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Best places to visit in the Blue Mountains

Be prepared to be captivated by the tall forests, sandstone cliffs, canyons and waterfalls that could take you an age to explore in the Blue Mountains.

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The rugged mountain region west of Sydney is best known for dramatic scenery featuring steep cliffs, waterfalls, eucalyptus forests and historic villages.

Expect to be enchanted by the blue horizon of eucalyptus trees that appear to stretch on forever and the natural beauty of the World Heritage Area.

You can explore on foot through some of the 140 kilometres of walking trails or take more of an extreme approach with some of the more adventurous activities on offer.

Best places to visit in the Blue Mountains

1. Katoomba

This historic and compact town is where you’ll likely be based if you decide to stay a few days to take in everything the Blue Mountains has to offer.

Katoomba has fresh mountain air, awesome views, heritage guesthouses and easy access to the walks and activities around the area.

  • Best for: The cultural traveller.
  • How to get there: The most popular option is by car or tour bus for the 90-minute drive from Sydney but there is also a regular train that travels from central Sydney and even directly from the airport.
  • Top five things to see/do: Blue Mountains Cultural Centre, Leura Cascades, Everglades Historic House and Gardens, Gordon Falls, Leuralla Toy and Railway Museum.
  • How long do I need? Full day.
  • Recommended tour: Blue Mountains Hop-on Hop-off Tour – This bus tour gives you the flexibility to explore all the attractions in the region at your own pace.

2. Scenic World

Walk on air along a skyway suspended 270 metres over a stunning ravine, drop down on an almost-vertical railway to walk on the boardwalk through lush, ancient rainforests in the valley, and ride back up the gorge walls in the steepest aerial cable car in the southern hemisphere.

  • Best for: The adventurer.
  • How to get there: Located three kilometres from Katoomba’s centre and railway station, visitors can hop on a bus or drive to get here.
  • Top five things to see/do: Scenic Skyway, Scenic Cableway, Scenic Walkway, Scenic Railway, Prince Henry Cliff Walk to Katoomba Falls.
  • How long do I need? Full day.
  • Recommended tour: Blue Mountains Two Night Stay with Scenic World Pass – Explore the Blue Mountains in style with a two-night stay including a VIP family pass to visit all of the attractions at Scenic World.

3. Wentworth Falls

Wentworth Falls is the largest waterfall in the Blue Mountains National Park with fascinating Indigenous sites over 20,000 years old.

Various bushwalk trails for visitors of different abilities surround this dramatic three-tiered, 187-metre waterfall that allow for some spectacular views.

  • Best for: The nature lover.
  • How to get there: Wentworth Falls is easy to get to by public transport from Katoomba.
  • Top five things to see/do: Wentworth Falls, Wentworth Falls Lake, The National Pass, Charles Darwin Walk, Wentworth Falls Village.
  • How long do I need? Half-day.
  • Recommended tour: Blue Mountains Day Trip – The perfect tour if you have just one day to visit the Blue Mountains with stops at all important sites including Wentworth Falls.

4. Three Sisters

The Three Sisters is one of the Blue Mountains’ most spectacular landmarks with an interesting story behind it. It is an unusual sandstone formation representing three sisters who were turned to stone, according to Aboriginal legend.

Each of the Three Sisters stand at over 900 metres tall and the view changes throughout the different seasons and even during the day. For photos, the view is best from midday to late afternoon so make sure to bring your camera.

  • Best for: The budding photographer.
  • How to get there: The Three Sisters is located in the Katoomba precinct of Blue Mountains National Park and is accessed from Echo Point. The best way to get there is by car or on a tour.
  • Top five things to see/do: Echo Point Lookout, Three Sisters Walk, the Giant Stairway, Prince Henry Cliff Walk, Spooners Lookout.
  • How long do I need? Half-day.
  • Recommended tour: Blue Mountains Nature and Wildlife Day Tour – Soak up panoramic views of eucalyptus forests and learn local Indigenous legends behind the ancient rock formations.

5. Govetts Leap

Past the major tourist spots in Katoomba and Leura, Govetts Leap is the perfect place to start a series of bushwalks including the Fairfax Heritage walking track and Govetts Leap descent.

From the viewpoint, you'll be treated to panoramas of cliff faces and a 180 metre waterfall.

  • Best for: The bushwalker.
  • How to get there: Blackheath is the closest town to Govetts Leap Lookout. The view point is just over 3km from Blackheath Station.
  • Top five things to see/do: Bushwalk, enjoy the views, visit Blue Mountains Heritage Centre
  • How long do I need? Half day (Full day if bushwalking)
  • Recommended tour: Self-guided walk of Govetts Leap Loop. Starting from the lookout point or Blackheath Train Station, this 8.7km walk will have you walking along the valley seeing waterfalls along the way.

6. Leura

Tucked between Wentworth Falls and Katoomba, Leura is growing ever popular as a popular stopover location in the Blue Mountains. Its sweet country-town feel is complemented by its tranquil garden spaces and heritage architecture.

Hike Sublime Point Road for spectacular vistas from Sublime Lookout or take to the open road and follow Cliff Drive, past Leura cascades (pictured) and onto Katoomba Falls.

  • Best for: The nature and history lover.
  • How to get there: Leura has a train station and is easily accessed by public transport.
  • Top five things to see/do: Sublime Lookout, Leura Cascades, Leura Mall, Everglades Garden and Leura Gardens Festival (September/October).
  • How long do I need? Half day (full day if bushwalking)
  • Recommended tour: Leura itself is pretty easy to navigate and is best used as a starting point further into the Blue Mountains. To see the region's highlights, take a self-guided bike tour through the Leura, Katoomba and the Blue Mountains. It can be completed within 4 hours giving you ample time to rest, relax and explore Leura further.

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