by Jacqui Owens
A few weeks ago, for the first time ever, I played the tourist in the Blue Mountains instead of going for work or visiting friends. I DO NOT know what took me so long to do it properly, we had such a great time! Here’s the low down.
In terms of a plan of attack, we headed down in the morning and drove all the way to Blackheath where we stayed for a browse, a park play and lunch. In the afternoon we headed to Scenic World where we spent a good few hours, retiring to the hotel in the early evening. The following day we spent the morning in Leura followed by a stop-over at Glenbrook for lunch on the way home.
Things to do:
- Browse the many antique stores (while hubby and the kids enjoy people watching in the brisk Blackheath air!)
- Check out the markets (2nd Sunday of the month)
- Visit Blackheath Memorial Park – huge park with fun play equipment and a duck pond to boot!
- Grab a coffee at Anonymous Cafe (Campos)
- Enjoy lunch at Meet Me @ Matts Juice Bar – delicious soups, the best cheese toasties (thank god for brioche) and other yummy snacks (lots of vegan and gluten-free options). They also have fresh cold-pressed juices, turmeric lattes and other hip drinks, as well as a lovely kids play area in their courtyard.
- Govetts Leap Lookout – gorgeous views and a pram friendly bush walk, the Fairfax track, that leaves from Govetts Leap information centre and meanders down to a beautiful lookout
- SHOP. The main drag of Leura is very pretty, lined with lovely shops. Shout out to the husband for allowing me to indulge in some retail therapy while he wrangled small people.
- Do not, I repeat DO NOT go to Josophans Fine Chocolates if you have any issues with gorging on delicious chocolates at a pace that you are ashamed of.
- EAT (more). I’ve tried the Leura Garage which is a cool setting with good coffee, and the Leura Gourmet Cafe & Deli – it has a lovely leafy outlook and you can pick up a snack for the road on the way out.
- Definitely check out Scenic World and its four attractions being the Railway, Skyway, Walkway and Cableway which all show different parts of the Megalong Valley and Three Sisters. Despite the daggy name and hoards of tourists, it’s a highlight! We enjoyed it as much as the kids. My parents took GREAT delight in describing their experience of the railway when they were young, the construction of the trains back then and the way everything has changed. The railway itself is quite impressive and it’s backstory is really interesting. Not to mention it’s the steepest incline railway in the world at 52 degrees. Tickets aren’t cheap unfortunately but they have some deals for families.
- Three Sisters Lookout, Echo Point – hubby has 3 sisters so of course I forced him to take a photo of himself with the iconic beauties and send it to his family. The Echo Point viewing platforms get extremely busy on sunny weekends, but there are short walks and trails that wrap around Echo Point that allow you to escape the bulk of the crowds. Fun fact: The Three Sisters is floodlit until around 11pm and is said to look spectacular against the backdrop of the night sky.
- This is a great half way stop, about 50 minutes into the trip. Between the fab little railway themed park and the so-dang-kid-friendly Cafe 2773 (animals, a cubby house, yum kids menu), Glenbrook is definitely worth a visit even if it’s not on the way to or from the Blue Mountains!
- Lots of Ryde District Mums have recommended The Fairmont Resort, Leura. In fact, we wrote a whole article about it here! It has two awesome playrooms, an outdoor maze, ride on train, school holiday entertainment program, a merry-go-round, cinema, tenpin bowling and more! Sounds pretty well perfect..
- We stayed at Lilianfels Resort & Spa and it was heavenly! Definitely a great choice for a romantic weekend away
- I’ve also heard excellent things about the Parklands in Blackheath
I think I forgot just how stunningly beautiful the Blue Mountains are and how lucky we are to live so close. It’s a must-do people! A MUST-DO!