Watagan National Park Discovery Tour

A large rock is overhanging the walking track on the Watagan National Park Discovery Tour












High Season



8 years minimum




A short drive from Newcastle and Lake Macquarie are the Watagan National Park. Our Watagan National Park Discovery Tour will provide you with an exciting day in the Australian bush right in the heart of the Watagan National Park.

We will take you to places even local people don't know about.


If you are thinking about doing a guided day in the bush  then you have come to the right place here's why:

Walking Rivers believes its more fun and exciting, bushwalking if you are engaged fully in the experience.

We undertake to provide some basic training in bush survival skills as well as navigation on all our bush adventures. The training is in addition to just having fun discovering places that are off the beaten tourist track.

We provide all transport, food, training, and equipment for you to have a memorable experience discovering the Watagan National Park and some of its pristine natural secrets.

Key points, why are we different

  • Receive navigation training
  • Be part of a team
  • Learn bushcraft
  •  Training included
  • Engaging professional guides


The Watagan National Park discovery day  is just that, a real day of discovery

You will experience a  day in the Australian bush that rewards with some breathtaking views, both inland to the west and coastal to the east.

Known to offer you intrigue and excitement regularly it has become one of our favorite experiences.

Because of the remoteness of the area, there is no other way to experience this part of the National Park other than by walking.

We know you will love walking through the variety of plant life, then along a cliff top taking in stunning views right across the Hunter Valley. Visiting a cave that very few people even know exists is another highlight of the walk.

Additionally, we know you will love seeing some of the abundant wildlife that calls the National Park home.

Our private lunch stops often allow you to get up close and personal with many of Australia's native animals.

Our Watagan National Park discovery tour allows plenty of time for you to become fully immersed in all the natural beauty the National Park has to offer.

Key points,  why we love the Watagan National Park discovery tour

  • A real Australian bush experience
  • Offers the opportunity to reconnect with nature
  • Walking only accessible areas
  • Ancient landscape displaying the natural beauty


The Walking Rivers Watagan National park discovery tour is very much a social event.

Spending a day walking with a functional group of like-minded people is a highlight that stays in peoples memories for a very long time.

Bushwalking for some people allows them to fall into a transient state and in so doing wash away all their stress and worries. While for others it is the feeling of accomplishment and achievement that is the attraction.

Scenery that is unparalleled and can only be observed through bushwalking is undoubtedly one of the top highlights for the Watagan National Park Discovery Tour.

If you are into photography, the opportunities for that perfect shot are everywhere.

The Watagan National Park Discovery Tour provides people with passive exercise, the best kind because you are exercising while doing something that is fun rewarding and easy to love.

You will feel your body responding to even the lightest of demands made on it, and through this response know that you are alive.

For some people, a highlight is just exploring new area's
where does that track lead, what’s over that hill, does that stream have a waterfall, etc

Whatever may be your reason for joining us on the Watagan National Park Discovery Day I am confident you will have ample opportunity for that reason to be satisfied.

Key points, activity highlights

  • Escape from stress
  • Wonderful nature experiences
  • The thrill of exploration
  • Challenging yourself
  • Fitness and exercise
  • Companionship and social aspects, or for some, the solitude


Walking Rivers staff will assist you to recognize the exceptional beauty and diversity that abounds inside the boundaries of the Watagan National Park.

The Watagan National Park area was formally declared a National Park on the 1st of January 1999. It protects an area of 7750 hectares including the headwaters for both Dora and Gap creeks.

Slowly meandering along forest tracks provides many opportunities for a guide to engage with you in educational discussions and point out interesting features in the landscape.

Between the years 1830 and 1890 Cedar timber was cut from the area until its exhaustion. By the 1920 reports indicate that some of the forests in the area had all valuable timber removed.

Some evidence exists today of the logging history in the area.

General cultural information for the Watagan National Park

The traditional inhabitants of this area the Awabakal and Darkinjung people consider the park to be of significant cultural importance and there is some archaeological evidence that shows their history reaches back over eleven thousand years.

There are more than 40 recorded Aboriginal sites in the Watagans area. These sites include art sites, axe grinding grooves, and open campsites. The Watagan Range and surrounds once provided a delicious range of food items for the inhabitants.

Flora and Fauna

The wildlife in our walking corridor can be varied and abundant.

It is not uncommon to spot kangaroos, wallaby, and Goannas as well as a wide variety of birds.

The Watagan protected area provides critical habitat for over 150 native species of animals including wallabies, gliders, brush and ring-tailed possums, amphibians and reptiles. Additionally, there are also over 130 species of birds (Atlas of NSW wildlife 2006)

Key points, the park.

  • Protects critical habitat 
  • 150 Native animal species
  • Close to a major city
  • Crystal clear Waterfalls and creeks
  • Ancient Landscapes


Our one-day Watagan Bushwalking Discovery Day starts from our home base in Newcastle;

The Walking Rivers bus travels from Newcastle out through Lake Macquarie and onto our start point, one of the many the picnic grounds hidden away in the beautiful Watagan Mountains . (approximately 1.5 hours driving).

Our coach can pick people up at one of our designated meeting places along the way and return you to the same spot.

We are as flexible as possible with our pickups to try and make it easy for you. Talk to us on an individual basis to arrange your pickup point. Of course, we will bring you back to your pick up location when your adventure ends.

Key points, getting there

  • convenient departure points
  • regular breaks
  • onboard movies
  • making friends


For those who haven’t tried it, the Watagan Discovery Day bushwalk is a casual meander through the bush on exiting tracks with only a slight bit of physical exertion required on some of the moderate inclines.

  • reconnect with nature
  • relaxing environments
  • time to reflect the day's activities
  • feeling free


We have to say. When possible, we use locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables sourced from our nearby farmer's markets. Furthermore, we also provide snacks just in case you get hungry while walking along. It is a Walking Rivers policy you will never go hungry, even after a day’s bushwalking in the fresh air.

Key points, the food

  • all included
  • plenty to eat
  • snacks and fruit
  • diverse menu


  • Professional guiding service
  • Morning tea and Lunch
  • National Park Fees
  • Bus travel both ways from Newcastle 


  • Not included in the tour cost are accommodation before or after the tour completion
  • Flights, airport transfers, ferries, taxis
  • Travel/medical insurance
  • Alcoholic or carbonated beverages

Let us know if you are you are bringing any of your own equipment. After checking the list of what to bring lets us know



If you are at all apprehensive about your abilities to undertake the Watagan National park Discovery Day, please remember our experienced guides will train you in the skills needed to complete the journey.

All you need is to be moderately fit and have a yearning for some safe and controlled adventure.

Going on a fully guided adventure is very different to going it alone. Being conducted by professional, trained, qualified people allows us to go to many places that would be unthinkable on our own.

Additionally, we consider you to be part of a team overcoming all the challenges the bushwalk throws at us.

Walking Rivers has comprehensive risk management and contingency plans in place as well safety procedures that ensure you will be free to not worry about anything too much other than having fun.