Blue Mountains Attractions
- Mount Tomah Botanic Gardens. Located 10 mins drive from Bilpin Springs Lodge the gardens are gorgeous all throughout the year. Discover an enchanted world of plants at Mount Tomah Botanic Garden, the cool-climate garden for the Botanic Gardens Trust Sydney. Set on the summit of a basalt-capped peak, the Garden is home to over 5,000 species of plants displayed by geographic origin. In addition to visiting the gardens there is a restaurant onsite with great food and amazing views that stretch all the way back to Sydney. Mt Tomah Botanic Gardens are open every day except Christmas Day. April to Sept: 10 am - 4 pm. Oct to March: 10 am - 5 pm. Enquiries: (02) 4567 2154 FREE (Image: Simone Cottrell)
- Scenic World in Katoomba is located on the edge of a sheer 300 metre cliff overlooking the Jamieson Valley. The scenic railway, skyway and cableway are a ‘must do’ attraction for visitors to the Blue Mountains. Thrilling, exciting and educational you can ride over Katoomba Falls on the skyway, enjoying the view all around and even below you through the glass floor. The scenic railway to the valley floor is the worlds steepest railway, originally used for hauling coal from the valley to the top of the cliffs. Now it’s the most thrilling train ride in Australia. On arrival in the valley walk the boardwalks, get close and feel the spray at the base of Katoomba waterfalls, see old coal mining shafts disappearing into the cliff face and then ride the scenic cableway back to the top of the cliff. There are eateries and an extensive souvenir shop upon return to the cliff top. Find all details on www.scenicworld.com.au
- Three Sisters in Katoomba. Australia’s most famous lookout point the Three Sisters and Echo Point at Katoomba are truly a natural wonder. Enjoy the magnificent view, including the 3 famous rock pinnacles making up the ‘Three Sisters’ as well as Mt Solitary and the Ruined Castle rock formation. The lookout is called Echo Point with good reason. On a quiet afternoon if you coooee you’ll hear your call echo back. With recently upgraded boardwalks and stairs, the Three Sisters are even more accessible. Find more details on www.BlueMountainsAustralia.com/tourist/thingstodo/threeSisters.asp
- Blackheath and Leura. The towns and villages of the Blue Mountains are well worth visiting. Boutiques selling clothes, antiques and other lovely gifts plus renowned bakeries Hominy and Schwarzes of the Blue Mountains are dotted throughout the villages of the Blue Mountains. In Blackheath stop for a coffee at Anonymous Cafe on the highway, view some art or other creative venture in the Virgin Walls gallery and pop up store, or head down to the ever popular Victory Theatre Antiques for an amble through wares from a time past. Down the mountain is Leura Mall, considered one of the prettiest main street in the Blue Mountains and well worth a visit. Take your time to enjoy the boutiques, restaurants and cafes. For those that love to shop, simply spending time on Leura Mall could take a full day! If you have kids, the Leura Lollie Shop is always a hit. Find more details on this quaint and yet sophisticated village on the Leura Village Website and The Blue Mountains Australia Website.
- Windsor, Richmond and Kurrajong Villages. After establishing the colony of Sydney in January 1788, Governor Arthur Phillip began to explore the areas around the colony to find good land for growing crops to save the starving village. In July 1789 he discovered the Hawkesbury river and the land where Windsor and Richmond stand today. These towns are the second oldest settled areas in Australia, sitting peacefully on the banks of the Hawkesbury River. Later on settlers moved west into the mountains founding towns and settlements like Kurrajong and even Bilpin. These towns are full of history, they have lovely parks to stroll in, main streets full of life but they move at a slower, much more relaxed pace away from the hustle of Sydney city. You’ll enjoy visiting these towns today. To take the scenic route and find out more about Kurrajong on our blog, and on the Hawkesbury Australia website.
- Blue Mountains National Park. The World Heritage listed Blue Mountains National Park is massive, and can be accessed by car to enjoy easy to see views, or take a few more minutes to walk the tracks and trails. You’ll be inspired no matter what with the lookout you head to in the Blue Mountains. Only 15 minutes from Bilpin Springs Lodge is the turnoff to Mt Banks – possibly the most spectacular short walk anywhere in the Blue Mountains. Park in the carpark and immediately walk the track that starts at the low stone walls in front of the cars. In only a couple of minutes you’ve climbed steps taking you onto a flat rock platform with amazing views into the Grose Valley and sheer cliffs rising above you to the top of Mt Banks. It will take 1 – 2 hours to walk to the top of Mt Banks and if you have the time and energy this is a great walk. Or if you only have 15 minutes you can still enjoy a real Blue Mountains bushwalk experience before returning to your car. Check out our blog for more information on the Mt Banks bushwalks plus links for preparing for your walk.
- Other memorable walks and viewpoints to enjoy are Govetts Leap (with a short 10 - 15 minute walk to Horseshoe Falls) as well as Leura Cascades walk (the Grotto at the bottom is magical). And Finally Wentworth Falls is spectacular. There’s level walks to fine lookouts nearby to carparks. Plus short walks down to Princes Rock are well worthwhile with great views over the falls, and for the more adventurous there is the Undercliff Walk. Finally if you have all day the walk along the very narrow ‘heart pumping’ Cliff Top walk, then down to the bottom of the falls is amazing. There are lots of stairs with this last walk. Find all details on the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service website.
- Jenolan Caves. Just 90 minutes from Bilpin Springs Lodge is Jenolan Caves – a magnificent mix of limestone cave formations. On arrival you drive thru the Grand Arch and the road in fact follows the course of the river flowing underneath the road pavement. Then it’s time to explore the caves. There are many fully guided tours to join and they operate 7 days a week. There are 1 hour tours in easier to access caves plus longer 2 and 3 hour excursions into rarely visited areas of the caves. All tours guarantee magical sights of stalagmites and stalactites plus curtains, shawls and an amazing array of spectacular underground rock formations. There’s a bistro and restaurant meals available to ensure the whole family will enjoy a visit to Jenolan Caves without going hungry. Bilpin Springs Lodge is self contained so if packing a picnic is more your style, we have the facilities for you to get sorted.
- For those keen for a full day of adventure, drive on past Jenolan Caves and out to the Kanangra Boyd National Park. Full of wildlife and truly amazing rock walls and waterfalls, there are level, short walks as well as longer walks available. The Waterfall walk to the left side of the track as you approach the main lookout is amazing. It’s quite steep and the ground is a bit loose but the waterfalls, pools and views are mind blowing. Well worth exploring.
- Zig Zag Railway. (Please note - the railway is currently closed for repairs following the 2013 bushfires - scheduled to reopen late 2017/2018 TBC)
The Zig Zag Railway appeals to children and adults alike, especially those who once rode behind steam locomotives on the way to school or on holidays. It is a magical step back in time, filled with sights, sounds and smells of a bygone era. Every trip from Clarence Station winds its way through the remarkable Blue Mountains’ scenery, offering glimpses of grand sandstone viaducts, accompanied by the chuffing steam locomotive. It is a chance to appreciate the difficult terrain that confronted the builders and marvel at how they brought the railway down into the Lithgow Valley and on westward.
It is an experience that makes you stop, wonder and marvel – the perfect opportunity to create new memories. Trains run daily (except Christmas Day) at 11am, 1pm, 3pm from Clarence Station. Additional trains run on Sundays and some public holidays. Check the timetable for further details.Located at Clarence (enroute to Lithgow) on the Bells Line of Road, 25 mins drive from Bilpin Springs Lodge. Find all details on www.zigzagrailway.com.au