The Blue Mountains, named for their curious blue haze, are thrust from the ancient rock of New South Wales, Australia, and hold awe-inspiring vistas, tranquil, quiet pockets, and natural wonders waiting for those ready to trek out into the wilderness to find them. You’ll explore lush rainforests, encounter spectacular waterfalls, and of course, share a moment or two with the towering Three Sisters.
Rory Brown, a natural-born trekker, has spent time exploring this sprawling Australian wonderland, and he shares the best walking tracks you can explore to take in the sights, recharge your batteries, and plug yourself into the abundance of nature.
Katoomba Falls Round Walk
We start with a relatively short track that can be enjoyed by bushwalkers of all ages. This two-hour circuit hike brings you face to face with one of the loveliest waterfalls in the Blue Mountains.
Along the way, you’ll encounter Vaniman’s Lookout, which affords trekkers an excellent view of the Three Sisters, with the Scenic Skyway looming right above you, and the sprawling majesty of the Kedumba Valley below.
A bit further in, you’ll get your first view of the Falls from Juliet’s Balcony. This perch offers an extraordinary panorama of the Blue Mountains surrounding you.
All in, this track is a short but spectacular hike through a section of mountains not commonly traversed by tourists.
Lockleys Pylon Walking Track
This track will take you through another of the mountains’ less-traveled areas. At two and a half hours, it’s still a short trek, but it contains one or two steeper regions that may not be suitable for all hikers. If you can manage, though, the breathtaking vistas from the top of the pylon are absolutely worth the effort.
On the way, make sure to take some time to explore The Pinnacles, a unique rock formation that sits near the start of the track. For a time, you’ll walk alongside Fortress Creek as it winds through the canyon below. Watch for a short detour which takes you to a quiet lookout, and a dramatic view of the creek.
The final trek up to the top of the pylon can be challenging for some, but once you arrive, you’ll experience a full 360-degree panorama of the full majesty of the Blue Mountains.
This last track isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s a challenging six and a half hour bushwalk that requires some preparation. If you’re in decent shape and looking for a day hike that takes you past some of the most famous formations in the Blue Mountains, you can’t do better than the Federal Pass track.
This path takes you down into the Jamison Valley, along the base of the cliff line, putting you right in the heart of the mountains. You’ll trek from Leura to the iconic Ruined Castle formation. On the way, you’ll marvel at the staggering, bottom-up views of the Golden Stairs, Ketumba Falls, and the Three Sisters.
Federal Pass will certainly get your heart rate elevated, but a day spent engaged with the natural beauty you’ll pass will also get your mind right.
About Rory Brown (Charleston, SC): After spending the first 40 years of his life in the United States, Rory Brown decided to focus on the quality of life and began living internationally. He now spends his time in Lake Como, Italy, Sydney, Australia, Charleston, South Carolina, and Kauai, Hawaii. His appreciation for simple health food that embraces local traditions of excellence has earned him credit among farm-to-table communities everywhere he goes.
Brown began his career as a technologist and has always focused on healthy lifestyle choices. His well-researched lifestyle writing has increasingly focused on living life to the fullest each day throughout the world.
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