Within the heart of the Sydney metropolitan area, Sydney Harbour National Park encompasses a number of stunning foreshore areas and islands, many of which were former military and colonial defence sites. Explore and immerse yourself in its natural beauty with magnificent beaches, inlets and cliffs, or learn about the area's historical significance, which includes 70 Aboriginal sites and 200 historic buildings. Sydney Harbour National Park is accessible by all forms of public transport, particularly harbour ferries.
The Royal National Park is situated on 15,080 hectares to the immediate south of Sydney and was the second national park in the world. Walk the coast for magnificent views, or experience the variety of habitats, including heath, rainforests, open woodlands, and estuarine systems. Enjoy historic landscapes and short walks to lookouts with spectacular views over the park. Wattamolla, Garie and Burning Palms are some of the most beautiful beaches in Australia.
Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park lies on the northern perimeter of Sydney, at the place where the Hawkesbury River meets the sea: a tight cluster of secretive, winding creeks, sheltered beaches, hidden coves and wide expanses of deep blue water. Wildflowers grace the sandstone ridges, dense forests cling to the slopes, and mangroves squat on the tidal mudflats. Park highlights include: rock engravings, hand stencils and other Aboriginal sites, historic Bobbin Head, with its picnic areas, marina and visitor centres.
Lane Cove National Park is a beautiful pocket of bushland that sits on either side of the peaceful Lane Cove River. It s in easy reach for Sydneysiders, extending from East Ryde to Pennant Hills and West Chatswood. It s a great place for a day out with the family; there are lots of picnic areas to choose from, including those that offer picnic tables, barbecues, children s play equipment, flat grassy areas and easy access to walking tracks and places to ride your bike. The Park is a perfect place to picnic for the day.
Filled with significant sites, remarkable landscapes and heritage-listed attractions, Kamay Botany Bay National Park offers an idyllic daytrip from Sydney. Separated by the marine-rich waters of historic Botany Bay, the park s northern and southern headlands feature a unique combination of natural and cultural heritage. Explore the southern side around Kurnell, where in 1770, James Cook the crew of the Endeavour came ashore, or the northern side at La Perouse, where French explorer Comte de Laperouse was last sighted in 1788.
Just a short drive from Sydney's CBD, its impressive sandstone country offers great water and bush views, waterfalls and several significant Aboriginal sites and historic places. It s the ideal escape for a daytrip or picnic. Garigal is home to a remarkable array of animals and plants, including the threatened southern brown bandicoot and protects thousands of years of heritage. You can retrace Governor Phillip's steps along the heritage walk to Bungaroo, where he camped for two nights on his first expedition in 1788.
Head to the Blue Mountains National Park for abundant wildlife, quiet forest retreats and tranquil freshwater lakes and streams, which provide ample opportunities to swim, walk, camp and picnic. Adventure seekers can get their adrenaline going with a rock climb or canyoning experience tailored for beginners to outdoor veterans. Home to the world famous Three Sisters rock formation and Katoomba Falls, The Blue Mountains are less than 3 hours from Sydney by train.
180km from the outskirts of Sydney, Kanangra-Boyd National Park, part of Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area, feels like you ve crossed an ocean to get there. Take in the magnificent scenery - the sheer sandstone cliff faces of Kanangra Walls or mist-wreathed Mount Cloudmaker - before walking down forest-lined trails to one of the park s waterfalls. An easy day trip from the Blue Mountains, Kanangra-Boyd also has quiet campsites among the snow gums at Boyd River if you want to get away from it all.
For the most part, Burragorang State Conservation Area is water - clean, precious water that supplies about 80 per cent of Sydney s supply. Virtually its only publicly-accessible point is Burragorang lookout and picnic area, but it is certainly a sight for weary, city-smogged eyes. Vast expanses of water formed by Warragamba Dam catchment area are surrounded by areas of thick bushland. The park covers more than 17,500ha and is home to a number of threatened species of wildlife, including koalas, tiger quolls and the powerful owl.
Marramarra National Park is one of the Hawkesbury's best-kept secrets and has to be among the most exciting national parks in the country. Hidden away in the northern outskirts of Sydney at the junction of Hawkesbury River and Berowra Creek, it s a peaceful pocket of Aussie bush on Sydney's doorstep, just waiting to be explored. It s so close to the city, but you ll barely see another soul. Go boating, kayaking and canoeing on the beautiful waters of Hawkesbury River and Marramarra Creek.
Georges River National Park, which is surrounded by suburbia in Sydney's south, is a popular place for a family day out in the great outdoors. The landscape of the park includes striking rock formations, steep forested hillsides, plateaus and riverside flats, providing ample opportunities for picnics, barbecues, fishing and walking. It's a good place for some waterskiing, jetskiing and taking a boat out, you can launch your boat from the ramp. It s also a pleasant place for a spot of kayaking or canoeing, awith lots of scenic spots.
Cattai National Park is a fantastic place for a family daytrip or a weekend getaway. There are two parts to the park: the popular Cattai Farm area, flanked by the mighty Hawkesbury River, and the quieter Mitchell Park area. Each section offers a fantastic experience in the great outdoors; Cattai Farm is great if you re looking for a weekend camping trip, some canoeing or a big family barbecue. This parcel of land is an intact land grant given to a First Fleet settler.
To walk among the exquisite and varied rock pagoda formations, sandstone cliffs and canyons at Gardens of Stone National Park is a memorable experience. The extraordinary rock shapes, the stunning scenic views over the valleys and the mesa of Pantoneys Crown make this area of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area a must for photographers. This rugged territory is also a haven for adventurers, with excellent opportunities for canyoning, mountain-biking and serious bushwalking or hiking.
This large park occupies the beautiful bushland valley between the suburbs of Hornsby Heights, Thornleigh, Galston, Pennant Hills and Cherrybrook, reaching up to the quiet waters of Berowra Creek. Covering a 25km stretch of the Great North walk, the park offers more than 70km of walking tracks and fire trails. If you d rather enjoy nature at a slower pace, enjoy a picnic or barbecue at Crosslands Reserve, so close to the suburbs and yet so far from the speed of daily life. It's a great spot for some canoeing or kayaking.
Just 45km from Sydney and 8.2km from Windsor, Scheyville National Park is an accessible destination appealing to outdoor enthusiasts and history buffs alike. Scheyville National Park offers enough variety to keep even the shortest attention spans occupied for a full day. It s most easily approached in three parts. The northern precinct of the park is a separate arm reaching above the rest, encompassing Longneck Lagoon. The southern precinct of the park includes the Migrant Heritage walk.