Five glorious Sydney hiking trails

Posted by Andrew McCaig on

   
   
It’s been a long 12 months, but if the pandemic and lockdown has taught us
anything, it’s that we need to connect with nature more often.  We don’t know
about you, but all that staying indoors business was hard, and when the world
started reopening we were eagerly waiting to get back out and explore.
  
So as the weather turns a tad cooler, consider this the counterpart to our top
Sydney swimming spots. Go forth and hike along these left-of-field trails (no
Bondi to Coogee walks here 😉)
          
   
   Images sourced from: @steffensontribeoffive & @jocrawford123
     
If you’re looking for something that’s gorgeous and suits all fitness levels,
the Narrabeen Lagoon Trail is your walk. An 8.6km loop, the walk only takes
about two to three hours, but the places you’ll see on this trail will make it feel
like a different world. Natural wildlife, shimmering waterfalls, rugged bushland -
this hike has it all, not to mention a few cafes dotted around the lake if you’re
more of a ‘leisurely stroll with a coffee’ kind of person.
      
If you want to stretch the walk out a little further, you could extend into the
Bicentennial Coastal Walk, weaving its way along Northern Beaches’ coastline.
Take your camera, this walk is radiant.
   
     
   Images sourced from: @bitesize_traveller & @exploringpaw
     
Prefer to stay on the south side of the Bridge?
Then take a walk along the Hermitage Foreshore in the Eastern suburbs. Nice
and shady, family-friendly, and peppered with historical sites and quaint little
beaches - what more could you want from your outdoor adventure?
   
Begin this walk at Nielsen Park (best for parking) and weave your way along the
foreshore to Bayview Hill in Rose Bay. You’ll pass gorgeous beaches and coves
like Milk Beach and Parsley Bay and get a glorious view of Sydney Harbour,
not to mention Shark Island and Strickland House. If you’re keen on something
that’s relaxed but will still get your steps up, then this walk is ideal. It’s an
easy hour walk and less than 2km, but you can make a day of it if you stop for
a picnic along the way.
      
   
      Images sourced from: @sfinge90 & @barefootbelly
     
Stretch your legs a little further afield and head to Bouddi National Park on the
Central Coast. Just under two hours from Sydney’s CBD, this coastal walk is
everything it promises to be.
    
Winding all the way from Macmasters Beach to Putty Beach, trust us when
we say this 8km walk will take up all your photo storage on your phone. Think
classic beautiful beaches, active birdlife, boardwalks and pristine panoramas.
Allow between three and five hours for this trek; include a pit stop somewhere
like Gerrin Point Lookout and you might even spot a few whales from afar!
      
   
 Images sourced from: @taiana_rebic
    
Swap the coastline for the bush and head west to the Blue Mountains National
Park, just a couple of hours from Sydney. Here, you’ll find the Grand Canyon
Track, a spectacular 6.3km hike that’ll wow you with a different kind of scenery.
   
Kicking off near Blackheath at Evans Lookout, this track is lush and green,
featuring everything from sandstone cliffs to creeks and waterfalls. As you
meander your way to the canyon floor, nature really puts on a show, making the
hard work truly worth it. But of course, what goes down must come up,
so prepare yourself for a bit of a climb on a damp trail. We recommend donning
proper hiking boots and allowing 3-4 hours for this hike.
      
   
Images sourced from: @house.of.urban.nomads & @sophietpayne
     
Back up in the northern suburbs of Palm Beach, this walk will work up a sweat,
but boy is the view worth it. About 113 metres above sea-level, the Barrenjoey
Lighthouse walk takes around an hour over a 2km loop. There are two walking
tracks to the top of the hill, so alternate between the two on your climb and
descent.
   
We suggest taking a break at the top to gaze upon the heritage listed sandstone
lighthouse and soak up the uninterrupted views, stretching out to the Ku-ring-gai
Chase National Park on one side, ocean and vast coastline on the other.
This walk is a popular one, so if you prefer to avoid crowds, make this a
weekday or early morning adventure.
   
   
We’re blessed with a city that boasts as many natural wonders and captivating hikes as Sydney.
From the northern end, the coast, and out to the bush, 
Sydney’s suburbs really know how to steal the spotlight. We love exploring nature and our own backyard.
Where do you go hiking when you want to get back to nature?

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