Exploring the Jibbon Track is a perfect family adventure in the Royal National Park combining aboriginal history, snorkeling, swimming and the opportunity for incredible photography.

Highlights

  • Aboriginal historical site – engravings and middens
  • Crystal clear waters for snorkelling and swimming
  • Opportunity for underwater and aerial photography
  • Family friendly

Arriving at Jibbon Beach

Finding an adventure that suits the whole family can often be a challenge. It needs to have the right mix of exploration, whilst ensuring accessibility and safety for children is maintained. Luckily this is achievable, just an hour drive from Sydney. The Jibbon track and beach check all the boxes, with a little bit of history thrown in along the way.

Jibbon Beach is located in the Sydney Royal National Park, just east of Bundeena. Roadside parking is available on Loftus Street, with the walk commencing at the intersection of Neil and Loftus streets. This path will take you down onto the beach where you’ll be greeted with soft white sand and crystal clear water. Enjoy the walk along the beach, admiring the picturesque views across the water and towards the city. You’re likely to also see some pretty impressive boats docked in the area.

 

Melissa Bowyer jibbons track beach Sandstone cave

 

The sand is surprisingly extremely soft and easy to sink into it, making walking along it a little difficult (in shoes anyway). Continue about 100m along the beach. There’ll be a sign, directing you off the beach and into the bushland to the start of the Jibbon Track. But don’t take the track just yet, continue exploring along the beach.

The beach becomes quite rocky, with many rock platforms. Walk up onto these platforms, where there are sandstone overhangs and formations. Stop for a while and check out this area. It’s a fantastic area for snorkelling, if you have a water camera, take some photos.

The beach here is lined with tiny crushed sun-bleached white shells. You’ll also find middens which are thought to be around 7,000 years old. Middens are the remains of food consumed by the Dharawal people, and include shells such as oysters, and bones such as snapper and flathead. Strangely enough, archaeologists have also recovered traces of human bones, and as such, the area is protected! This fascinated my kids!

 

Melissa Bowyer jibbons track beach Shells

Onto the Jibbon Track

Once you’ve finished checking out this area, continue back along the rocks and beach until you get back to the bush path. Walking up into the bush, you’ll see clear signs that you’re entering the Jibbon Track. The Aboriginal campsite has many sculptures and there’s plenty of information about the area. Keep following the track further into the bushland.

 

Melissa Bowyer jibbons track beach Shells Path

 

You’ll come across an intersection with a handwritten sign indicating that if you continue north you’ll enter a nudist beach. This may be appealing if you’re so inclined… enjoy! Otherwise, continue east onto a set of steps up to a platform. This is positioned over the stone engravings of various animals such as stingray, orca and kangaroo. The kids thought this was cool, so take some time to appreciate this epic slice of history.

 

Melissa Bowyer jibbons track beach Engravings

 

You can then head back to the beach along the path, which takes you in a circular loop. In the early morning, this beach is virtually unpopulated and secluded. It isn’t until about midday that it becomes quite busy. So if you get in early, take the opportunity for some aerial photography, capturing some expansive coastal and bush shots, some 120m above land. If you have a drone, I highly recommend this. Kick back, enjoy a swim, then head back along the beach.

Essential Gear

  • Food and water
  • Sun protection
  • Swimmers
  • Camera (and water camera)
  • Drone

How To Get There

From Sydney travelling south along the Princes Highway, turn left at Loftus into Farnell Avenue, where you will see a sign ‘Royal National Park’. Follow Farnell Avenue to Audrey weir, which then becomes Sir Bertram Stevens Drive. Continue to the Bundeena turnoff, following the signage, turning right after the shops and onto Loftus street. The path is on the intersection of Neil and Loftus streets, with plenty of roadside parking.

Activities

  • Hiking
  • Photography including underwater and aerial
  • Swimming
  • Snorkelling
  • Aboriginal History

Skill Level

Beginner – the whole family can enjoy this, just be careful on the rock platforms and uneven paths

Distance / Elevation

Approximately 4km return / some slight elevation into the bushlands.