Exploring The Blue Mountains was incredible. Exhausting but incredible. In case anyone doesn’t know, these mountains got their name because of the blue haze that fills the air as you overlook the area, caused by the Eucalyptus plants. The day that we visited it was a little cloudy, but luckily we still had great views. Initially we weren’t sure about which walk to do; there are a variety of different paths to take depending on difficulty levels and the amount of time you want to spend walking. We started off simple and made our way to the viewpoint overlooking this natural marvel.
After the viewpoint, we knew that we didn’t want to leave without a proper look at Wentworth Falls, so we opted for the short walk which takes you to the top of the waterfall. Along the way we took a few little detours to other viewpoints, which was great because we ditched most of the other tourists with our convoluted route. Personally, if I see something beautiful I need a moment to myself to take it all in. So for me, being surrounded by other tourists can really ruin things – there’s nothing worse than being rushed! Our route took us underneath miniature waterfalls, across sparkling streams, and hopping over stepping stones as if the whole place were a fairy kingdom (one can dream). Needless to say, I thought it was a pretty magical place.
Once we reached the top of the falls it was pretty crowded – my worst nightmare! The views here are good, but we thought they would be even better if we made our way down to the bottom. So, we carried on. Our journey became harder at this point, so if you want to venture on as we did, prepare yourselves. The route downwards is very steep; you really have to hold onto the railings as the stone steps are teeny (probably for the fairies)!
Looking up at Wentworth Falls is spectacular, definitely worth the extra bit of walking. It’s quite a misty waterfall, so when the sun catches the water it creates an ethereal atmosphere. After seeing this natural beauty with our own eyes, we were hungry for more. Instead of making our way back, we embarked upon the ‘National Pass’, the longest and most intense walk available. It’s very possible that we got a bit carried away, but by this stage it was too late to change our minds!
This was when things really cranked up a notch. Once you get to this point, the walking tracks are long gone and instead you are faced with vertical ladders down the rock face. Fear not! These ladders come equipped with a cage like creation in case you lose your grip (though I’m just not sure if these are actually effective). After practically abseiling down, things do not get any easier. If you feel like it’s too much at this point, I would strongly advise that you turn around and go back the way you came!
At the bottom of the ladder trail, you are greeted by another stunning waterfall. After this, it’s time for some serious work. My advice? Be smart – bring snacks. I spent the remainder of the journey dreaming about sugary goodness. The walk back up is tough. You’ll find yourself crossing rocky waterfalls and wondering where on earth the path is. Whilst you’re panting your way up, just remember to take a look around you – I guarantee you won’t regret it.
Whilst no part of this walk would have been approved by British Health and Safety regulations (they ruin all the fun), I am so glad that we had the opportunity to really experience The Blue Mountains. Sure, there were times when I thought I may pass out or give up, but the things that we saw along the way made it all worthwhile.