The staggering peaks to the west of Sydney known as the Blue Mountains are a natural attraction definitely worth a visit.
What are some highlights of the Blue Mountains?
Take a journey down one of the heritage walking tracks and be immersed in the stunning landscape.
Hike to the Hassans Walls Lookout, which is the highest in these mountains. From here, at about 1,100 metres above sea level, you'll get panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.
There are also picturesque places where you can enjoy a picnic and opportunities to get in touch with the Aboriginal culture at various sites dotted around the mountains.
There are three main areas of the Blue Mountains – the Katoomba, Lithgow and Oberon Area. Katoomba is where you'll find places to stay, eat and shop. If you're wanting to stay for a few days, this is a great base while you explore the other areas. Lithgow, on the western edge, is perfect for treks and bushwalks, and Oberon is a great place to go trout fishing and where the Jenolan Caves are found.
This landmark is where you'll see some of the most stunning limestone caves in Australia. Throughout the 11 show caves, you'll see amazing lighting displays, underground rivers and awe-inspiring formations.
What is there to do at the Blue Mountains?
September and November, the spring months, are the best time to visit the mountains. The area positively comes alive with flowers, sunshine and animals out in force.
During this season, there are many events that celebrate blossoming nature and glorious days. The Hazelbrook and Woodford Garden Festival takes place on September 13-21. This is the 30th year the festival has taken place. It highlights the absolute beauty of the gardens here, and the diversity of species of trees, shrubs, flowers and more.
The gardens here are unique – they are the result of the combined efforts of the dedication, imagination and passion of the gardeners who created them.
How do I get to the Blue Mountains?
While the Blue Mountains are a bit out of Sydney, they're worth the journey. A popular way to get from city to country is with a Sydney rental car. It'll take you just an hour and a half to drive there, and the route is a lovely one.
The M4 Motorway will get you there faster, but the way that goes through Windsor and Kurrajong and the Bells Line of Road, otherwise known as route B59, is a more scenic route that'll show you more of outback Australia. See with your own eyes the thriving farms, rugged bush and beautiful sandstone cliffs.