The Basin at Pittwater in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park
South Steyne end of Manly Beach, Manly
Hornsby & Ku-Ring-Gai National Park
Perched on the edge of the Hawkesbury River, the expansive Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is one of Australia’s oldest National Parks. Known for its network of walking trails, Aboriginal rock paintings and lovely water views, Ku-ring-gai Chase covers 14,977 hectares and is National Heritage listed.
Hornsby & Ku-ring-gai National Park
Around 30 km from the centre of Sydney you’ll find the upper north shore Sydney suburb of Hornsby, with the vast and beautiful Ku-ring-gai National Park to its north.
Hornsby and the surrounding area is vibrant and fertile, with some great natural attractions. Visit the beautiful Lisgar Gardens. Set on a hillside, this park includes a rainforest walk and is home to native and exotic plants. The gardens boast over 90 varieties of camellias. Nearby is the the Wallarobba Arts and Cultural Centre. Housed in the the Wallarobba Homestead, built in 1903, this historic space includes a community art studio and gallery. Just over 10 km away is the pretty Crosslands Reserve. The Reserve is part of the Berowra Valley National Park and has barbecue and picnic facilities as well as a children's playground.
Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is one of Australia’s oldest National Parks, with the famous 250 km Great North Walk, which was created in 1988 and goes all the way from Sydney to Newcastle. The villages of Appletree Bay, Cottage Point, and Bobbin Head are all within Ku-ring-gai Chase, which covers 14,977 hectares.
If a 250 km walk seems like a tall order, there are numerous other beautiful walks within the park to suit all levels. The Red Hands Walking Track is one of the most well-known, and will lead you to one of the most famous Aboriginal heritage sites in the park and you can view ancient rock paintings done in red ochre. Also not to be missed are The Basin Track and Mackerel Track, both easy scenic walks. The Basin Track leads to the Basin Campground, and the Mackerel Track leads you to stunning views over Mackerel Beach and across to Pittwater.
There are frequent train services to Hornsby, making it easy to get to from Sydney. It’s also known as a commercial hub, with a vibrant high street. For local produce explore the Hornsby Organic Markets, which take place in Hornsby Mall (on Florence Street) every Thursday. They specialise in local jams and chutneys.