Booti Hill and Wallis Lake walking track
Booti Booti National Park
Just 20km from Forster, this thrilling track offers a scenic day walk including beaches, Wallis Lake, and plenty of opportunities for swimming and whale watching.
- Booti Booti National Park
- 7.3km loop
- Time suggested
- 2hrs 30min - 3hrs 30min
- Grade 3
- Entry fees
- Park entry fees apply
- What to
- Drinking water, hat, sunscreen
- Please note
- The Booti Hill and Wallis Lake walking track can also be approached from Elizabeth Beach and Sunset picnic area on The Lakes Way.
- Remember to bring your binoculars if you want to bird or whale watch
The Booti Hill and Wallis Lake walking track touches both the ocean and the shores of Lake Wallis. Bring your swimmers and make a day walk of it with beautiful views from the headland and plenty of wildlife to keep the camera active.
Start at Ruins campground and travel clockwise, so the hardest part is knocked off early. Walk out to the stunning Seven Mile Beach and look for the signposted track – this climbs up the northern side of Booti Hill through twisted eucalypts. There are rest spots along the way, and a small opening with a scenic view of Seagull Point right before you enter some refreshing rainforest.
Eventually the track emerges onto the ridge-crest above Lindemans Cove and joins a fire trail that leads to a small clearing. Go straight ahead for Elizabeth Beach and a terrific opportunity for an ocean dip. If it’s winter, you might even spot a migrating whale. There are also tables and a barbecue just 100m along the trail, so don’t forget the picnic.
Back on the main walking track, branching west, cross The Lakes Way for a change of pace. The final 3.5km of the loop follow the shore of Wallis Lake, with striking lichens and graceful waterbirds aplenty.
Soon you’ll reach a grassy clearing with some marked graves. The Gogerly family are buried here; pioneer fishers once owned the land of the Ruins campground.
For the latest updates on fires, closures and other alerts in this area, see https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/walking-tracks/booti-hill-and-wallis-lake-walking-track/local-alerts
- National Parks Contact Centre
- 7am to 7pm daily
- 1300 072 757 (13000 PARKS) for the cost of a local call within Australia excluding mobiles
- in Booti Booti National Park in the North Coast region
Booti Booti National Park is always open but may have to close at times due to poor weather or fire danger.
Park entry fees:
$8 per vehicle per day. Day passes are available from the Manning Great Lakes Area Office, Tea Gardens Visitor Information Centre, Bulahdelah Visitor Information Centre and the Hawks Nest Newsagency.Buy annual pass.
All the practical information you need to know about Booti Hill and Wallis Lake walking track.
Grade 3Learn more about the grading system Features of this track
2hrs 30min - 3hrs 30min
Quality of markings
Short steep hills
Quality of path
Formed track, some obstacles
No experience required
Getting there and parking
Booti Hill and Wallis Lake walking track starts from The Ruins campground in Booti Booti National Park. To get there:
- Drive approximately 20km south of Forster along The Lakes Way
- Turn left into the Ruins campground
Parking is available at Ruins campground, Elizabeth Beach, or Sunset picnic area, all accessible via The Lakes Way.
Best times to visit
There are lots of great things waiting for you in Booti Booti National Park. Here are some of the highlights.
See the park's magnificent wildflower displays as they bloom across the heathlands.
Swim at the seasonally patrolled Elizabeth Beach or kayak in Wallis Lake, whilst staying at the nearby Ruins campground.
Visit Cape Hawke lookout to watch whales migrating off the coast.
Weather, temperature and rainfall
15°C and 30°C
5°C and 20°C
The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day
Maps and downloads
A current NSW recreational fishing licence is required when fishing in all waters.
Booti Hill and Wallis Lake walking track is in Booti Booti National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:
A haven for birds and birdwatchers alike
Booti Booti National Park features a substantial number of amphibians and reptiles, including red-bellied black snakes, brown snakes, rose-crowned snakes and blue-bellied swamp snakes. Goannas are regular visitors to The Ruins campground and picnic areas, and you may even be lucky enough to see a land mullet or water dragon. The unusual peninsula between the Pacific Ocean and Wallis Lake also provides an outstanding habitat for over 210 species of birds, including rainbow and scaly-breasted lorikeets, yellow-faced honeyeaters and silvereyes, as well as a number of waterbirds, including pelicans and the endangered little tern.
- Cape Hawke lookout Just five minutes from Forster, the Cape Hawke lookout offers spectacular 360-degree views along the coast from the top of a dedicated tower, perfect for whale watching.
- Elizabeth Beach picnic area A short drive from Forster, Elizabeth Beach picnic area offers a great spot to relax near a beach popular for swimming, surfing, and whale watching in winter.
- Sailing Club picnic area An alternative to the ocean-front options of Booti Booti National Park, Sailing Club picnic area offers a shady rest spot on the shore of Wallis Lake.
Captain Cook first sighted Cape Hawke on May 12, 1770, and named it in honour of the First Lord of the Admiralty, Edward Hawke. The famous explorer and surveyor John Oxley later passed through the area in 1818. The first European inhabitant was Captain J. Gogerly, who sailed between Forster and Sydney ferrying timber, oyster shells, and sandstone. Today you can pay respects to Captain Gogerly and some of his relatives at their gravemarkers, across the road from the Ruins campground.
- Booti Hill and Wallis Lake walking track Just 20km from Forster, this thrilling track offers a scenic day walk including beaches, Wallis Lake, and plenty of opportunities for swimming and whale watching.
Spirituality, identity and lifestyle
Booti Booti National Park holds important cultural significance for the Worimi Aboriginal people, who have lived on and used the land and waters for many thousands of years. Dozens of Aboringal sites exist within the park, including artefact scatters, stone quarries, tool sites, and shell middens. These are important markers of Aboriginal history in the region, demonstrating how land, water, plants and animals contributed to and continue to have significance for Aboriginal identity, spirituality, and lifestyle.