Every weekend in Australia feels like a real break. But this weekend the Blue Mountains took me to another world, and then back down again with a thud!
I hired myself some wheels and set off on the 1hr 50 minute journey into the West.
I started at the furthest point of my journey, working my way back towards Sydney, at Govett’s Leap near Blackheath. As I walked towards the edge my jaw dropped at the introduction of one of the most stunning and breathtaking views I have ever seen in my life. The sun over the Grose Valley and the glistening Bride Veil Falls, with the gentle squawks of the parrots of cockatoo’s interrupting the eery silence, has been imprinted in my memory forever.
I know the clue is in the title, but they really do have a lovely blue haze that blankets the valleys. There are many theories on why the mountains appear blue, one of the most commonly believed is that tiny droplets of dispersed Eucalypt oil combines with dust from the arid environment from the top of the mountains with the water vapour in the tropical rainforests and swamps of the valleys, appearing blue in the light.
Next stop was Evans lookout. A beautiful outlook over the Grose valley from a slightly different angle. Here you can see a completely sheer cliff face- a reminder of just how weird and amazing nature is. With the breeze in the right direction the smell of Blue Gums and Eucalyptus trees was stunning.
Further down the valley and closer to the town of Katoomba was the Leura Cascades. The environment completely changed to a muddy, soggy and humid rainforest. As I picked my way through the bush the sound of trickling water gets louder and louder until I reached the strongest part of the cascades…
I felt like I was in a secret world. I kept following the stream further until I reached the edge. A complete surprise as the forest fell away and this view was all that was left.
I climbed back out of the swamp, literally…
…past Bridal Veil lookout…
…right up to the famous Echo Point, home of the Three Sisters. Each of the Three Sisters stand at 922, 918 & 906 metres tall, respectively. That’s over 3000 feet above sea level!
It really is as amazing, if not more amazing, than everyone says. It’s slightly spoilt by the coach loads of tourists prying for the best selfie spots but I suppose we all have to share and even this couldn’t spoil it.
With my tummy rumbling I decided to retire to the picturesque village of Leura. Filled with gift shops, galleries and cafes, Leura is like stepping back in time. Completely cut off in the mountains it has retained its charm and identity and was the perfect spot for a late lunch. I went to the Red Door Cafe and had the nicest sandwich I’ve had in a long time.
Sadly it was time to get the car back, but stay tuned because I’ll be back for the Jenolan Caves. Here’s a taster of things to come…
Oh yeah I almost forgot, I came back down with a thud. All I’ll say is watch out for these signs with particular care.
The poor kangaroo must of had a headache but luckily he shook it off and bounced away seemingly unharmed, leaving me with a hefty insurance bill!