The highlight of my travels in New South Wales would be the Blue Mountain. There are a few places around the Blue Mountain that you can base yourself at to explore the mountains. My boyfriend, Rhys and I based ourselves in Katoomba. But there’s various towns or bases to choose from and travel to. We picked quiet and quaint Hotel Blue Katoomba, which featured original 1920s architecture and decor. The hotel should be an attraction in itself! It was a bit musty but was a lovely stay with delicious cooked hot breakfast. The portions for breakfast was hearty – full english (bacon, sausages, tomatoes, eggs any way you like). There’s toast and cereal. Also, pancakes with maple syrup.
Katoomba is the largest and most visitors go here as it is home to many of Blue Mountains attractions. Katoomba is where Echo Point (where you get to see the famous three sisters), Scenic World, cinema, larger supermarkets and shopping is at. There’s so many things to do here. It is known for its artsy, hippie inhabitants, but I didn’t think so, it is rather touristy. There’s smaller and quieter towns that you can find accomodation in too. Namely, Leura (right next to Katoomba), Wentworth Falls (close to Katoomba), Blackheath, Mount Victoria and Medlow Bath.
There are various picturesque lookouts around the mountains. The most incredible one was definately Echo Point with Jamison Valley and the Three Sisters, we saw that on our first day. See the sunset here, it’s beautiful. Stay until after the sun sets, it looks different at night, the mountains get lit up. We didn’t really get to enjoy the views at the other lookouts like Govett’s Leap as it was foggy, cloudy and rainy on our second day there. There was literally fog in the way and we couldn’t see the valley at all.
Go on the many hikes and walks around the national park, it’s relaxing and great exercise. There’s a lot of trails, take a map and check out the various waterfalls around the park. We didn’t get to see wildlife at the park though. Didn’t spot any furry koalas. There’s even a secret hike, the Orphans rock walk. My boyfriend was obsessed with it but we didn’t go, I was too scared. Actually, it is an abandoned trail and no one is allowed on there, too dangerous. There’s some really nice waterfalls on the trails.
Initially we didn’t plan on visiting scenic world, but we did go and didn’t regret it. Scenic world is a bit like a theme park, but with 3 scenic rides and a walk – the Scenic Walkway. Other attractions and things to do in the park include the Scenic Skyway, Cableway and Scenic Railway. The walkway was a relaxing walk through a small area in the the national park. The Scenic Railway was definitely the most exciting, it is the steepest cable-driven funicular railway in the world. The railway goes up and down a very steep mountain face, the steepest incline measures 52 degrees. It doesn’t go very fast so it isn’t that frightening.
Don’t forget to try the best pizza I’ve had in a long time at Rene’s Pizza Place. We had the garlic and fresh basil leaf chicken one and also the satay pizza, it’s really good. Loved it! Stone baked, so fresh and yummy. Great to have in cold Katoomba.
So there’s the highlights of our trip and the many Blue Mountains attractions, and I’m ending it with a poem on a rock at Echo Lookout..