48 hours in the Blue Mountains

With views across blue-tinged valleys, world-class accommodation and gourmet high teas, the Blue Mountains and surrounds offer plenty for visitors. Here’s how to have a fabulous getaway in this extraordinary landscape. 48 hours in the Blue Mountains
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48 hours in the Blue Mountains

With views across blue-tinged valleys, world-class accommodation and gourmet high teas, the Blue Mountains and surrounds offer plenty for visitors. 


Sydneysiders have long headed to the World Heritage-listed Blue Mountains to recharge their batteries. With kilometres of walking tracks, lookouts over expanses of Australian bush, cool-climate gardens, renowned restaurants and new luxury accommodation, the Blue Mountains is a unique escape from the city. Here’s how to have a fabulous getaway in this extraordinary landscape.   

DAY ONE MORNING  

Wake early to go for a hike
Beat the crowds that flock to Echo Point by rising early to tackle the historic Giant Stairway – a set of 800-plus stone and steel steps tacked onto a cliff in 1909. The lower trail leads hikers through ancient rainforest to the Scenic Railway. Billed as the world’s steepest passenger railway, it hauls hikers back up to the escarpment from 9am. 

Eat and shop at Blackheath
Refuel at Anonymous Café on the Great Western Highway at Blackheath – the corner eatery does a breakfast burrito stuffed with braised beans, black rice, grilled corn, a fried egg, salsa and sour cream. The two-cheese toastie is also excellent comfort food. Around the corner in Govetts Leap Road is the Victory Theatre Antique Centre – look for the colourful Jenny Kee mural painted along its side before diving into two floors of vintage goodies. 

Lilianfels Resort, Blue Mountains, New South Wales

DAY ONE AFTERNOON

High tea with a view

Instead of lunch, tackle a tiered tray of savoury and sweet temptations at the Hydro Majestic Hotel in Medlow Bath. In 2014, the wraps came off a six-year, $30 million renovation that restored the kilometre-long clifftop property to its former glory. The picture windows in the Wintergarden overlook the stunning Megalong Valley. High tea can be combined with a tea-leaf or tarot-card reading in the hotel’s Cat’s Alley. Take a history tour of the hotel, which opened as a health spa in 1904, or check out the historic photographs and memorabilia on display in the new Pavilion.

Play golf before dinner
Head to Leura golf course, the oldest in the Blue Mountains, for a round of golf with spectacular views over the blue-tinged Jamison Valley. Drop your luggage at the neighbouring Fairmont Resort Blue Mountains , where the Dalai Lama stayed in 2015 in the brand-new Grand Luxury Suite, or stay at the Hydro Majestic’s sister property, Lilianfels, in Katoomba. Its on-site fine-diner, Darley’s, is one of the most luxurious and feted restaurants in the mountains.  

DAY TWO MORNING

Slip into an historic garden or cinema
After a lazy breakfast at your hotel, head to Everglades Historic House & Gardens  in Leura. The National Trust property showcases the work of Danish landscape designer Paul Sorensen, who incorporated Art Deco touches in his taming of the steep site. If it’s more of an indoors kind of day, catch a movie at the charming single-screen venue, Mount Vic Flicks , at Mt Victoria.
 

DAY TWO AFTERNOON

Lunch at a botanic garden
One of the more unusual views in the mountains can be enjoyed from Blue Mountains Botanic Garden, Mt Tomah. Its restaurant looks across the rugged Wollemi National Park towards the Hunter Valley. Well regarded chef Sean Moran’s creations at Tomah Gardens Restaurant  include dishes such as free-range chicken with potatoes, vegetables and gravy, and blueberry scones with honey butter.

Check in to the ultimate getaway
Emirates One & Only Wolgan Valley  is tucked into a remote valley north of Lithgow. The property, surrounded by sandstone cliffs, doesn’t have mobile phone coverage, allowing guests to completely switch off and enjoy a true getaway. The 40 free-standing suites, with Federation touches, each have a swimming pool. Grab a bicycle to explore the 2800-hectare grounds, kept trim by wombats and wallabies.

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