Southern Highlands nature
The Southern Highlands region of NSW offers travellers stunning experiences in nature from walks to waterfalls through pristine national park wildernesses to picnics in grand formal gardens. Visit in autumn for vibrant foliage or spring when thousands of tulips burst into bloom.
Visit Fitzroy Falls in the Morton National Park, where the water drops more than 80 metres. A short wheelchair-accessible boardwalk connects the Fitzroy Falls Visitor Centre to views of the falls. Follow the East Rim and West Rim walking tracks along the escarpment to more lookouts.
A short drive east is Belmore Falls, another fantastic waterfall. Near Robertson you’ll find the Macquarie Pass National Park, where a road through rainforest links the highlands and the South Coast. Be sure to keep an eye out for wallabies, wombats, kangaroos and birdlife.
Near Mittagong, the Box Vale Mine walking track follows an old railway line through a tunnel to views of the Nattai Gorge. For bird lovers, the Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve in Moss Vale is perfect for watching waterbirds.
A short drive south is Bundanoon, a popular destination for bushwalking and cycling in the northern expanse of the Morton National Park. You might want to extend your visit beyond the end of the day; the starry night skies here are just as memorable.
The Southern Highlands is home to some of Australia’s most beautiful private gardens. Many of the region’s historic country manors are surrounded by immaculately landscaped grounds inspired by traditional English gardens. Visit Harpers Mansion, Retford Park, Hopewood House and Peppers Manor House.
The landscaped gardens at Red Cow Farm in Sutton Forest are ideal for gentle walks. The new Southern Highlands Botanic Gardens has a mix of exotic and native species. In Bowral, the annual Tulip Time Festival celebrates the arrival of spring and is held in the pretty Corbett Gardens.