Looking to escape the city and enjoy some of the best four-wheel driving tracks near Sydney? Your next big adventure could be just a few miles away.
We’ve compiled a list of some of the best places you need to visit this year. With each location featuring quite a few different tracks and campgrounds, you can pick and choose the ones that you feel most comfortable with.
Watagans National Park
Just over an hour from Sydney, Watagans National Park features several campgrounds that are easily accessible with a 4X4, such as the Mitsubishi Triton. Once you set camp, you can explore the area and head off onto any of the hundreds of tracks to test out your skills. From mud holes to dense rock terrain, you’re bound to find something that’s both challenging and exciting.
Now, you can, of course, drive on the main road with a soft-road SUV, but if you want to go off the beaten track and try out something a bit more exciting, you’ll need something more durable. That being said, information about most formed tracks can be found online, so it’s good to have a rough idea of where you’re going before hitting the road.
You might also enjoy plenty of walking trails and lookouts in the area!
Located three hours from Sydney, Newnes is found within the Wollemi National park. It’s one of the most well-known four-wheel driving destinations in NSW and home to some of the best off-road tracks near Sydney.
Access to Newnes is generally easy and accessible with most 4X4s. To get to the campground on the other side, you only have to cross at the ford at Wolgan River. Some of the most amazing tracks in the area are only a few minutes away from the camp (e.g. Maiyingu Marragu Trail, Powerlines, Glow Worm Tunnel).
If you make it to Newnes Campground, make sure you visit the spectacular glow-worm tunnels and the old Newnes Industrial Ruins.
A little further away from Sydney, Barrington Tops is another 4WD destination known for its stunning scenery and challenging tracks. The area is home to more than a few campgrounds, four-wheel tracks and walking trails. Bear in mind that some campgrounds will charge a fee (e.g. Gloucester River campground costs $12 per adult and $6 per child/night).
With hills rising thousands of metres above sea level, Barrington Tops offers rugged beauty with stunning views below. Just make sure you visit during the summer/spring season as most tracks are closed from June till October.
If you’re up for the challenge, you may want to try out some of the more difficult side tracks, such as Tugalow Trail, which passes through several small creeks, bog holes and muddy ruts.
Turon National Park
Approximately three hours northwest of Sydney, Turon National Park provides a great base for some of the most exciting tracks in the area, namely the popular Pinnacle Firetrail and Ben Bullen.
The two main campsites in the area are the Woolshed Flat and the Diggings, both of which are located on the river. The river crossings can be challenging, but you shouldn’t face any difficulties with a modern 4×4, such as the new Mitsubishi Pajero.
Ben Bullen is well-known for its steep climbs and rocky sections, which is why good tyres are a must. From big ruts to rough rock steps, prepare for a technical, yet fun and challenging ride.
With the right vehicle (e.g. the new Mitsubishi Triton 2019) and under the right conditions, beach driving can be loads of fun. Less than two hours from Sydney city, Blacksmiths Beach is regarded by many as the toughest beach drive in NSW.
Not just great for driving, there are some great fishing spots in the area too. It also makes for a fantastic camping destination. If you’re bringing the family, you’ll be delighted to know that Blacksmiths Beachside Holiday Park comes with plenty more facilities.
Bear in mind that the southern and northern ends of the beach are pedestrian-only.
The beautiful Colo River is only an hour-and-a-half away from Sydney. With plenty of camping spots and great 4WD tracks, it makes for a perfect 4X4 weekend away. Spots at the Upper Colo Reserve can be booked ahead of time ($12 for adults and $10 for children), but bear in mind that the campground is closed during winter.
If you make your way to Colo River, make sure to check out the famous Gees Arm South Trail. Technical with plenty of rock steps, it’s bound to prove challenging even to the most experienced of drivers.
Abercrombie River National Park
Approximately three and a half hours west of Sydney, the Abercrombie River National Park is home to some of the most popular campgrounds and 4WD tracks in NSW. The four main campgrounds include Bummaroo Ford, Silent Creek, The Sink, and The Beach.
All four campgrounds come with their own sets of challenging tracks, however, The Beach definitely stands out from the bunch. Situated down a steep trail that keeps 2WDs away, it’s close to some challenging tracks, including the Bald Hill Trail, one of the steepest and rockiest tracks in the area.
Yengo National Park
Another National Park to the north of the city, Yengo National Park boasts some great campsites and enjoyable 4WD tracks. The two main campsites are Blue Gums and Mountain Arm. Expect to get charged approximately $17 a night as an adult.
Howes Trail is one of the most fun 4×4 tracks in the area, which also happens to be one of the entrance points to the park. When dry, the track is not particularly difficult, and with a good 4WD (such as the durable Ford Ranger Raptor), you should be fine even in the wet.
Another popular trail that keeps drivers coming back to Yengo is the Big Yengo loop trail, which is locked and only accessible to those who pay to stay at one of the campgrounds. Although not particularly difficult, the track is fun and always well-maintained.
Always make sure you’re fully equipped for the 4WD journey ahead. Click here to learn more about the latest and most powerful 4WD models in the market.