Destinations for Blue Mountains, Lithgow and Oberon
Some of the destinations within this region include:
Table of Contents
- Capertee Valley and Glen Davis
- Glenbrook section(Blue Mountains National Park)
- Hartley Historic Site
- Jenolan Karst Conservation Reserve
- Kanangra-Boyd National Park
- Mount Tomah Botanic Garden
- Mount Victoria
- Mount Werong and Yerranderie
- Newnes Plateau
- Wentworth Falls
- Wolgan Valley
Find out more about the features, attractions and landscapes of " Blue Mountains, Lithgow and Oberon.
Blackheath is a more intimate base than Katoomba, with spectacular sites on both sides of the main ridge. East of town lies Blue Mountains National Park, where the rim of the stupendous Grose Valley has several lookouts and picnic areas, and bush camping site at Perrys Lookdown. Many walking tracks explore the creeks and edges of the plateau before descending deep into the valley. Don't miss the interpretive display and information centre at the National Parks and Wildlife Service Heritage Centre near Govetts Leap Lookout (phone 02 4787 8877). The west side of town and Shipley Plateau are also well supplied with impressive lookouts and walking tracks. The rural, cliff-rimmed Megalong Valley lies below - well worth visiting to see rainforest, the Six Foot Track and other attractions.
Capertee Valley and Glen Davis
The Capertee is another valley surrounded by sandstone cliffs, and a birdwatcher's paradise. Drive through the broad expanse of the upper valley, past the stand-alone mesa of Pantoneys Crown and bushland of Gardens of Stone National Park to the old mining village of Glen Davis. Here the valley narrows down between towering cliffs. Camp with excellent facilities in the village park or downstream in the bush of Coorongooba in Wollemi National Park. Tours of the oil shale industry ruins can be arranged.
Glenbrook section(Blue Mountains National Park)
The park entry fee gives access to a road system connecting several picnic areas, lookouts over the Nepean River gorge, a camping area, swimming holes, an Aboriginal art site and walking tracks. Euroka - a sheltered, grassy basin between the hills, with tall blue gums and relaxed kangaroos - is a great camping or picnicking spot (camping fees apply with bookings required: 02 4588 2400). Glenbrook Visitor Information Centre is on the Great Western Highway.
Hartley Historic Site
Area: 13 hectares
Soon after the first road reached Bathurst, Hartley was established as an important colonial outpost west of the Blue Mountains. Much of the well-preserved village is now protected in the historic site. The monumental courthouse dates from the 1830s and holds many fascinating stories. Shop, information centre and guided tours. Phone 02 6355 2117.
Jenolan Karst Conservation Reserve
Area: 2422 hectares
Jenolan is one of the oldest, best decorated and most complex cave systems in the world, and an important part of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. More than 250,000 visitors a year come to marvel at the 340 million year old caves, explore the surface features on a variety of walking tracks or take an underground adventure trip. Open every day. Parking and tour fees apply. Accommodation ranges from the comforts of the historic Jenolan Caves House to cabins. Phone 02 6359 3911.
Kanangra-Boyd National Park
Area: 68661 hectares
Kanangra-Boyd National Park is mostly wilderness, joined on three sides by Blue Mountains National Park. Beloved of bushwalkers, this park has exciting opportunities for everyone. The unsealed Kanangra Walls Road leads across the snow gum forests of the Boyd Plateau, past Boyd River Camping Area to Kanangra Walls Lookout. Perched on the edge of Kanangra Deep with its conglomerate cliffs and steep blue ridges fading into the distance, the lookout is only a short, easy walk from the car (and can be reached by wheelchair). Slightly longer walks go to Kalang Falls and across the airy heathland of Kanangra Tops on the edge of the Kanangra-Boyd Wilderness.
This 'capital' of the upper Blue Mountains is a hub of tourism activity. On the south side of town, Cliff Drive connects numerous cliff-edge lookouts and picnic areas that continue through Leura and Wentworth Falls. Echo Point Lookout and the Three Sisters (and visitor information centre) are not to be missed, but don't stop there! The walking track complex links the cliff-top to the valley with steep climbs through fern-filled glens. Or the rides of Scenic World are an easier way to reach the valley and an interpretive rainforest boardwalk. Narrow Neck Peninsula offers an edge-of-the-world mountain bike ride on a management track closed to cars.
Sublime Point Lookout and Leura Cascades Park are the key visitor sites on the southern escarpment. The picnic area is an entry point to the extensive walking track system in Blue Mountains National Park. On the northern side, the unsealed Mount Hay Road (four-wheel-drive sometimes required, and popular with cyclists) leads to heathland walking tracks on the edge of the Grose Valley wilderness.
Mount Tomah Botanic Garden
The cool climate garden of the Royal Botanic Gardens Trust sits at an elevation of 1000 metres on Bells Line of Road (part of The Botanists Way). Extensive landscaped grounds on rich volcanic soil display cool plants from around the world, but especially from Australia and the Blue Mountains. Paths and tracks, picnic sites, informative signs and self-guided walks, a gift shop specialising in plant books and products and a self-guided audio tour are available. Spectacular views over the World Heritage Area. The garden will soon offer an information and interpretive centre for the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. Entry fee applies.
This historic village is close to a number of lookouts and walking tracks on both the Grose Valley side (Blue Mountains National Park) and above the Kanimbla Valley to the west. A special attraction just out of town is Mount York with its lookouts and historic roads - now walking tracks - across the Blue Mountains.
Mount Werong and Yerranderie
A long unsealed drive out of Oberon crosses high country grazing land and pine forests to enter the remote southern section of Blue Mountains National Park at Mount Werong. There is a bush campsite here in the native forest, and a walking track to the historic Ruby Creek Mine. Continuing on, the road follows the twisting divide between the Kowmung and Wollondilly Rivers with glimpses into the blue-green deeps, past Batsh Camp campsite onto the Bindook Plateau with its isolated farmlands. Turning past the square-topped bulk of Mount Colong (which gives its name to this southern Colong sector of the World Heritage Area), the road arrives at the old silver-lead-zinc mining village of Yerranderie. Originally accessed from the east through Burragorang Valley, this area was isolated by Warragamba Dam. Camp by the historic courthouse in 'Government Town' or in 'Private Town'. Accommodation is available in 'Private Town' (phone 02 4659 6165).
The highest and most extensive sandstone plateau in the Blue Mountains lies just north of Lithgow. Land use is mainly production forest of pine plantations and native eucalypts, but the sandstone battlements and gorges on the eastern and northern edges are protected in Blue Mountains, Wollemi and Gardens of Stone National Parks, leading into the remote Wollemi Wilderness. You can camp or picnic at Bungleboori Picnic Area in Newnes State Forest, and drive or cycle out to the Glow Worm Tunnel - once blackened by steam trains servicing the Newnes oil shale industry but now colonised by luminous grubs.
A double-tiered waterfall where Jamison Creek plunges off the southern escarpment gives its name to both the small village and the general area. Blue Mountains National Park facilities are focused at Wentworth Falls Picnic Area (lookouts) and The Valley of the Waters Picnic Area (café). One of the most interesting networks of walking tracks anywhere links the two sites with escarpment creeks, falls and forests at multiple levels. Darwins Walk (commemorating a visit by Charles Darwin in 1836) links the main falls with the village and railway station. For the more adventurous, a long drive or bike ride down an unsealed road takes you to McMahons Lookout overlooking Lake Burragorang.
This isolated and cliff-bound gulf lies off the northern edge of Newnes Plateau. A spectacular drive out of Lithgow travels along the length of the settled valley to the historic relics of Newnes on the edge of Wollemi National Park. This was once the scene of the largest industrial operation in Australia, where the Commonwealth Oil Corporation Ltd mined the shale, produced paraffin, motor oil and other products and freighted them out by train. Today you can camp beside the Wolgan River and explore the ruins spread out below orange cliffs.