“Tourists Encouraged to Return to the Blue Mountains”
*This article and guide contributed by David P. Stott who is a Travel Writer and Photographer and receptionist at Blue Mountains YHA. He has lived in the Blue Mountains since 2002 and is something of a Blue Mountains Tourism expert.
Blue Mountains Tourism (BMT), together with new South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Services are encouraging tourists to return to the villages and towns of the Blue Mountains.
In a further boost, the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service has also reopened sections of the Blue Mountains National Park including all lookouts, picnic areas and walking tracks from Katoomba to Wentworth Falls. David Crust, Blue Mountains Branch Director said that more sections of Blue Mountains National Park will continue to be reopened in the coming days and weeks ahead.
“We are pleased to welcome visitors back to many of our popular walking tracks for an opportunity to reconnect with nature in a safe environment. We encourage everyone to check the NSW National Parks website when planning their visit as more areas are reopened,” he said.
There are many landscapes in the vast Blue Mountains region that have remained untouched by bushfires, and many Blue Mountains businesses have not sustained any damage, remaining open throughout the bushfire crisis where it was safe to do so.
President of BMT, the region’s peak tourism body, Jason Cronshaw said,:
“The Blue Mountains has always been a popular destination over the Summer period, and we are excited to encourage tourists back to experience the beauty of our region as part of a safe and memorable holiday.”
“We have incredible experiences on offer to cater for everyone, and many local businesses who really need your support right now, so please make a day trip or take a long weekend and head back to the Blue Mountains where you will be welcomed with open arms,” he said.
Bushwalking in the Blue Mountains
This is the landscape that so intrigued Charles Darwin during his visit in 1836, describing the views from Wentworth Falls as “exceedingly well worth visiting”. With hundreds of bushwalking trails, lookouts at iconic landmarks such as the world-famous Three Sisters, dozens of beautiful waterfalls, glowing sandstone escarpments and far-reaching views of blue-hazed valleys, you too will be captivated by the rugged beauty of this treasure on Sydney’s doorstep. Pack a picnic and enjoy a day trip to marvel at the Three Sister rock formation from Echo Point in Katoomba.
Head to Evans lookout and nearby Valley View lookout in Blue Mountains National Park if you’re seeking incredible views, especially around sunrise and sunset. It’s also a good spot to begin one of several day walks.
A brilliant introduction to the wonders of Blue Mountains National Park, Evans lookout offers breathtaking views towards Grose Valley, especially with the sandstone cliff walls glowing orange at sunset. Located near Blackheath, it’s a good spot to include in a day trip from Sydney, and a great base for adventurous bushwalkers who want to get amongst it.
Take in the clear mountain air as you trace the line of Govetts Creek winding its way through the expansive valley floor, or wander over to check out the scenery from Valley View lookout nearby.
Take in sweeping views of sheer sandstone cliffs and hazy blue Grose Valley from Govetts Leap in Blackheath.
6.)Grand Canyon Track
“Arresting sandstone walls, ever-present waterfalls and abundant native plants line the awesome Grand Canyon track near Blackheath in the Blue Mountains. The historic loop track takes you into the heart of this World Heritage-listed landscape. It’s an intimate and adventurous track which walkers have trodden since 1907.”
Setting out from Evans lookout, the well-shaded track meanders through luscious native vegetation of ferns and golden wattles and remains close to Greaves Creek, all of which combine to make this a particularly good walk for the summer months. Shorten the loop by leaving a second car at the Evans Lookout Road entrance or spend the day and stop for lunch at the nearby picnic area before returning to the lookout.
Often regarded as one of the most impressive and most enjoyable hikes in the Blue Mountains region, the Grand Canyon Walk will leave you in awe.
The track passes through lush rainforest with several creek crossings, small waterfalls, huge sandstone walls and rock overhangs along the way.
Opened to the public in 1907, the 6km long Grand Canyon walking track was the first of its kind in the Blue Mountains and has since been challenged by thousands of hiking enthusiasts each year.
Descend into the Grand Canyon. Combine a short walk with Aboriginal rock art or a swim in a natural pool near Glenbrook. Combine a short walk with Aboriginal rock art or a swim in a natural pool near Glenbrook. Mountain bike riders can tackle the famed Woodford-Oaks trail, scenic Narrow Neck or Faulconbridge Ridge trail.
7.)Fairfax Heritage walking track
Fairfax Heritage walking track offers summer wildflowers, and scenic lookouts with waterfall views over Grose Valley, in Blue Mountains National Park.Fairfax Heritage walking track meanders from the Blue Mountains Heritage Centre to the dramatic cliffs and lookouts of Govetts Leap, at Blackheath. This easy walk is perfect for families or if you’re short on time, and want to experience the Blue Mountains’ diverse vegetation and spectacular views.
The wheelchair-accessible path winds over gentle slopes, skirting the edge of a unique hanging swamp. The path then opens up to forest of peppermint and scribbly gums, dotted with grass trees. In early summer, you may see the vibrant red flowers of waratahs, as well as many other colourful wildflowers.
Nearing the cliffs at George Phillips lookout and Govetts Leap lookout, you’ll enjoy expansive views of the World Heritage-listed Blue Mountains National Park, including the Grose Valley, Govetts Gorge and Jungle Falls. There are picnic shelters at both lookouts.
Return the same way, or follow the unsealed 500m track alongside Govetts Leap Road to loop back to the Blue Mountains Heritage Centre. Drop in for information, maps, books and souvenirs of your Blue Mountains escape.