Special Offer

Head to the stars: Barrenjoey

Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park

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Overview

SOLD OUT. Calling all amateur astronomers to Barrenjoey Headland in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. Discover astrophotography, learn about the solar system and tour Barrenjoey Lighthouse at this fun event.

When

Saturday 19 October 2019

Station Beach activities run from 5pm to 9.30pm

Optional guided tours of Barrenjoey Lighthouse run from 5.30pm to 7pm, 6.30pm to 8pm, 7.30pm to 9pm and 8.30pm to 10pm. Select a time slot for your guided tour when you book. Lighthouse tour takes around 30 minutes each way.

Where
Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park
Accessibility
No wheelchair access
Grade
Medium. Station Beach activities suitable for all ages. Optional guided lighthouse tour suitable for adults and children 8 years and over with moderate fitness.
Price

$20 per person.

Meeting point
Station Beach in front of Governor Phillip Park, Palm Beach.
What to
bring
Torch, drinking water
Bookings
SOLD OUT. Phone 1300 072 757 for more information or book online.
Book now

Join us at Palm Beach, 1 hour from Sydney's centre, as we set out to simulate a pristine dark sky landscape. We'll be transforming Barrenjoey Headland into an observatory for 1 night only. Come along and witness the sparkly wonder of the solar system under the light of the new moon.

There's plenty to see and do at this great event, including:

  • Learning about the solar system from local astronomers and looking through one of the onsite telescopes
  • Going on an optional guided tour of Barrenjoey Lighthouse
  • Listening to stories about Aboriginal astronomy
  • Learning tips and tricks for night sky photography from our experienced astrophotographer. Don't forget your camera and tripod
  • Discovering why dark, natural night skies are important to animals, plants and humans
  • Enjoying a barbecue dinner and some tea, coffee or hot chocolate

If you're a nocturnal adventure seeker or solar system enthusiast, don't miss this fantastic evening under the stars. Remember to bring a headlamp or torch and a water bottle.

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 https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/events/head-to-the-stars-barrenjoey/local-alerts

Park info

  • in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park in the Sydney and surrounds region
  • Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is open sunrise to sunset but may have to close at times due to poor weather or fire danger.

    • The entrance to Bobbin Head and Appletree Bay is closed from 8pm to 6am during daylight savings periods, and from 5.30pm to 6am the rest of the year.
    • Gates to West Head are closed from 8.30pm to 6am during daylight savings periods, and from 6pm to 6am the rest of the year.
  • Park entry fees:

    $12 per vehicle per day.

    Vehicles over 8 seats: $4.40 per adult, $2.20 per child (per day). Students on educational programs: $1.10 per student. Teachers/educational supervisors: free (1 adult per 10 students).

    Buy annual pass (//pass.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/).
See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Head to the stars: Barrenjoey.

Getting there and parking

Get driving directions

Get directions

    From the Wakehurst Parkway, turn left on to Pittwater Road. Continue along Pittwater Road until you reach Barrenjoey Road. Continue on Barrenjoey Road for 7km then turn right onto Beach Road and follow to the end, turning left at Governor Phillip Park. Follow until you reach the end.

    Park entry points

    Parking

    Parking is available along Barrenjoey Road or at Governor Phillip carpark (Pittwater Council). Please note that this is paid parking.

    Maps and downloads

    Accessibility

    Disability access level - no wheelchair access

    Not wheelchair-accessible.

    Visitor centre

    Learn more

    Head to the stars: Barrenjoey is in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

    A great location to run, row or ride

    West Head lookout, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

    Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is situated within the Sydney Metropolitan Area, 20km north of the Sydney CBD. The park runs from St Ives to the shores of the Hawkesbury River at Brooklyn. The 14,882ha park also includes the stunning Barrenjoey Head, 1km across Pittwater at Palm Beach. Multiple entry points offer easy access – one of the many reasons this park is so popular with locals. With everything from jogging tracks to picnic areas and great places to whalewatch, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is excellent for outdoor activity. Hire paddle boats from Bobbin Inn, walk the Gibberagong track, horse ride the Perimeter trail or cycle from Mt Colah to Pymble station.

    • Akuna Bay Boating enthusiasts love Akuna Bay. Use the public barbecue and enjoy a picnic at Akuna Bay Marina. It's the ideal spot to recharge after you've been out sailing.
    • Bobbin Head Visit Bobbin Head picnic area in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park and enjoy a barbecue or a spot of fishing. Go canoeing or hire a paddle boat for a great daytrip from Sydney.

    A rich Aboriginal heritage

    Aboriginal engravings in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

    The Guringai Aboriginal people originally inhabited the area, and the park showcases their rich cultural heritage. More than 350 Aboriginal sites have been recorded in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. They include rock engravings, burial sites, axe grinding grooves and places that show evidence of Aboriginal occupation. For many visitors, these sites and other relics are the most visible reminders of the area's rich, living Aboriginal culture.

    • Aboriginal Heritage walk Take the fascinating Aboriginal Heritage walk highlighting rock art and engravings of the Guringai people of West Head in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park.
    • Head to the stars: Barrenjoey SOLD OUT. Calling all amateur astronomers to Barrenjoey Headland in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. Discover astrophotography, learn about the solar system and tour Barrenjoey Lighthouse at this fun event.
    • The Basin track and Mackerel track The Basin track and Mackerel track offer stunning ocean views, as well as one of Sydney's best Aboriginal Art sites. You can also enjoy a picnic and swim, or catch a ferry to other scenic spots on Pittwater.

    Brilliant for birdwatchers

    Wildflowers in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

    Over 160 bird species have been recorded in the park so bring those binoculars to see wood ducks, crimson rosellas, wedge-tailed eagles and pelicans. The Basin campground is home to some confident kookaburras, so keep a tight hold on your lunch.

    • Head to the stars: Barrenjoey SOLD OUT. Calling all amateur astronomers to Barrenjoey Headland in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. Discover astrophotography, learn about the solar system and tour Barrenjoey Lighthouse at this fun event.
    • Waratah walking track The long, yet gentle, Waratah walking track takes in wildflowers and scenic water views over Akuna and Yeomens Bay in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park.

    Wonderful waterways

    Views from Barrenjoey headland, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

    Protecting a major part of northern Sydney’s waterways, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is the ideal place to make a splash. The park includes much of the Hawkesbury River, Pittwater and Cowan Water, plus numerous creeks and coves. You’ll find good facilities at Empire Marina, amazing sea views at Barrenjoey Head and several good spots for a waterfront picnic.

    • Coastal walk stage 3: Mona Vale to Barrenjoey With the end in sight, we'll make the final 12km trek from Mona Vale to Barrenjoey Lighthouse in Ku-ring-gai Chase. This series of 3 walks starts in Manly and finishes at Palm Beach.
    • The Basin track and Mackerel track The Basin track and Mackerel track offer stunning ocean views, as well as one of Sydney's best Aboriginal Art sites. You can also enjoy a picnic and swim, or catch a ferry to other scenic spots on Pittwater.
    • West Head lookout Enjoy incredible views from West Head lookout, regarded as one of Sydney's best in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. Photograph Pittwater and Barrenjoey Head, or take a short walk from here.

    Plants and animals you may see

    Animals

    • Long-nosed bandicoot, Sydney Harbour National Park. Photo: Narelle King

      Long-nosed bandicoot (Perameles nasuta)

      A nocturnal marsupial and one of the smaller Australian native animals, the long-nosed bandicoot is found across eastern Australia. Populations in the Sydney region have dwindled since European settlement, leaving only endangered colonies in inner western Sydney and at North Head, near Manly. The long-nosed bandicoot has grey-brown fur and a pointed snout which it uses to forage for worms and insects.

    • White-bellied sea eagle. Photo: John Turbill

      White-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

      White-bellied sea eagles can be easily identified by their white tail and dark grey wings. These raptors are often spotted cruising the coastal breezes throughout Australia, and make for some scenic bird watching. Powerful Australian birds of prey, they are known to mate for life, and return each year to the same nest to breed.

    Plants

    • Old man banksia, Moreton National Park. Photo: John Yurasek

      Old man banksia (Banksia serrata)

      Hardy Australian native plants, old man banksias can be found along the coast, and in the dry sclerophyll forests and sandstone mountain ranges of NSW. With roughened bark and gnarled limbs, they produce a distinctive cylindrical yellow-green banksia flower which blossoms from summer to early autumn.

    • 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.

    • A red triangle slug on the trunk of a scribbly gum tree in Blue Mountains National Park. Photo: Elinor Sheargold/OEH

      Scribbly gum (Eucalyptus haemastoma)

      Easily identifiable Australian native plants, scribbly gum trees are found throughout NSW coastal plains and hills in the Sydney region. The most distinctive features of this eucalypt are the ‘scribbles’ made by moth larva as it tunnels between the layers of bark.

    •  Grey mangrove, Towra Point Nature Reserve. Photo: John Spencer

      Grey mangrove (Avicennia marina)

      Grey mangrove is the most common and widespread mangrove found within intertidal zones across Australia, and throughout the world. Growing to a height of 3-10m, they thrive best in estuaries with a mix of fresh and salt water. They excrete excess salt through their long thick leaves, and absorb oxygen through their aerial root system.

    Environments in this park

    Education resources (1)

    Barrenjoey Head Lighthouse. Photo: Kevin McGrath