One of the most scenic trails that traces Sydney’s Middle Harbour is the Bantry Bay loop. This 7.4km circuit features steep climbs that elevate the heart rate while showing off stunning views across the historic bay to the city skyline. 


We acknowledge that this adventure is located on Guringai Nation, the traditional Country of the Guringai people who have occupied and cared for this land and water for thousands of years. We pay our respects to them as the Traditional Custodians and recognise that sovereignty was never ceded.


  • Variety of landscapes and scenery within one walk  
  • Tranquil picnic spot in a historic location 
  • Multiple access points and options to lengthen or shorten the journey 


This loop walk follows four different trails through Sydney’s Garigal National Park, beginning with the straight and level Engravings Track.  

Read more: Bradleys Head to Middle Head is a Perfect Harbourside Hike (NSW)


Engravings Track

From the parking area at the end of Grattan Crescent in Frenchs Forest, walk across the oval and turn left down Bantry Bay Rd. Eventually, the road merges with a management trail that runs parallel with Wakehurst Parkway. Look out for the sign pointing to ancient Aboriginal engravings on the sandstone platform to your right. 


Timbergetter’s Trail

Just before reaching Seaforth Oval, follow the signpost at the start of the Timbergetter’s Trail. This section takes you all the way down to the water at Bantry Bay. Here, enjoy a sunny spot on the wharf overlooking historic armament sheds used to store supplies during World War II, or perch on a picnic bench in the dappled shade beneath the big trees that flank the water.

Read more: 13 Best Spots for an Adventure Picnic in Sydney


Bay Track

Along the Bay Track, the lower parts of the walk abound with tiny waterfalls and cool areas carpeted with mosses. Keep an eye out for the natural infinity pool just before the sharp climb to the Bluff. As you ascend, the terrain becomes sparser and rockier. Several striking examples of wind-eroded sandstone line the trail on the way up.


Bluff Trail

The trail plateaus at the Bluff Lookout, an expanse of huge sandstone boulders offering wide views of the surrounding bushland and suburbs, all the way to the city skyscrapers that punctuate the horizon. Several popular mountain biking trails intersect here, too. Follow the Bluff Trail until you reach the trackhead at the end of Grattan Crescent, where you parked earlier.  

Read more: The 6 Best Mountain Bike Trails in Sydney


Essential Gear

  • Hat
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunnies
  • Minimum 2L water 
  • Sturdy walking shoes  
  • Snacks
  • Camera
  • Optional: Hiking poles for navigating steeper sections

Read more: Remember to leave no trace!

How To Get There

The beginning of the loop walk is a 25-minute walk from the bus stop at Maxwell Pde on Warringah Rd; buses also stop along Wakehurst Parkway. However, the easiest way to access this track is by driving to the parking area at the end of Grattan Cr, Frenchs Forest.  


Skill Level


While some sections are gentle, several steep, sustained inclines make this circuit suitable for fit, confident walkers only.

Distance / Duration

7.4km loop from Grattan Cr / 2-2.5hr