Located in northern Sydney, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is the second-oldest national park in the country and a favorite among campers, hikers and nature lovers. Its lush rainforest landscape, quiet creeks and mountain passes lead visitors to forget Ku-ring-gai Chase is still within Sydney city limits, but its incredible views, thick mangroves and scenic drives make it the perfect escape from center city hustle.
The park is on the Australian National Heritage List, and travelers often wander its well-kept walking paths that wind through the Australian jungle. Driving may prove the easiest way to navigate the area, but many visitors prefer to call upon bicycles and horses to explore. An ideal day trip, Ku-ring-gai Chase offers public picnic spaces, paddle and sailboats and scenic overlooks like the Barrenjoey Lighthouse.
Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is accessible by car from Turramurra, Mt Colah, Terrey Hills and Church Point. It is open from sunrise to sunset but may close in inclement weather, so it’s best to call ahead during poor conditions. Gates near Bobbin Head and Appletree Bay are closed between 8 p.m. and 6 a.m. daily, and gates to West Head are closed from 8:30 p.m. until 6 a.m. Entry fees are $11 per vehicle per day.