11 August 2019

Canberra Day Trips: Carrington Falls

| Canberra Day Trips
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Breathtaking scenery at Carrington Falls. Photo: Lisa Martin.

Have you been to Carrington Falls in the Southern Highlands? The location is guaranteed to wow you, with three lookouts with breathtaking views, walking tracks, picnic and barbecue facilities and gorgeous cascades, waterholes and rock pools where the Kangaroo River plunges to the gully below.

Carrington Falls is situated where the Kangaroo River crosses the Budderoo Plateau to descend to the gorgeous Kangaroo Valley. Around 7km from the town of Robertson, the falls start at an elevation of almost 550m and drop between 130–160 metres to the valley floor.

Bushfires damaged the facilities near the top of the waterfall in 2016, but these were reopened in January 2019 and the area is once again welcoming visitors.

Why you’ll love it

There’s plenty of choice when it comes to exploring the falls. The picnic area, which has picnic and barbecue facilities, is the starting point for the various walking tracks that will take you to the lookouts that face the magnificent falls.

I think this is one of the hidden gems of the Kangaroo Valley. Each time I’ve gone here, there’s only a handful of people here and after posting pictures on Facebook of this road trip, I always get asked by a lot of people how to get there. – Lisa Martin, via RiotACT.

The walk to Izzards Lookout track is short and you’ll be rewarded with views of the lush forest. If you’re up for something more energetic, head to Nellies Glen picnic area where you can choose from Warris Chair lookout track or Missingham lookout track for views over Carrington Falls Gorge. Jamberoo Lookout offers breathtaking views over Kiama and Lake Illawarra.

And if you prefer something less strenuous? Pack a picnic or barbecue lunch, find a shady spot and listen to the mighty falls crash around you while you rest, read, or soak up the sights and sounds of nature.

Or if you’d prefer to let someone else do the cooking, relax at the Lyrebird Cafe with a bite to eat or a cool refreshment. It’s beside the Minnamurra Rainforest Centre in Budderoo National Park.

Getting there

Carrington Falls is on Jamberoo Mountain Road, in Budderoo National Park.

From Canberra, head towards Sydney via the Federal and Hume Highways. Take the Illawarra Highway exit to Wollongong. You’ll then pass Moss Vale and Robertson, before coming to the turnoff to Jamberoo Mountain Road on the right near the Robertson Pie Shop. Once you’re on Jamberoo Mountain Road, there will be signs to Carrington Falls on your right.

When to go

The park’s waterfalls are at their best towards the end of summer and into early autumn when there’s more rain about, and don’t let a bit of wet weather put you off because the rainforest comes alive in the rain.

In late winter and spring, the wildflowers pop up, and in summer the rainforest canopy keeps the air cooler than in the harsh summer sun.

Key details

  • Duration: 2 ¼ hours
  • Distance from Canberra: Just under 200km
  • Recommended for anyone keen to enjoy panoramic lookouts, paddling in waterfalls, views, a quiet place to take in the serenity, explore rainforests or just appreciate all that pristine river environments have to offer

Do you know of any other waterfalls in the region that Canberra Day Trips should visit? Let us know below.

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