If you’d love to find a local bushwalk that’s perfect for families, look no further! The track between Wyrrabalong and Crackneck Lookouts offers coastal walking at its finest. Families can stroll along the sandy path, admire the beautiful native plants and wildflowers, and maybe even spot a whale out to sea! This track is short enough for little legs to manage, and still challenging enough to give you some exercise.
The walk is in Wyrrabalong National Park, and runs along a section of the clifftops between Bateau Bay and Forresters Beach. It forms part of the popular Coastal Track (a 6km return trail from Wyrrabalong Lookout down to Bateau Bay Beach).
There’s so much to look at – it really is a beautiful walk. You’ll see grass trees and lots of banksia, and in Spring the wildflowers really put on a show. Keep the kids busy spotting lizards and kookaburras, and take advantage of the wider sections of track to pause with them and enjoy the ocean views. You’ll find whales cruising past between May and November, so don’t forget to pack your binoculars!
The track is sandy and easy to walk, although about halfway along there’s a large metal staircase (it’ll get your heart rate up on the way back!). And at the end there’s some steep sandstone steps leading up to Wyrrabalong Lookout. Stop for a snack at the picnic table, and take some time to drink in the views. We’ve spotted a seal playing in the waves below here, and it’s a great vantage point for more whale watching too. If you head a little further around the trail you will find a concrete viewing platform with stunning views across Terrigal.
To head home, walk back along the track. If you’re in luck you might find a coffee van waiting at Crackneck Lookout – grab a cuppa and enjoy the views one last time before heading home.
Crackneck Lookout to Wyrrabalong Lookout, Wyrrabalong National Park
How to get there: Park at Crackneck Lookout. The trail starts on the southern side of the carpark. Head down the trail a short distance and you’ll find a gorgeous old gumtree on the left, with branches just the right height for kids to climb. Soon after, the path narrows and meanders through picturesque bushland, occasionally opening up to the coast on the left.
Facilities: There are picnic tables at Crackneck and Wyrrabalong Lookouts. There are no bathrooms, but the toilets at Bateau Bay Beach are only a short drive away.
Accessibility: This track is well suited to kids aged 4 and up. It’s not suitable for strollers (too many stairs!).
Distance: The track is 3km return.
Location: Northern end: Hilltop Street, Bateau Bay. Follow the street to the end to find the carpark at Crackneck Lookout.
Southern end: Cromarty Hill Road, Forresters Beach. There is a small carpark on the right side of the hill heading up to the lookout. Park here and walk uphill past the communications tower to start the trail.
You can start at either end – we began at Crackneck Lookout and walked south towards Wyrrabalong Lookout, but you can easily go the other way too.
For more information, visit the NSW National Parks website.
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Written By: ALISON MCCANN
Alison is a busy local mum who enjoys exploring the Coast’s spectacular natural spaces. You’ll often find her out on a bush trail with her husband and three kids. With a background in media production, communication and marketing, she loves sharing stories about the wonderful region we get to call home.