Day Trip to Sydney’s Blue Mountains & the stunning Three Sisters


New South Wales / Travel Blog

Visiting the Blue Mountains is a great day out for anyone planning to visit Sydney and is looking for an experience that takes them away from the hustle and bustle of a busy city. Located an hour and half outside of Sydney, you wouldn’t know it once you got there that you’re so close to Australia’s largest city. Whilst visiting the Blue Mountains you’ll be able to visit the Three Sisters, the main attraction that draws millions of visitors to the Blue Mountains each year. It’s not just these impressive rock formations that will have visitors coming away with an experience they won’t forget, but the surrounding activities that enable you to see the Three Sisters from different perspectives.

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During my stay in Sydney I made sure to make it special by spending one night at the luxurious Shangri-La Hotel, overlooking the impressive Sydney Harbour. From here in a Harbour View room you gain uninterrupted views of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney Opera House and the buzz of people going about their daily lives in the harbour and Circular Quay.

Staying here was all the more impressive in June as this was when the Vivid Festival was on and gave impressive views of the harbour whilst the monuments were lit up at night. The projections being broadcast on the sails of the Sydney Opera House were clearly visible as they came to life at 6:00pm. You can read a full review of the Shangri-La Sydney here and watch the video below capturing this amazing time.



Getting to the Blue Mountains is best done by car and that’s what I did with Avis, at the conveniently located outlet within the Marriott Hotel near Circular Quay. There are also other options for getting up to the mountains, if you prefer to take a slower approach you can try public transport with trains taking you right up to the Blue Mountains where you can get off at Katoomba Station, taking approximately two hours.

One other option to take into consideration is a tour up to the mountains, especially if you’re staying in the Sydney city centre, however I wouldn’t recommend it as the Blue Mountains are pretty easy to explore on your own and you’ll save some money doing it this way along with having the flexibility to go at your own pace.

Arriving at Katoomba, the best thing to do is to head straight for Scenic World despite the temptation to drive to the Three Sisters lookout. This is the best way to base yourself for seeing everything and to maximise the experience. Entry to Scenic World is $39.00 for an adult ticket and will give you unlimited entry to all attractions for the day. You’ll be given a wristband with a barcode that gives you access to the attractions and with this you scan on as you board either the Skyway, Railway or Cable Car.


It was recommended that the Skyway is the first attraction to visit. This large cable car transports visitors to the other side of the gorge, giving impressive views of the Three Sisters on one side whilst providing views of the just as impressive Katoomba Falls on the other side. There is also a glass floor in the centre of the Skyway that people can stand on. It will start off frosted and then once the Skyway starts moving over the gorge will reveal itself to those standing on top of it.

Once arriving at the other side there are a few options, either take a short walk around the corner to view the Katoomba Falls, or take the longer path and either take a peek at the Three Sisters, or continue on for an even longer hike to the rocks themselves. The first major stopping point is the Three Sisters lookout. You can also drive here too if you’re not up for walking, however it’s a much better experience going on the hike to reach here.

Once here you can opt to turn around and go back or continue on down the track taking you right up to the Three Sisters. There is then another option to go down with a small bridge, called Honeymoon Bridge, linking to the closest rock. Not a lot of time should be spent here as there are a large number of people trying to clamber onto the rock depending on what time of the day you’re visiting. Space is a premium with a small ledge for people to stand on and look back.

Heading back and you’ll need to catch the Skyway back across to where it all started at Scenic World. Once you arrive back you’ll then have two options to either take the Cable Car or the Railway down into the valley. I chose to take the Cable Car down which gives you impressive sweeping views of the valley and also a bit of an adrenaline rush for anyone standing at the front of the cable car as it approaches the edge and leaps over the side of the mountain.

Arriving at the bottom there are several boardwalks to take you around the rainforest. You can take the cable car back up or opt to walk straight to the railway, but the best option is to take either the short or the slightly longer boardwalk zig-zagging its way around the forest.

Getting back to the summit where Scenic World begins you can catch the railway, which is the steepest in the world. It can get quite busy so if you want those prime seats at the front you may have to wait a couple of times to get that front spot. Some advice would be to take advantage of the padded bar at in front of your seat as the train goes on an almost vertical incline and it really hurt putting all that pressure on my knees.

It’s quite a fun little ride as it shoots back up, but don’t fear, if you are like me and you aren’t one for rides, it’s very laid back and quite fun.

Visiting the Blue Mountains is a really fun day out and if you’re staying in Sydney it’s a great way to get out of the city and to be able to go on an adventure through some of the rainforest. If you’re just wanting to visit the Three Sisters then you’re not obligated to visit Scenic World and this can be done on its own free of charge. However to really make the most of your day it’s a lot more fun to experience the attractions surrounding the Three Sisters.

If you haven’t yet already check out the video above for a guided tour of the Blue Mountains and the awesome view of Vivid from the Shangri-La Hotel.

For more information on Scenic World, head over to there website here.

GUIDE BOOKS

A guide book isn’t cheating! Before you leave on your next adventure ensure you plan to get the most out of your trip and check out the range of guide books from Lonely Planet. The comprehensive guide books on Australia from Lonely Planet will give you an insight on what to expect on your travels to this amazing country.


Just your average guy doing his 9 – 5 job as a Senior Payroll Officer by day, writing about his travel adventures and hopefully giving you inspiration and ideas for your next travel adventure here at loneXplorer…

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