Take a scenic 90 minute drive west of Sydney and discover the magnificent Blue Mountains. This World Heritage Listed National Park is recognised internationally for its incredible geographic, botanic and cultural values and boasts a stunning landscape of dense eucalypt forest, grand escarpments, waterfalls and cave systems.
Why are the Blue Mountains Blue
The area is home to 90 different species of eucalyptus trees and the greatest and most diverse concentration of eucalyptus trees in the world. Ever wonder why the Blue Mountains are called blue? The air is filled with several finely dispersed droplets of eucalyptus oil. These oil droplets not only delightfully perfume the air, but combined with dust and water vapour; they scatter rays of brilliant blue light earning this spectacular mountain range its name.
Travelling through the Blue Mountains you’ll come across a number of quaint villages and towns such as the picturesque village of Leura. You’ll notice many of the region’s villages and landmarks are named after the European explorers Blaxland, Wentworth and Lawson who first crossed the rugged mountain terrain in 1813.
Katoomba is the most popular town in the Blue Mountains due to its public rail connection to Sydney and its proximity to many attractions such as the three Sisters and Scenic World.
One of the main attractions in Katoomba is Echo Point, which offers panoramic views of the Three Sisters rock formation and the Jamison Valley.
Visitors can also visit Scenic World and take the Scenic Railway, a scenic cable car ride that offers views of the surrounding area.
The town also has several bushwalking trails that lead into the surrounding wilderness, such as the Giant Stairway and the Federal Pass.
Katoomba also has a vibrant culture, with a variety of shops, cafes, and restaurants, as well as a number of art galleries and museums. The town is also home to the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre which hosts exhibitions, performances and other events.
Adventure activities such as canyoning, abseiling and rock climbing are also popular in the area. The area is also home to the famous "Valley of the Waters" which is a great spot for bushwalking and picnicking.
Leura is only 5 minutes drive from Katoomba and is known for its picturesque scenery and charming village atmosphere. Leura is one of the most visited towns in the Blue Mountains and is renowned for its gardens, bushwalks, and breathtaking views of the Jamison Valley. The main street of Leura, known as Leura Mall, is lined with antique shops, art galleries, and cafes.
Leura is also known for its beautiful gardens, including the Leuralla Toy and Railway Museum, the Everglades Historic House and Gardens, and the Leura Cascades. The town is also a popular spot for bushwalking, with several trails leading into the surrounding wilderness, including the popular Prince Henry Cliff walk. The town is also home to the Leura Golf Course, which offers beautiful views of the surrounding valley.
Blackheath is located about 20 kilometers (or 12 miles) west of Katoomba. The drive between the two towns takes around 30 minutes
Blackheath is a popular destination for nature lovers, with several walking trails that offer panoramic views of the surrounding wilderness, including the famous Grand Canyon and Govett's Leap. Visitors can also take scenic drives along the Bells Line of Road and take in the views of the Megalong Valley.
The town is also known for its historical significance, with several heritage buildings such as the Blackheath railway station and the Blackheath Memorial Park and Cenotaph. The town is also home to the National Pass, one of the most popular bushwalks in the Blue Mountains, which takes visitors through a narrow gorge and past several waterfalls.
One of the most striking landmarks of the Blue Mountains is the amazing rock formation known as the Three Sisters. Each pinnacle stands at 922, 918 and 906 metres tall respectively.
The formation gets its name from the aboriginal legend of three sisters who were turned to stone by a local witch doctor.
The best place to view of the Three Sisters is from Echo Point, a lookout perched on the edge of a 170 metre cliff face in Katoomba. Echo Point is only 5 minutes drive from Katoomba village. There is parking and a lot of viewing platforms.
Echo Point Visitor Information is a great starting point for visitors to the Blue Mountains National Park. The centre provides information on the park's attractions, including the Three Sisters rock formation, as well as hiking and walking trails, guided tours, and other activities. The Centre also provides maps, brochures, and other information to help visitors plan their trip.
The Echo Point Visitor Centre is open every day and is staffed by knowledgeable local guides who can provide information and answer questions about the park.
Walking trails from Echo Point
From Echo Point, there are several walking trails that visitors can take to explore the Blue Mountains National Park. Some of the popular trails include:
The Giant Stairway
This trail takes visitors down the escarpment to the base of the Three Sisters, offering spectacular views of the valley and the rock formation along the way.
The Prince Henry Cliff Walk
This trail offers panoramic views of the Jamison Valley and the Three Sisters. It is a moderate to challenging hike that takes about 2 hours to complete.
The Federal Pass
This trail is a moderate hike that takes visitors through the rainforest and offers views of the valley and the Three Sisters.
The Scenic Walkway
This trail is a relatively easy walk that takes visitors along a paved path with several lookout points offering views of the valley and the Three Sisters.
Discover the wonders of one of the oldest open cave systems in the world. Known to the local Aboriginal people as ‘Binoomea’ (meaning Dark Places), the Jenolan Cave system stretches over an enormous 40 kilometres of multi-level passages, many still undergoing explorations. There are nine caves open to visitors, all featuring amazing lighting, underground rivers and limestone formations.
With over 40 kilometers of multi-level passages, including nine stunning caves open to visitors, Jenolan Caves is one of the oldest known open cave systems in the world, boasting underground rivers, limestone formations, and rare and endangered species.
Jenolan Caves is known for its stunning natural beauty and unique geological features that have been formed over millions of years. The caves are home to a variety of rare and endangered species, making it an important conservation site in Australia. Visitors can take guided tours through the caves, admiring the impressive limestone formations and crystal-clear underground rivers.
Location and Access
Located about 175 kilometers west of Sydney, the limestone caves of Jenolan Caves are easily accessible by car. From Katoomba, a popular tourist destination in the Blue Mountains, take the Great Western Highway west for about 35 kilometers, then turn onto Jenolan Caves Road and continue for about 11 kilometers. The scenic drive takes around 45 minutes and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape.
There are a number of different tour options available at Jenolan Caves, ranging from short and easy walks to more strenuous, longer tours. The admission fee varies depending on the tour you choose, and there are special interest tours available for those interested in photography, adventure caving, or ghost tours. Whether you are a solo traveler or visiting with your family, there is a tour option suitable for everyone.
Scenic world offers a railway, cablecars and scenic forest boarwalks. Enjoy the iconic views of the Blue Mountains. Hop aboard the world's steepest railway into the Jamison Valley. Explore kms of raised boardwalks through the rainforest, spotting Lyre Birds and ancient tree ferns amongst other flora and fauna. Ride the Cableway, to cruise past the sandstone escarpment and Orphan Rock. Glide past Katoomba Falls and the Three Sisters on the iconic Skyway.
Glide between cliff tops with panoramic views of World Heritage landscapes on the Scenic Skyway. This 720 metre journey provides the best views of Katoomba Falls, the Three Sisters, Mt Solitary and Jamison Valley.
Suspended 270 metres above ancient ravines, breathtaking views of rainforest canopy are revealed beneath your feet through the electro-glass cabin floor. For the less adventurous, seating and solid flooring is also available.
Discover the thrill of a 52° (128%) incline in open terrain riding the steepest passenger railway in the world, the Scenic Railway.
The 545 metre Scenic Cableway journey gently descends into the Jamison Valley and returns to the top of the escarpment. The fully enclosed cabin is a unique vantage point for viewing iconic rock formations including Three Sisters, Orphan Rock and Mt Solitary. Passing closely by sheer sandstone cliffs, it showcases the renowned geology and geomorphology of the World Heritage region.
Experience walking under the canopy of an extraordinary temperate rainforest. Located in the Jamison Valley, the Scenic Walkway is a 500m elevated boardwalk, an easy 10-20 minute walk between the Railway and Cableway stations.
Featherdale Wildlife Park is a popular stop for people visiting the Blue Mountains from Sydney
Featherdale provides a home to over 1,700 Australian native animals from more than 250 different species and serves as Australia’s largest native collection. Focusing solely on native animals, at Featherdale you will find the largest collection of koalas in New South Wales, 3 open space enclosures filled with kangaroos and wallabies, as well as loads of other iconic Australian animals, such as dingos, echidnas, wombats, bilbies, Tasmanian devils, reptiles and a stunning collection of birds from Australia and around the world.
The Blue Mountains Heritage Centre is located in Blackheath. This is your one-stop-shop for maps and information on national parks in the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. Learn about local Aboriginal culture, plants and animals and the fantastic walking tracks around the stunning Grose Valley.
Fairfax Heritage walking track starts here and leads to the picnic area and scenic views of nearby Govetts Leap lookout.
270 Govetts Leap Road, Blackheath
9am to 4.30pm daily. Closed on Christmas Day.
Prince Henry cliff walk
The Prince Henry Clif walk is easily accessable from Echo Point at Katoomba. Following the cliff edge from Katoomba Cascades to Gordon Falls, near Leura, this moderate walking track offers great views of the Blue Mountains and the 3 Sisters.
With over 20 lookouts offering magnificent views of Jamison Valley and three waterfalls, this track is a visual delight at any time of year. From Echo Point lookout, you’ll see the iconic Three Sisters.
Carlotta Arch walking track
Short but steep Carlotta Arch walking track, also called Shaping Waters walk, offers fantastic views of limestone formations and beautiful Blue Lake, at Jenolan Caves.
Grand Canyon track
Setting out from Evans lookout near Blackheath in the Blue Mountains, be met with a series of waterfalls, creeks and spectacular views along the challenging Grand Canyon track.
Wentworth Falls track
If you're heading to the Blue Mountains, Wentworth Falls track rewards bushwalkers with grand valley views from Fletchers lookout before reaching the top of popular Wentworth Falls waterfall.
Fairfax Heritage walking track
Family and wheelchair friendly, Fairfax Heritage walking track offers summer wildflowers, and scenic lookouts with waterfall views over Grose Valley, in Blue Mountains National Park.
Kanangra Waterfall walk
Kanangra Waterfall walk in Kanangra-Boyd National Park offers marvellous views of the cascading water at Kanangra and Kalang Falls.
Longneck Lagoon walking track
A small freshwater wetland, Longneck Lagoon walking track allows visitors to see the startling array of birds that frequent the area. Perfect for walking with children.
Princes Rock walking track
Historic Princes Rock walking track offers scenic views over Mount Solitary and Wentworth Falls in Blue Mountains National Park.
Rigby Hill walking track
Rigby Hill walking track is an easy 1hr return walk from Pierces Pass, in Blue Mountains National Park. It offers dramatic views of the Grose Valley, near Blackheath and Mount Wilson.
McKeown's Valley walking track
McKeown's Valley walking track, also known as Healing Waters walk, is a short and easy return walk at Jenolan Caves offering fantastic karst landscapes and wildlife spotting in the Blue Mountains.
Mount Banks Summit walk
For some of the best scenic views in the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area, try the steep Mount Banks Summit walk from the picnic area, near Mount Wilson.
Round walking track
Packed with scenic views, birdwatching, rainforest and waterfalls; medium difficulty Round walking track offers iconic views of The Three Sisters in Blue Mountains National Park.
Ruby Creek walking track
Ruby Creek walking track is an easy return walk from Mount Werong campground. It offers mining heritage and waterfall views in the remote Southern Blue Mountains area, near Oberon.
Victoria Falls walking track
If you’re visiting Blue Mountains National Park give Victoria Falls walking track a go. This steep but rewarding bushwalk offers Grose Valley views and a scenic waterfall near Mount Victoria.
Rocket Point lookout track
The short but Moderate Rocket Point lookout track takes in Wentworth Falls waterfall and some of the best views of the famous falls and valley, in Blue Mountains National Park.
Blue Gum Forest
Blue Gum Forest is a fine, historic example of closed forest, situated in Grose Valley in Blue Mountains National Park. Get to it by walking track from Perrys lookdown or Pierces Pass.
Blue Mountains Driver/Guide made my day fun! I was so lucky to have Ben as Driver/Guide for my final tour with AAT Kings! He made the trip to the Blue Mountains, out of Sydney, worthwhile. As a person with a disability, I also greatly appreciated Ben's kindness and patience. AAT Kings is very fortunate to have an employee like Ben and I'm grateful to have had him as a guide for my last Australian tour!
Just did a Blue Mountain tour with AAT Kings. Opted for the “in style”. Well worth the difference in price. Small group, great lunch and a boat cruise at the end of the tour. Guide Joe was outstanding and very informative.
Blue Mountains with Henry - Great day! Went on the AAT Kings Blue Mountains and Wildlife day tour today. Our guide Henry was excellent. Very professional, friendly and knowledgeable. Commentary throughout the day was entertaining, personable and insightful. The coach and overall AAT Kings were impeccable and top notch. The tour was well placed and an overall awesome experience. The Blue Mountains are breathtaking. Featherdale Wildlife Reserve was lots of fun as we got to interact with and feed the animals. Recommend the tour and both the Scenic World Rides and Parramatta Cruise add-ons to roundout a must-dp tour.