Last updated: September 26, 2023
Part of the Greater Blue Mountains, Kanangra-Boyd National Park is a remote wilderness area just under 200 km from Sydney.
This beautiful national park is a real treat for those looking for an escape from the city, with various walking trails, lookout points, and waterfalls to explore.
The most popular vantage point in this area is the Kanangra Walls Lookout, with various other highlights nearby to make a day of it, such as Kalang Falls, Dance Floor Cave, and Kanangra Plateau.
In this article, we will talk you through the two most popular walking trails and how best to get there by car.
How to Get There
The car park to visit Kanangra Walls is located at the very end of Kanangra Walls Road in Kanangra-Boyd National Park (see map location).
From the Great Western Highway, turn into Jenolan Caves Road in Hartley. Keep driving on this road past the Jenolan Caves, and then turn into Kanangra Walls Road.
If Jenolan Caves Road is closed at the Jenolan Caves, you will need to do a detour via Duckmaloi Road (Hampton) and Edith Road (Oberon). From Edith Road, you can eventually turn into Kanangra Walls Road.
It takes between 3 and 4 hours to drive to Kanangra Walls from Sydney, so it makes for a perfect Sydney day trip.
Kanangra Walls Road
Kanangra Walls Road is just under 30 km long and is unsealed. Although this road is in reasonable condition, there are a lot of potholes.
A 4WD vehicle is not strictly required, but drive slowly so that you’ll able to spot large potholes in a timely manner and avoid them. After rainfall, we don’t recommend going there with a 2WD vehicle.
Once you’ve parked your car, head to the big signpost to start hiking. Below, we are going to discuss the following two walking tracks:
- Kalang Falls Walk:
To Kanangra Walls Lookout and Kalang Falls.
- Kanangra Plateau Walk:
To Dance Floor Cave and Kanangra Plateau.
We strongly recommend doing both walking tracks, which can be completed in under three hours. The Kanangra Plateau Walk includes that famous photogenic spot we’ve all seen many times on social media.
Kalang Falls Walk
The first walk is the 1.5 km return walking trail to Kanangra Walls Lookout and Kalang Falls. It’s a fairly short walk, but the last section between the lookout and the waterfall is steep.
The path is well-maintained, easy to follow, and family-friendly. Bring decent hiking shoes and a water bottle for your comfort and safety.
Here is a map with the highlights:
- Kanangra Walls Lookout
- Kalang Falls
|Kalang Falls Walk:|
|Distance:||1.5 km (return)|
|Grade:||Moderate (steep sections)|
1. Kanangra Walls Lookout
The first 500 metres of the walking trail from the car park to Kanangra Walls Lookout is on a flat path through a pleasant landscape of heath vegetation and low trees.
At the junction with the Plateau Walk, keep going straight until you see the Kanangra Walls Lookout appearing on your right at the signpost.
The far-stretching views from Kanangra Walls Lookout are quite spectacular, with countless rolling mountain tops and cliffs right in front of you.
The lookout is unfenced, so if you have small kids with you, keep them close. It’s quite a big lookout, so there is more than enough space for groups of people to move around.
Despite the name, the Kanangra Walls Lookout is not the main viewing point in this area, but more on that later.
Once you’ve finished admiring the views, it’s time to head down the stairs to visit the very pretty Kalang Falls, also referred to as Kanangra Creek Waterfall.
2. Kalang Falls
The descent to Kalang Falls is very steep, but it’s only short and the track is well-maintained and reasonably stable and safe.
At the end of the walking trail is a well-sized viewing platform with views of the waterfall and the creek.
But for the best views of the water spectacle, make your way onto the rocks from behind the platform, and simply walk over to the waterfall. If weather permits, you could even go for a little swim!
Once you’ve finished exploring Kalang Falls, it’s time to head back up the stairs and either walk back to the car park or do the second walking trail to Kanangra Plateau.
If you’re concerned about going back up the stairs, it can be done in under ten minutes, so it’s not as hard as it looks.
Kanangra Plateau Walk
The second walk (that we strongly recommend doing) is the walk to Dance Floor Cave and Kanangra Plateau. This walk includes the photogenic spot that this area is so famous for.
While not as steep as the first walk, there are some steep sections that need to be negotiated. Also note that the Plateau Walk is actually much longer than we’re describing here, so you have the opportunity to continue hiking for as long as you wish.
Here is a map with the highlights:
- Dance Floor Cave
- Kanangra Plateau
|Kanangra Plateau Walk:|
|Distance:||3 km (return)|
|Grade:||Moderate (steep sections)|
1. Dance Floor Cave
To start this walking trail, find the junction with the Plateau Walk which is only moments away from the car park.
From that junction, the track quickly descends via well-maintained staircases. It’s quite steep, but it’s only a short section. Luckily, the views on the left of the path are very pretty.
After a few hundred metres through bushland, the track arrives at a junction with a detour to the Dance Floor Cave.
The Dance Floor Cave is a large rock overhang that, in the late 19th century, was used as the location for travellers and settlers to meet and socialise. The cave was so popular that a wooden dance platform was installed.
The dance floor has vanished but the cave is still being used as a camping shelter for bushwalkers.
Once you’ve finished exploring this fascinating cave, retrace your steps to the main walking track to continue to Kanangra Plateau.
2. Kanangra Plateau
After a few more staircases, the trail soon flattens out and opens up onto a beautiful plateau.
Once you’re hiking on that plateau, the views are absolutely amazing. There are various side trails that allow you to get closer to the cliff edge and really take in the views.
Be careful, though, as the winds on the plateau can be quite strong, so you wouldn’t want to be too close to the cliff edges.
As the path continues eastbound, you will soon see a large, pointy rock jutting out from the cliff edge. That’s the popular photo spot that most people will be familiar with.
The rock may look narrow, and perhaps a bit scary, but it’s big enough for people to stand on. So if you want a photo taken of you while standing on that rock, go for it!
As mentioned, the Plateau Walk continues past this spot, so if you do have some time and energy left, there’s no reason not to hike any further.
About 500 metres further into the walk, the views back to the Kanangra Walls Lookout are spectacular enough to make the effort worthwhile. After heavy rainfall, you may even see some waterfalls dropping into the valley from the cliffs on the opposite side.
Here is a short video of the views:
If you’d like to spend more than one day in the Kanangra Walls area, and perhaps catch a sunrise or sunset, camping might be a good idea. The Boyd River Campground, on Kanangra Walls Road, is home to 10 campsites and has basic facilities. Bookings are required.