Barrenjoey Headland is spellbinding. It is a relatively small peninsula with the vast stretch of Pacific Ocean to the east, the gateway to the Hawkesbury River to the north and gorgeous still waters of Pittwater to the west. If you had to pick one of these locations for a great, short bushwalk with whale watching as an added bonus, you’d pick Barrenjoey. The walk up the Smugglers Track to the lighthouse, with views down over Palm Beach and Pittwater is sensational, and the view from the top is vast.
At the far, northern end of the car park, on the left, is a signed walking track to Barrenjoey Headland. Follow the signs for an additional 1.4km to the top of the headland. There are two routes to the top, the more genteel Barrenjoey Headland Access trail or the Smugglers Track.
Take the Smugglers Track for the best views and don’t forget to stop and admire them on your way to the top. Follow the walking track past the lighthouse to a small rocky outlook that gives outstanding views over the beach and ocean below.
2.3km return (1.4 miles)
About 30 minutes each way.
Marked track. Some uneven natural stone steps.
The track goes straight up the side of the headland. Steep in sections, some people may find this tough.
Mountains to Climb?
One steep hill.
Mobile (cell phone) reception?
Yes. See details below.
The Boathouse, Palm Beach. 100m from the carpark.
Closest Street Address (for Google Maps): Lot 132 Beach Rd Palm Beach NSW 2108
GPS coordinates: -33.581441, 151.331727
Park in the council Governor Phillip car park (Pittwater Council parking fees apply) or on Barrenjoey Rd.
Catch the L90 bus from Railway Square, Sydney. It’s a long bus trip – about 1.5 hours. Walking distance from public transport: 2km / 25 minutes.
Alight on Beach Road, near Palm Beach Golf Club. Walk along the road north from here keeping the golf club on your left and Governor Phillip Park on your right. Walk for 600m until you pass the golf course and Palm Beach Boathouse on your left, until you reach the car park.