There are many different vantage points from which to see and experience the National Falls in the Royal National Park – all of them offering spectacular views of this powerful and stunning waterfall. All of the access tracks are generally accessible even after heavy rain, making this one of the best waterfalls to visit after long periods of sustained rain, when the waterfall is at its most impressive. (The nearby town of Waterfall was named after these spectacular falls.)
The different Natonal Falls viewing points and access tracks are described below – the track to the lower falls and overhang is a little “hidden”, with no signage, but offers the most impressive view.
Top of the Upper Falls
The parking area (a dirt area next to the road) for the National Falls is right next to the formal (fenced) lookout at the very top of the waterfall. Waterfall Creek drops a metre or over a wide ledge, before plunging into the valley below.
Another informal and faint path takes you to a vantage point over the Upper Falls, and a glimpse of the valley below.
Base of the Upper Falls
A marked track descends to the base of the National Falls “Upper Falls”; it’s a short and easy but steep walk down a flight of stone steps.
At the bottom of the track is another fenced viewing platform, with filtered views of the bottom of the waterfall’s top tier.
The best vantage point is via informal track that takes you to an enormous overhang, next to the middle of the falls.
You can continue behind the waterfall, which is a pretty cool experience after heavy rain – you can really feel the power of the water.
Although the path gets a bit narrower and muddier, it continues all the way to the other side of the waterfall.
Although the overhang at the Upper Falls is an impressive spot… the Lower Falls is even more spectacular. It’s a bit tricker to find the access track – you need to walk about 200m down McKell Avenue, and look for a set of well-constructed stone steps that head down from the road.
The track goes past a small sandstone cliff, which is covered by moss and hanging plants, before passing through a patch of ferns.
You’ll then need to duck under a low overhang past a minor waterfall (it may not be flowing if hasn’t rained for a while)…
…before you reach an enormous overhang behind the lower section of the National Falls (or Lower Falls).
Even without the thundering waterfall in front of the overhang, the enormous cave is impressive in its own right.
Getting to National Falls
The waterfall is located just off McKell Avenue, about 3km from the suburb of Waterfall (and about 50 minutes south of the Sydney CBD). Look for a dirt parking areas just next to the road. For the Lower Falls, leave your car at the Upper Falls and walk (carefully) down the road about 200m.