Light to Light Walk

A wild and remote 4-day coastal walk experience in Ben Boyd National Park.

Humpack off Greencape, Ben Boyd National Park_credit Scott BlanchThe upgraded Light to Light Walk will be a fully immersive 4-day experience that combines walking and eco-accommodation in one of the most remote and dramatic settings in Australia. The project will deliver a spectacular 30-kilometre coastal walk supported by hut accommodation, located in the Ben Boyd National Park on the Sapphire Coast of New South Wales.

What the project involves

The Light to Light Walk project will deliver tourism infrastructure to create a world-class multi-day walk in the South Coast region of New South Wales. The project will upgrade and realign sections of the current track and provide overnight accommodation at 3 sites. This will enable the transformation of the existing Light to Light Walk into a hut-to-hut style walk, enhancing the region's reputation as an iconic Australian coastal nature-based destination and improving opportunities for visitor participation.

The 4-day experience will remain a public walk, managed by National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS). The walk will be able to be undertaken as self-guided, or through commercial tour operators offering various levels of assistance to individuals or groups, with NPWS fostering these partnership opportunities.

The Light to Light Walk will promote the important environmental, cultural and heritage aspects of the region, encourage sustainable development and provide physical and mental health benefits through increased access to the natural environment.

Additionally, the project will provide opportunities to strengthen local and regional partnerships, including working with the Aboriginal community.

The proposed walk has been awarded $7.9 million funding by the Regional Growth – Environment and Tourism Fund program, an initiative of the NSW Department of Industry, that provides funding for infrastructure that supports regional economic growth, creates local employment opportunities, and drives growth in the visitor economy.

Planning for the Light to Light Walk has commenced. We are currently undertaking the plan of management amendment and walking track strategy consultation which will also inform the detailed design and approvals phase. Feedback received will be considered carefully in finalising the plans and further public engagement will occur.  Construction on the project will commence in the coming year. It is anticipated that the project will be completed by 2021.

The Light to Light Walk project aims to create a new multi-day walking experience of a superior quality that can be completed by using newly built hard-roofed accommodation, or camping. The project aims to be the key attraction to the region's tourism industry, while encouraging people to protect and love their national parks.

The walk is expected to deliver benefits to the local economy, drawing new visitors to the region and providing opportunities for the tourism industry including tour operators, transport, accommodation and hospitality services.

Our national parks are managed to protect their unique values and provide for sustainable visitor use and enjoyment. This includes providing visitor experiences and, where appropriate, new visitor facilities including visitor accommodation.

We will conduct independent environmental assessments to examine the significance of likely environmental impacts of the proposal and the possible measures required to mitigate any potential impacts to the environment. This highlights the need to ensure that public visitation and enjoyment is compatible with the protection of conservation values.

The proposed project will undergo further detailed design and assessment to ensure compliance with the park’s plan of management and conservation management plans. Further stringent environmental, cultural heritage and cost-benefit assessments, involving our staff, key stakeholders and other experts, will ensure the project meets environmental, cultural and economic aspirations.

The proposed Light to Light Walk will offer visitors an opportunity to experience a diverse range of landscapes while connecting with the dramatic coastline as they make their way from Boyds Tower in the north, to Green Cape Lighthouse in the south. The walk will promote the natural and cultural heritage of the region and provide new opportunities for learning about the ecology of local landscapes, culture and wildlife, including seals, seabirds and whales.

Interpretation through innovative storytelling is one of the most effective ways to enhance a multi-day walk and to achieve an ‘experience of a lifetime’ for walkers. Developing rich and engaging interpretation, including opportunities for local Aboriginal guided experiences, will be a key focus with the aim of immersing the walker in the natural and cultural landscape creating respect, a strong connection and sense of place.

Effective community and stakeholder engagement is critical to the success of this project. NPWS will engage with stakeholders and interested community members in a meaningful and timely way. Those interested in the project are invited to register their interest and receive regular updates on the project.