With scenery more dramatic than a Kardashian family dinner and as rugged as Chuck Norris’ jaw line, the Blue Mountains National Park is an incredible sight to behold. Here’s our top five Blue Mountains adventures to add to your bucket list.


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.

1. Canyoning At Empress Canyon

Like an adventurous cocktail, you can slurp in the Peruvian hilltops, canyoning combines a dash of rock climbing, bushwalking and abseiling to give you an immense rush, sometimes with spiritual revelations too!

The aim is simple: follow a river, stream or tributary that cuts its way through the mountains. However, unlike a bushwalk down by a peaceful creek you will be scrambling, climbing, sliding, jumping and rappelling down waterfalls and navigating through steep ravines.

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With over a hundred unique and magical canyons to choose from in the Blue Mountains, there is something for everyone willing to step foot into this vast network, much like the pioneering explorers of yesteryear.

Empress Canyon – with its 30m waterfall abseil at the end – is a perfect place to start for beginners. Please note that canyoning is a high risk activity, so if you’re new to it contact the crew at BMAC who will tailor something special for your group – the instructors have conquered more canyons than we’ve had hot dinners, so you know you’re in safe, albeit calloused, hands.

Need a good campsite? Read: The Best Free Campsites In NSW


5 Adventures To Make Life Unboring, knog, photo by guy wilmot, empress canyon, blue mountains, nsw, bilby headlamp

2. Hiking And Wild Swimming At The Pool of Siloam

There are few more rewarding experiences out there than working up a sweat on a mystical bush trail and then finding a remote watering hole to throw your clammy self into. The Pool of Siloam and Lyrebird Dell are two such refreshing head clearers!

Both are quite easily accessible; the quiet track off Carleton Road providing the jaw-dropping views of the Three Sisters. There’s an easy 1.5km circular route joining the two swimming spots together with the Gordon Falls Picnic Area but the track opens up a world of possibilities for more adventurous hikers as it connects with several trails that cover a large area of the Blue Mountains.


Pool of Siloam

3. Mountain Biking The Oaks Trail

This 28km track connecting Woodford and Glenbrook is a favourite among people with a hankering for an adrenaline injection. Suitable for novice-level riders, the fire trail weaves through the towering forest and along scenic plateaus with views across the Lower Blue Mountains valleys.

It’s also easily accessible from Sydney: catch the train from Central to Woodford (1.5hrs, $5), hire a bike from Blue Mountains Bikes if you don’t own one ($69), lunch and a beer in Glenbrook ($20), train from Glenbrook to Central ($5). Arguably the best $100 you’ll spend this year.


shot by Fin Matson, lower Blue mountains, Destination NSW, Blue Mountains, mountain bike

4. Liloing Down The Colo River

If you’re feeling intrepid and you’re searching for a unique outdoor experience that shifts the whacky gear up a notch or three, then this may be just what you’re looking for.

Not for the fainthearted, liloing (paddling water on an air mattress) is a world away from an inflatable dolphin in your local swimming pool. Essentially it involves carrying your essentials in a waterproof bag and following the course of a river from A to B (which can be as near or as far as you desire). In terms of the Colo River, car-pooling is best for the overnight adventure. Leave one car at the end of Bob Turners Track, and take another car to the starting point at the end of Grassy Hill Fire Trail (Canoe Creek Track).

In all seriousness, this one is riddled with potential risks at certain times of the year, so ensure you’re prepared! If an overnight trip is a little intimidating, then find your ‘river-legs’ on a more gentle stretch of water first.


5. Caving In Jenolan Caves

This is the perfect pint sized microadventure where for a few hours you can be guided on a fun, safe but slightly claustrophobic version of underground yoga.

The underground wonderland of the Jenolan Caves is an intricate labyrinth of tunnels, caverns and crevices; it’s mesmeric limestone stalagmites, stalactites and crystal formations have been formed over millions of years leaving caves that are like a living fossil, documenting the eons but still changing, growing, forming and crumbling today.


Adventures in the Blue Mountains FAQs

How far away are the Blue Mountains from Sydney?

From the CBD to Katoomba, the heart of the Blueies it is around 1.5-2 hours drive.

How many days do you need to explore the Blue Mountains?

Honestly you could spend weeks up there, there’s so much to do and see! If you’re stretched for time, a long weekend of 2-3days is the perfect amount of time to explore.

What is the best time of year to visit the Blue Mountains?

The spring months of September to October are the most pleasant time to adventure in the Blue Mountains.