Sydney is the gateway to the great outdoors, surrounded on all sides by a bounty of ocean, rivers and rainforests as well as vast outback landscapes and mountain ranges.
There are some beautiful parks in Sydney; relax in the lovely Hyde Park or the idyllic Royal Botanic Gardens, both in the heart of the city. Sydney Harbour National Park is truly spectacular, made up of a series of bays and five islands. Catch the ferry to historic Cockatoo Island and discover Sydney’s convict past.
The Royal National Park to the south of Sydney is a fantastic spot for bushwalking, exploring and swimming in the park’s beaches and is accessible by train. To the north of Sydney, you’ll find Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, Australia's second-oldest national park and a scenic wonder, with great walks on offer.
Regional New South Wales (NSW) is home to amazing natural attractions, from the country to the coast. The heritage listed Blue Mountains is just 60km west of Sydney. Here you can take in the spectacular views from Echo Point Lookout, go bushwalking or explore the Jenolan Caves. Nearby, the Hawkesbury region offers plenty in the way of natural attractions, from apple picking to checking out the local farms to the area’s many parks and reserves.
Many of NSW’s National Parks are right on the beach. Head north up to Byron Bay, Australia's easternmost town and discover beautiful beaches and lush green hinterland. Explore the Cape Byron Headland Reserve and walk to (and up) the park’s historic lighthouse for 360 degree views of this stunning region. The South Coast of NSW is another great natural paradise to explore, from the dramatic landscapes of the Morton National Park, to a walk along the gorgeous Seven Mile Beach.