In the summer heat, sometimes it’s better to go undercover. Unleash your inner Batman at some of Sydney’s caves. The perfect place to (over)hang out!

 

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

 

Sandstone Caves – Royal National Park

Best for: Escaping the crowds

It’s a good sign when a cave doesn’t even have a name. The sandstone caves in the Royal National Park, which you reach by detouring off Lady Carrington Drive, are ignored by the majority of visitors – because they don’t know about them.

There’s a sign showing the track – about 1km from the southern end of Lady Carrington Drive. It’s easy to miss unless you know to look for it. At the end of an overgrown trail – which takes less than 20 minutes to hike – it opens up into a cave system, along with a waterfall. Shhh, don’t tell everyone!

Jenolan Caves – Blue Mountains

Best for: Going deep

The most touristy caves on our lists, Jenolan Caves in the Blue Mountains are still worth putting on your bucket list. For a tour with a twist, sign up to the ‘Off the Track’ night tour – held between 8pm and 10pm – where you’re taken around old caves that are no longer on the standard day tour (and get to wear a very macho helmet).

Another worthwhile trip is Wombeyan Caves which has its own campground.

Psyn Caves – Katoomba

Best for: Biking to

I haven’t yet visited the Psyn Caves near Katoomba but, after reading other people’s reviews, I plan to get there, pronto.

With a bunch of different caves – some close to the road and some down trails – you can choose to drive, hike or mountain bike. This means it’s also a prime cave to camp by because you have the option of driving your gear in.

If you’re an abseiler, tackle the infamous Malaita Wall whilst you’re in the area – a 45-metre descent down a sandstone cliff into the Jamison Valley. For expert guidance, Eagle Rock Adventures takes groups to this location.

Pindar Cave – Brisbane Water National Park

Best for: Public transport

We’ve found the location for your next birthday gathering! Pindar Caves, a huge sandstone overhang that’s large enough to host 50 people and is best reached by catching the train to Wombayne.

From there’s it’s a 14km return hike that climbs onto the plateau and continues along the ridgeline to Mount Pindar. There’s a swimming hole near the caves, as long as it’s rained recently, and beneath the overhang is a wide, open space perfect for pitching so you can turn it into a multi-day adventure.

Read more: Remember to leave no trace!

Little Cave – Sydney

Best for… City Dwellers

The cave version of the tiny house trend, Little Cave in Nielsen Park is as the name suggests… little. But, what it lacks in size it makes up for in location.

Overlooking the harbour on the edge of Vaucluse, Little Cave’s proximity to the city means you don’t have to save this cave for special occasions – escape there after work, alone or with a friend you don’t mind getting cosy with. Because you have to climb over a rock face to get to it, it’s also just tricky enough to deter too many people.

 

Feature photo by Kate Miles