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Discover the 15 Friendliest Towns Across Australia: A Guide to Warm Welcomes

12/05/2024
14 mins read
Albany
Source: Tourism Western Australia

Want to find the most welcoming places in Australia? From the lovely Berry in NSW to the lively Fremantle in WA, these places offer more than just beautiful views—they’re about the friendly people you’ll meet. Whether you want a beach vacation, a countryside escape, or to experience local culture, these towns guarantee great times with their warm welcomes and local kindness. Let’s go see what makes each of these towns worth visiting!

Our editorial picks for the friendliest towns in Australia are:

  • For a mix of countryside charm and refined style: Berry, NSW
  • For a secret spot known for deep-sea fishing and its artsy community: Bermagui, NSW
  • Known as the spa capital with roots in European culture: Daylesford,VIC
  • A historical treasure with a lively food and wine scene: Beechworth,VIC
  • A lively port city known for its rich cultural scene: Fremantle, WA

Berry, NSW

Berry, a beautiful village in the Shoalhaven region of NSW, mixes country charm with a touch of elegance. Close to the coast, this town is filled with green hills and old buildings, and the people here are as welcoming as the small cafes and unique shops. Walking down Queen Street, you’ll come across all sorts of special items, from old treasures to handmade goods, all showing the town’s long history of farming. Don’t forget to stop by the Famous Berry Donut Van for something sweet, and check out the monthly Berry Markets, where you can find the best local food and handmade products.

Berry isn’t just nice to look at; it’s also a great place for people who love food. With top-notch restaurants and cozy tea places, you can enjoy country cooking with a bit of city style. Whether you’re having a fancy dinner or just having tea in a place where the sun shines through, you’ll always hear the friendly talk of the people living here. Berry is also full of community events, like workshops and festivals, making it the perfect example of a friendly small town.

  • How far from Nearest CBD: Approximately 145 km from Sydney CBD
  • Known for: Boutique shopping, gourmet food, heritage charm, and the Famous Berry Donut Van
  • Google Map Link: https://maps.app.goo.gl/4CXSUirTKDDvUgXPA

Bermagui, NSW

Bermagui, located on the Sapphire Coast, is a beautiful hidden spot where the deep blue sea meets the greenery of forests and mountains. It’s a perfect place for fishing enthusiasts and nature lovers, offering some of the best deep-sea fishing in Australia thanks to its close location to the continental shelf. The town has a rich history, including stories about writer Zane Grey’s fishing trips and the unsolved mystery of government geologist Lamont Young’s disappearance in 1880, which is why Mystery Bay got its name.

There’s more to Bermagui than just its fishing history; it’s a place where art and nature come together beautifully. The Bermagui Blue Pool, an amazing ocean rock pool, provides a cool swim with a fantastic view. The nearby beaches and Camel Rock are great for exploring and relaxing. The town has a welcoming atmosphere, and you can feel it whether you’re talking to a local by the harbour or enjoying fresh seafood at a restaurant by the water.

  • How far from Nearest CBD: Approximately 380 km from Sydney CBD
  • Known for: Deep-sea fishing, Bermagui Blue Pool, artistic community, and pristine natural beauty
  • Google Map Link: https://maps.app.goo.gl/N4PwuzHY1hAHcUyy6

Currarong, NSW

Currarong, a coastal village at the northern tip of the Jervis Bay area, is a tranquil escape where the bush meets the sea. This small community may be off the beaten path, but it’s a treasure trove of natural wonders, from the white sands of Jervis Bay to the rugged cliffs of Beecroft Peninsula. The town’s seclusion only adds to its charm, making it the perfect spot for those looking to unwind in a serene setting. With a population that swells in the summer, Currarong maintains its friendly small-town atmosphere year-round.

Whether you’re here to catch a glimpse of the migrating whales, cast a line from the rocks, or simply soak up the sun on a secluded beach, Currarong’s laid-back lifestyle is contagious. The local Zac’s Place is a favorite for fresh seafood, and the walking tracks that lead to hidden coves and shipwrecks tell the tales of the town’s maritime history. It’s a place where nature’s beauty is matched only by the warmth of its community.

Daylesford, VIC

Daylesford is a cozy country town where taking it easy is what it’s all about, located at the base of the Great Dividing Range. It’s known as the spa capital of Australia, filled with natural mineral springs and top-notch wellness centers that invite guests to relax and unwind. The town’s European roots are visible in its beautiful buildings and the Hepburn Springs Bathhouse, a historic spot where people have enjoyed therapeutic mineral baths since 1895.

But Daylesford offers more than just relaxation. It’s also a great place for those who love food, with organic cafes and upscale restaurants that serve fresh local food from the nearby Macedon Ranges. The Wombat Hill Botanical Gardens are perfect for a peaceful walk, and the town’s art galleries display the area’s creative talent. With a friendly and welcoming community, Daylesford makes everyone feel like they belong.

  • How far from Nearest CBD: Approximately 115 km from Melbourne CBD
  • Known for: Natural mineral springs, wellness retreats, gourmet dining, and vibrant arts scene
  • Google Map Link: https://maps.app.goo.gl/siRsoZk63C3M73if6

Montville, QLD

Montville is a picturesque village located in the Sunshine Coast hinterland, known for its fresh air and beautiful views. This lovely village is filled with art galleries, pottery studios, and craft cottages, showcasing the region’s creative spirit. As you walk down the tree-lined Main Street, friendly local shopkeepers and the smell of fresh coffee from cozy cafes will welcome you. Montville is all about relaxing, whether you’re shopping in unique boutique stores or enjoying a glass of local wine with a view of the stunning hinterland.

For those who love the outdoors, Montville is the perfect starting point to explore some of Queensland’s most beautiful natural spots. Close by is Kondalilla National Park, famous for its breathtaking waterfall and green rainforest, providing a peaceful getaway. You can have a leisurely picnic or a cool swim in the natural rock pools. With its welcoming community and peaceful surroundings, Montville is a great place for anyone looking to relax and enjoy nature and creativity.

Maleny, QLD

Maleny is a beautiful town located high above the Sunshine Coast, with amazing views of the Glass House Mountains. This lively community mixes country charm with a creative spirit, where dairy farms are found alongside artisan cheese shops and organic cafes. The main street of the town is always buzzing, with both locals and visitors coming together to enjoy the relaxed vibe of Maleny. It’s a place where you can feel a strong connection to nature, whether you’re visiting a local farm or walking through the beautiful Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve.

The town is very focused on being sustainable and supporting local farmers, which you can see everywhere, from the busy farmers’ markets to its green initiatives. Maleny Dairies is a popular spot, showing off the local dairy industry with farm tours that are both fun and informative. With its friendly people and beautiful natural scenery, Maleny is the perfect spot for anyone looking for a welcoming and eco-conscious place to visit.

Hepburn Springs, VIC

Hepburn Springs is a tranquil village where the legacy of the gold rush era meets the rejuvenating power of mineral waters. As the spa capital’s twin town, Hepburn Springs is synonymous with relaxation and wellness, boasting the historic Hepburn Bathhouse & Spa where visitors have indulged in the therapeutic waters since 1895. The town’s European heritage is woven into the fabric of the community, with Swiss-Italian migrants having left their mark on the local cuisine and architecture.

Beyond the spa experiences, Hepburn Springs invites you to explore its enchanting gardens and scenic walking trails. The town’s friendly locals are proud of their slice of paradise and are always ready to share their favorite spots, be it a hidden mineral spring or a cozy cafe. With its blend of natural beauty and a welcoming atmosphere, Hepburn Springs is a place where well-being is a way of life.

Beechworth, VIC

Beechworth is a historical treasure located at the base of the Victorian Alps, where history is kept alive and celebrated. This town acts like a living museum, boasting more than 30 buildings recognized by the National Trust that share stories from the gold rush days. Beechworth’s streets are lined with impressive old buildings made from local honey-colored granite, giving the town a unified and welcoming look. It’s a place where those who love history and architecture can spend days exploring and always find something new to appreciate.

The town’s lively food and wine culture is another reason people visit, with local breweries, bakeries, and cafes showcasing the area’s abundant produce. Beechworth’s warm community loves their history and is excited to share it with guests, whether through a guided tour of the historic courthouse or a wine tasting at a local winery. With its beautiful surroundings and friendly people, Beechworth is a welcoming town that makes every visit feel like a journey to the past.

Bright, VIC

Bright is a lively center located in Victoria’s High Country, known for its love of adventure and the outdoors. This town attracts people who enjoy the fresh air of the mountains and activities that are exciting. Whether it’s the excitement of biking down Mystic Mountain or the calm of fishing in the Ovens River, Bright has something for everyone. But it’s not all about the thrill; Bright is also a great place for those who love food. With a wide variety of local foods, from craft beers to handmade cheeses, the town’s food scene is as fresh as its mountain surroundings.

In autumn, Bright becomes even more beautiful, with its trees turning into a stunning display of reds, oranges, and yellows. During this season, the town is full of visitors, but the friendly people who live here are always ready to share a story or suggest their favorite places to go. Whether you’re warming up in a café or walking through the Alpine National Park, you’ll find that the sense of community in Bright is as refreshing as the cool mountain air.

  • How far from Nearest CBD: Approximately 320 km from Melbourne CBD
  • Known for: Outdoor adventures, seasonal colors, local produce, and a welcoming community
  • Google Map Link: https://maps.app.goo.gl/cFd7BcqbddyFwY3E7

Maldon, VIC

Maldon is a town where history comes to life, offering a glimpse into the past with its well-kept buildings from the gold rush era. It was named Australia’s first ‘notable town’ by the National Trust in 1966 because of its 19th-century look that’s still around today, making it feel like a real-life museum that’s both genuine and welcoming. The town’s history is as rich as the friendliness of its current residents, including shop owners, artists, and historians who love to share old stories.

However, Maldon isn’t just stuck in the past; it’s a place where old and new blend together smoothly. The town has a lively arts scene, antique shops, and local events that attract people of all ages. Whether you’re taking a ride on the vintage steam train or grabbing a coffee at a historical bakery, the welcoming vibe in Maldon makes every visitor feel right at home.

  • How far from Nearest CBD: Approximately 135 km from Melbourne CBD
  • Known for: Gold rush heritage, historic streetscape, and a tight-knit community
  • Google Map Link: https://maps.app.goo.gl/s3uCx4UhPGerrG8w8

Port Fairy, VIC

Port Fairy is a cozy coastal town where life moves at a slower pace, and visitors are always greeted with open arms. This lovely fishing village is known for its broad streets, lined with 19th-century cottages and ancient stone churches, giving it a feel like it’s straight out of a storybook. The people here have a strong connection to their town, taking pride in it and always ready to show it off to guests. The Port Fairy Folk Festival is a big event here, bringing together musicians and music fans from all over the world to celebrate the town’s lively culture.

You can still see signs of Port Fairy’s history as a maritime hub today. Walking along the wharf, you’ll see fishing boats and have the chance to talk to local fishermen. Griffiths Island, close by, is a beautiful place for wildlife and those looking to find some peace, with its flock of shearwaters and an old lighthouse. The sense of community in Port Fairy is strong and welcoming, making it a place where visitors often feel like they’ve made lifelong friends.

Yamba, NSW

Yamba, perched at the mouth of the Clarence River, is a coastal gem that’s as laid-back as it is lovely. This seaside town is a favorite among those who appreciate the simple pleasures of life: a good surf, fresh seafood, and friendly faces. Yamba’s beaches are a drawcard, with the famous Angourie Point offering some of the best surf breaks in the country. But it’s the town’s relaxed vibe and welcoming locals that truly set it apart, making it a place where time seems to slow down.

The Pacific Hotel, with its stunning ocean views, is a local institution where travelers can mingle with surfers and fishermen alike. The town’s ocean pool, built into the rocks, is a slice of paradise, and the local café scene, with spots like Beachwood Café, serves up fresh, seasonal fare that’s as delightful as the coastal views. In Yamba, the community’s warmth is as consistent as the tides, ensuring every visit is a memorable one.

Margaret River, WA

Margaret River is more than just a place to visit; it’s an experience that comes with a relaxed way of living. This town is famous worldwide for its top-notch wineries and amazing surf spots, offering a great mix of natural scenery and excellent food. The people here, including surfers, winemakers, and artists, create a welcoming community vibe that makes everyone feel at home. Whether you’re here to surf the best waves or enjoy some of the finest wines, you’ll find the people of Margaret River as warm as the surroundings.

This town doesn’t just focus on making great wine; it also takes pride in its food, with local chefs cooking up dishes that are both fresh and creative. The annual Gourmet Escape is a big event that attracts food lovers from all over to enjoy the area’s delicious tastes and creative dishes. The town’s love for art is seen in its many galleries and studios, adding a layer of cultural interest that fits perfectly with its natural beauty and food scene.

Albany, WA

Albany, WA, the oldest European settlement in the area, is a town where the past and nature come together in an amazing way. Located on the southern coast, Albany boasts breathtaking coastal views, old buildings, and a very welcoming community. You can feel the town’s rich history everywhere, from the ancient whaling stations to the ANZAC Peace Park, which honors Albany’s part in the ANZAC legacy. However, it’s the people of Albany who really stand out, known for their kindness and willingness to share the stories and beauty of their town.

For those who love being outdoors, Albany has a lot to offer, like hiking in Torndirrup National Park or watching whales in King George Sound. The town’s food scene is also great, with options ranging from fresh seafood to produce from local farms. With its stunning scenery, deep historical roots, and friendly people, Albany is a place everyone should visit when in Western Australia.

Fremantle, WA

Fremantle, or ‘Freo’ as locals like to call it, is a lively port city near Perth, known for its rich maritime history and free-spirited atmosphere. This diverse town attracts artists, musicians, and food enthusiasts, creating a lively scene filled with live music, art markets, and plenty of cafes and bars. The community is relaxed but full of life, making it a popular spot for both locals and visitors.

The town’s old buildings add to its appeal, housing everything from unique shops to small breweries. The Fremantle Markets, around since 1897, showcase the best the community has to offer, including specialty foods and handmade items. The spirit of the sea is ever-present at the busy Fremantle Harbour and the Shipwreck Galleries. Thanks to Fremantle’s welcoming and varied community, guests not only feel at home but also leave feeling a bit more inspired.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which town in Australia is considered the friendliest?

Daylesford, Victoria, has been named one of the most welcoming places on earth, ranking fourth globally. Additionally, Perth has been recognized as Australia’s friendliest city.

Are these friendly towns suitable for families?

Yes, many of the towns listed, such as Berry, NSW, and Maleny, QLD, offer a family-friendly atmosphere with community events and a safe environment.

What is the best time of year to visit these towns?

The best time to visit depends on the specific activities and climate of each town. For example, Bright, Victoria, is best visited in autumn to experience its famous fall foliage, while coastal towns like Yamba, NSW, are great year-round but particularly enjoyable in the summer months.

Can I find good food and cultural experiences in these towns?

Absolutely, many of these towns boast a vibrant food scene and cultural experiences. For instance, Beechworth, Victoria, is known for its local gastronomy and rich history, and Margaret River, WA, is famous for its wineries and surf breaks.

Are these towns accessible by public transport?

Some towns may be accessible by public transport, such as Daylesford, Victoria, which is just over an hour’s drive from Melbourne. However, for more remote locations like Bermagui, NSW, it may be more practical to drive or join a guided tour.

Lachlan Taylor

Lachlan aka Lockie is a contributing writer at Humble Trail, known for his down-to-earth style and passion for the great outdoors. Born and raised in the small town of Deloriane, Tasmania, Lockie developed a deep love for nature and adventure from a young age.

His articles are a blend of his personal adventures and insightful explorations, often focused on sustainable travel, wilderness treks, and the serene beauty of untouched landscapes.

Always with his own reusable coffee cup in hand, Lockie loves a good caffeine fix as much as everyone else on the Humbletrail team.

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