The Most Amazing Waterfalls & Picnic Spots In & Around Sydney

  • Kids

Just imagine the long, lazy Summer days that could be spent bonding and exploring at a magical waterfall or nature-filled picnic spot in Sydney.

Pile the kids into the car, leave the screens at home, and enjoy all the natural beauty that this city has to offer. Pack some ice-cold drinks, plenty of sunscreen, and set off on an exciting picnic this Summer. Happy adventurin'.

Collins Flat Beach Waterfall

Nestled between North Head and Little Manly Cove, you can only get to this little, secluded hidden gem by foot (or boat). Scenic harbour views and calm waters accompany this small but beautiful waterfall at Collins Flat Beach in Sydney Harbour National Park. You might even spot a passing ferry or a fairy penguin! Not a bad spot for a romantic (sans-kids!) picnic either...

Centennial Parklands

What Eastern-suburbs based family doesn't have memories of feeding ducks at the duck pond, riding bikes around the cycle tracks or sitting down to a picnic in these gorgeous, sprawling parklands? The good thing about Centennial Parklands is that there are just so many great shady spots to set down the picnic blanket around its perimeter. There are no waterfalls, however, the beautiful ponds with wandering geese and graceful swans are a pretty sight. There are multiple playgrounds and cafes, and you can even pre-order picnic hampers from the Centennial Homestead to make it a truly seamless experience. 

Upper Gledhill Falls

Just a 5-minute walk from McCarrs Creek Road, Ku-ring-gai Chase is Upper Gledhill Falls - a tall waterfall surrounded by lush greenery, feeding into an enchanted-looking 10-metre wide pool ideal for swimming. The stream is larger after rainfall, but if not, just enjoy the gentle splashes. You can even hop on the rope swing into the water if you're feeling brave! 

via Mitchell Goosen/flickr

Wendy Whiteley's Secret Garden

If fairies exist, we're sure this is you'd find them. After the death of her ex-husband, the famous artist Brett Whiteley, Wendy Whiteley transformed a weed-ridden wasteland into this little piece of magic that has become Wendy Whiteley's Secret Garden. She intended for it to be enjoyed by the community, and after a 30-year lease granted to the council by the state government, her legacy lives on. You can find this enchanting picnic spot at the top of a set of stairs in the gorgeous Lavender Bay, with views out over the harbour.

via Wendy's Secret Garden

Jump Rock, Macquarie Pass

Not to be confused with Manly’s Jump Rock, this one can be found after a 45-minute walk after parking at the base of Macquarie Pass. There are ropes and various rock climbing grips installed to help you as you clamber across the rocks (probably ideal for older families). The waterfall flows into a deep swimming pool where people love to jump into from the various ledge heights (from 3-10 metres) surrounding the pool.

via Pioneer Walks

Australian Botanic Gardens, Mount Annan

As well as the awesome nearby playground with a flying fox, the Mount Annan Botanic Gardens are perfect for a picnic and exploring nature. After a yummy packed lunch, you can feed ducks in the lake, and follow the meandering paths throughout this expansive green space, playing eye spy to hunt for sunbathing lizards. 

Lizard Log, Western Sydney Parklands

The awesome Lizard Log Nature Playground isn't the only drawcard for families at this popular picnic spot in Sydney's west. It also boasts ten purpose-built coal barbecuing stations, 24 electric barbeques, scenic walking and cycling tracks, a pavilion and amphitheatre, toilet facilities and 20 picnic shelters. Mickey's Ice Cream Van is also known to frequent Lizard Log on weekends and school holidays, the perfect post-picnic treat.

via Western Sydney Parklands

Glebe Foreshore Parks

Take a walk around the Glebe Foreshore and pick one of the four dazzling waterside parks along the way for a picturesque family picnic. Jubilee, Bicentennial, Federal & Blackwattle Bay parks occupy more than 17 hectares of open grasslands, sports fields, adventure playgrounds, wetlands and off-leash areas. The parks have barbecue and picnic areas and public toilets and bubblers.

via Travel + Leisure

Winifred Falls, Royal National Park

After the 4 km walk along the Winifred Falls Fire Trail, you will relish a well-earned swim in the pool beneath the namesake waterfall. Winifred Falls is a striking waterfall in secluded, peaceful surrounds off the beaten track -perfect for a rustic picnic, soaking up the sun and making a splash in the creek.

Winifred Falls

Kingfisher Pool, Heathcote National Park

This Sutherland picnic spot near Kingfisher Pool campground in Heathcote National Park has a clear freshwater stream surrounded by fragrant native flora. You can swim, follow the bushwalking trails, or try some birdwatching.. The picnic area is an idyllic pitstop as you explore the national park.

Kingfisher Pool Picnic Area

More Fun By The Water

Best Harbour Beaches
Best Rockpools For Kids
Best Playgrounds By The Water

Have you signed up to our newsletter? Join ellaslist to get the best family and kid-friendly events, venues, classes and things to do NEAR YOU!