Best Hikes Brisbane Water National Park For Every Fitness Level

Brisbane Water National Park is one of the most versatile national parks Central Coast has to offer. Featuring mountains, wild swimming, waterfalls, and some of the best views the east coast of Australia has to offer. Located only an hour away from Sydney this national park is the perfect place for a day trip from Sydney, to chase waterfalls with the family, or go for a day hike. In this article, we will be discussing the best hikes Brisbane Waters National Park has to offer.

At only 1 hour north of Sydney or 1 hour north of Newcastle the Central Coast is the perfect day trip idea. Whether you’re looking for an easy hike on the Central Coast, a unique experience, a family-friendly hike, or a hidden lookout the Brisbane Water National Park is the place to find it! The Central Coast bushwalks are some of the most unique on the east coast of NSW and the rugged sandstone cliffs make for some of the most beautiful backdrops in Australia and are a photographer’s dream.

These Central Coast hikes each have something unique to offer adventurous souls and you will find something in the article for every fitness level including some of the best family-friendly hikes Central Coast has to offer.

Firstly we will be looking at family-friendly hikes on the Central Coast.

Somersby falls

Somersby Falls

This 3 tier waterfall attracts visitors on day trips from Sydney frequently. This picturesque location is a hit with families, photographers, and casual hikers alike. Somersby Falls is easily the most popular waterfall on the Central Coast due to the vast size and beauty of the waterfall system. The steep staircase makes for a challenge, however, at only 600m total the falls are accessible by those at most fitness levels.

Just before starting this hike, you’ll find Somersby Falls picnic area which features accessible toilets, picnic tables, and also an accessible viewing area of the falls. The beauty of this is you don’t need to hike to see the best waterfall on the Central Coast.

Egyptian Hieroglyphs

The Kariong Glyphs

This hike is bound to be a hit with the kids! Imagine hiking your way through the bush and rock scrambling to find Egyptian Hieroglyphs in the middle of NSW. It almost sounds like something out of Indiana Jones. The kids will be in awe of the carvings and the big kids will be equally intrigued. How did they get here? If you’d like more info on the Gosford glyphs make sure you check out this post about it!

Mooney Mooney Aboriginal Area

brisbane waters national park hikes
Indigenous Engravings

Located just off the Pacific Highway you’ll find this protected area where you can view genuine indigenous engravings. These engravings feature men, kangaroos & fish. This area is easy to find and offers some insight into the traditional owners of the land. Remember to treat this area with respect and avoid touching/standing on the engravings.

These ancient aboriginal engravings hold great links to the past for local indigenous communities and because of this, they hold cultural significance and need to be treated with respect. When visiting this area it is important to keep the leave no trace principles in mind.


Kariong Brook Falls

secret spot central coast
Kariong Brook Falls

This waterfall is located deep in the Brisbane Waters National Park and is one of the best-hidden gems Central Coast has to offer. Here you can experience one of the more unique things to do on the Central Coast which is wild swimming. This is a popular wild swimming location. The waterfall cascades down into a deep pool where you can swim and spend your day. If you’d like to find this spot, check out this article for the instructions.

Woy Woy Infinity Pool

hidden gem central coast
Woy Woy Infinity Pool

The Woy Woy Infinity pool recently went viral. The pool is surrounded by rugged bush and offers one of the most unique things to do on the Central Coast. The pool is chilly but offers an insta-worthy moment where you get to take in all the beauty of the National Park. The hike to this hidden gem is relatively easy until you need to descend to the pool. This part of the hike is hard and appropriate footwear needs to be worn to safely make it to the pool. Please keep in mind that this is a remote location and phone reception will be patchy at best. Do not attempt to find this location without adequate preparation.


girrakool waterfall in brisbane waters national park

Up near Somersby, you’ll find the Girrakool loop which offers beautiful views of waterfalls, and indigenous engravings. This easy walk on the Central Coast is one of the more popular walks, but this doesn’t diminish its beauty of it. This walk is best taken during late winter/early spring when the wildflowers are in bloom and you can experience the true beauty of the area.

Just off from this hike, you’ll also find the Girrakool picnic area which features a toilet block, picnic table, and BBQ facilities. Remember to pack a picnic when heading out on this hike and make a day out of it with the whole family!

Piles Creep Loop

Piles creek features a large swing bridge and it one of the great walks in the area

Located just next to the Girrakool loop is a slightly more adventurous hike. The Piles Creek loop dons waterfalls, rugged terrain, gullies, and giant caves. But most famously this hike features a large swing bridge. This is part of the great north walk and is definitely one of the best hikes the Central Coast has to offer. Whilst this hike won’t be accessible for young kids, it will be classed as a family-friendly hike, although time should be taken as this is a short but hard hike.


Warrah Lookout

girl on the edge of warrah lookout in patonga
Warrah Lookout

One of the most popular lookouts in Brisbane Waters National Park is Warrah Lookout. Located near Patonga this lookout offers pristine views of the Hawkesbury River, Sydney’s northern beaches, and lion island. This lookout offers panoramic views which are unparalleled on the Central Coast. If you’d like more info on this lookout and directions we’re already written an entire post about it!

Spion Kop

secret lookout central coast nsw
Spion Kop Lookout

This lookout is for adventurous hikers, but big risks reap big rewards. This lookout has been dubbed (by us) the best lookout on the Central Coast! This hidden gem is lightly trafficked and offers some of the best views. We already have a post about this spot and how to find it so make sure you check it out for more info!

Hopefully, this has offered you some insight into Brisbane Waters National Park, and you can find some of the hidden gems Central Coast has. There is so much more to the Brisbane Waters area than this article can offer but this shows you some insight into how versatile the area is. This area is made for exploring and we just ask that if you choose to explore that you treat the land and area with respect.

If you’d like some tips on eco-friendly hiking and camping make sure you check out this post for some tips.


Sign up for our newsletter and stay up to date


Leave a Comment