Great South Coast Walk

A new long distance walk

The Great South Coast Walk is Australia’s newest long-distance walk and, at 660 km, is the longest coastal walk in Australia. It links many shorter tracks along the southern coastline of New South Wales, from Bundeena on the southern fringe of Sydney, to Mallacoota, just over the border in Victoria. The Great South Coast Walk was first walked in 2004 and, since then, many others have either walked it end-to-end or completed stages of it.


One feature of the walk is the great variety of landscapes through which it passes – long stretches of pristine beach, small sheltered coves, sheer coastal cliffs, hills, headlands, rock platforms, estuaries, lakes, rivers, dune systems and even urban landscapes. The vegetation is also very diverse – different types of eucalypt forest, temperate rain forest, tall and short heathland, wetlands and open pastures. Geological changes are also quite marked along the walk, with sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic rocks. It passes by 12 of the designated geological sites in New South Wales, set up to show the state’s unique features.

Another feature of the Great South Coast Walk is the numerous water-crossings, which add to the adventure of the walk. While some have bridges or available boat transport, others may require shallow or deeper wades and a few even require a short swim. As with any coastal walk, knowledge of the tides and sea conditions is critical for water-crossings or walking on rock platforms.

The walk crosses twelve national parks and six nature reserves or conservation areas, which show-case the diversity of flora and fauna. The rich birdlife is a particular highlight, while seals and migrating whales can be seen in season. The South Coast of New South Wales has a string of towns and villages along it, which means that, for the most part, walkers can choose their overnight accommodation. After walking through natural landscapes during the day, it is possible to stay in cabins, holiday houses or camp in tents. This offers a more “European” style of walking for those who choose it.

This site has been set up to describe the Great South Coast Walk, to provide maps, track files and a set of resources that will aid anyone planning to do the walk, either in part or in full. It is currently set out in 11 stages, each covering 3-4 days and 50-70 km of walking. Generally, walkers should expect to complete the Great South Coast Walk in 35-40 days, though the fastest end-to-end walk is 20 days. The route for the Great South Coast Walk was first mapped in 2004, but has been continually modified since then to take into account the creation of new sections of tracks and improved routes, largely from the contributions of walkers. If using the track files from this website, it is best to ensure that you have the latest set.

Contributions that may improve this website and the walk are always welcome.

The concept of a Great South Coast Walk has been endorsed by the following organisations:

Peak body for bushwalkers
in NSW and the ACT

Bushwalking Club

Shoalhaven Bushwalkers

Milton NPA
Sydney University
Bushwalking Club

Far South Coast
Branch NSW

ACT National Parks

Bushwalking Club

The Bush Club

Ramblers Club

Illawarra NPA

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