Sydney has a slew of stunning waterfalls surrounding it, some of the best in NSW are only a short drive away! Here are the bangers you can’t miss.


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.

I’m not sure what TLC were thinking, but recommending to not go chasing waterfalls is a ridiculous idea…

Who wouldn’t like to visit spectacularly high gorges with cascading water falling hundreds of metres into a prehistoric rockpool? What about exploring secretive waterfalls hidden away in lush rainforests where you can recreate a scene from Blue Lagoon without anyone inadvertently photo-bombing your Instagram shot?

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Thanks to NSW’s wildly diverse climate, whether you go on a road trip North, West or South of Sydney there’s a waterfall out there with your name on it. The trick with waterfalls is all about the timing – if you go exploring after a heavy rain, chances are you’ll be in for an absolute treat

West of Sydney – Katoomba, Wentworth and Minnehaha Falls

Wentworth Falls and Katoomba Falls are two of the most scenic waterfalls in Australia, both within two hour’s reach of Sydney. They’re Lord of Ring’s-esque in grandeur and the vista that they’re carved out of is nothing short of magnificent. However, their ease of access and global popularity ensure you’re highly likely to witness a selfie-stick fencing fight on the viewing platform.

For something a lot more private, try Minnehaha Falls. It’s a dreamy little place with a swimming hole so beautiful no ludicrous Hollywood set could ever rival it. To get there, drive through Katoomba to Yosemite and walk 15 minutes down from the car park. Be brave, breathe deep and take the plunge – you won’t regret it!


Wentworth Falls, Jonathan Tan, Blue Mountains, Waterfall

Wentworth Falls | Shot by @thetantrap

South of Sydney – Wattamolla, Curracurrong and Winifred Falls

In less than one hour’s drive south of Sydney, you can find yourself completely surrounded by nature, enjoying a chlorine-free experience under a spine-tinglingly wild waterfall. How insanely cool is that?

Head first to Wattamolla Falls along the famous coastal walk in the Royal National Park, or maybe nearby Curracurrong Falls. Alternatively Winifred Falls, which you’ll find if you take the mildly challenging 4 km walk from Audley, smack bang in the middle of the RNP.


Wattamolla Lachy JF Royal National Park NSW

Photo by Lachy Firmstone


If you’ve still got time up your sleeves, there are a couple of magnificent falls a little further south in the Southern Highlands, namely Fitzroy Falls and Budderoo. Even further is Paddy’s River Falls, which has carved itself into the landscape to the west of the Australian Alps and therefore benefits from the melting snow. Time this one right and you’re in for a treat (this is one you can stand behind the water and feel like you’re the Last of the Mohicans).

North of Sydney – Collins Beach, Upper Gledhill and Waterfall Way

If following lane dividers at your local swimming pool is getting slightly tedious, then it’s probably time you headed north on a waterfall chasing road trip. These ones really take the biscuit.

If you’re feeling lazier than a hungover sloth, or you don’t trust your car’s ability to do the kilometres, then a dip under Collins Beach waterfall near Manly may be just the paradise ticket. If you think that’s special, you’ll want to head a tad further to Ku-Ring-Gai National Park where the elusive Upper Gledhill Falls hides. Brace yourself, this one’ll blow your budgy smugglers off.

Now, the pièce de résistance: Waterfall Way – a 191km drive that weaves through the lush varying landscape of the New England Region. The tumbling waterfalls you’ll witness along this almighty road trip include Apsley, Ebor, Tia and Wollomombi Falls.


Wildflowers And Waterfalls At America Bay (NSW), Aedan O'Donnell, waterfall, stream, rocks, trees

Photo by Aedan O’Donnell

The 10 Best Waterfalls Near Sydney

  1. Wentworth Falls
  2. Katoomba Falls
  3. Minnehaha Falls
  4. Wattamolla Falls
  5. Winifred Falls
  6. Fitzroy Falls
  7. Paddy’s River Falls
  8. Collins Beach Waterfall
  9. Gledhill Falls
  10. Waterfall Way

Sydney waterfall FAQs

1. Are there waterfalls in Sydney?

Sydney is a pretty big place and while there might not be a waterfall in Martin Place, there are certainly a few in Sydney’s suburbs.

2. Can you swim in Fitzroy Falls?

No, NSW National Parks does not have an official track to the base of the falls. While a dangerous unmaintained track exists, landslides, a rusty ladder, and the need for ropes mean we don’t recommend it.

3. Can you swim at Wentworth Falls?

Yes you can! At the bottom of the steep set of stairs at Wentworth Falls lies a cool, sandy bottomed pool perfect for swimming.

4. How long is the Katoomba Falls walk?

The Katoomba Falls walk is 2km and should take around an hour to complete.


Feature image by @henry_brydon