Middle and Georges Head walking track link to the Sydney Harbour Scenic Walk

Enhancing the experience of the iconic Sydney Harbour Scenic Walk.

View from Middle Head of the North and South Heads of Sydney HarbourThe National Parks and Wildlife Service is constructing a new walking track in the Sydney Harbour National Park linking Middle Head and Georges Head to the Sydney Harbour Scenic Walk. The link will connect the headlands and create a seamless walking experience for visitors.

What the project involves

The new walking track, with story-telling along the route and, improvements to Chowder Bay Road are identified in the Sydney Harbour National Park, Middle Head & Georges Head Masterplan.

Middle Head is a jewel within the stunning array of foreshore open space and beaches that adjoin Sydney Harbour. The combination of natural and cultural qualities at Middle Head and Georges Heads is unique to Sydney and Australia. Intrinsic to this is a sense of retreat and release from urban Sydney that is enabled by the place’s largely undeveloped and low-key character. The master plan seeks to reconcile these fundamental values with improved and safer access for visitors.

The most important strategy for enhancing the community experience of Middle and Georges Head is its effective integration into the Sydney Harbour Scenic Walk. At present, the headlands are not linked effectively to the broader Harbour Scenic Walk with key connections difficult and unclear. The new walk will connect the headlands to deliver the missing link along and create a seamless experience for visitors.

Across Middle and Georges Heads there are points of interest focussed on natural and cultural features from various phases of Sydney's history. The state-registered military fortifications at Middle Head and Georges Head are significant as a collection of defence structures which date from 1801 to the Vietnam War. Conservation works to the significant military fortifications will also occur along with an interpretation of the area's history to create a highly layered recreational and educational experience.

Planning for this project including site assessment, design, heritage and environmental approvals has been completed in 2020. Construction will be undertaken in a staged approach commencing at the end of 2020 and is expected to be completed by 2022.

Middle Head and Georges Head are not linked to the broader Sydney Harbour area or Bondi to Manly Walk and walkers largely bypass the headlands. Establishment of a new track linking Middle Head to Georges Head will create an iconic harbour experience that leads walkers to the unmatched cultural and visual environment of Middle Head. This will enhance the visitor experience at Middle and Georges Head and enable visitors to experience the natural and cultural features of this area.

We manage our national parks 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 tracks and trails.

Independent environmental and heritage assessments were carried out to examine the significance of any likely environmental impacts of the proposal and identify means to eliminate or mitigate any impacts to the natural or cultural values of the site.

Within the Sydney Harbour National Park are Middle Head and Georges Head which contain the largest collection of nineteenth and twentieth-century coastal fortifications anywhere in Australia, demonstrating evidence of the continual response to the technological changes in warships and artillery and the nature of perceived and actual threats to Sydney. The headlands also contain Aboriginal sites, pockets of natural bushland and some threatened plant and animal species.

Developing rich and engaging interpretation will be a key focus to immerse the walker in the natural and cultural landscape creating respect, a strong connection and sense of place.

We engaged with community groups and stakeholders throughout development of the master plan and will continue to engage with stakeholders and interested community groups throughout this project. We will provide regular updates on this project website. See the NPWS Visitor webpage and on-site signage for any impacts on visitation during the construction phase.

Update: March 2021

Conservation of military fortifications underway.

  • 28 Feb 2021

Update: December 2020

Walking track construction commencing in early 2021.

  • 24 Dec 2020

Update: June 2020

Plans for the walking track have been completed.

  • 10 May 2020
Sydney Harbour Scenic Walk update

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