Wild Walks in NSW
It’s no secret Australians love time spent outdoors, but with endless places across this wide brown land, sidestep the well-worn path, get off the beaten track and discover awe-inspiring trails that will enliven the senses and instil a new appreciation for native flora and fauna.
Blue Fig Trail – Nightcap National Park
Located within the Whian Whian State Conservation Area between Byron Bay and Nimbin, this easy 4.8km walk is suitable for families, trail-walkers and mountain bike riders alike. Frog lovers will delight in the array of species that breed in this water catchment area, with gentle waterfalls along the way making it an ideal spot to stop for a relaxed picnic while enjoying the birdsong of many local species.
Bouddi National Park
Located near Gosford on the NSW Central Coast, the Bouddi National Park is rich in Aboriginal history, with over 100 sites featuring rock engravings, grinding grooves, shelters, drawings and paintings. Take a three-hour guided heritage tour which commences with a smoking ceremony then tracks along the coastal landscape to include visits to these significant cultural treasures.
Source: Hiking The World
Gunguddy - Wollemi National Park
Located within Wollemi National Park, the second largest park in NSW and part of the Greater Blue Mountains, Gunguddy – or Dunns Swamp as it is also known – includes 5kms of waterways fed by the Cudgegong River. Home to over 250 species of birds, kangaroos, wallabies and sugar gliders, this is one for the animal lovers. With five different walks ranging in difficulty, there is one to suit most abilities from beginner to those more seasoned.
Hare Point Walking Track – Jervis Bay National Park
190kms from Sydney in the Jervis Bay National Park, the 6km Hare Point Walking track takes around three and a half hours to complete. This loop – which begins at the Red Point picnic area – winds through the Bangalay sand forest to Hare Point where majestic mangroves line the inlet on the way to the beach. Pack insect repellent to keep the mozzies and sandflies at bay and bring binoculars to spot abundant native birds, soldier crabs or perhaps even a whale.
Mount Kosciuszko Summit Walk
Walgalu and Ngarigo Country
Worth the effort, this 18.6km return walk takes in spectacular views from the top of Australia’s highest mountain, 2,228 metres above sea level. Although recommended for those with some experience, there are plenty of resting spots along the way to sit and enjoy the fields of spring wildflowers, weathered snow gums and granitic rock formations thought to be over 400 million years old.
Image by Christian Bass
Mutawintji National Park – Rockholes Loop Walking Track
Malyankapa and Pandjikali Country
Located near Broken Hill, the 6902km Mutawintji National Park features the majestic Bynguano Ranges. This rugged desert landscape which has been home to Aboriginal people for thousands of years boasts magnificent examples of hand-stencilled art and other important cultural sites. For those more agile and looking for the adventure of steep ascents, the 5.6km Rockholes Loop takes around two and a half hours to complete and takes in rock art, engravings and rockpools visited by native wildlife including the endangered yellow-footed rock wallaby.
Main photograph - Flora of Mount Kosciuszko. Source: visitnsw.com