Narrow Neck to Castle Head Lookout (Beautiful Views)

Last updated: February 26, 2024

The walk from Narrow Neck to Castle Head is a short bush trail that leads to a beautiful lookout with panoramic district views towards Mount Solitary.

This reasonably easy 4.5 km return walk starts from the Narrow Neck Plateau trail, which extends from Glenraphael Drive in the Katoomba area of the Blue Mountains.

Narrow Neck to Castle Head Lookout
Distance: 4.5 km (return)
Time: 2 hours
Grade: Easy / moderate (mildly steep sections)
Dogs: Not allowed

Short video of the Castle Head Lookout:

How to Get There

Narrow Neck and Castle Head are located in the Katoomba area of the Blue Mountains, not too far away from Scenic World and Echo Point.

To get there, turn into Glenraphael Drive from Scenic Drive, and stay on this road until it arrives at a gate with a car park (see map location).

Narrow Neck Fire Trail gate
Narrow Neck Fire Trail gate

Note that this car park is located beyond the car park for the Golden Stairs and the walking track to Ruined Castle.

Glenraphael Drive is an unsealed road but is in good condition. The road is manageable by 2WD vehicles, but a 4WD vehicle is recommended after rainfall.

Map

Below is a map of the walking track starting from the car parking area.

A: Narrow Neck Fire Trail car park
B: Castle Head Lookout

Map of the Narrow Neck to Castle Head Lookout walking track

About the Narrow Neck Plateau

The Narrow Neck Plateau, also known as the Narrow Neck Peninsula, is a plateau southwest of Katoomba that divides the Megalong Valley and the Jamison Valley.

Glenraphael Drive runs on top of the Plateau and evolves into the Narrow Neck Plateau Trail, a management trail that leads all the way to the southernmost point of the peninsula.

Glenraphael Drive on the Narrow Neck Plateau
Glenraphael Drive on the Narrow Neck Plateau

This management trail is a popular hiking and cycle trail and offers beautiful views of an area of the Blue Mountains that is not so high-trafficked.

Castle Head is a small headland on the eastern side of the Narrow Neck Plateau, with a scenic lookout facing Mount Solitary and Ruined Castle.

And it’s that scenic lookout we’re going to explore below!

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Castle Head Lookout Track Notes

The track to the Castle Head Lookout is relatively short (4.5 km return from the gate on the road), but there are a few mildly steep sections and various sections with a rough surface to conquer.

But overall, it’s not a challenging walk, and anyone with a reasonable fitness level should not have any issues completing the track.

Start of the Walk

Once you’ve parked your car, make your way to the gate and start hiking southbound on the management trail, the Narrow Neck Plateau Trail.

After approximately 15 minutes, the trail arrives at an intersection with the Castle Head Track, where you need to turn left into the bush.

Start of the Castle Head Track
Start of the Castle Head Track

After a bit of climbing and descending, the track passes an unofficial lookout that offers superb views of the Jamison Valley.

Views to the east from Castle Head
Views to the east from Castle Head

On a clear day, you should be able to identify the Three Sisters and perhaps even the Kings Tableland plateau further east.

Trig Station

Just before the track arrives at the final destination, the Castle Head Lookout, it passes an old trig station, which marks the highest point of the headland.

Castle Head trig station
Castle Head trig station

From this trig station, it’s only a short walk through a section of low-growing vegetation to reach the lookout.

Castle Head Lookout

The views from the lookout are breathtaking, with various landmarks, mountains, and valleys visible on a clear day.

Castle Head Lookout
Castle Head Lookout

Straight ahead, you should be able to identify the Ruined Castle, with the imposing Mount Solitary behind it.

The valley on the left (east) is the Jamison Valley, and the Cedar Creek Valley (west) is located on the opposite side.

Cedar Creek Valley as seen from Narrow Neck
Cedar Creek Valley as seen from Narrow Neck

The Cedar Creek Valley is essentially located between Castle Head and the southern part of the Narrow Neck Peninsula.

On the other side of Narrow Neck is the Megalong Valley, which you can’t actually see from the Castle Head lookout.

Mount Solitary as seen from Castle Head
Mount Solitary as seen from Castle Head

Once you’ve finished admiring the views from Castle Head, retrace your steps to the management trail and the parking area.

More Hiking

If you have time and energy left, you could continue on the Narrow Neck management trail to the peninsula’s southernmost point. This isn’t a hard walk by any means, but with almost 10 km, it is quite long.

You can read more about this Narrow Neck walking trail on the NSW National Parks website.

 
 

Castle Head Lookout in the Blue Mountains

 

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AJ Mens

AJ Mens is a digital publisher based in Sydney, Australia, and the editor-in-chief of Sydney Uncovered and Blue Mountains Uncovered.

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