Hike to Wedding Cake Rock From Bundeena

Last updated: April 19, 2021

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, with beautiful views of the ocean and the sandstone cliffs to enjoy along the track.

Keen to do more hikes nearby? Check out our list of the best walks in Royal National Park for some great options.

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

How to Get There

There are in fact two ways to get to Wedding Cake Rock. The first option is via the Big Marley Firetrail, a bush walking track starting from Bundeena Drive (see map location here).

The second option is a coastal walk starting from Beachcomber Avenue in Bundeena following the coastline all the way to Wedding Cake Rock. This section option is what we’re going to discuss in this article.

There is a small car park located at the very end of Beachcomber Avenue (see map location here).

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

The large information board at the car park marks the start of the coastal walking track to the Wedding Cake Rock.

This is also the official starting point of the Coast Track from Bundeena to Otford, which means that the Bundeena to Wedding Cake Rock walking track is essentially the first section of the Coast Track.

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 is mostly flat from start to finish.

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

  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 and route 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 to 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 rock, before it arrives at the next natural landmark.

The Waterrun is an amazing natural sight, that can be best viewed from a high 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. If you look closely, you may even find a heart-shaped marking in the surface.

3. Wedding Cake Rock

From The Waterrun, the walking track continues to the main destination of this walk: 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 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 that very same thing.

Fencing around Wedding Cake Rock
Fencing around Wedding Cake Rock

The second reason is that Wedding Cake Rock can literally fall into the ocean at any moment. If you look closely at the images of the rock from above, it is not hard to see how this rock 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 is very much worth a visit. Plus, the coastal walking track to this unique landmark is an absolute delight.

4. Marley Head

As mentioned, the extra section from Wedding Cake Rock to Marley Head is optional but it is totally 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 going south if you have the time and energy, as this is basically the Coast Track that goes all the way to Otford.

Otherwise, simply retrace your steps back to the car park. Interestingly enough, 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 any cliff edges along the route, especially on windy days.
  • Protect yourself against the sun as there are no trees that 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!
 

Bundeena to Wedding Cake Rock walking track

 
 
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