The Great North Walk Trail Hiking Australia
  • Length: 250km

  • Duration: 15 days

  • Grade: 4-5

  • Style: One Way

  • Start: Macquarie Place, Sydney

  • End: Bicentennial Park, Newcastle

  • Location: Sydney and Surrounds

  • Closest Town: Sydney

  • Distance from CBD: 750m

  • State: NSW

  • Latitude: -33.863236

  • Longitude: 151.210233

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Trail Access

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2WD Access

4WD Access

Public Transport

Bitumen Road

Gravel Road

Steep Road

Winding Road

Speed Bumps

Vehicle Ford

Entry Fee

Large Car Park

Small Car Park

Accessible Parking

Accessible Toilet

Public Toilets

Drinking Water

Untreated Water

Picnic Shelter

Picnic Table

BBQ Facilities

Campfire Pit

Camping Area

Trail Features

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Concrete Path

Timber Boardwalk

Gravel Path

Sandy Trail

Rough Trail

Undefined Trail

Prams & Strollers

Manual Wheelchair

Motorised Wheelchair

Bicycle Trail

Mountain Bike Trail

Historic Rail Trail

Dog Friendly

Urban Walk

Coast & Beach

Historic Lighthouse

Waterfalls & Lakes

Rainforest Walk

Goldfields & Mining

Heritage Walk

Aboriginal Art

Alpine Region

Alpine Huts

Exposed Ledges

Rock Scrambling

Steep Terrain

Bush Bashing

River Crossings

Scenic Viewpoints

Well Marked

Drinking Water

Untreated Water

Fishing Spots

Swimming Spots

Overnight Campsites

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The Great North Walk is a 250km, multi-grade, one-way hike that stretches from Sydney to Newcastle in NSW. The hike should take approximately 15 days to complete.

Summary

The Great North Walk is a walking track which runs from Sydney to Newcastle in New South Wales, Australia. The main track, 250 kilometres in length, runs between the Obelisk in Macquarie Place in Sydney to Queens Wharf Tower in Bicentennial Park in Newcastle and is well sign-posted. There are many “side tracks” which link the track to populated areas along the length of the walk. The walk includes a huge variety of wildlife and scenery.

A 25-kilometre section at the northern, Newcastle end, is also known as the Yuelarbah Track. This section runs from the Teralba railway station to the Queens Wharf on Newcastle Harbour. At Kahibah Station, the Great North Walk uses a short section of The Fernleigh Track and passes along the northern side of Glenrock Lagoon to get to the coast.

After its official start in Macquarie Place, the walk continues through the suburb of Hunters Hill, where there are many heritage homes, then arrives at the Lane Cove River. It follows the river through the Lane Cove National Park to Thornleigh, then follows Berowra Creek. Further north, the track crosses over to the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park before proceeding to Brooklyn, on the Hawkesbury River. The river can be crossed either by train or boat, after which the track proceeds north through Brisbane Water National Park and the Ourimbah Valley before reaching the Watagan State Forest. Further north, the track veers east in the vicinity of Brunkerville and follows the Myall Range for some distance before reaching Teralba, on the southern fringes of Newcastle. It then proceeds to its official finishing point in Newcastle.

In addition to the main track between Sydney and Newcastle, there is an extension that goes north to the Hunter Region. The extension departs from the main track in the vicinity of Brunkerville, and proceeds along a country road to the village of Paxton, passing abandoned coal mines along the way. From Paxton it proceeds north and follows the Mount View Range, where there are extensive views in the direction of Cessnock. The track then descends the northern end of the range before terminating in the wine-making area of Pokolbin.

The total walk from Sydney to Newcastle takes between 8 and 14 days to complete, with popular camp sites at designated spots along the way. Many of these sites are on ridge tops with no available water supply. Where natural standing water is available, it is not necessarily safe to drink and should be treated before use.

Getting there

Good access exists to both ends of the track with regular public transport to Sydney and Newcastle.

Tips

  • It is not necessary to do the walk in one go; individual sections can be completed easily as day walks.
  • The track is often close to the railway line, providing convenient rail access at a number of points.
  • Some early sections in Sydney are through local suburbs on sealed roads.
  • There are more than a dozen ancient Aboriginal rock art sites along the route.
  • The best time to take this walk is late autumn, winter and spring. Summer is extremely hot and should be avoided, particularly if bushfire risk is high.

For more information visit The Great North Walk website

37 thoughts on “The Great North Walk (250km)

  1. Great one to break down into overnight hikes. Have done several sections. Cat see there being too many issues solo hiking the legs from pokolbin to Paxton accommodation at paxton pub. If coming from Newcastle heaton gap motel safe. My fave section was from hawkesbury river to Berowra with camping at Berowra Waters. Park car at hawkesbury river train station, follow signs to trail. Hike to Cowan train station (11km). Either catch train back to hawkesbury river to car or hike another 6km to Berowra waters to either camp near the carpark or stay at some accommodation down there. The marina has good food if you dont want to camp cook. Morning hike back to Berowra train stn back to hawkesbury river.

  2. Completed in April 2017. Sydney to Newcastle solo over 10 days in perfect weather. I hope to do the return in a few years time. As someone who travelled often between Sydney to Newcastle by train this was a must.
    Some days are much harder than others and I found it challenging during the easter long weekend due to the amount of people on the track through to Brooklyn plus the heavier pack with all my food….& I’m a bit fat.
    I’ve taken the ferrys from brooklyn to little wobby and patonga or the train to wondabyne or woy woy but my favourite is the little wobby route.
    My feet were in bad shape for this trip but as it didnt rain it made foot care much easier and bearable.
    The next few days were fantastic. The only rain that came was while I was in my tent, there were watertanks where there were meant to be none and while not everything went to plan, once you get past Somersby you are pretty much locked in to finish.
    The sad part was finishing and it was a long day with the walk from heaton gap till the end.. 40 something Km’s. With very little left in the pack though and plenty of water around, it was a nice section once at Glenrock and then onto the coast.