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West Head Beach Walking Trail - Ku-ring-gai Chase

Home > Sydney > Adventure | Beaches | Outdoor | Picnic Spots | Walks
by Seafarrwide (subscribe)
Check out my blog at seafarrwide.com/ for more about me. Contact me : seafarrwide@gmail.com Follow my social media pages - www.facebook.com/Seafarrwide/ www.instagram.com/____seafarrwide___/
Published May 30th 2020
Spectacular West Head Lookout and Beach
West Head Beach, Seafarrwide
West Head Beach - credit: Seafarrwide


I'm a little ashamed to say that after living on the Northern Beaches in Sydney for over 30 years, I have only just discovered that West Head in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park has several interesting and challenging bush walks.
West Head, Ku-ring-gai National Park, Seafarrwide
West Head - credit: Seafarrwide


If you are an avid hiker or even if you aren't, you can still enjoy the drive down to West Head lookout and take in the spectacular views out to Palm Beach and up to Broken Bay. There is a picnic area for groups that just want to enjoy the view and explore nearby. Or you can take your choice of 16 walking trails along West Head Road that vary from easy to challenging. Some are a short 20 minutes bushwalk and others can take you the whole day.

West Head, Ku-ring-gai National Park, Seafarrwide
West Head - credit: Seafarrwide


I really enjoy a day out hiking through the bush discovering the natural beauty that is our beautiful Australia. I work inside an open plan office with no windows, dealing with challenging people and to me, walking in the great outdoors is my healing process.

The Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is the perfect area to escape to. This National Park is the traditional country of the Guringai people and its easy to see why it was such a treasured land. The area has rich soil, sandstone, beautiful native plants (over 900 plant species have been recorded) wildflowers and birdlife.

West Head, Ku-ring-gai National Park, Seafarrwide
West Head - credit: Seafarrwide


When you reach the high points of the walking trails in West Head, you can enjoy magnificent ocean views along Pittwater, up the Hawkesbury River and over to Brisbane Waters. In the distance, you can see Bouddhdi National Parks on the Central Coast and depending on where you are, also the picturesque point of Palm Beach.

West Head, Ku-ring-gai National Park, Seafarrwide
West Head - credit: Seafarrwide


West Head Lookout, Ku-ring-gai National Park, Seafarrwide
West Head Lookout - credit: Seafarrwide


The day I decided to visit we reached the West Head Lookout just after 3pm. The views are breathtaking.

West Head Lookout, Ku-ring-gai National Park, Seafarrwide
Palm Beach Point - image credit: Seafarrwide


As we watched lone Yachts bracing the breeze, it made us dream of owning our own boat one day. How idyllic it would be to be able to anchor in a sunny protected bay and soak up the last few afternoon rays of sunset. One can dream!

West Head Lookout, Ku-rin-gai National Park, Seafarrwide
West Head Lookout - credit: Seafarrwide


After taking several photos, we decided it would be best to do the West Head Beach walking trail from the Lookout area.

West Head Lookout, Ku-ring-gai National Park, Seafarrwide
West Head Lookout - credit: Seafarrwide


This track is approx. 750 metres return and takes around 40 minutes. The entrance starts easy enough weaving a narrow path down past a rock ledge viewpoint and further past high rock walls and bushland.

West Head Beach Walking Trail, Seafarrwide
West Head Beach Walking Trail




Soon a series of steps begin, timber has been laid into the pathway as a guide. Eventually, you will cross a small freshwater creek stream which cascades over the boulders into a beautiful waterfall.





The path continues down some timber stairs and around further along the valley. You will start to glimpse the sea through the trees high above the beach.

West Head Beach Walking Trail, Seafarrwide
West Head - credit: Seafarrwide


Here expect the path to narrow even further with more steps that begin to decline steeply.

West Head Beach Walking Trail, Seafarrwide
West Head Beach Walking Trail - credit: Seafarrwide


West Head Beach Walking Trail, Seafarrwide
West Head Beach Walking Trail - credit: Seafarrwide


It is all worth it when you finally reach the beach. The clean stretch of sand and impressive rock boulders piled up to make this a pretty beach. The view, of course, is outstanding, stretching out over the vast ocean and across to the Palm Beach Headland.

West Head Beach, Seafarrwide
West Head Beach - credit: Seafarrwide


Now I suggest before you embark on this walk, ensure you have water and maybe some snacks. If the weather is warm, ideally you would bring your swimmers, hat, sunscreen and light quick-drying towel.

West Head Beach, Seafarrwide
image credit - Seafarrwide


The walk back up is challenging. I walk every day with my dog but believe me, the first stretch of steps and path up to the waterfall area is steep. I guarantee the hike back up will make even a younger seemingly fit person puff for air. Expect that your knees and thighs might feel a slight burn from the exertion.

Of course, you can stop and sit on a rock for a rest along the way, which is what I had to do. It was really exhilarating to achieve the walk. After seeing the beauty in the area, I am now determined to revisit West Head earlier in the day and try the longer walking trails.

West Head Beach, Seafarrwide
image credit - Seafarrwide


Important information:

If you are entering the park by car for the day, you will need to pay a day entry fee of $12. I also suggest asking for a walking trail map which will give you all the information you require so you can find and decide on what trails to take. If you decide you would go back again and again, then I would suggest buying a Multi Parks pass $65 (this option includes entry to all NSW National Parks except Kosciuszko National Park). See all the options on the NSW National Parks and Wildlife app or website
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Why? Scenic walking trail, lookout and beaches
When: Anytime of year
Where: West Head, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park - West Head Road
Cost: $12 for the day - car entry fee
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