Greater Blue Mountains

Blue Mountains, NSW
Glenn Waterfall, NSW (credit - David Finnigan)
Quoll
Southern Cross, Yengo National Park, NSW

Greater Blue Mountains

Embrace freedom beyond measure in the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area – one million hectares of cliffs, canyons, valleys, waterfalls and bushland. This traditional country of six Aboriginal language groups is just 90 minutes drive from Sydney. Take in the panoramas on a bushwalk, bike or with an Aboriginal guide. Marvel at natural attractions like Wentworth Falls, the Three Sisters, Dunns Swamp or Mt Yengo. Explore Jenolan Caves and walk the historic Six Foot Track to Katoomba. Wind along the Greater Blue Mountains Drive and its discovery trails to appreciate the area's incredible size and diversity.

Four ways to embrace the Blue Mountains

Bushwalking, Blue Mountains, NSW
Bushwalking, Blue Mountains, NSW

1. On a natural adventure

See the craggy forms of the Three Sisters from Katoomba or explore Jenolan Caves, the world's oldest open underground cave system. From Blackheath, go bushwalking through the Grose and Megalong Valleys, stopping at stunning lookouts such as Govett's Leap, Evans Lookout and Perry's Lookdown. Watch Wentworth Falls plunge into the Jamison Valley and walk or bike ride through the Glow Worm Tunnel in Wollemi National Park. Mount Tomah Botanic Gardens is home to the Wollemi Pine, a plant species which dates back to the dinosaurs.

Viewing cave formations, NSW
Viewing cave formations, NSW

2. With an Aboriginal guide

Go walkabout with a local Darug guide, watching bark and body painting demonstrations, discovering waterfalls and billabongs and tasting bush tucker. See axe-grinding grooves at Camp Fire Creek and the ancient Aboriginal campsite of Lyrebird Dell. Check out the engravings at Finchley Trig in Yengo National Park. Visit Red Hands Cave, where the stenciled hand prints are more than 500 years old. See the Three Sisters, a trio of rocky pinnacles which have their own Dreaming story. Boutique tours also stop at Castlereagh's cultural centre for boomerang throwing classes and didgeridoo demonstrations.

Horseriding, Blue Mountains, NSW
Horseriding, Blue Mountains, NSW

3. By bike, foot, car or train

Trek 45 km from Katoomba to Jenolan Caves on the Six Foot Track or from Katoomba to Kanangra on the Badge of Honour Walk. Do day walks or camp over three days and two nights. Visit Blue Gum Forest or ride a horse through the Megalong Valley. Abseil Blackheath's Grand Canyon Track or bike ride from Glenbrook to Wentworth Falls. Take a vintage steam train from Bell to Lithgow or enjoy the aerial view from the glass-bottomed scenic railway. Follow the Greater Blue Mountains Drive to surrounding regions such as the Southern Highlands, Mudgee, the Hunter Valley and the Hawkesbury.

Blue Mountains, NSW
Blue Mountains, NSW

4. Soaking up mountain magic

Lunch on Leura's pretty tree-lined streets, then browse the galleries, boutiques and bric-a-brac stores. Pamper yourself in a day spa or sit down to coffee and cake in Katoomba. Stay in grand old hotels, five star resorts with valley views or bed and breakfasts in scenic bush surrounds. Shop for gourmet food at Blackheath or take high tea in a majestic, historic hotel at Jenolan Caves. During June, July and August, you can embrace the Yulefest celebrations with a Christmas roast and pudding around a roaring fire.

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