Scenic World Blue Mountains Australia

| by Meliha | 20 Comments » | Australia, Guest Post

pictures of australiaBlue Mountains – A Panorama by t3rmin4t0r, on Flickr

Many people have heard some of Australia’s most popular destinations — Sydney, Cairns, the Gold Coast, Melbourne, the Great Barrier Reef, Tasmania, and Blue Mountains — to name just a few. Meliha
from Travel Adventures of a Desi Blonde shares her tips for visiting the Blue Mountains of Australia.

Blue Mountains

Blue Mountains is a mountain range about 1.5 to 2 hours outside of Sydney. Its area is 11,400 km², and its highest point is about 1,190 meters above sea level. Its name comes from the bluish color of the range when viewed from far away (according to Wikipedia). Since it’s so close to Sydney, visiting the Blue Mountains can easily be a quick day trip or an overnight excursion.

pictures of australiaThree Sisters by Aschaf, on Flickr

There are several popular sites to see in Blue Mountains, including a rock formation known as Three Sisters and tourist attraction Scenic World, both of which are located in the town of Katoomba.

Scenic World

pictures of australia

Blue Mountains by Travel Adventures of a Desi Blonde, on Flickr

At Scenic World, there are multiple ways to take in the beauty of Blue Mountains. Scenic World’s Scenic Skyway travels across the mountains 270 meters above the ground, and their Scenic Cableway and Scenic Railway both travel down to the valley floor. Once on the valley floor, visitors can then take their Scenic Walkway around the rainforest.

At Scenic World, visitors can purchase different experiences. A single or round trip ticket of the same activity, or multiple trip tickets of different activities combined into a single visit. A single round-trip ticket for the Scenic Skyway costs $16 for adults and $8 for children ages 4-13, or a family ticket can be purchased for $40. A combined ticket that includes all four attractions (Scenic Skyway, Scenic Railway, Scenic Cableway, and Scenic Walkway) costs $28 for adults and $14 for children ages 4-13, or a family ticket can be purchased for $70.

Scenic Skyway

pictures of australiaBlue Mountains – A Panorama by Aschaf, on Flickr

During our visit to Scenic World, my husband and I decided to take the Scenic Skyway. Though my slight acrophobia issue nearly talked me out of the ride (after we’d already bought the tickets), I powered through and everyone in the cable car (except me, I think) seemed to enjoy sweeping views, including the view of Katoomba Falls out the side windows and the valley floor through the Electro-Scenicglass floor.

Katoomba Falls

pictures of australia

Katoomba Falls by Travel Adventures of a Desi Blonde, on Flickr

After only a few short minutes, the cable car was already on the other side where there are lookout points a short distance away as well as a trail that leads down to a section of Katoomba Falls. On the day we visited Blue Mountains, the weather was hot (over 40 degrees Celsius!) and humid. Several people were cooling off from the hot weather in the waterfall.

In and Around Blue Mountains

pictures of australiaPrince Henry cliff walk by Aschaf, on Flickr

There are multiple ways to get to Blue Mountains Australia:

  • Tour companies offer day trips from Sydney
  • Sydney’s rail system also goes to the Blue Mountain area
  • Cars can be rented at the Sydney airport

Planning a Trip to Blue Mountains

pictures of australiaMount Solitary by Aschaf, on Flickr

Visitors should plan for not more than one or two activity-filled days (unless the laid-back, slow atmosphere of the small towns around Blue Mountains is preferred) and avoid major holiday timeframes since a lot of businesses are completely closed, or have limited operating hours on national holidays.

Though we didn’t take a day trip through a tour company, if we had to do it over again, we may have gone that route instead. When you consider that the cost of not paying for a hotel in Blue Mountains may balance out the cost per person (through a day trip), it might be well worth it.

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Written by Meliha

A Midwesterner by birth, a Californian by migration, and a “desi” by choice, Meliha's travels have taken her to 4 continents and 21 countries, including Singapore, Australia, Thailand, and U.A.E. As a regular visitor to south Asia, these days, Meliha straddles two continents (America and Asia) and two cultures (American and south Asian/desi). She writes about the Travel Adventures of a Desi Blonde. Visit my website

20 Responses to “Scenic World Blue Mountains Australia”

  1. Fred says:

    The name Blue Mountains comes from the bluish haze around the mountains when viewed from far away. The haze is a result of the oil from the Eucalyptus trees evaporating.

    Based on experience, I’d recommend following the trail down the mountains, then taking the cable car back to the top. Walking through the rainforests below will keep you cool and give you a better look at the wildlife.

    • Meliha says:

      Thanks for reading and providing some great suggestions Fred!

      Prior to arriving in Blue Mountains, we’d actually planned on doing some hiking. After getting there and experiencing temperatures of 100+ degrees Fahrenheit (40+ degrees Celsius), we decided against it. (We were sweating buckets that day — even without doing any physical exercise.)


  2. Stunning photography and excellent post as usual. Have always heard about the beauty and amazing panorama of the Blue Mountains area. Your post certainly gives specific tips and great recommendations to plan a trip, thank you for sharing your insights.

  3. Sophie says:

    The Blue Mountains is such an excellent area to explore, and so easy to get to. My then 11-year-old liked the kangaroos the best of all.

    • Meliha says:

      Thanks for reading and commenting!
      Unfortunately, we never saw “wild” kangaroos while we were in Australia. Only ones we saw were behind fences in a zoo. :( Would have loved to have encountered them in the wild (if only to say I did)… :)


  4. Sarah says:

    Thanks for your useful overview. Personally, I think the Blue Mtns are a bit overrated and a tourist trap — but if you get off on some trails to run or hike, or if you explore the cool towns nearby, it’s worth it. Everyone focuses on the Three Sisters formation, when there’s so much else to explore. Also, if you have kids, there are some great educational opportunities. For more info on how we explored the area with our two school-age kids and stayed in an eco lodge, check out Byways by the Blue Mountains.

    • Meliha says:

      Thanks for reading and commenting.
      I think I understand where you’re coming from. We had a little bit of the same impression too, but I think that was only because we’ve been to other mountainous regions that are more grandiose (Grand Canyon and Yosemite) AND I think because we got there on a holiday and found the “sleepy little towns” around BM are even more “sleepy” during holiday timeframes.
      As I mentioned in the article, I think it’s still a nice place to see/go, but I would definitely limit the time spent there (not more than 2 full days unless you’re into that kind of slow pace) and avoid holiday timeframes (unless you like having a hard time finding food and groceries–ha).


  5. Peter says:

    Wow, can’t believe I didn’t go to these places when I went there a few years ago, oh well, I’ll just have to go back.

  6. Beautiful!!! I’m so sad I missed this part of Oz when I was there. Definitely a reason to return.

  7. Nice and beautiful pictures. I enjoyed reading.

  8. Dave says:

    Great photos, especially the panoramic . We were in Sydney years ago and sadly never made it to the Blue Mountains. Next time for sure.

    • Meliha says:

      Sounds like a great plan. BM is so close to Sydney (~1.5-2 hours) so it’s definitely accessible.

      From your site, looks like you’ve been to a lot of other interesting places though. (I’m kinda jealous of your trips to Egypt and Petra in Jordan…they’re both on my “list.”)

      Cheers, Meliha

  9. Sonya says:

    Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous travel in Australia.

  10. Blue Mountains looks awesome!!! I didn’t expect something that beautiful could be in Australia. I especially like the Katoomba Falls :) Thanks for these tips! These will come in handy just in case I go to Australia :)

    • Meliha says:

      Thanks for reading (and for your comments).
      There are a couple of waterfalls in Blue Mountains…the picture just shows one of them. I definitely recommend Blue Mountains as a day trip from Sydney.

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