Looking for the best hikes in Sydney? You’ve come to the right place. Sydney walks is our speciality as we’ve personally been on every single walking track in Sydney mentioned in this post. And you’ll find more of the off the beaten track walks in Sydney in this post, some where you won’t see many other people around at all!
But if you’re looking for walks in Sydney and around the CBD, then we’ve got you covered too. It’s all here!
I thought it would only be fair to share some of the best bushwalks in Sydney and walking tracks near me which I’ve personally experienced.
In no particular order, here’s my 18 best hikes in Sydney which include a mixture of some of the best bush walks in Sydney, best canyoning in Sydney, waterfalls in Sydney and best beaches in Sydney.
Please Be Aware
Before I start this post, please, please make sure you look after yourself when you are hiking. We are not invincible so just be careful and don’t carry on if you feel unsafe and don’t put yourself in any situation that might be dangerous just to get a photo.
Although this post is in no particular order, my part hike, swim and sort of canyoning adventure through the Mares Forest Creek Canyon is without a doubt the best thing I have ever done in Sydney, hands down.
It’s a 3 hour drive out to Wombeyan Caves. You can stop off at the information office when you arrive to get some walking directions if you need to. Once you’re directed onto the right path, it’s a pretty easy 30 minute walk to the water.
You’ll then need to strip off to your swimmers or wetsuit if it’s winter or Spring, then time to embrace the cold water.
My friend and I went completely unprepared and I’d advise wearing some sort of aqua shoes for this one as you’ll be walking, swimming and climbing over rocks. The scenery is completely mind blowing and I must admit, it’s easily one of the best hikes near Sydney.
Expect crystal clear, emerald waters and you’ll just want to keep on going as far as you can. It is amazing!
If you find Jenolan Caves a bit too busy, then visit Wombeyan Caves. We went on a self guided tour to have a massive cave all to ourselves! It was amazing!
There’s a fantastic campsite here that’s worth staying in for the weekend if you didn’t want to drive there and back in one day.
Read Our Posts About Mares Forest Creek Canyon & Wombeyan Caves
Make a weekend of it and chec out both Mares Forest Creek Canyon and Wombeyan Caves near Sydney.
It’s an easy to follow hike which would be impossible to get lost. Whilst the walk to the lookout isn’t the most inspiring, it’s completely worth it when you reach Hanging Rock & Baltzer Lookout. We were in complete awe of this place.
If you have the desire to stand at the very edge of this famous rock, be aware as it’s incredibly dangerous and I strongly recommend you don’t attempt it. There’s a big gap in the rock which you have to jump over which was way too scary in my eyes.
When I went there, there were loads of people and only one person jumped over the rock. It was also really windy as well and very scary. But this place is without a doubt worth visiting, it’s incredibly beautiful there.
If you’re looking to take that perfect insta worthy shot on your hike, it doesn’t get much better than taking here at Sea Cliff Bridge.
There’s a lot of confusion about how to find this lookout but I have it all covered complete with a video below. Just make sure you don’t use the track next to the railway lines as you’re looking at a good $400 fine.
Just be VERY careful if you are thinking of doing this walk – there have been fatalities.
7. Resolute Beach In Ku-ring-gai National Park 1.30hr return hike
Another one of my favourite beach hikes in Sydney is to Resolute Beach in Ku-ring-gai National Park.
It’s mind blowing to think this beautiful beach is located right over the water from Palm Beach but you’ll honestly feel like you’ve found the most beautiful gem in Sydney.
Take the boat from Palm Beach over to Mackerel Beach, then follow the beach all along to your right until you find the track. This will take you right next to the crystal clear waters and over to a pretty much secluded Resolute Beach.
Watch Our Video to Resolute Beach Below!
8. Mermaid Pools In Tahmoor 1.30 hour return hike
A easy 30min-45min hike to Mermaid Pools in Tahmoor is a must. When you arrive at the pools, you’ll be in awe of how this was once a sacred spot for Aboriginal women to bathe in.
If you want to swim in these pools, you’re going to need to jump from quite a high cliff into them. Be warned though – it’s at your own risk as there have been injuries here. If something does happen, you’ll have to wait for an air ambulance to arrive.
I couldn’t quite face it so I went back up stream to enjoy the water in the most beautiful pools. I really felt like I was immersed in nature here and it was awesome. You can read more about the other pools here.
9. Walk To The Top Of Gerringong Falls 3hr return hike or 2hr return bike ride
It’s a long hike, but I’d recommend taking your bike for a lovely ride as the path is bike friendly and easy to follow.
When you reach the end, dump your bikes to the side and follow the stream to the left. You’ll then come to the very top of the falls.
Please note, there is no safety restrictions at the top of the falls so don’t get too close. Also, don’t even bother trying to get to the bottom of Gerringong Falls, it’s way too dangerous (trust me I tried it here!).
Read Our Posts About Gerringong Falls
Find out information about how to get to the top of Gerringong Falls, and what happened when we tried to get to the bottom of Gerringong Falls.
Whilst most people might visit West Head Lookout in Ku-ring-gai National Park to see the spectacular views out to Palm Beach in Sydney, many might not have heard of some of the walks you’ll pass by on the road.
Just before you reach West Head Lookout, there’s a walking track to America Bay. The beauty about this particular Sydney walk is that it’s just a 20 minute hike to an amazing lookout over to the Hawkesbury River. It’s a gorgeous spot you could bring a picnic with you to enjoy the peacefulness.
It’s also a walk you could bring kids on as it’s not that far to walk.
11. Hike To The Bottom Of Wentworth Falls In Blue Mountains 2hr return
One of the best hikes in Sydney I’ve been to is to Wentworth Falls in Blue Mountains. It’s a very busy hike to the first stage of the falls which I think most reckon that’s the bottom, but it’s not! The hike is amazingly designed and the path meanders into the cliffs and under cliffs, and the stairs – there’s lots of them.
After you reach the first stage of the falls, continue on and the crowds disappear. You’ll be faced with some questionable staircases but just don’t look down and you’ll be fine!
It’s all worth it when you get to the bottom as the falls are incredible. There were only two other couples there at the bottom when we went, we couldn’t believe how empty it was after the masses we saw before.
13. Olympic Pools Walk In Royal National Park 2.5hr return
Whilst Karloo Pools in Royal National Park tend to be pretty busy because you can get to them using public transport (Heathcote train station), if you continue on further, you’ll come to the amazing Olympic Pools.
When you get to Karloo Pools, walk over the rocks on the left of the pools and continue on for about another hour and you’ll come to the massive Olympic Pools in Royal National Park. We attempted to find this pool twice because we just couldn’t find the track from Karloo Pools. Just keep to the left hand side of the pools and you’ll find it.
When we got to the pool, it was the first ever wild swimming spot we found with not one other person in sight. To be honest, we didn’t actually swim here because we were unsure whether it was safe, but of course it is!
14. Bundeena To Wedding Cake Rock & Big Marley Beach 2.5hr return
The Bundeena to Wedding Cake Rock walk is really popular for a day trip to Royal National Park in Sydney. You can easily get public transport here by catching the train to Cronulla, then jumping on the ferry to Bundeena. This is a fantastic walk to see a beautiful walk in Royal National Park.
Whilst Wedding Cake Rock in Sydney became super popular with Instagrammers, the rock is now fenced off to protect you as there’s nothing stopping you from actually falling of the rock if you get too close. People do still jump the fence but remember, it’s there for a reason.
The actual best part of this hike is out to Big Marley beach. Once you leave Wedding Cake Rock, the final 1.3KM quietens down as you’ll probably get the path to yourself. When it opens out to the image above, it’s absolutely breathtaking. Bring your swimmers and go for a swim when you arrive at Big Marley Beach.
Continue on for another hour and you’ll come to Wattamolla Beach. I’ve done both walks from Bundeena and from Wattamolla and both are stunning!
15. White Sands Coastal Walk In Jervis Bay 2hr return hike
I did quite a bit of research to find the best walks in Jervis Bay to do and all I could find was the White Sands Coastal Walk. I’m glad I found this walk because it is stunning!
The White Sands Coastal Walk in Jervis Bay is one of the best hikes in Sydney! You’ll also find some of the most beautiful beaches you’ll ever see in Australia. That’s right, I’ve called it, some of the most beautiful beaches not only near Sydney but in Australia!
The water is turquoise and the sand is white, it’s no surprise it’s home to the whitest sand beach in the world at Hyams Beach. Finish the hike with breakfast or lunch at the gorgeous Hyams Beach Cafe.
The Garie Coastal Hike in Royal National Park is an absolutely stunning walk! Not only is the Garie Beach so beautiful, the coastal walk will take you to more secluded beaches as you walk in the second oldest national park in the world!
You’ll pass by some incredible homes that are completely cut off from the world. We wondered how they get supplies there if there are no roads? We spoke to a local and they all pay for a helicopter to fly in supplies every so often. It’s mind blowing to think you can live so remotely and live just an hour from Sydney.
If you’re looking for a city walk in Sydney, then we recommend doing the Bondi to Watsons Bay walk. This is a much quieter walk in Sydney than the Bondi to Coogee walk, but the highlight is finding the beautiful Diamond Bay in Bondi. The remains of what looks to be a house makes you feel like you could be in somewhere like Greece. It’s a special place!
If you do walk down to the cliff edge, be incredible careful – there has been a fatality here.
The Figure 8 Pools became so popular during 2016 that it’s been told over a thousand people were believed to do this hike in just one day! When we visited, the crowds had died down but we did visit in Spring and early in the morning.
What most people hadn’t mentioned about this hike in Sydney is that it’s a beautiful walk to get there. You’ll pass by a couple of beaches and just seeing that sun glisten on the ocean is so special, it’s a moment you won’t forget.
You can do the Figure 8 Pools walk on a guided tour, or jump on the train to Otford and start it from there! If you’re not doing a tour, you’ll need to plan the tides before you go. Don’t bother hoping for the best (I nearly did this) as you could waste your entire day – the tides totally depend on whether you’ll be able to actually get to the Figure 8 Pools.
We’ve finally ticked off one of the best walks in Sydney, the Grand Canyon Walk Blue Mountains! One of the things I love about this hike is that you’ll pass by so many different terrains, you’ll feel like you’ve done three hikes in one. From the dry bushland, the further you head into the canyon, you’ll enter a tropical paradise. It’s an absolutely exceptional walk.
If I could only do one hike in Sydney, I’d do the Grand Canyon Walk in Blue Mountains. Find out everything you need to know before you tackle this incredible hike down to a rainforest believed to be over 100 million years old below!