AUSTRALIA | A Visit to the Three Sisters & Katoomba Falls at the Blue Mountains | Lakad Pilipinas

Three Sisters Blue Mountains Australia

Surrounded in bluish haze, we stood transfixed in front of three enormous jagged sandstone rocks rising proudly from a forested valley, almost a thousand meters below. The Three Sisters—legend has it that these were three girls from the Katoomba Tribe who fell in love with three men from its neighboring Nepean Tribe. Forbidden by law from marrying, the men took the sisters, promptly starting a war. An elder shaman then turned the sisters into stones, trying to protect them, but unfortunately, got killed during the war. No one else since was able to turn them back.

Three Sisters Blue Mountains Australia
THE THREE SISTERS AT THE BLUE MOUNTAINS

But it was all a hoax. The legend isn’t a legit aboriginal story but was something purportedly made up by a local to stir more interest to the landmark. But the Three Sisters need no legend, it’s a legend in itself.

Sydney Central Station Australia
TAKING THE TRAIN TO KATOOMBA FROM THE SYDNEY CENTRAL STATION

Waking at the ungodly hour of four in the morning at the Sydney Central Inn, we took the early morning train to the town of Katoomba to see the Blue Mountains. We’re no hikers, but since it’s just about an hour away from Sydney and we found a tour around the Blue Mountains via Klook, we grabbed the chance to visit it. To be honest, what really attracted us to see it though was its status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, lol.

Katoomba Town Australia
ROLLING STREETS AT THE TOWN OF KATOOMBA

We thought we’d plan our itinerary en route to Katoomba, but we were dead to the world throughout the trip. So, we arrived at Katoomba with zero knowledge on where to actually go. Asking around, we were told that Scenic World, the tour we signed up for, was still two kilometers away from the station.

Two kilometers is nothing. We can walk. So, walk we did.

Katoomba Town Australia
KATOOMBA’S MAIN DRAG IS FILLED WITH HISTORIC ART DECO BUILDINGS

We passed through the main thoroughfare, enjoying the nippy morning air and the town’s artsy and art deco vibe. Katoomba is a sleepy town of about 8,000 people, and true enough, there were hardly any people around except for a few tourists visiting the Blue Mountains.

Katoomba Town Australia
WE DIDN’T MEET A SINGLE SOUL

I turned on my map and found that Scenic World was just a hop away from the Three Sisters. Going up and down the hilly streets, we decided to take a detour to the Echo Point, the viewing deck for the famed rock formation. My initial thought was that it would be like the Sagada Echo Valley, but no one was shouting, so I guess not, lol.

Echo Point Katoomba Blue Mountains Australia
THE ECHO POINT VIEWING DECK

Echo Point Katoomba Blue Mountains Australia
THE VIEWING DECK AS SEEN FROM BELOW

And indeed, the Blue Mountains opened up as we arrived. It was quite a sight. The viewing deck sits right at the edge of a dizzying escarpment, a thousand meters above the lush valley floor below. Off our left, standing like sentinels are the Three Sisters, on the far right is Mount Solitary, and on the horizon, massive sandstone plateaus rise above the dense forest. Mountain ranges line the background, blanketed in a blue haze.

Blue Mountains Australia
A PANORAMIC VIEW OF THE BLUE MOUNTAINS

Blue Mountains Three Sisters Australia
THE THREE SISTERS

Blue Mountains Mout Solitary Australia
MOUNT SOLITARY

This bluish tinge is where the mountains got its name, it is said that it came from terpenoids, an organic compound secreted by eucalyptus trees which grow in abundance along the area.

Blue Mountains Three Sisters Australia
THERE’S A BRIDGE TO ONE OF THE THREE SISTERS!

Taking photos of the Three Sisters, I zoomed in and noticed someone walking on a small bridge that crosses to one of the rock formations. People can actually go there! I was thrilled. I told C that we should definitely see these rocks up close.

Blue Mountains Giant Stairway Trail Australia
THE TRAILS ALONG ECHO POINT ARE QUITE EASY TO NAVIGATE

We then found out that there are several hiking trails that branch out along the Echo Point. I love how organized things are around here. Each trail is set with a sign informing hikers where it would go, how hard it is, and how long it would take to get there. The sign leading to the Three Sisters said it was just fifteen minutes away by foot. We can definitely do that! We saw another sign that leads to the valley floor below, the so-called Giant Stairway, and it takes about an hour and a half to reach. We definitely won’t do that!

Blue Mountains Giant Stairway Trail AustraliaBlue Mountains Giant Stairway Trail Australia
GOING DOWN ON ONE OF THE SISTERS

The trails are, surprisingly, paved, making the hike extremely easy. We even saw a couple dragging a baby along with them! It only got hard as the stairs descending to the Three Sisters started. The steel stairwell was very steep and quite narrow, but it has railings, so it was manageable.

Blue Mountains Three Sisters Australia
WE RESTED A BIT

Blue Mountains Three Sisters Australia
AND ENJOYED THE VIEW

Blue Mountains Three Sisters Australia
LAST LOOK BEFORE GOING BACK UP

It took us twice the time required to reach Meehni, the only sister available for visiting. The other two, Wimlah and Gunnedoo was without access for hikers. The short bridge terminates on a small hollow off one side of the rock pillar where a bench was thankfully located. We took the time to rest and enjoy the view before going back up.

Blue Mountains Katoomba Falls Australia
A SMALL CASCADE ALONG THE KATOOMBA FALLS TRAIL

I reviewed our map and found we’d be passing through Katoomba Falls before we arrive at Scenic World. Another detour it is. Going back up, we followed our map, taking another trail that wends across the forested part of the cliff, onto a small waterfall which feeds the Kedumba River where the main cascade of Katoomba Falls is set.

Blue Mountains Katoomba Falls Trail Australia
I LOVE THE TRAILS ALONG THE BLUE MOUNTAINS, IT MAKES HIKING EASY!

Again, the trail which was a combination of elevated wooden walkways and dirt paths, was easy peasy even for us. The cool weather, Katoomba is a thousand meters above sea level, was definitely helping too since it was almost high noon.

Blue Mountains Katoomba Falls Australia
KATOOMBA FALLS’ MASSIVE DROP, A PITY IT WAS THE DRY SEASON

Unfortunately, since we visited during the dry months, the cascade wasn’t that strong. There’s a viewing deck right on the trail, but we saw the whole stretch of Katoomba Falls better while riding the Scenic Skyway cable car. We forged ahead on the trail to head to our original destination.

Blue Mountains Trail Australia
ARE WE THERE YET?

And after more than five hours of walking since we left the town’s train station, at last we reached Scenic World. An easy two-kilometer walk, eh?

 

SCOOT HAS DAILY PROMO FARES FROM MANILA TO AUSTRALIA

SCOOT, KLOOK, AND ONE VINE MIGRATION MADE OUR TRIP TO AUSTRALIA POSSIBLE. VIEWS AND OPINION ALL MINE.

 

 

Three Sisters
Address: Cliff Drive, Katoomba, New South Wales, Australia
Entrance Fee: None
GPS Coordinates Map: -33.7320178, 150.3116105

Katoomba Falls
Address: Cliff Drive, Katoomba, New South Wales, Australia
Entrance Fee: None
GPS Coordinates Map: -33.728184, 150.3042591






Posted by Christian Sangoyo on Saturday, April 7, 2018

0 comments

Post a Comment