KATOOMBA: THE AUSTRALIAN TRAVELLER GUIDE
Just west of Sydney, the spectacular scenery of The Blue Mountains spans a large area and includes more than enough lookouts. However the real gem of the Mountains lies in the lively town of Katoomba, home to the Three Sisters. Although it is a popular tourist destination, the visitors-to-residents ratio hasn’t disturbed the friendly community atmosphere in the town. Travellers are invited to stay and indulge in the laid back lifestyle of local mountain-dwellers.
What to do
The main reason people travel to Katoomba – besides the refreshing gulp of fresh air, is to visit legendary Echo Point.
You’re guaranteed to see the best ofJamiesonValleyon the various viewing platforms but be warned this area is a major tourist attraction, so try to get there a bit earlier in order to avoid the crowds. The most exciting feature ofJamiesonValleyof course, is The Three Sisters. At night the geological giants are submerged in floodlights, highlighting the natural beauty of the valley.
If you’re really keen, you can also bushwalk along the many different tracks in the valley to soak up the awesome scenery.
Grab a bite to eat at one of the fine restaurants along the main road, where you can also stop and admire the talent of local artists and buskers.
Where to stay
Katoomba is the kind of place that’ll make you want to curl up with a good book and stay for the weekend. Rather than play tourist in the area, get a feel for what it’s like to be a local. Right at the top ofKatoomba Street, The Carrington Hotel is one of the finest hotels in the region. Even if you aren’t planning on sleeping there, it’s worth visiting for a drink or two.
For those light on spare change, the Sky Rider Motor Inn is a reasonably priced and well-reviewed alternative. Prices generally start at about $90.
Couples however, may be tempted by something a little more intimate, such as Edgelinks Country House – one of many luxury bed and breakfasts in the area. Expect panoramic views and European touches with old world charm.
When to travel
The climate of the Blue Mountains is more temperate than the Sydney region. The winter months bring frost and wind, though the summer months have been known to bring rain. Make sure you rug up!
The best way to see Katoomba is by car. Drive up to the mountains and stop along the way- checking out waterfalls, lookouts and the quaint towns that lead to The Three Sisters.
Trains leave fromSydney’s Central Station hourly and buses and taxis run through the area.
For more information about Katoomba, go to www.katoomba-nsw.com
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