Hidden gems near Forest Reach

17 January 2023

Do you have a thirst for something different? A little off the beaten track, but close enough to make it home before the kids’ bedtime?  

Luckily, for those who settle in Forest Reach, just 18kms south-west of Wollongong, there are lovely hidden gems which locals have been quietly coveting.  

These little eateries and shopping treasure troves are loved for their boutique atmosphere and mouth-watering signature dishes.  

Here are three favourites you will be glad you had the inside word on. 

Smiths Ln Dairy 

It’s barely a five-minute drive away, but you’d be forgiven for thinking Smiths Ln Dairy* is a world away. The Dairy is a quiet hideaway from the bustling heartland of the Forest Reach community. 

You’ll relish walking into the warmth of the Smiths Ln Dairy restaurant foyer. With a luscious garden grocery and pantry, it’s easy to meander. Smell and taste your way through to the relaxed outdoor dining area and country garden by the back veranda. 

You might even see a group of young pre-schoolers, gathered by the discovery garden with their mums. It’s story time. They sit cross-legged, trying not to wriggle too much, and stare up toward their storyteller as they listen to the farm-style book being read to them. 

Enjoy a coffee or a tasty burger here, either with friends, family or solo - it's easy to spend hours! 

Smiths Ln Dairy
Source: Smiths Ln Dairy*

Uncle Boks  

For a completely different change of pace, Uncle Boks*, tucked away in Wollongong city, is among the most colourful little eateries you’ll come across. 

The bright pink 70s neon lighting is wonderfully at odds with the Asian-inspired mashup menu that includes Vietnamese, Taiwanese, and Chinese dishes. You can even get a cheeseburger. It’s all so disconnected that it works.  

It is the cocktails though that garner the cult following. Even on Tuesday evening, you’ll find it busy as fans sip creatively titled tipples like ‘Gogo Yubari’ and ‘Passionate From Miles Away’.  

You’ll always see someone at the bar nestled into the signature cocktail, ‘Bok Jungle Juice’, with Aperol, black rum, lime, and pineapple.  

Home Thyme

Over the last 10 years, many would agree, Albion Park’s Home Thyme* has enthralled locals with the most delicately chosen homewares and gift pieces in all of the Illawarra. 

Luxuries grace the shelves, from little candles and cane lamps to beautiful statement wooden furniture pieces. Just the kind of décor to furnish your lovely new home at Forest Reach. 

Almost like a tribute to the southern seaside of the Illawarra, the fresh ambiance of Home Thyme feels like a relaxed walk on the beach. 

Home Thyme
Source: Home Thyme*

A place where family memories are made  

Staged land releases for Forest Reach are happening throughout 2023. To start your transition to the family future you want (with all the food favourites you love in any big city) - learn more about what this new community has to offer.

Register your interest 

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