We’ve picked out the 5 best child-friendly hikes within a few hours of Sydney. There’s no excuse to not get out there for some quality family time!


We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the Countries on which these adventures take place who have occupied and cared for these lands, waters, and their inhabitants for thousands of years. We pay our respects to them and recognise that sovereignty was never ceded.

Whether you have a baby in a backpack, a toddler in a pushchair or a 5-year-old trailing behind you, there’s a hike for every age bracket within a few hours of Sydney. The best bit? These trails will satisfy adventurous parents too and all that fresh air will make them sleep the whole drive home. Because Mother Nature is the best babysitter.

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1. Minnamurra Falls, Budderoo National Park

My daughter holds the records as the youngest person to ever ‘hike’ to Minnamurra Falls. Well, that’s according to the Park Ranger who met us as we walked the trail – when she was three days old.

It might sound crazy (and if my midwife is reading this, yes, I took it slowly), but the elevated walkways and paved trails are easy to manoeuvre with a newborn in a baby-wearer. There are even handy benches along the way for breastfeeding pitstops.


An Adventure Weekender in Kiama, photo courtesy of DNSW, Minnamurra Rainforest waterfalls, rainforest, rocks, waterfall

Photo thanks to Destination NSW

2. Lady Carrington Drive, Royal National Park

Note: Lady Carrington Drive is currently closed for upgrades. For updates check the National Parks Website.

More like an unsealed road than a trail, Lady Carrington Drive is the perfect route for young kids who are determined not to be carried. Start at the Audley end as this has more activity options, with the boat pond, a café for sugary bribes and trees to hang a hammock from (the best way to get our baby to sleep, we’ve discovered).

We took our 3-year-old nephew who walked half of the 10km track, amazed by the overhanging rocks, mountain bikers and sticks he had to stop to collect (pack your patience!)

Read more: Remember to leave no trace

3. The Three Sisters, Blue Mountains National Park

The National Parks website has an ‘access friendly’ section that lists wheelchair friendly trails – which are also perfect if you’re pushing a pram or buggy. The closest is Fairfax Heritage walking track, although this one can get busy especially on a weekend (blame the whale watchers).

Venture a little further and the Three Sisters Walk is pram-friendly from Echo Point to Oreades lookout. Don’t get stuck at the stairs to Honeymoon Bridge!


4. Fairyland Pleasure Gardens, Lane Cove National Park

What child wouldn’t want to go to a place called Fairyland? Starting at Finders Wharf, a stone’s throw from Sydney CBD, this 6km stretch is a favourite for bird watchers searching for the ‘Powerful owl’ – the largest owl in Australasia.

The Fairyland Pleasure Ground – once a fairground and now a picnic area – is part of a bush regeneration project. Some of the volunteers even give out business cards that say they’re members of a fairy cult working for a wizard.

Read more: What to Pack in Your Hiking First Aid Kit

5. Middlehead, Sydney Harbour National Park

Combine a nature walk with a history lesson. Walk the Don Goodsir track, in Sydney Harbour National Park to the old military forts built in the 1800s (do your homework if your kids are old enough to ask questions!).

Some of the tunnels are still open to the public and you can look down into the old gun pits. If you prefer peace not war, head to Chowders bay for a serene afternoon of snorkelling and kayaking afterwards.

Read: Bradleys Head to Middle Head is a Perfect Harbourside Hike


Bradleys Head to Middle Head is a Perfect Harbourside Hike (NSW), Daniel Piggott, Sydney Harbour, headland, military fortifications

Shot by Daniel Piggot

Child Friendly Hikes Near Sydney FAQs

When is the best time of year to go hiking with kids?

It’s best to take children hiking in mild weather. Make sure it’s not too hot or pouring with rain. Kids are fair weather hikers

What should you take hiking with children?

Make sure you take hats, sunscreen, snacks and plenty of water

Feature image by John Harris Photography