Box Head Lookout in Bouddi National Park

Last updated: May 25, 2024

The Box Head Track in Bouddi National Park is a short trail through serene bushland scenery, leading to a beautiful lookout with panoramic views.

The Box Head Lookout offers unique views of the South Pacific Ocean, Broken Bay, Lion Island, the Hawkesbury River, and the Barrenjoey Headland.

There is an option to extend this walk by doing a short detour to beautiful Lobster Beach via the Flannel Flower walking track.

Box Head Track
Distance: 3.2 km (return)
Duration: 1.5 hours (including stops)
Grade: Easy (sections with rough surface)
Dogs: Not allowed

How to Get There

Located within Bouddi National Park on the Central Coast, Box Head is a large headland that marks the northern entry point to Broken Bay and the Hawkesbury River.

It was named that way because the headland actually looks like a giant box when viewed from the ocean.

Box Head
Box Head

Driving to Box Head from Sydney is a bit of a hassle, as you will need to go north via Gosford and then south towards the southern tip of the Bouddi National Park peninsula. But this part of the Central Coast is quite scenic, which makes the drive more enjoyable.

To get to the starting point of the Box Head walking track, turn into Hawke Head Drive in Hardys Bay. Follow this road until you reach a small car park at a large signpost. Here is link to the exact map location.

Be mindful that the last stretch of Hawk Head Drive is unsealed and has a few challenges, but it is manageable with a 2WD car.

Map and route of the Box Head track

Box Head Walking Track

The 3.2 km return walking trail to the Box Head Lookout is fairly easy and straightforward, but we recommend wearing decent hiking shoes.

Start of the Box Head Walk
Start of the Box Head Walk

From the car park, follow the walking trail past the Bouddi National Park Tallow Beach signpost and walk around the gate further up the trail.

Track to the Box Head Lookout
Track to the Box Head Lookout

The track arrives at an intersection where you can turn right to visit Lobster Beach (see further below) or turn left to continue to the Box Head Lookout.

This intersection is followed by another intersection for Tallow Beach and Box Head. Veer right at this point and follow the track until it reaches a rocky area.

Scenic views from Box Head
Scenic views from Box Head

From that point on, the trail continues through a landscape of bushland and heath vegetation, until it reaches the edge of the cliff leading to the lookout.

As you get closer to the Box Head Lookout, the views of Tallow Beach, Little Tallow Beach and Maitland Bay on the left are amazing.

Box Head Lookout

The trail ultimately ends right at the tip of Box Head, where the lookout offers breathtaking views of Broken Bay, the Barrenjoey Headland, and Lion Island.

Box Head Lookout in Bouddi National Park
Grab a seat and soak in the views

There is a bench at the lookout where you can have a rest while soaking in the beautiful surroundings and views.

Lion Island as seen from Box Head
Lion Island as seen from Box Head

Once you’ve finished absorbing the views and exploring the headland, retrace your steps to the car parking area via the same route.

Things to Do Nearby

If you have extra time to spare, we strongly recommend exploring the area a bit further, as there is so much to discover.

1. Lobster Beach via Flannel Flower Walking Track

If the weather is nice, visit Lobster Beach via the Flannel Flower walking track. The start of this 1.5 km (one-way) walk is at the intersection close to the Box Head car park.

This easy bushwalking trail through a forest of red gum trees offers great views of Broken Bay and the beaches nearby.

Lobster Beach
Visit Lobster Beach

Lobster Beach is a beautiful 300m secluded strip of sand facing Brisbane Water with Umina Beach and Pearl Beach on the other side of the bay.

Alternatively, you can drive to High View Road in Pretty Beach (accessible via Hardys Bay) and park your car close at the “Lobster Beach” signpost.

From there, it’s a pleasant 15-minute walk to the beach up and down a well-maintained walking path through bushland.

2. Hardys Bay

While there are various nice places to visit nearby, Hardys Bay, in particular, is an excellent spot for breakfast or lunch.

Hardys Bay
Have lunch in Hardys Bay

Facing Brisbane Water, Hardys Bay is home to a few cafes and bistros where you can enjoy a nice meal or otherwise just a warm coffee or a refreshing cold drink.

 

Box Head Lookout in Bouddi National Park

 
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