Karloo Walk, Royal National Park, NSW

Karloo Pool

Karloo track is one of Sydney’s Royal National Park’s best day walks.  It’s close proximity to the suburban train from Sydney and it’s stunning swimming hole make it a very popular destination for Sydney visitors.  If you are planning a visit on the weekend, I would recommend starting out early, so you can enjoy the swimming hole before it gets too busy.

Directions: From Heathcoate Train Station, cross to the east side of the train tracks and walk about 20 metres south down Wilson Parade until you reach a sign marking the start of Karloo Track.  Walk 1 hour on this track through the bush until you reach Karloo Pool. After a swim and a rest, you have the option of continuing on to Uloola Falls and then onward to Waterfall Train Station, or turning and walking an hour back up the track to Heathcote Train Station.

Vernal and Nevada Falls Walk, Yosemite

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This hike up the Mist Trail is a gorgeous forested and mossy zigzag to a height of 300 meres above sea level, where you will find one of Yosemite’s biggest and most famous waterfalls.  At the top of the trail, after some rather precarious but thrilling steps, the Merced River spills over the booming 100 metre tall Vernal Falls.  Be careful on the rock steps, which are slippery, and whatever you do, don’t think it’s a good idea to take a dip as it is very dangerous to swim there.   While the Mist Trail is a busy track, it’s not too crowded and there is a good sense of camaraderie as people walk up together.  From Vernal Falls, you can go higher to the much less crowded Nevada Falls.  It’s a 10 kilometre hike all up, but at least the return is downhill.