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All The Breathtaking National Parks You Have To Visit Near Sydney (And By Near, We Mean Within 150 kms)

Marco Ruiz Marco Ruiz - Sponsored SMN Writer (APAC) - Staff Writer (Aus)

All The Breathtaking National Parks You Have To Visit Near Sydney (And By Near, We Mean Within 150 kms)

National Parks. A national treasure and a welcome escape from the city.

New South Wales has somewhere in the vicinity of 250 National Parks—253 to be exact, we think. And Sydney is home to not only the oldest National Park in Australia but also one of the oldest in the world—Royal National Park. These areas of land have been given protected status because of their landscapes, ecosystems, native flora and fauna and their cultural significance. Subsequently, they also offer everyday Australians the opportunity to relax in and appreciate nature’s gifts with so many just a short train, bus or car ride from the city.

Not sure which one to visit first? Check out our list of all national parks near Sydney (ordered by rough distance from Sydney) and start crossing them off your list.

Be sure to check the NSW National Parks website for local alerts before travelling as well as necessary visitor info such as parking fees and restrictions. 

1. Sydney Harbour National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Walk Bradleys Head to Chowder Bay, go swimming at Collins Flat Beach, scuba dive at North Head, or learn about aboriginal culture on a tour of the islands in Sydney Harbour.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 10 km

🛏️ Accommodation

📝 More info

2. Lane Cove National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Ride the Pennant Hills West Pymble fire trail, volunteer with the Lane Cove National Park bushcare group, have a picnic at Bakers Flat picnic area or at any of the other eleven picnic areas in Lane Cove National Park.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 15 km

🛏️ Camping and Accommodation

📝 More info

3. Malabar Headland National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Go birdwatching and spot the (seasonal) wildflowers along the Western Escarpment walking track, or join the Friends of Malabar Headland group to help take care of our beautiful backyard.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 15 km

📝 More info

4. Garigal National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Have a picnic and paddle downriver at Davidson Park picnic area and boat ramp, ride a horse or bike along the Cascades trail and spot the beautiful little waterfalls that give the trail its name.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 21 km

📝 More info

5. Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Go on a guided bushwalk, visit the historic Barrenjoey Lighthouse, hire a small boat from Empire Marina, or visit one of the Aboriginal art sites in the national park.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 30 km

🛏️ Camping

📝 More info

6. Berowra Valley National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Check out the scenic views along the Place of Winds interpretive trail or at Barnett’s lookout, or challenge yourself to complete the 27 kilometre Great North walk.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 30 km

📝 More info

7. Georges River National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Go birdwatching and encounter wildlife on the Yeramba Lagoon loop track, enjoy a picnic at Cattle Duffers Flat, or a spot of boating from Fitzpatrick Park.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 30 km

📝 More info

8. Royal National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Take the bike out for a spin, have a surf at Garrie Beach, or join the Women’s trek training sessions to pick up new skills and improve your fitness among so many other activities to experience in the world’s second (or third) oldest national park.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 35 km

🛏️ Camping and Accommodation

📝 More info

 

9. Kamay Botany Bay National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Visit La Perouse Museum and learn the explorer’s first contact with aborigines, cross a 130-year-old wooden bridge on the Bare Island Fort guided tour, or go for a swim and snorkel at Congwong Beach.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 35 km

📝 More info

10. Heathcote National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Cycle, swim or walk your way around Heathcote National Park, which offers great views, wildflowers and birdwatching too.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 45 km

🛏️ Camping

📝 More info

 

11. Scheyville National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Go birdwatching and encounter wildlife on the Longneck Lagoon walking track, explore 12 km of trails on horseback, or turn back in time to post-WWII with the Migrant Heritage walk. 

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 60 km

📝 More info

12. Cattai National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Stroll through remnant rainforest and diverse woodland on the Mitchell Park walking tracks before relaxing with a spot of fishing at the Mitchell Park picnic area. 

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🚗 Distance from Sydney: 65 km

🛏️ Camping

📝 More info

13. Marramarra National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: See the scenic Hawkesbury River by following the Canoelands Ridge walking track, or take the mountain bike bush along the Coba Ridge to Collingridge Point walking track. 

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 70 km

🛏️ Camping

📝 More info

14. Popran National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Find the crystal-clear waters of Emerald Pool, explore the 248 trail on horseback or on a mountain bike, or go on a guided kayak adventure.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 70 km

📝 More info

15. Dharawal National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Wind through the traditional country of the Aboriginal Dharawal people on the Minerva Pool walking track, chase Maddens Falls, and have a BBQ while you’re there.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 70 km

📝 More info

16. Blue Mountains National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Read our Secret Sydney Guide To The Blue Mountains

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 80 km

🛏️ Camping

📝 More info

17. Brisbane Water National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Get the camera out at Warrah lookout, see rock art at the Bulgandry Art Site Aboriginal Place, and count the number of waterfalls you can find.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 85 km

📝 More info

18. Yengo National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Take the 4WD into the bush, go a little slower by bike, or enjoy the views at Finchley lookout.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 85 km

🛏️ Camping and Accommodation

📝 More info

19.Dharug National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Go on Wollombi Aboriginal culture tour and camp, visit convict sites along the Old Great North Road bike ride, or challenge yourself on the Dubbo Gully loop trail. 

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 90 km

🛏️ Camping

📝 More info

20. Wyrrabalong National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Take care of nature and volunteer, tick off the lookouts along the Red Gum trail, and fire up the barbie at Bateau Bay Beach picnic area.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 92 kms

🛏️ Camping and Accommodation

📝 More info

21. Bouddi National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Who doesn’t want to volunteer and help out the community at a place called Lobster Beach, go for a gentle walk on Strom loop and make sure to take your camera, or learn more about the area on a Bouddi guided Aboriginal heritage tour.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 93 km

🛏️ Camping

📝 More info

22. Thirlmere Lakes National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Go walking, swimming, or take the 4WD out for a drive on the Greater Blue Mountains – Wollondilly trail. 

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 100 km

📝 More info

23. Macquarie Pass National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Adventure in pristine forests with Scones in the forest South Coast walking tours, and don’t stop chasing waterfalls either.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 100 km

📝 More info

24. Nattai National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Walking, sightseeing, birdwatching and wildlife encounters—all the reasons you need to get outdoors and explore.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 120 km

📝 More info

25. Seven-Mile Beach National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Surf and swim, enjoy a picnic or a barbie, or walk either south or north along the Sand Track walk.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 140 km

📝 More info

26. Bangadilly National Park

🤷‍♀️ What to do: Navigate the Mount Penang (unmarked) loop walk for reach the summit and take in the spectacular views.

🚗 Distance from Sydney: 140 km

📝 More info

 

Prefer to hit the coast rather than the bush? Then take the 100-Beach Challenge!

 

(Featured image: Illawarra Nature and Aviation)

Wellness & Nature