Tweed Byron Hinterland Trails

New ways to experience nature in the north.

The Tweed Byron Hinterland Trails project

Woman at Minyon Falls, Nightcap National ParkThis project will deliver world class recreational facilities in the Tweed, Byron and Lismore region to boost both the NSW visitor economy and community wellbeing.

Tweed Byron Hinterland Trails will create high quality nature-based visitor experiences focusing on a signature walk from near the village of Uki to Minyon Falls in the far north NSW hinterland.

The project will see new sustainable visitor infrastructure in the Wollumbin, Mount Jerusalem and Nightcap national parks and Whian Whian State Conservation Area.

What the project involves

Characterised by lush rainforests, mountain views, countless waterfalls and hidden rockpools set within the remnant caldera of an ancient shield volcano, this region has the potential for a range of new recreational opportunities.

We plan to develop a network of a tracks and trails offering short to medium walks and cycling opportunities supported by visitor hubs offering facilities for day use and overnight stays including campgrounds, picnic areas, car park and toilets.

The 4-day walk from near Uki to Minyon Falls will be purpose-designed to provide the walker with the ultimate rainforest experience. A minimal impact approach, allowing the natural elements to determine the route will reduce the need for extensive trail construction. 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 Minyon Falls visitor precinct will have a major upgrade, enhancing the walking track at Minyon Falls and providing a signature loop walk to the base of the falls with lookouts and additional seating. A new day use area will also be developed at Unicorn Falls in Mount Jerusalem National Park.

Proposed works on the Wollumbin Summit track will seek to minimise visitor impacts on this recognised place of Aboriginal significance and manage sustainable visitor numbers.

The proposal received funding through the 2018/19 NSW Government budget for $7.35 million and will be delivered in stages over a four-year period, with final completion expected in 2022.

The project aims to redistribute the current unsustainable visitor pressures from the culturally significant Wollumbin National Park and encourage dispersal of coastal visitation particularly in the Byron Bay area. It will boost the regional visitor economy by extending visitor stays and bring economic benefits to local communities.

The project is part of a cohesive approach to market and enhance the tourism and local economies in the region, particularly in Tweed Shire. It will enable the development of strong partnerships with community, industry and government stakeholders including Aboriginal communities.

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 tracks and trails.

We will conduct independent environmental assessments to examine the significance of likely environmental impacts of the proposal and measures required to mitigate any potential impacts. This highlights the need to ensure 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 project will develop hiking trails, visitor hubs, cycling trails, lookouts and walks within the outstanding landscapes of these significant national parks. The design and construction of visitor facilities will be sensitive to the rich natural and cultural heritage of the sites.

Interpretation through innovative storytelling is one of the most effective ways to achieve an ‘experience of a lifetime’ for visitors. 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 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. Positive and ongoing consultation with the Aboriginal community aims to ensure the proposal is in keeping with Aboriginal interests and aspirations.

Those interested in the project are invited to register their interest and receive regular updates on the project.

To register your interest in this project please complete and submit the form.

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