Ku ring gai Chase National Park
Sydney to the Hunter Valley
Ku ring gai Chase National Park | Brisbane Water & Bouddi National Parks | Central Coast
235 km | 3.5 hr drive time
On the coastal drive between Sydney and the Hunter Valley wine region three national parks offer great walks, swimming, and Aboriginal culture. The Central Coast is a mecca for surfers with lots of fun for families too.
Secluded beaches, bushland, sandstone cliffs, coastal walks, lakes, beach towns, seafood and fun for the kids best describe this route.
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The drive from Sydney to Ku ring gai Chase National Park, Brisbane Water National Park, the Central Coast and Hunter Valley combined is 235 km. There is a lot to do and plenty of places to stay so we recommend taking three days to make the journey, although you could skim through it in a day if time was short.
All recommended campgrounds and points of interest are marked on the map below.
Day One: Ku ring gai Chase National Park
Day one of our Sydney to Gold Coast Drive will focus on the Ku Ring Gai Chase National Park, moving on to Brisbane Water National Park where the camping begins. We've compiled a list of key things to do in the same order that you will reach them if driving from Sydney.
7 Things to do in Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park
- Rose Seidler House Museum: for a trip back in history.
- Bobbin Head picnic ground and Mangrove Boardwalk: for a waterfront lunch in gorgeous surrounds.
- Upper Gledhill falls: A great swimming hole and waterfall with a little sandy beach and a rope swing into the pool.
- America Bay walking track: Passes Aboriginal engravings and a waterfall and ends at a beach with some lovely places along the way to sit and enjoy the views. 1.8 km return or 1.5 – 2 hrs.
- Elvina walking track has many Aboriginal engraving sites and meanders through rainforest and passed water holes. At Elvina Bay there is a picnic area and a rope swing into the water. 4.8 km return, 2 hrs.
- Westhead Lookout: for stunning views.
- Westhead Beach: for a secluded swim.
Sydney - Blue Mountains - Hunter Valley
Camping and Caravan Parks
All campgrounds and caravan parks are all marked on the map below with orange dots.
Brisbane Water National Park Camping
- Patonga Camping Ground – Is in the secluded bayside village of Patonga right on the beach and inlet of the Hawkesbury River. It has electric BBQs, a ferry service to Palm Beach, laundry and dryers, a children’s playground, hot showers and toilets. There’s a tavern and a fish and chip shop nearby. Fires are allowed in winter.
RATES: Unpowered sites $20 - $43 for two. Additional adults $10, kids $7.50
- NRMA Ocean Beach Resort and Holiday Park – Set on the beachfront at pretty Umina Beach (see picture below). It has resort facilities – heated pool with spa and waterslide, toddlers wading pool, waterpark, kids playground, Go Karts, tennis courts, camp kitchen, hot showers and toilets, laundry room, BBQs, Basketball, Café, WiFi.
RATES: From $33 per site (great value for families and groups).
- Glenworth Campground – 200 acres of family-friendly riverfront camping in a grassy meadow surrounded by natural bush setting. This is not a coastal campground. There’s a 10 pm noise curfew. Activities include laser skirmishes, survival courses, kayaking, horse riding, bush walking, abseiling, quad biking. Facilities include hot showers, toilets and wood fired BBQs.
RATES: From $25 per adult. $12.50 if you combine camping with activities.
For our Central Coast recommendations, see Day Three: Camping and Caravan Parks Central Coast