choose from public and independent schools, while feeling a part of a warm and inclusive country community.


On the outskirts of Wollongong, the coastal suburb of Bulli is seeing a surge in popularity with young families looking to escape the big smoke. Less than 90 minutes’ drive from Sydney, it’s convenient enough for those needing to commute, yet has the feel of a holiday at home. Flanked by glistening beaches, it gives locals a sun-kissed lifestyle with plenty of outdoor adventure. From an Olympic-sized ocean pool to cycling tracks through the escarpment, waterfall trails and popular Sublime Walking Track, Bulli offers an idyllic change from the pace of the city. Locals converge at the Foragers Sunday markets, surrounding cafes and eateries and kids’ playgrounds, which all contribute to the family-focused vibe.


The historic town of Griffith in the Riverina is steadily growing in popular with young families seeking a tree change. It offers affordable housing and large blocks of land, good education facilities and a welcoming community, with sports playing a big part of daily life. The bustling village centres around Banna Avenue’s string of coffee shops, restaurants and boutiques, with mouth-watering delicacies reflecting Griffith’s rich Italian culture. On weekends, families flock to City Park with its fabulous water play area and flying fox. Delve into the region’s fantastic local food scene or get back to basics within the rugged landscape of Cocoparra National Park.

Avoca Beach

Rich in community and family amenities, the beachside suburb of Avoca takes prides of pride on the NSW Central Coast. Sitting just 90 minutes north of Sydney, the neighbourhood is prized for its relaxed, coastal lifestyle, with the pristine beach at its heart. Kids love exploring the rockpools or playing at waterfront playgrounds, while the Avoca Lake is popular for kayaking, canoeing and boating. There are monthly markets (held on the fourth Sunday) with local produce stalls, artisan wares and live music, and a flourishing café scene. Add sports clubs, a shopping village and an excellent local primary school and it’s easy to see why Avoca Beach has seen an influx of young buyers over the last few years.

Suffolk Park

Just five minutes from central Byron Bay, the tree-lined suburb of Suffolk Park has become a hotspot for growing families. It’s bounded by beautiful surf beaches and lush green hinterland, with a friendly, easy-going vibe. Families can immerse themselves in all the region’s cultural and creative delights – including a strong roster of arts, music and farmers’ markets – while benefiting from a quieter, more residential lifestyle without the crowds of tourists. Suffolk Park is eminently walkable, a short stroll to dog-friendly Tallow Beach and cute cafes. It offers families a mix of contemporary and character-filled homes and a good selection of local schools.

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