The Blue Mountains is one of the best nature escapes in Australia. With just a mere 90-minute drive from Sydney, it transports you to its alluring natural attractions, country villages and farm-to-table dining.
What is there to do in Blue Mountains National Park exactly? There are enough attractions and activities to pack out anyone’s itinerary. Let’s look at some of the most memorable experiences, including many free things to do in the Blue Mountains.
Getting to the Blue Mountains
By Car: Approximately 90 minutes from Sydney, arriving in Katoomba.
Nearest Airport: The nearest airport to the Blue Mountains is Sydney Airport, about one hour away via car.
By Train: Approximately two hours from Sydney, leaving Central Station and alighting in Katoomba.
1. The Jenolan Caves
The Jenolan Caves offer around 40 kilometres of multilevel passages to explore. You can visit eleven show caves on a tour, all of which are spectacularly illuminated. Alternatively, crawl, shimmy and squeeze your way deeper into this intricate cave system via Adventure Caving.
As you explore the Jenolan Caves, keep an eye out for Silurian marine fossils and the pure white calcite formations. Each show cave presents yet another fascinating feature of the Jenolan Caves. For instance, the section of river in the River Cave that was once crossed by a small boat. Also, the Tasmanian Devil fossil deposits in the Imperial Cave and the nine-metre shawl formation, Angel’s Wing, in the Temple of Baal.
2. Scenic World Blue Mountains
One of the best ways to truly appreciate the natural beauty of the Blue Mountains is via Scenic World Blue Mountains. Descend into Jamison Valley on the steepest passenger railway in the world. Next, walk the 2.4-kilometre Scenic Walkway boardwalk, surrounded by flora and birdlife.
Afterwards, admire the Three Sisters, Orphan Rock and Mt Solitary rock formations while riding the Scenic Cableway. Finally, glide 270 metres above ancient ravines on the glass-floored Scenic Skyway for the best views of Katoomba Falls, the Three Sisters, Mt Solitary and Jamison Valley.
3. Blue Mountains Cultural Centre
Located in Katoomba, the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre offers a variety of local artist exhibitions, workshops and talks. It comprises the Blue Mountains Art Gallery and Katoomba Library. Here, you can discover more about the local culture and history.
Various special events take place throughout the year such as artist studio tours and drawing sessions. Exhibitions range from experimental video installations to historical paintings as well as textiles and archaeological discoveries.
4. Bygone Beautys
Bygone Beautys is a beloved Leura attraction for lovers of all things tea. This teapot museum comprises more than 5,500 teapots from around the world. Even Christmas and Australia-themed pots! Stick around for a delectable Traditional High Tea in the quaint tearoom.
5. Blue Mountains Botanic Garden
The 28-hectare Blue Mountains Botanic Garden is an oasis of cool-climate flora and native Australian wildlife. Here, you can find hundreds of plants from around the globe in themed gardens and join informative guided tours.
It offers fun family-friendly activities and is one of the best attractions for kids. Activities include scavenger hunts, silent walks showcasing the sounds of the forest and identifying plants.
6. Wentworth Falls Lake
This is a popular family picnic spot with barbecues, a playground and leisurely waterfront walking track.
As you walk along the foreshore, you can see people kayaking and canoeing. You can also admire sandstone sculptures by local artists that highlight native plants.
7. Katoomba Falls
This is one of the best-known waterfalls in the Blue Mountains. The waterfall cascades about 150 metres in two distinct stages and the best way to admire the falls from all angles is to take the the two-kilometre Katoomba Falls Round Walk.
Want to learn more about this trek and other amazing Blue Mountains walks? Read our blog on the best Blue Mountains walks & lookouts.
8. Little Wombat Gallery
Discover some of the region’s best contemporary artists at Little Wombat Gallery. The gallery displays award-winning photography by Roslyn Elms alongside paintings by Gerlinde Thomas. On top of that, you can also admire porcelain art by Elaine Dowd and mosaics and sculptures by Saskia Kremer. Also, don’t miss seeing the artisan jewellery by Therese Peters.
9. Red Hands Cave in Glenbrook
Red Hands Cave showcases the rich Aboriginal culture in the Blue Mountains. Enter this ancient cave structure to discover earthy handprints and stencils painted between 500 and 1,600 years ago. You can access the cave via the eight-kilometre Red Hands Cave loop walking track, following in the footsteps of the Darug people. Alternatively, you can walk from the Red Hands Cave car park which is about 500 metres away.
10. Street Art Walk in Katoomba
The Street Art Walk is located at Beverly Place in Katoomba. Conceived in 2013, it’s an impressive display of culturally inspired murals. About 135 artists contributed to the Street Art Walk’s initial creation.
Today, artists from the local region, Australia and around the world have all provided large-scale paintings that change constantly throughout the year.
Discover these Incredible Blue Mountains Attractions
There are so many things to see and do in the Blue Mountains. With KAYAK, you can tailor your holiday by hand picking your favourite accommodation.
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