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Heathcote National Park

“After a long bushwalk, I love nothing more than floating on my back in Kingfisher Pool. It’s so beautiful and quiet – I feel like I’m the only person alive.”

Enjoy the rugged beauty of the Australian bush at Heathcote National Park. This untamed park is characterised by magnificent native vegetation and wildlife, rocky outcrops, hidden freshwater pools. Heathcote is a great place for bushwalking and camping, and is within easy reach of Sydney.

Seasoned bushwalkers will enjoy the excellent walking tracks and bush camping experiences on offer in the park. This park has limited facilities so it is ideal for those who are comfortable with self-sufficient and relatively isolated walking and camping experiences.

Highlights
 

Why you should visit

Heathcote National Park is a special place, here are just some of the reasons why:

The beauty of the bush
At Heathcote National Park, iconic eucalypts offer shade alongside Sydney peppermints, tea trees and banksias. Keep your eyes peeled for possums, wallabies and, although they’re shy, lyrebirds. Deep gorges worn into the park’s age-old sandstone boast creeks and hidden pools to explore and relax by.

The great outdoors
Slow down and forget your cares with a freshwater swim. Try Kingfisher Pool, Mirang Pool or Lake Eckersley. Or check out the pretty rockpools and waterfalls where Heathcote Creek meets the Woronora River. Cycle along Pipeline Road to the Sarahs Knob picnic area, where you can also complete a great hill run.

A calm haven
The 2,250ha Heathcote National Park is less than an hour from central Sydney by car or train. The park adjoins Royal National Park, just west of the Princes Highway and South Coast train line. However, once you’re inside you’ll forget about transportation – the park is beautiful, quiet and secluded, plus, it’s a vehicle-free zone.

A long and varied history
The area was for years home to local Aboriginal people, and you can still see several Aboriginal rock engraving sites. In 1937, a bushwalking group leased a section of what is now national parkland to protect this important area of bush. This section and its surrounds became known as the Heathcote Primitive Area (1943). This was expanded again and renamed Heathcote State Park (1967). In 1974, the area became Heathcote National Park.

A seasoned walker’s park
If you love to bushwalk, then Heathcote is your kind of park. A multitude of walking tracks criss-cross the park, including the Heathcote to Waterfall track linking Heathcote and Waterfall train stations. This 10km walk starts at either end and can be enjoyed in one day or with an overnight stop at the Mirang Pool campground.

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Getting there

 Car

There is no private vehicle access permitted in Heathcote National Park, which is 35km south of Sydney.

From Heathcote:

  • On foot, enter the park along any of the walking tracks or from the main fire trail located between Woronora Dam Road and Heathcote Road, along the Water Board pipeline.
  • You can also enter from Heathcote via Oliver Street.

From Waterfall:

  • There is access at Waterfall from the northern end of Warrabin Street and from the Woronora Dam Road, which leads off the Princes Highway 3.5km south of Waterfall.
  • About 2km from the end of the Woronora Dam Road you’ll see a short stretch of unsealed road leading to Sarahs Knob.

Bike

Check out the Bicycle information for NSW website for more information

 Opening times

Heathcote National Park is open sunrise to sunset but may have to close at times due to poor weather or fire danger.

 Close to

Heathcote National Park is close to:

  • Sydney (35km)

Weather and climate

 Weather

Heathcote National Park offers an exceptional visit all year round. You're sure to find a walk, tour, activity or attraction to appeal, regardless of the season.

 Visiting through the seasons

There are lots of great things waiting for you in Heathcote National Park. Here are some of the highlights:

Spring (Sept, Oct, Nov)

  • Visit Heathcote National Park in spring to see blooming Gymea lilies give a scarlet glow to the gullies

 Temperature

Summer

  • The average temperature ranges between 16°C and 27°C
  • The area’s highest recorded temperature is 42°C (1977)

Winter

  • The average temperature ranges between 6°C and 17°C
  • The area’s lowest recorded temperature is -0.6° C (1968)

 Rainfall

  • The wettest month on average is March
  • The area's highest recorded rainfall is 254.5mm in one day

Safety

Royal National Park visitor centre

Phone: 02 9542 0648
Street address: 2 Lady Carrington Drive, Audley, Royal National Park, NSW
Opening hours: 8:30am-4:30pm, daily (closed Christmas Day)


Royal National Park office

Phone: 02 9542 0648
Street address: 159 Farnell Avenue, Royal National Park, NSW
Opening hours: 9:00am-4:30pm, Monday to Friday (closed public holidays)

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A tree, Waterfall to Kingfisher Pool loop, Heathcote National Park. Photo: Andy Richards