Jenolan Caves is one the great natural spectacles in Australia, the most ancient open caves in the world with arguably the most beautiful limestone formations. Tucked into a remote valley in the southern Blue Mountains National Park, this labyrinth of stalactite-lined chasms carved by pure underground rivers is a must-do extension for any visit to the Blue Mountains.
Visit the caves
After nearly a year of closure due to fire, flood, landslides and COVID-19, Jenolan Caves has just reopened five of its show caves – Temple of Baal, Lucas, Chifley, Imperial and Orient. Due to limited numbers, weekend tours can only be undertaken if they are packaged with accommodation options or dining at Chisholm’s Restaurant. Individual cave tours are available mid-week with limited bookings.
Other guided tours, such as the night-time Legends, Mystery and Ghosts Tour and the Adventure Caving Tour, will hopefully resume as soon as it safe to do so. Meanwhile, other features such as Carlotta Arch Walk, the McKeown’s Valley Track, the Devils Coach House and the Six Foot Track are free to experience.
Commune with wildlife
Spot wildlife such as wallabies and lyrebirds, and keep an eye out for the resident platypus who regular make an appearance in the Blue Lake, accessed via the scenic Jenolan River Track, a gorgeous riverside amble through pristine wilderness.
Getting there and where to stay
Jenolan Caves is a three-hour drive from Sydney along a winding road. Tours to the Caves are available from the Blue Mountains, or you even attempt the three-day walk to the Caves via the Six Foot Track, utilising the services of the Megalong Valley Shuttle.
The historic Jenolan Caves House is one of the icons of the Blue Mountains, built in 1897 in the spacious, gracious Federation style of the time. The historic ambience is heightened by period furniture, creaky floors – and some say a resident ghost or two! You can also book modern motel-style accommodation at the Mountain Lodge.