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Located just 2 hours away from Sydney, the spectacular Blue Mountains National Park is simply unmissable. With jaw-dropping views, stunning walks and waterfalls, there’s plenty to do and see. You’re going to need your walking shoes but don’t worry, there’s something for everyone!
The National Park is huge – I’m talking 2690 square kilometres kinda huge with lots of cute little towns nestled in it. So how can you possibly know where to start right? Well, I have the perfect 2 day itinerary for you that covers a fantastic part of the Blue Mountains. What’s even better is that you can camp overnight for free! Sounds pretty great, right?
So pack your bags, charge your cameras and get ready to spend 48 hours in the magnificent Blue Mountains!
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Check out my video from the trip to the Blue Mountains here!
How to get to the Blue Mountains
The easiest way to spend 48 hours in the Blue Mountains is to drive. From Sydney, you can get to Katoomba in the Blue Mountains (the location of the 3 Sisters) in about 1.5-2 hours. It’s an easy drive from the city but be sure to try and avoid the rush hour traffic, especially if you’re going on a weekend trip.
Things to bring for 2 days in the Blue Mountains
The Blue Mountains national park is a true outdoorsy haven. There are loads of lookouts for photographs, walking tracks for hiking and waterfalls to spot. Here’s what I recommend bringing with you to make sure you have a great time and see as much as possible.
- Sunscreen: The Blue Mountains can sometimes be scorching hot and sometimes cool, but the suns rays in Australia are no joke! Be sure to bring a high factor sunscreen with you and reapply it regularly as you’re going to be outside the whole time. I love the Nivea sunscreens as they are non-greasy and last well. I usually fill a small silicon travel bottle (like these) with my sunscreen to put in my day bag.
- Comfy walking shoes: You’re going to be walking a fair few kilometres without even doing any hikes so a pair of comfy walking shoes are a must! All the main sites are well paved but some have quite a few steps involved. I like to wear my really lightweight pair of Nike’s but anything comfy will be fine.
- Water bottle: Having a refillable water bottle is a great way to cut down on using single-use plastics, and being out in the sun all day is thirsty work! I got given a foldable water bottle as a gift before I left for Australia and I love it! The more you drink, the less space it takes up in my day bag- perfect!
- Day bag: I find it easier to use a small backpack for the Blue Mountains. That way I have space for everything such as my camera, snacks, water and sunscreen and can still have my hands free. Tom’s Northface backpack (like this one) is perfect for us for day use.
- Camera: You guys, the Blue Mountains is one seriously photogenic place, so be sure to bring your camera with you! I use a Sony a6000 and absolutely love it! It’s compact, light and I love the photo quality. In addition to this, we often carry our GoPro for some more action shots. We have a GoPro Hero 5 but the newer ones have come on leaps and bounds. If you’re in the market for a new GoPro I would highly recommend going for the Hero 7 for an easy way to take great photos.
Your Itinerary for 48 hours in the Blue Mountains
This is the first town you will come across and it’s an amazing area to start your trip. Park up at Breakfast Point lookout and walk down to Princes Rock Lookout to get the best view of the awesome Wentworth Falls itself. You will be able to see for miles over the national park here so sit back and soak it in. On your way back to the carpark, stop at Jamison Lookout to get another view over the mountains.
It’s time for another mind-blowing viewpoint at the Gordon Falls lookout. This is one of my favourite waterfalls I’ve seen in Australia, and when you can also see for miles, it really does make for a picture postcard view.
If you’re looking to escape the heat then check out the Toy and Railway Museum here in Leura where they have the largest collection of toys, trains and collectables in this part of the world. So it’s a great place to head if this is your thing.
After this, wind your way through the forest on foot to the Leura Cascades and Leura Falls. It’s such a tranquil spot that will leave you feeling like you’ve stepped into an enchanted forest!
Start your afternoon off in Katoomba with a visit to the Blue Mountains Chocolate Company. Grab a delicious handmade sweet treat and a drink in the cafe. Next head on down to Echo Point and the famous 3 sisters rock formation. The name comes from an Aboriginal legend where 3 sisters from the Katoomba tribe fell in love with 3 brothers from the Nepean tribe but law forbade them to marry. A tribal war began and so a witch doctor turned the 3 sisters to stone to protect them.
Throughout the day, the 3 sisters can look quite different but it’s a truly magnificent sight. Be sure to walk down the steep Giant stairway to Honeymoon Lookout and walk across the bridge if you’re brave enough! It’s always a busy spot, just as the 12 Apostles is on the Great Ocean Road, but it’s so worth fighting the crowds!
**Top Budget Tip – park up near the Blue Mountains Chocolate Company for free and walk down to Echo Point, instead of paying for the car park there**
The last place on a busy day before you settle down for the night at your free campsite. Scenic World is a unique way to experience the Blue Mountains where technology works with the environment. Here you have the opportunity to ride the steepest railway in the world, glide over the trees on the Scenic Skyway, get panoramic views on the Scenic Cableway, and explore the forest and everything in it on the Scenic Walkway. You can even take your own food in and have a picnic on the walkway amongst the trees. Perfect!
Govetts Lookout and Megalong Valley
After a busy day, it’s nearly time to get camped up for the night. On the way, be sure to pass by Govetts Leap lookout to see the waterfall and the view across the Grose Valley. It’s a pretty awesome final view of the day and one of the most famous lookouts in Australia!
Take the exhilarating winding road down to the Megalong Valley where you will find a number of free campsites. I stayed at the Blackheath Glen Reserve which was a fairly small space in the forest. Make sure you get there in enough time to get a spot then cook some food, make a fire and watch the stars come out. Pretty perfect hey?
Prepare yourself for one hell of a view to start your day! The road to this spot can be fairly rough so make sure you check the weather, but if you can make it then 100000% do! Take the steps down to the lookout and soak in the panoramic views. The rock formation here with the walkways make it the ultimate view point. Watch out for birds sweeping across the treetops below and take in all the colours around you. Make sure you take the stairs all the way down to the final rock too!
Once you can tear yourself away from the views of Pulpit Rock, take the road to Mt Tomah to spend some time relaxing at the Botanic Gardens. It sits high up so has great views over the valley – I mean, where doesn’t have a fantastic view in the Blue Mountains right? Entrance is free and free guided tours run at 11.30am most days if you want to learn more.
The final place on your 48 hour Blue Mountains trip! Bilpin is famous for its apples and so what comes with that? Apple Pies! Stop off at a cafe to grab a slice on your way for lunch. A delicious way to end!