Norah Head Nature Trail
Darkinjung & Guringai Country

50 min to 1 h

1.9 km
return

↑ 51 m
↓ -51 m

Moderate track
A beautiful walk with a great variety of scenery. The walk starts with some beautiful forest scenery, visits an interesting memorial to the merchant navy, wanders past the scenic Norah Head lighthouse with its stunning coastline views, and finishes with some exploration of the rockshelf below the lighthouse. On weekends, you even have the option to join a tour of the lighthouse. Let us begin by acknowledging the Darkinjung & Guringai people, Traditional Custodians of the land on which we travel today, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. 
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Bush St reserve. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Views from the Bush St reserve. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Norah Head nature trail. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Surrounded by green. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Through the coastal forest. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Lookout on the nature trail. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Shady walking. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Narrow track and thick undergrowth. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Over the gully. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Lighthouse car park. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Merchant Navy memorial. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Merchant Navy memorial lookout. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Footpath to the lighthouse. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Views from the lighthouse path. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Norah Head lighthouse. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Views from Norah Head. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Steps at Norah Head. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Norah Head rockshelf. | Photo by Matt McClelland (wildwalks), 2009.
Downloads GPX PDF

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Safer Bushwalks
Tips on staying safe on track
Before you start any bushwalk ensure you;
• Tell someone you trust where you are going and what to do if you are overdue
• Have adequate equipment, supplies, skills & knowledge for the whole journey
• Consider the impact of weather forecasts, park/track closures & fire dangers
• Can respond to emergencies & call for help at any point
• Are healthy and fit enough for this journey
If not, change plans and stay safe. It is okay to delay and ask people for help.
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Getting There
Transport options and directions
Start (-33.2798267,151.5701781)
Mode Bus Car (There is free parking available.)
DirectionsFrom Wilfred Barrett Drive, A49
  • Turn on to Denison Street then drive for 540 m
  • Turn right onto Bungary Road and drive for another 810 m
  • Turn left onto Maitland Street and drive for another 115 m
  • Continue onto Bush Street and drive for another 185 m
  • Enter roundabout and drive for another 5 m
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Track Notes
Turn by turn instructions & maps
Getting started
From the car park at the Bush St Reserve, Norah Head (near the intersection with Young St), this walk goes past the toilet block and across the park to the information board and trackhead at the back corner of the park.....
Turn map Directions & comments
Start.
There is a car park (about 80 m back from the start).
There is a toilet (about 80 m back from the start).
Bush St reserve (about 20 m back from the start).
Bush St reserve
Bush St reserve

This picnic area is in Bush St, Norah Head, near the intersection with Young St. The reserve has parking, toilets, picnic tables and garbage bins. There are fantastic views along the coastline. The Headland Nature Trail starts here, and it also a short walk to the beach and ocean rockpool.
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This picnic area is in Bush St, Norah Head, near the intersection with Young St. The reserve has parking, toilets, picnic tables and garbage bins. There are fantastic views along the coastline. The Headland Nature Trail starts here, and it also a short walk to the beach and ocean rockpool.

After another 160 m turn right, to head along Norah Head Nature Trail.
After another 20 m find the "Headland lookout" (25 m on your left).
Headland lookout
Headland lookout

This unnamed lookout is on the Headland Nature Trail at Norah Head and has excellent views along the coastline and out to sea. The lookout is on a small, fenced, wooden platform.
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This unnamed lookout is on the Headland Nature Trail at Norah Head and has excellent views along the coastline and out to sea. The lookout is on a small, fenced, wooden platform.

After another 390 m turn left.
After another 20 m continue straight.
After another 15 m find the "Merchant Mariners memorial and lookout" (on your right).
Merchant Mariners memorial and lookout
Merchant Mariners memorial and lookout

This memorial and lookout point commemorates the loss of lives in the merchant navy, during times of war, primarily WWII . There are several plaques with details of the ships and number of lives lost. The stunning views from the lookout take in the nearby Norah Head lighthouse and much of the coastline to the south.
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This memorial and lookout point commemorates the loss of lives in the merchant navy, during times of war, primarily WWII . There are several plaques with details of the ships and number of lives lost. The stunning views from the lookout take in the nearby Norah Head lighthouse and much of the coastline to the south.

After another 60 m pass the sign (on your right).
After another 65 m pass a seat (on your left).
After another 30 m find the "Lighthouse cottages and weddings" (on your left).
Lighthouse cottages and weddings
Lighthouse cottages and weddings

The cottages at the Norah Head Lighthouse can be booked as accommodation (ph: 1300 132 975) and the Lighthouse grounds can be booked for weddings (ph: (02) 4396 4102).
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The cottages at the Norah Head Lighthouse can be booked as accommodation (ph: 1300 132 975) and the Lighthouse grounds can be booked for weddings (ph: (02) 4396 4102).

After another 55 m continue straight.
After another 90 m find the "Norah Head Lighthouse" (on your left).
Norah Head Lighthouse
Norah Head Lighthouse

The lighthouse was established in 1903 and was converted from a kerosene burner to mains electricity power in 1961. Tours of the lighthouse are available on weekends , every half hour between 10am and 1:30pm .
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The lighthouse was established in 1903 and was converted from a kerosene burner to mains electricity power in 1961. Tours of the lighthouse are available on weekends , every half hour between 10am and 1:30pm .

Then head down the steps
After another 35 m come to "Norah Head Lighthouse Point lookout".
Norah Head Lighthouse Point lookout
Norah Head Lighthouse Point lookout

This lookout, on the point of Norah Head, near the lighthouse, has amazing views in all directions, up and down the coastline, across the rockshelves and beaches below, and of the lighthouse itself.
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This lookout, on the point of Norah Head, near the lighthouse, has amazing views in all directions, up and down the coastline, across the rockshelves and beaches below, and of the lighthouse itself.

Turn around here and retrace the main route for 930 m to get back to the start.
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Terrain
Know the Hills, grading & facilities

Norah Head Nature Trail


Grading
Class 3/6
Moderate track
Length 1.9 km
Time 50 min to 1 h
Quality of track Formed track, with some branches and other obstacles (3/6)
Gradient Short steep hills (3/6)
Signage Directional signs along the way (3/6)
Infrastructure Generally useful facilities (such as fenced cliffs and seats) (1/6)
Experience Required Some bushwalking experience recommended (3/6)
Weather Weather generally has little impact on safety (1/6)

Some facilities on route
Toilet: There is one -69 m back from the start.

Seat: There is one 730 m from the start.


Order of key facilities on route
ItemFrom StartName & link to notes
Toilet
-69 m[toilet]
Building
760 mLighthouse cottages and weddings
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