Jilliby State Conservation Area

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Overview

Located near Central Coast, Jilliby State Conservation Area is a popular place for 4WD touring, mountain biking, horse riding and long bush walks through the forest.

Read more about Jilliby State Conservation Area

Jilliby State Conservation Area allows you to escape into a natural haven, with the advantage of being so close to Central Coast. The park is also an idyllic spot for horse riding, mountain biking, walking and adventures in your 4WD.

Explore many of the trails throughout the landscape and when you feel like a rest, set up a picnic at any of the two picturesque picnic areas located at Muirs lookout or Stoney Ridge. From Muirs lookout, scenic views stretch out to Lake Macquarie and Lake Munmorah, with a glimpse of the coastline and Bird Island in the far distance.

Birdwatching is a treat in Jilliby as there are over 130 recorded species in Watagan Range. However, if you prefer bushwalking, then keep your eyes peeled for the local wildlife. There have been over 150 native animals recorded in the area, including endangered animals like the yellow-bellied glider and the yellow-bellied sheath-tail bat.

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/visit-a-park/parks/jilliby-state-conservation-area/local-alerts

Contact

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Jilliby State Conservation Area.

Getting there and parking

Get driving directions

Get directions

    To Jilliby (southern section) from Wyong:

    • Follow Yarramalong Road west to Red Hill Road on the left in Ourimbah State Forest
    • Head south through Ourimbah State Forest, uphill to the intersection of Wallaby Road, and turn right.
    • Continue west, along Red Hill Road, to the park boundary at Prestons Ridge Road.

    To Jilliby (central section) from Wyong:

    • Take Hue Hue Road to Jilliby Road
    • Turn left onto Watagan Forest Road and proceed 6km to the park boundary

    To Jilliby (northern section) From Cooranbong:

    • Turn onto Martinsville Road at the Fire Station from Freemans Drive
    • Keep left, uphill along Wattagan Road, to Martinsville Hill Road and onto the park boundary.

    Park entry points

    Parking

    Road quality

    The roads in Jilliby State Conservation Area are unsealed and accessible by 4WD only. Gates and roads may be temporarily closed to prevent damage when wet. Please contact Lake Munmorah office on 02 4972 9000 for more information.

    • Unsealed roads

    Vehicle access

    • All roads require 4WD vehicle

    By bike

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

    By public transport

    Jilliby State Conservation Area is not readily accessible by public transport. The closest railway stations are located in Wyong (10km) and Morisset (25 km).

    Best times to visit

    There are lots of great things waiting for you in Jilliby State Conservation Area. Here are some of the highlights.

    Autumn

    Cooler months are a great time to jump in your 4WD and go for a car touring adventure to enjoy the forests in all their autumn glory.

    Spring

    Spring is a perfect time to enjoy long bushwalks, bike rides and horseback rides through the parks many trails.

    Summer

    When the weather is too hot to work up a sweat, enjoy a picnic in the beautiful picnic areas at Muirs lookout and Stoney Ridge.

    Weather, temperature and rainfall

    Summer temperature

    Average

    17°C and 27°C

    Highest recorded

    42.9°C

    Winter temperature

    Average

    7°C and 17°C

    Lowest recorded

    -0.1°C

    Rainfall

    Wettest month

    September

    Driest month

    February

    The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

    230.2mm

    Facilities

    Toilets

    Picnic tables

    Barbecue facilities

    Maps and downloads

    Safety messages

    However you discover NSW national parks and reserves, we want you to have a safe and enjoyable experience. Our park and reserve systems contrast greatly so you need to be aware of the risks and take responsibility for your own safety and the safety of those in your care.

    Yambo Forest Road is only suitable for 4WD vehicles between Jilliby Road and Mandalong Road.

    Mobile safety

    Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency Plus 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).

    Prohibited

    Pets

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

    Smoking

    NSW national parks are no smoking areas.

    Nearby towns

    Wyong (11 km)

    Wyong is a bustling township and the centre for Wyong Shire. There's something for everyone, as it's close to the Central Coast's lakes, beaches and wooded valleys.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Morisset (15 km)

    Morisset is a gateway to the Watagan Mountains. It's a resort and residential town close to huge state forest. It's situated on Lake Macquarie between water and woodlands.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Gosford (31 km)

    Gosford is a great destination for a family day trip or holiday. It's situated on Brisbane Water National Park and surrounded by state forests, lakes and beaches.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Learn more

    Jilliby State Conservation Area is a special place. Here are just some of the reasons why:

    Unique plants and animals

    Native vegetation, Jilliby State Conservation Area. Photo: John Spencer

    Jilliby is a natural wonderland filled with an enormous diversity of plant species and native vegetation. Wandering through, you'll discover tall moist eucalypt forests flourishing with mountain blue gum and blue-leaved stringybark. There are also drier forest areas that will enchant you with forest oak, Sydney peppermint, and broad-leaved white mahogany. Pockets of paperbark palm forests, and warm-temperate as well as subtropical rainforest occur in sheltered gullies and creeklines.

    • Muirs lookout Muirs lookout at Jilliby State Conservation Area displays amazing scenic views from the Watagan Range overlooking neighbouring townships.

    Aboriginal sites

    Bushwalking track, Jilliby State Conservation Area. Photo: John Spencer

    Jilliby is an important cultural and historical area for Aboriginal people. There are more than 40 recorded Aboriginal sites in Jilliby, and the adjacent Watagans National Park also includes art sites, axe-grinding grooves and open campsites. Awabakal and Darkinjung People were the original inhabitants of Watagan Range, which once provided a rich range of food sources, including plant foods such as fruit, acacia, grass seeds and nectar. Fish and freshwater shellfish were fished from the rivers, and local wallabies, kangaroos, possums, lizards and even insects were all part of the local diet.

    A history of booming trade

    Bushwalking track, Jillaby State Conservation Area. Photo: John Spencer

    The mountainous ranges and heavily timbered gullies of Watagan Range were a physical barrier to exploration and development. Jilliby was on the western side of Tuggerah Lakes and Lake Munmorah as the colony of Sydney began to expand. These ranges soon were exploited to provide valuable, marketable timber using nearby waterways for transport. Government licences were issued to a small number of sawyers to cut red cedar in the ranges west of Tuggerah and Lake Macquarie. The early colonial cedar trade saw most of the cedar shipped off to England to supply an insatiable market for fine softwoods. Hardwood fed a building boom from the 1860s and provided sleepers for the northern railway line.

    Education resources (1)

    What we're doing

    Jilliby State Conservation Area has management strategies in place to protect and conserve the values of this park. Visit the OEH website for detailed park and fire management documents.