The one thing I absolutely love about Australia is the great abundance of national parks. There are so many great hiking and camping spots that any outdoor fan is absolutely spoilt for choice. I’ve put together a list of 5 of my favourite spots that are dotted around New South Wales.
Camping at Bristol Point
The Bristol Point campsite is set in Booderee National Park, close to the popular Jervis Bay. It’s a short 3 hour drive from Sydney CBD and should definitely be on anyone’s list this summer. The site itself is set in a cool, shady forest, with not only one but 3 beaches all within a 10 minute walk. My favourite beach is the one in the centre. As it’s quite small and all but disappears in high tide, people rather go to either of the main beaches on either side which means the centre one is far quieter. If you’re lucky enough to have it all to yourself it almost feels like it’s your own private little haven.
Hike to the Glow Worm tunnel
Set in the Wollemi National Park, around 3.5 hour drive from Sydney CBD, this is a truly amazing experience. The trail itself is well covered and shady and although it’s only a 3km round trip, you do climb up and down quite a bit. The glow worms are in an old rail tunnel which is about 400 meters long and I definitely recommend taking a torch or a headlamp as to get the full experience you’ll need to go quite far inside. Once inside, find a comfortable spot to sit or stand, turn off all lights and let the glow worms slowly light up around you. Once you’ve had your fill, there are plenty of amazing picnic spots dotted around to relax in.
Bouddi coastal walk
Most people, when thinking of coastal walks in Sydney, will immediately think of the famous Bondi to Coogee walk. The Bouddi Coastal Walk is a short 1.5 hour drive from Sydney CBD and offers a less crowded, but just as amazing alternative. Starting at Putty Beach and ending in MacMasters Beach, this 8km hike will take you through shady forests and over seaside cliffs, with some great beaches in between for a swim. Handy tip: check the weather beforehand! Even in spring and summer, there can be some heavy rainfall which can turn trails like these into a dangerous mudslide.
Grand Canyon track
Who knew Australia had their very own Grand Canyon? It’s situated in the Blue Mountains about a 2 hour drive away from Sydney CBD. Unlike the American version, this shady trail is surrounded by luscious plants and is a perfect hike for the hot summer months. You’ll walk alongside creeks, sandstone cliffs and even under a waterfall or two. For the more adventurous souls, there are guides that will take you “canyoning”. You’ll abseil right down to the bottom of the canyon, and then proceed to walk and swim your way out.
A tourist park in Shoalhaven, a 3.5 hour drive from Sydney CBD, Bendalong Point has something for everyone. Whether you want to rough it in a tent, hire a cabin, or come along in your own caravan, this park caters for all. You’ll have access to a number of beaches loads of little rock pools. The beach to the left becomes hidden during high tide but the water is still shallow enough to walk through and the nearby trees have plenty of low-lying branches to hang your towels on.
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