Gosford is the focal point of the New South Wales Central Coast. Aside from the town centre's urbane enticements - including the vibrant Ettalong Markets - the flip-side of Gosford is its pastoral tenor. Flora and fauna are both main attractions of Gosford. You can get close to snakes, kangaroos and other native wildlife at the Australian Reptile Park, and Mangrove Boardwalk to the west is a true delight of nature.
Many residents of Gosford commute to Sydney daily, hence transport links with Sydney are good. However, they are very crowded in peak times (evenings, 5pm - 7pm leaving Sydney) on weekdays as most of them are commuter oriented. The area is also a popular holiday spot, so travelling north from Sydney at the beginning of any New South Wales holiday period will be difficult.
Gosford is less than one hour's drive north of Sydney's North Shore on the F3 freeway leaving Hornsby. There are a number of exits that will take you into the area: the major ones are the Woy Woy and Gosford exits.
Gosford is also about an hour's drive south of Newcastle on the F3 freeway.
If you are already in the Central Coast, you can get to Gosford by the private bus company, Busways ; this services all of the Central Coast. Buses are usually very clean, and some are air-conditioned. A Busways depot is in Gosford, where you can pick up a timetable. Alternatively, you can ask a bus driver for a timetable. Major bus stop have timetables on them, and it should be noted that public holiday bus services follow the Sunday timetable. When you see the bus coming, signal to the driver by looking at the driver and raising your hand and stand away from the road.
Cityrail trains leave Sydney's Central, Strathfield, Epping and Hornsby stations half hourly for Gosford and Wyong during the day, and more frequently in peak commute hours. They stop at a number of stations in the Gosford area: the major two at which all trains stop are Woy Woy and Gosford.
Trains from Newcastle to Gosford depart hourly, and trains from Wyong half-hourly.
The Palm Beach Ferry  runs hourly from Palm Beach in Sydney's Northern Beaches during the day, ending at about 6pm. It travels to Wagstaffe in the south of the Gosford area in about 25 minutes, and to Ettalong in about 40 minutes.
Whilst the actual centre of Gosford doesn't offer a lot of interesting shops, there are two large shopping centres nearby. Buses from Gosford and most areas of the Central Coast travel regularly (albeit not always so frequently) to Erina Fair, which contains many mid-range clothing shops, hairdressers, coffee shops, newsagents, department stores, shoe shops, fast food outlets, restaurants and bookshops. There is also a library, gym, cinema and ice rink on the grounds. A similar shopping centre is found at Tuggerah although it is smaller and has less facilities than at Erina Fair.
Gosford offers some variety for those staying in the centre or just passing through. During the day, a number of cafes are open for breakfast and lunch on Mann Street and William Street, including Pie Face and Gloria Jean's Coffee. Most cafes will serve decent quality coffee and food.
Of an evening, you can find several restaurants in the city centre, including:
If you are after a smaller, more intimate experience you could try
As in many populated coastal areas of Australia, there are many homeowners who rent their houses to holiday makers on a weekly basis. As a guide, a four bedroom house might rent for a short term price of $700-1,500 per week. Local real estate agents usually organise the holiday rentals.
Galaxy Motel - Part of Gosford RSL ☎ +61 2 4323 1711
If you are looking to stay in Gosford itself, the Hotel Gosford  offers serviceable and inexpensive rooms just opposite the Imperial Shopping Centre and the Railway station. ☎ +61 2 4324 1634. Booking in advance is highly recommended