Hike to Wedding Cake Rock From Bundeena

Last updated: April 18, 2024

Wedding Cake Rock is one of the most iconic landmarks in the Royal National Park. It may be fenced off now, but it is still a unique sight to visit.

A relatively easy coastal walk starting in Bundeena leads to this rock formation, with beautiful views of the ocean and the cliffs to enjoy along the track.

For more of these great hikes nearby, check out our guide to the best walks in Royal National Park.

Bundeena to Wedding Cake Rock
Distance: 7 km (return)
Duration: 2 hours
Grade: Easy / moderate
Dogs: Not allowed
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How to Get There

There are two ways to get to Wedding Cake Rock:

  1. Via the Big Marley Firetrail:
    A bush walking track starting from Bundeena Drive (see map location).
  2. From Beachcomber Avenue in Bundeena:
    A walk that mostly follows the coastline to Wedding Cake Rock.

The second option is what we’re going to discuss in this article.

There is a small car parking area located at the end of Beachcomber Avenue (see map location). The large information board at the car park marks the start of the coastal walking track to the Wedding Cake Rock.

Start of the trail to Wedding Cake Rock
Start of the trail to Wedding Cake Rock

Bundeena to Wedding Cake Rock Track Notes

The hike to Wedding Cake Rock from Bundeena is approximately 3.5 km one way. It’s a fairly easy walk with various boardwalks and clear signage, and it is mostly flat from start to finish.

We are going to describe the walk along the following highlights, landmarks, and milestones:

  1. The Balconies
  2. The Waterrun
  3. Wedding Cake Rock
  4. Marley Head (optional)

Below is a map of the walk with those highlights marked.

Note that the extra bit to Marley Head is optional, but we recommend going there because the views are fantastic.

Map of the Wedding Cake Rock walking track

1. The Balconies

The first section of the walk is an easy fire trail, quickly followed by a left turn heading towards the ocean, following signs for the Royal Coast Track.

The track then soon arrives at the first highlight, The Balconies, via a comfortable, elevated boardwalk through a heath landscape.

The Balconies in Royal National Park
The Balconies

The Balconies is a large open area with various rocky sandstone layers from where you can enjoy panoramic views along the beautiful coastline of the Royal National Park.

Also known as The Terraces, this is a great spot to settle in and watch the whales swim by during their migration season from June to November.

2. The Waterrun

From The Balconies, the main track continues along the coast via various boardwalks and sections over rocky areas before it arrives at the next natural landmark.

The Waterrun is a unique natural rock formation that can be best viewed from an elevated point. It’s a large, flat area with various near-straight lines cut into the rocky surface.

The Waterrun in Royal National Park
The Waterrun

A creek also runs through it before it drops into the ocean, and a set of sandstone steps forms a little bridge over that creek.

Overall, it’s a fantastic spectacle that is worth exploring a bit more. Looking closely, you may even find a heart-shaped marking on the surface.

3. Wedding Cake Rock

From The Waterrun, the walking track continues to the main destination of this adventure: the Wedding Cake Rock.

It wasn’t long ago that visitors could sit on the edge of the rock and have a picture taken of themselves. With the rise of Instagram, for many people, a trip to Wedding Cake Rock wasn’t so much about the hike; it was all about that magic photo.

Wedding Cake Rock
Wedding Cake Rock

Wedding Cake Rock is now completely fenced off, with various warning signs explaining why it has been fenced off and that severe penalties apply to those caught climbing over the fence.

The fence has been established for two reasons. The first reason is that sitting on the edge of that rock is rather dangerous, especially when there are large crowds waiting around to do the same thing.

The second reason is that Wedding Cake Rock could quite literally fall into the ocean at any moment.

Fencing around Wedding Cake Rock
Fencing around Wedding Cake Rock

If you have a closer look at the images of the rock taken from above, it is not hard to see how this iconic landmark will indeed, at some point, be a thing of the past.

But even with the fence there, Wedding Cake Rock is still a remarkable sight and very much worth visiting. Plus, the coastal walking track to this unique rock formation is an absolute delight.

4. Marley Head

As mentioned, the extra section from Wedding Cake Rock to Marley Head is optional but worth it.

This section is only an extra 20 minutes return, and the far-stretching views of Marley Beach and Little Marley Beach, and beyond, are sensational, especially on a clear and sunny day.

Views from Marley Head
Views from Marley Head

From the headland, you can keep hiking southbound if you have extra time and energy to spare. The path is part of the Coast Track that goes all the way to Otford.

Otherwise, retrace your steps to the car park via the same trail. There are always new things to discover on the way back, and the views are also different.

A few tips before you go out to discover Wedding Cake Rock:

  • Don’t climb over the fence to sit on the rock. Just don’t.
  • Stay well away from cliff edges along the route, especially on windy days.
  • Protect yourself against the sun as there are no trees to offer shade.
  • Wear proper shoes for your own safety and comfort.
  • Parking in Bundeena is free, and there is no need to pay the national park entrance fee when parking there.
  • Going on a warm day? Go for a swim at Marley Beach!
  • Hungry after the walk? Bundeena has quite a few nice cafes!
 

Wedding Cake Rock in Royal National Park

 

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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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