Point lookout

New England National Park

Overview

Point lookout is a must-see destination for visitors to New England National Park, offering panoramic views across World Heritage rainforest to the ocean in the distance.

Type
Lookouts
Where
New England National Park
Accessibility
Easy
Price
Free
What to
bring
Hat, drinking water, sunscreen
Please note
  • The weather in this area can be extreme and unpredictable, so please ensure you’re well-prepared for your visit.
  • Remember to take your binoculars if you want to bird watch

Point lookout is the must-see destination for visitors to New England National Park. Perched on the edge of the Great Escarpment, it offers panoramic views across World Heritage rainforest to the ocean in the distance.

At sunrise, the mist in the valley turns from orange to pink as the sun erupts above the distant horizon. It’s no wonder this is one of the most photographed sunrises on the NSW North Coast.

Accessible to all, Point lookout is a 200m walk from the carpark on a wheelchair-friendly track. Pack a picnic, have a barbeque and spend a few hours relaxing and admiring the view. Read about the wonders of the Gondwana rainforest, Aboriginal cultural heritage and the history of this impressive location in the picnic shelter.

While you’re there, why not venture off to discover the rainforest below on the many walking tracks that start here?

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Current alerts in this area

There are no current alerts in this area.

Local alerts

For the latest updates on fires, closures and other alerts in this area, see http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/lookouts/point-lookout/local-alerts

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Point lookout.

Getting there and parking

On entering New England National Park, continue to the end of Point Lookout Road, where you’ll find the carpark at Point lookout.

Road quality

  • Unsealed roads

Vehicle access

  • 2WD vehicles

Weather restrictions

  • All weather

Parking

Parking is available at Point lookout, including several designated disabled spots.

Best times to visit

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

Autumn

Enjoy the fresh air walking during the day, and cosy nights by the fire at Toms Cabin.

Spring

Climb up to Wrights lookout and see the colourful display of wildflowers.

Summer

Immerse yourself in the cool air and vibrant green of the Antarctic beech rainforest covered in moss.

Winter

Discover the spectacular icicles and frozen rock faces along the Weeping Rock walking track.

Weather, temperature and rainfall

Summer temperature

Average

10°C and 24°C

Highest recorded

32.8°C

Winter temperature

Average

1°C and 12°C

Lowest recorded

-7.1°C

Rainfall

Wettest month

January

Driest month

June

The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

286.1mm

Facilities

There is limited water available in this area, so it’s a good idea to bring your own.

Toilets

  • Non-flush toilets

Picnic tables

Barbecue facilities

  • Wood barbecues (firewood supplied)

Carpark

Drinking water

Maps and downloads

Safety messages

This park is in a remote location, so please ensure you’re well-prepared, bring appropriate clothing and equipment and advise a family member or friend of your travel plans.

Fire safety

During periods of fire weather, the Commissioner of the NSW Rural Fire Service may declare a total fire ban for particular NSW fire areas, or statewide. Learn more about total fire bans and fire safety.

Mobile safety

Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency + app before you visit, it helps emergency services locate you using your smartphone's GPS. Please note there is limited mobile phone reception in this park and you’ll need mobile reception to call Triple Zero (000).

Accessibility

Disability access level - easy

  • This area is fully wheelchair accessible
  • Toilets are wheelchair accessible

Prohibited

Pets

Pets and domestic animals (other than certified assistance animals) are not permitted. Find out which regional parks allow dog walking and see the OEH pets in parks policy for more information.

Smoking

NSW national parks are no smoking areas.

Learn more

Point lookout is in New England National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

Aboriginal cultural heritage

Point lookout, New England National Park. Photo: Shane Ruming

The park straddles the traditional boundaries of the Dunghutti, Anaiwan and Gumbaynggirr People, and covers an area of great spiritual and cultural significance to local Aboriginals. Point Lookout in particular is a sacred location, known to Aboriginal people as 'Berarngutta', which roughly translates as 'prohibited area'. It is considered a men-only place, and today many Aboriginal women choose to continue this tradition and avoid visiting the area.

  • Point lookout Point lookout is a must-see destination for visitors to New England National Park, offering panoramic views across World Heritage rainforest to the ocean in the distance.

Amazing wildlife

Spotted-tailed Quoll (Dasyurus maculatus), New England National Park. Photo: Jim Evans

The park's altitudinal range, from 150m above sea level to 1563m, makes it a superb habitat for a diversity of wildlife. You might see kangaroos, wallabies, gliders, possums and the inquisitive spotted-tailed quoll. Adults and children alike will love watching the resident lyrebird at Banksia Point. Yet with over 100 species of birds in the park, there are plenty of opportunities for birdwatching. You might spot white-throated tree creepers and rufous fantails in the open forests, while in winter flowering banksias attract Lewins honeyeaters and eastern spinebills.

  • Point lookout walking track It only takes 20 minutes to negotiate the easy Point lookout walking track, but the views from this sealed track, within New England National Park, are truly stunning.
  • Wrights lookout walking track Wrights lookout walking track takes you through a lush world of ferns and wildflowers to a rocky plateau with spectacular panoramic views looking down to Bellinger River.

Historic heritage

Point lookout, New England National Park. Photo: S Leathers

In 2010, New England National Park celebrated its 75th anniversary as one of NSW's most iconic parks. Its history is a testament to the vision and dedication of several influential New Englanders, notably Philip A Wright and his son Peter. They were deeply impressed by the beauty and grandeur of Point Lookout and recognised the value of the area as a sanctuary for plants and animals. After you see the spectacular views at Point Lookout, take a moment to learn about the history of the park and the visionary people behind its conservation.

Volcanic landscape

Tea Tree Falls walk, New England National Park. Photo: J Evans

The steep cliffs of the plateau edge at New England National Park are the result of at least 5 basalt lava flows from the Ebor volcano, forming a rim over 300m thick. Active until about 18 million years ago, this massive volcano was centred around The Crescent, a semi-circular ridge in the Bellinger Valley, visible from Point Lookout. Subsequent erosion has created the dramatic profile of the escarpment we see today. The Banksia Point circuit provides a close-up view of a basalt flow, and you can see the layers of cliffs north from Point lookout.

  • Point lookout Point lookout is a must-see destination for visitors to New England National Park, offering panoramic views across World Heritage rainforest to the ocean in the distance.
  • Tea Tree Falls walking track Roam through eucalypt forest and beneath hanging moss on Tea Tree Falls walking track, linking Thungutti campground and Toms Cabin in New England National Park.

World Heritage rainforests

Wrights lookout, New England National Park. Photo: S Ruming

The rainforests in New England National Park are part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area; the most extensive strip of diverse rainforest anywhere on earth. The World Heritage Area is a direct window into the past and the future, providing a link to the ancient pre-human world and a stunning and irreplaceable record of life on our planet. Discover the ancient Antarctic beech forests below the escarpment edge on trails like the Lyrebird or the Eagles Nest walking tracks.

  • Eagles Nest walking track See the best that the park has to offer in just a few hours on the Eagles Nest walking track. Experience World Heritage rainforest, snow gum forest and outstanding views.
  • Weeping Rock walking track A short walk along Weeping Rock walking track in New England National Park will take you to a basalt cliff with natural springs above and covered in moss and ferns.

Plants and animals you may see

Animals

  •  Superb lyrebird, Minnamurra Rainforest, Budderoo National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

    Superb lyrebird (Menura novaehollandiae)

    With a complex mimicking call and an elaborate courtship dance to match, the superb lyrebird is one of the most spectacular Australian animals. A bird watching must-see, the superb lyrebird can be found in rainforests and wet woodlands across eastern NSW and Victoria.

  • Satin bowerbird. Photo: Ken Stepnell

    Satin bowerbird (Ptilonorhynchus violaceus)

    With vibrant blue-violet eyes and curious antics, the satin bowerbird is a favourite for bird watching and easy to spot as it forages for food in open forest. Relatively common across eastern Australia, in NSW they’re found in coastal rainforests and adjacent woodlands and mountain ranges.

Plants

  • Blueberry ash. Photo: Jaime Plaza

    Blueberry ash (Elaeocarpus reticulatus)

    The blueberry ash is a rainforest shrub which produces blue olive-shaped berries and spectacular bell-shaped flowers, which often appear on the plant together. It is a tall slender shrub or small tree found in rainforest, tall eucalypt forest and coastal bushland in eastern NSW, south-east Queensland and Victoria.

  • Wonga Wonga vine. Photo: Barry Collier

    Wonga wonga vine (Pandorea pandorana)

    The wonga wonga vine is a widespread vigorous climber usually found along eastern Australia. A variation of the plant occurs in the central desert, where it resembles a sprawling shrub. One of the more common Australian native plants, the wonga wonga vine produces bell-shaped white or yellow flowers in the spring, followed by a large oblong-shaped seed pod.

  • Coachwood flower. Photo: Michael Van Ewijk

    Coachwood (Ceratopetalum apetalum)

    Coachwood trees are Australian native plants that grow in warm temperate rainforests along coastal NSW. Also known as scented satinwood, the mottled grey bark of the coachwood has horizontal markings and a delicate fragrance.

Environments in this park

Education resources (1)

School excursions (1)

Point lookout, New England National Park. Photo: Michael van Ewijk/NSW Government