Audley boatshed

Royal National Park

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Overview

Hire a kayak and spend a few relaxed hours paddling up Kangaroo Creek from Audley Boatshed in Royal National Park, near Loftus.

Accessibility
Medium
Distance
4km return
Grade
Easy
Entry fees
Park entry fees apply
Opening times
  • 10am to 5pm, Tuesday to Sunday
  • Closed Monday (unless a public holiday)
Equipment
provided
Yes
What to
bring
Hat, sunscreen, bottled water, suitable clothing, raincoat
Please note

For safety reasons, all visitors are required to wear a life jacket. This is included in the hire cost.

Choose the pace of your own adventure when you hire a canoe, kayak or rowboat from Audley Boatshed, just 1 hour from Sydney. Take the family out in a rowboat with the ducks and enjoy the tranquil waters of the Hacking River. Take a break from paddling and enjoy lunch at one of the many picnic areas or Audley Dance Hall Cafe nearby.

If you're up for a longer paddle, you can spend several hours kayaking 2km up Kangaroo Creek and then returning the same way. As you glide between sandstone cliffs lined with eucalypts, and rainforest you might spot kingfishers diving into the water, turtles, lace monitors, and maybe even a koala up high. This area is also home to possums, sugar gliders, bats, wallabies, and many different parrots and rosellas.

Operating since 1893, historic Audley Boatshed has been a place for families to enjoy nature for generations.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Also see

  • NPWS staff and visitors using the computers at Royal National Park Visitor Centre, Royal National Park. Photo: Simone Cottrell © OEH

    Royal National Park Visitor Centre

    Make a beeline for Royal National Park Visitor Centre at Audley on your trip to Sydney's Royal National Park. It offers excellent tourist information and walking track maps.

  • Audley Dance Hall Cafe, Royal National Park. Photo: Simone Cottrell © DPIE

    Audley Dance Hall Cafe

    Visit Audley Dance Hall Cafe for a coffee or a meal after bushwalking in Sydney's Royal National Park. The cafe also sells takeaway food and drinks, so you can organise your own picnic.

  • A wide shot of Ironbark Flat picnic area in Royal National Park with trees and people in the distance. Photo: Nick Cubbin © OEH

    Ironbark Flat picnic area

    Ironbark Flat is a popular, family-friendly riverside picnic area near Audley. Just a short drive from Sydney, it offers easy access for prams and wheelchairs, plus scenic views of Hacking River.

  • Picnic shelter and barbecue at Currawong Flat picnic area in Royal National Park. Photo: Nick Cubbin © OEH

    Currawong Flat picnic area

    Family-friendly riverside Currawong Flat picnic area offers fishing, paddling and picnicking along the banks of Hacking River in Royal National Park, near Sydney.

Map


Map


Map


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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 https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/canoeing-paddling-experiences/audley-boatshed/local-alerts

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Audley boatshed.

Getting there and parking

Get driving directions

Get directions

    Audley Boatshed is located at 150 Audley Road, Audley NSW 2232.

    From Sydney:

    • Turn off Princes Highway at Farnell Avenue
    • Continue down the hill
    • Turn right onto Audley Road, just before Audley Weir

    From Waterfall:

    • Turn off Princes Highway at Waterfall train station
    • Follow McKell Avenue to the end
    • Turn left onto Sir Bertram Stevens Drive and follow to Audley
    • Continue past Audley weir
    • Take the first left after the weir onto Audley Road

    Road quality

    • Sealed roads

    Vehicle access

    • 2WD vehicles

    Weather restrictions

    • All weather

    Parking

    Parking is available at Royal National Park Visitor Centre and at Allambie Flat, next to the boat shed.

    By bike

    Check out the Bicycle information for NSW website for more information.

    By public transport

    Visit the Transport NSW website for more information.

    Facilities

    Toilets

    Flush toilets are available in the Allambie Flat picnic area.

    Picnic tables

    Barbecue facilities

    • Gas/electric barbecues (free)

    Cafe/kiosk

    Carpark

    Drinking water

    Drinking water available at Audley picnic areas

    Maps and downloads

    Safety messages

    Boating safety

    If you're out on your boat fishing, waterskiing or just cruising the waterways, read these paddling and boating safety tips.

    Bushwalking safety

    If you're keen to head out on a longer walk or a backpack camp, always be prepared. Read these bushwalking safety tips before you set off on a walking adventure in national parks.

    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.

    Paddling safety

    To make your paddling or kayaking adventure safer and more enjoyable, check out these paddling safety tips.

    River and lake safety

    The aquatic environment around rivers, lakes and lagoons can be unpredictable. If you're visiting these areas, take note of these river and lake safety tips.

    Water activities

    Beaches, rivers and lakes in NSW national parks offer lots of opportunities for water activities. Please take care in the water and find out how to help your family and friends stay safe around water.

    Accessibility

    Disability access level - medium

    Paddleboats and rowboats are available for people with accessibility requirements as they offer a more stable platform.

    Prohibited

    Generators

    Pets

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

    Smoking

    NSW national parks are no smoking areas.

    Visitor centre

    Learn more

    Audley boatshed is in Royal National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

    A date with history

    Audley Visitor Centre, Royal National Park. Photo: Andy Richards

    When exploring Royal National Park you can see a range of Aboriginal sites and artefacts. The best way to find out more about Aboriginal cultural heritage in the park is on a tour with an Aboriginal Discovery ranger. You might also spot one of the 80 historic remnants from the park’s Victorian-era establishment, including ornamental trees and residential remains.

    • Audley heritage tour Take a guided tour through the historic Audley Valley, in the heart of Royal National Park. You’ll explore heritage-listed buildings and learn how this popular day trip destination came to be.
    • Couranga walking track Vivid wildflowers pepper this medium walking track near Waterfall. Only an hour from Sydney, it offers several picnic spots and birdwatching opportunities.
    • Lady Carrington Drive This historic cycling track near Audley and a short drive from Sydney follows the river and offers birdwatching, pretty picnic areas and history to explore.

    A place to get active

    Coastal walk, Royal National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

    Who needs a gym? At Royal National Park you can hike, swim and row to your heart’s content. Hire a paddleboat from the Audley boatshed or surf the renowned Garie Beach. Jog along sandstone cliffs, attempt over 100km of walking tracks or try mountain biking the East Heathcote trails (be sure to note the ‘no sign–no ride’ policy). Located at Audley, just 32km from Sydney city, the park offers incredible beauty and natural diversity just minutes from the highway and train station. Spanning Port Hacking to Helensburgh, the park features multiple entry points and is well signposted, though it’s always a good idea to take a Royal National Park map.

    • Audley boatshed Hire a kayak and spend a few relaxed hours paddling up Kangaroo Creek from Audley Boatshed in Royal National Park, near Loftus.
    • Bonnie Vale guided nature walk Join a NPWS guide for an immersive nature experience in Royal National Park. Setting out from Bonnie Vale campground, you’ll explore coastal bushland, mangrove tracks and rocky shorelines.
    • Bundeena Drive to Marley walk This rewarding walk from Bundeena Drive to Little Marley Beach leads through heath, past fresh water pools and creeks, and on to scenic beach views in Royal National Park.
    • Bush playgroup activities in Sydney’s south Join Bush Play School for a day of creativity in Sydney’s south. Their nature play activities are a great way for kids to learn about the world around them.
    • Garie Beach picnic area A perfect day out, Garie Beach is a wonderful place to enjoy a picnic and is great for swimming, whale watching, fishing, surfing and walking options.
    • Kayak tours of Bundeena and Royal National Park Paddle the waterways of Bundeena and Royal National Park on a guided kayak tour with Bundeena Kayaks. It’s an unforgettable way to explore this beautiful stretch of coastline, just an hour south of Sydney.
    • The Coast track fitness adventures for women Hike The Coast track and immerse yourself in the beauty of Royal National Park with Women’s Fitness Adventures. Enjoy coastal views and the company of a supportive group of women on this 4-day trek.
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    Exceptional environments

    Rocky cliffs dropping off into the ocean, Royal National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

    The park was one of Australia’s first areas of land set aside for conservation. In this natural haven, open ocean, sandstone cliffs and wetlands meet grassy woodland, rainforests, coastal heathland and eucalypt forests. You’ll also find some significant geological sites, including fascinating beach ridges at Cabbage Tree Basin.

    • Bundeena to Wattamolla guided coastal walks Delight your senses on this coastal adventure run by M8 Explorer. With their knowledgeable and safety-conscious guides, explore beautiful coastline on a 4hr hike in the Royal National Park, beginning and ending with stops for delicious meals.  
    • Curra Moors loop track A challenging walk through heath and waterfalls, the Curra Moors loop track offers scenic sandstone cliff and coastal views, waterfalls and great birdwatching.
    • Figure Eight Pools adventure with M8 Explorer Awaken your inner explorer with an exciting tour of Figure Eight Pools in Royal National Park. Start with a paddle down the Hacking River before trekking down to the pools to discover amazing rock formations, wildlife and spectacular coastal scenery.
    • Guided forest therapy walk in Royal National Park Slow down and de-stress in Sydney’s beautiful Royal National Park on this guided forest therapy walk with Nature Being Australia.
    • Palm Jungle loop track A challenging yet spectacular walk, Palm Jungle loop track takes in rainforest, cliff tops, beaches and scenic coastal views in Royal National Park, near Otford.
    • Places are similar and different Explore the features of different places and environments on this Stage 2 (Years 3-4) geography excursion with Ranger Jamie Tours. Observe the variations between bushland, sand and sea in the pristine coastal surrounds of Royal National Park.
    • Tailored tours of Royal National Park Join Sydney Nimble Tours for your own private day out in the Royal National Park. From pristine beaches to sweeping coastal vistas, these tailored experiences are a great way to escape the city and immerse yourself in nature.  
    • The Coast track The Coast track in Sydney's Royal National Park is an epic multi-day walk between Bundeena and Otford. Enjoy incredible coastal lookouts, swimming spots, seasonal wildflowers and whale watching along this challenging 26km track.
    • The Coast Track and Figure Eight Pools experience Join award-winning Emu Trekkers on The Coast Track in the Royal National Park, near Sydney. You’ll experience stunning views and have the chance to safely visit the Figure Eight Pools if the weather conditions permit.
    • The Coast track fitness adventures for women Hike The Coast track and immerse yourself in the beauty of Royal National Park with Women’s Fitness Adventures. Enjoy coastal views and the company of a supportive group of women on this 4-day trek.
    • The Coast track overnight hikes for youth Hike The Coast track in Royal National Park on an overnight trip with Ausjourney. Reconnect with nature and learn transferrable life skills on this trek for The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award.
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    Home to the feathered and furry

    A flower blooming,  Royal National Park. Photo: John Spencer

    Many visitors regularly spot native wildlife in the Hacking River Valley area, so keep an eye out for possums, sugar gliders and wallabies. This Sydney park is also home to a huge number of bats, amphibians and reptiles. Plus, birdwatchers are in luck - over 300 bird species have been recorded here, look out for sulphur-crested cockatoos, crimson rosellas, yellow-tailed black cockatoos and rainbow lorikeets.

    • Biophysical interactions at Wattamolla Senior students will hone their fieldwork skills in this Stage 6 (Years 11-12) Geography excursion at Wattamolla. Located in Royal National Park, Wattamolla offers students a complex site to study biophysical interactions. 
    • Birds of Providential Point self-guided audio tour Discover native birdlife on this scenic self-guided audio tour to beautiful Providential Point in Royal National Park. You’ll walk through sun-dappled coastal forest and grassy glades as you learn about local birds and hear their calls.
    • Bonnie Vale guided nature walk Join a NPWS guide for an immersive nature experience in Royal National Park. Setting out from Bonnie Vale campground, you’ll explore coastal bushland, mangrove tracks and rocky shorelines.
    • Couranga walking track Vivid wildflowers pepper this medium walking track near Waterfall. Only an hour from Sydney, it offers several picnic spots and birdwatching opportunities.
    • Figure Eight Pools adventure with M8 Explorer Awaken your inner explorer with an exciting tour of Figure Eight Pools in Royal National Park. Start with a paddle down the Hacking River before trekking down to the pools to discover amazing rock formations, wildlife and spectacular coastal scenery.
    • Forest path Forest path is an easy walk in Royal National Park. It's great for kids and just 1 hour south of Sydney. Wander through cabbage tree palms and Gymea lilies on the path beside Bola Creek and the Hacking River.
    • Guided forest therapy walk in Royal National Park Slow down and de-stress in Sydney’s beautiful Royal National Park on this guided forest therapy walk with Nature Being Australia.
    • Junior ranger: Royal National Park Discover the Royal National Park these school holidays as a newly appointed ‘junior ranger’. This interactive guided activity is designed for children aged 6 to 14 years.
    • Kids nature discovery tour in Royal National Park Embark on an exciting treasure hunt in Royal National Park with Aussie Wild Nature Discovery. The guided nature play activity is a great way for kids to learn about the magic of the bush.
    • Little lyrebirds: Royal National Park Discover the local ecosystems of Sydney’s Ironback Flat picnic area, in Royal National Park. This interactive and engaging guided tour is great for children aged 6 and under.
    • Living world wet and dry environments Come and explore the Living World with us on this Stage 1 (Years 1-2) Science and Technology at Bonnie Vale in the Royal National Park. Students will explore both wet and dry environments and learn the importance of plant and animal habitat.
    • Living world WildTracker at Audley Join us on a WildTracker Science and Technology excursion for Stage 2 (Years 3-4) students at Audley in the Royal National Park. We'll don our detective hats and investigate, explore and analyse the natural environment, identify and group species, and discover the key elements that make up quality habitat for native plants and animals.
    • Places are similar and different Explore the features of different places and environments on this Stage 2 (Years 3-4) geography excursion with Ranger Jamie Tours. Observe the variations between bushland, sand and sea in the pristine coastal surrounds of Royal National Park.
    • Tailored tours of Royal National Park Join Sydney Nimble Tours for your own private day out in the Royal National Park. From pristine beaches to sweeping coastal vistas, these tailored experiences are a great way to escape the city and immerse yourself in nature.  
    • The Coast Track and Figure Eight Pools experience Join award-winning Emu Trekkers on The Coast Track in the Royal National Park, near Sydney. You’ll experience stunning views and have the chance to safely visit the Figure Eight Pools if the weather conditions permit.
    • Wattamolla to Curracurrang self-guided audio tour Take a self-guided audio tour from Wattamolla Beach to the glorious oasis of Curracurrang and discover the wildlife that call this place home. As you walk, keep your eyes peeled for the places where animals scamper, flutter and swim in this rugged landscape.
    • WildThings at Audley Discover 'wild things' on this Stage 1 (Years 1-2) science and technology excursion. We'll explore the beautiful natural environment at Audley, and examine the diverse life found there. Interacting with the living world has never been more fun.
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    Plants and animals protected in this park

    Animals

    • Five pelicans stand at the beach shore in Bundjalung National Park as the sun rises. Photo: Nick Cubbin © DPE

      Australian pelican (Pelecanus conspicillatus)

      The curious pelican is Australia’s largest flying bird and has the longest bill of any bird in the world. These Australian birds are found throughout Australian waterways and the pelican uses its throat pouch to trawl for fish. Pelicans breed all year round, congregating in large colonies on secluded beaches and islands.

    Plants

    • Close up photo of a waratah flower, Blue Mountains National Park. Photo: Simone Cottrell/OEH.

      Waratah (Telopea speciosissima)

      The beautiful waratah is not only the NSW floral emblem, it's also one of the best-known Australian native plants. This iconic Australian bush flower can be found on sandstone ridges around Sydney, in nearby mountain ranges and on the NSW South Coast. The waratah has a vibrant crimson flowerhead, measuring up to 15cm across, and blossoms in spring.

    • Cabbage tree palm in Dalrymple-Hay Nature Reserve. Photo: John Spencer/OEH

      Cabbage palm (Livistona australis)

      With glossy green leaves spanning 3-4m in length and a trunk reaching a height of up to 30m, the cabbage tree palm, or fan palm, is one of the tallest Australian native plants. Thriving in rainforest margins along the east coast of NSW, in summer this giant palm produces striking spikes of cream flowers which resemble cabbages.

    • Gymea lily. Photo: Simone Cottrell

      Gymea lily (Doryanthes excelsa)

      The magnificent Gymea lily is one of the most unusual Australian native plants, found only along the coast and surrounding bushland of the Sydney Basin, from Newcastle to Wollongong. In spring this giant lily shoots out spectacular red flowers that can reach heights of 2-4m.

    • Grass trees, Sugarloaf State Conservation Area. Photo: Michael Van Ewijk

      Grass tree (Xanthorrea spp.)

      An iconic part of the Australian landscape, the grass tree is widespread across eastern NSW. These Australian native plants have a thick fire-blackened trunk and long spiked leaves. They are found in heath and open forests across eastern NSW. The grass tree grows 1-5m in height and produces striking white-flowered spikes which grow up to 1m long.

    Environments in this park

    Education resources (1)

    School excursions (12)