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Kurnell Walk

Sydney sightseeing

Kurnell to Cronulla
This is a long walk of about fifteen kilometres which will take four to five hours. It can, however, be shortened to ten kilometres by taking one of a choice of two modifications, as noted below. The walk starts at the mouth of Botany Bay, so first it is necessary to get there. Take a train to Cronulla, a journey of about 45 minutes from the city centre. From the station, cross the road and from the bus stop almost opposite, take a bus no. 987 to Kurnell and the Botany Bay National Park.


Walk through the picnic area to the left of the entrance to the National Park for a short distance to the shore and turn right along the Monument Track. You will come first to a very famous site in Australian history – the landing place of one Captain James Cook in 1770. (Actually, he was Lt. James Cook at the time.) The site is at the farthest end of the stretch of beach. A little further along the track is Banks’ Memorial.


Banks was the botanist who accompanied Captain Cook on his historic voyage and returned with one of the world’s greatest botanic collections. Soon after is Cook’s Stream, where water was gathered during the first British landing on the Australian continent, and then, on your right, Alpha Farm, one of the first buildings on this peninsula. Nearby, on the left, is the grave of Forby Sutherland, a seaman on Cook’s barque, the Endeavour, who died on the journey.


The track turns sharply right and inland at this point and leads up to the Environmental Education Field Study Centre on the right and the Discovery Centre on the left. The latter is a museum telling of the history and culture of the area. Continue across the parking area and main park road (Cape Solander Drive) onto the Yena Track, taking almost immediately the diversion left onto the Banks’ Solander Track which leads through coastal woodland for 500 metres before rejoining the Yena Track.

Another kilometre and you will come across Cape Solander Drive once more. Turn right for one more kilometre to Cape Solander, where the road ends. The track, however, continues along the coast to Cape Bailey, with some beautiful views. At this point, there are choices.

One of the ten-kilometre options involves retracing your steps to the Yena Picnic Area at the end of the Yena Track. Follow Cape Solander Drive just a little further this time and turn left along the Muru Track which runs parallel to the Yena Track. When you meet Cape Solander Drive once more, turn left and follow it to the park entrance. However, if you choose to continue from Cape Bailey, another two kilometres will bring you to Potter Point.


Here there is another ten-kilometre option. Take the road, Banks Drive, leading away from the coast and if you follow this road for three kilometres, you will reach Captain Cook Drive a little south of Kurnell and be able to pick up the bus back to Cronulla at this point. Walking back into Kurnell will add about two kilometres.


The longest walk involves just continuing from Potter Point pottering round the coast. It is a further six kilometres to Cronulla, much of it beside or along the famed surf beach stretching in a long crescent round the bay. It is a pleasant enough walk, but an exposed one, so be sure to take a hat in summer. From Cronulla, you can return to the city by train.


Click here for Kurnell Map.


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