South Lawson Waterfall Circuit Walk

Last updated: March 27, 2024

The South Lawson Circuit Walk is a scenic bushwalk that takes in four small but pretty waterfalls in the southern part of Lawson, a quiet town located 14 km east of Katoomba in the Blue Mountains.

It’s also one of the few dog-friendly walks in the Blue Mountains where your furry friend is more than welcome to join and enjoy this exciting hike.

In this article, we will share the highlights of this enjoyable walk, including pictures and how best to get there.

South Lawson Waterfall Circuit Walk
Distance: 2.5 km (loop)
Duration: 1.5 hours
Grade: Easy / moderate (steep sections)
Dogs: On a lead
Subscribe to our newsletter and receive Sydney and NSW related tips and ideas straight to your mailbox!

How to Get There

There are two starting points for the South Lawson Waterfall Circuit Walk, both on Honour Avenue and both with car parks, as indicated in the map below.

The primary starting point of the circuit walk is less than 1 km south of the train station (see map location). If that car park is full, park somewhere on the side of the road, or try the second car park further south.

The train station is within walking distance of the walk as well, so using public transport is an excellent alternative to travelling by car.

Also note that if you’re visiting with your dog, the circuit walk runs past the former Lawson golf course, which now functions as a large dog park. Visit the council website for more details.


Below is a map of the South Lawson Waterfall Circuit, including the following four waterfalls:

  1. Adelina Falls
  2. Junction Falls
  3. Federal Falls
  4. Cataract Falls

Map of the South Lawson waterfall circuit walk

South Lawson Waterfall Circuit Track Notes

Even though the South Lawson Waterfall Circuit Walk has been around for over a century, it is usually pretty quiet, as it’s not a popular tourist walk.

It’s a refreshing bushwalk with a somewhat authentic atmosphere. The best time to do this walk is after a period of rainfall when the waterfalls are the most impressive. Be mindful though that the track can get a bit muddy, so it’s best to wear proper hiking shoes.

The Start

The start of the circuit walk is sign-posted at the corner of Honour Ave and Livingstone Street.

The little map that you can find at the starting point is quite helpful as it gives you a good sense of where the waterfalls are located.

Start of the South Lawson Circuit Walk
Start of the South Lawson Circuit Walk

Although it’s a circuit walk, there are a few intersections along the way where things can get a bit confusing, so it’s a good idea to have a closer look at the map before you start the walk.

The first intersection comes up around five minutes into the walk. To visit the dog park, turn right at that intersection. Otherwise, keep going straight!

The Waterfalls

The first waterfall, Adelina Falls, is not too far away from that intersection.

Adelina Falls in South Lawson
Adelina Falls

After Adelina Falls, there are three more waterfalls to be discovered along this pleasant bushwalking trail: Junction Falls, Federal Falls and Cataract Falls.

They are not very big or overwhelming by any means, but they are beautiful and somewhat unpretentious waterfalls.

Junction Falls in South Lawson
Junction Falls

All of these waterfalls can be accessed via short side trails off the main track. The signage is pretty good, but it’s still easy to miss them if you don’t pay attention.

Federal Falls, in particular, is easy to miss because the side trail to that waterfall is a bit longer than the others.

Federal Falls
Federal Falls

Cataract Falls is very close to Honour Ave, and once you’ve made it back to the streets, there are two ways to return to the starting point.

The Return

You can either return by walking on the side of Honour Ave, or you can choose to follow the fire trail that runs parallel to the street.

We recommend this second option as it’s a bit more exciting than walking on the side of the road.

Cataract Falls in South Lawson
Cataract Falls

Keen to discover more great hikes? Check out our guide to the best walking tracks in the Blue Mountains for a list of ideas.


South Lawson Waterfall Circuit in the Blue Mountains



    • Hi Kelly, there’s lots of street parking close to the start of this walking track. I don’t think there’s public toilets nearby though, so you’d probably need to head into Lawson for that.

    • Hi Joy,

      Yes this is a family friendly walk, and kids will love it too. It’s hard to give an exact age group though, because all children are different. But ultimately, this is a bushwalk with waterfalls and a bit of a climb, so kids will need to be ready for that.

  1. Lovely walk which I did recently during a wet spell as I read your recommendation before. I think it is misleading to say it is easy. It is not an easy walk for everybody. I started the walk first from the north car parking, but the initial descent looked too steep and nothing to hold on, along with the track being slippery because of the rain. So I went to the south car parking and started the walk here and the descent though steep was a lot easier. Steep steps throughout the circuit, you had to be careful not to slip and I was nervous about a jump across two rocks with water gushing in between.

    So wrong to say it is easy. Easy to me is when it is a flat walk and easy for all age groups.

    • Hi Hazel, glad to hear you enjoyed the walk. You are making a fair point, so we’ve adjusted the grade. Thanks for the feedback!

Leave a comment