Cast your mind back to road trips in the 60s, 70s or 80s. Before the Internet. Before handheld devices. Car travel, especially as a young passenger, was a little more, well, tedious.
But my, how we all perked up when we stopped at a Big Thing!
What’s a Big Thing? It’s a giant roadside attraction that’s as Aussie as a kookaburra on a Hills-Hoist. And definitely more kitsch than culture.
Larger-than-life animals. Oversized fruit. Massive musical instruments. Apparently, there’s almost 60 of these big Aussie icons in NSW alone.
Tourist traps? Perhaps. Fantastic pit stops for the kids? Most definitely. Here are some NSW big things to visit on your next trip to a Reflections Holiday Park.
The Big Prawn, Ballina
This ain’t no shrimp! This massive prawn needs to be seen to be believed, and if you’re lucky enough to stay at Reflections Holiday Parks Shaws Bay or Reflections Holiday Parks Ballina, you’re not likely to miss it.
Perched above the local Bunnings carpark, this mega-crustacean was earmarked for the scrap heap in 2009, but public pressure ensured its survival and restoration. Whilst you can no longer walk inside, it’s still perfect for a quirky holiday selfie.
The Big Banana, Coffs Harbour
As Australia’s first Big Thing, the Big Banana in Coffs Harbour is a must-see. But it sure has come a long way since it opened on the Pacific Highway in 1964. It’s no longer just a big thing, it’s a whole big fun park!
From waterslides and ice-skating to laser tag, there’s more to the Big Banana than fruit. A must-do when you stay at Reflections Holiday Parks Coffs Harbour, it’s also a fun day trip from any of our NSW Coffs Coast parks.
The Big Axe, Kew
Located right next to the Kew Visitor Information Centre, this 8-metre-long axe is a tribute to the region’s timber heritage. But it’s not the original. That sculpture, built in 1979, was so badly damaged by ants that it had to be rebuilt in 2002.
The Big Bowl, Lake Cathie
Fancy yourself a lawn bowls hot shot? You might struggle on the green with this one. It’s a gigantic lawn bowl, possibly the largest in the world, comprising almost two tonnes of steel and concrete. You’ll find it at the Lake Cathie Bowling Club, just a short drive from our Bonny Hills and North Haven Holiday Parks.
The Big Golden Guitar, Tamworth
If you’re travelling towards Reflections Holiday Parks Lake Keepit, then you’re likely to journey via Tamworth. And who can go to Tamworth without visiting the Big Golden Guitar?
Standing proudly at the Big Golden Guitar Tourist Centre, this 12 metre high guitar is modelled on the trophies given to winners of the annual Country Music Awards. Get a few pics, then say g’day to the country music stars in the adjacent wax museum.
The Big Blue Heeler, Muswellbrook
Pat a pooch in Muswellbrook on your way to Reflections Holiday Parks Lake Glenbawn. But not just any pooch. Visit the Big Blue Heeler, a sculpture tribute to the Aussie Cattle Dogs which were first bred in the area.
You’ll find this rather momentous mutt at the Muswellbrook Information Centre. The perfect place for the whole family (including any four-legged travellers) to stretch their legs.
Australia is a big place, so it makes sense we like big things. And NSW has plenty of them. Stop off at a big thing or two on your next road trip to a Reflections Holiday Park and bask in all their kitsch, oversized wonder.
Image courtesy of @tazelder.