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Jenolan Caves via Bells Line of Road

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40 posts
Jenolan Caves via Bells Line of Road


Would appreciate if I receive answers on this. We (3 adults n kids aged 15 &13) are arriving on 18 Nov (Thurs) at 7.30am, picking a prebooked car and driving to Jenolan caves via Bells Line of Road, Lithgow and Oberon. After the caves, drive to Katoomba and stay the night.

My questions:

1) How long does it normally take to clear the customs?

2) How many hours is the ride from Sydney airport to Bells Line of Road, Oberon and finally Jenolan Caves?

3) Where are the places that we can stop by along the Bells Line of Road? We would like to reach the caves by 1pm for Orient (1.30pm) and Temple of Baal (4pm). Are we too ambitious to do 2 caves or should we just do 1 cave and spend more time exploring other places of interest along Bells?

4) are the caves crowded in the afternoon on a Thurs?

5) What time does it get dark in Nov?

6) Driving back to Sydney on Friday evening to YHA, the Rocks. Not sure if we can return the car to Hertz by 5.30pm. Are there any resonably priced and safe overnight parking around YHA, the Rocks? What are the estimated fees?

Sorry, I have so many questions. Appreciate any answers.



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11. Re: Jenolan Caves via Bells Line of Road

Coles in Katoomba (cnr Park & Waratah Streets) is open 6am - midnight.

Sydney, Australia
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12. Re: Jenolan Caves via Bells Line of Road

Your revised itinerary sounds better. While it's a reasonably nice country town, I wouldn't make a detour to Oberon unless you have a specific reason. Lithgow is probably best avoided, unless you have an interest in small arms factories. Little Hartley is on your way and is worth a 15-20 minute stop to look at the old courthouse and the little convict built houses. Mount Victoria is a nice place for lunch, Mt Tomah has large Botanic Gardens with lots of native plants.

Best way to Sydney from Jenolan Caves via Bells Line of Road:


Drive back from Jenolan to Great Western Highway. Turn right onto the Great Western Highway, back towards the Blue Mountains to Mount Victoria. At Mount Victoria, turn left at the lights - I think the sign says "Bell". You will come to an intersection at Bell - turn right, the sign says "Richmond, Windsor". Follow Bells Line of Road for about 60km. Once in Richmond there are signs to Sydney.

But definitely get a GPS...

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
748 posts
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13. Re: Jenolan Caves via Bells Line of Road

1) Yes, this plan is definitely more doable. The route you will take to Katoomba is an easier drive than the Bells Line of Road, and you will have more time on the following day to appreciate the drive.

2) The usual way from Jenolan Caves to Bells Line of Road is via Hampton, up to Hartley and then up Victoria Pass to Mount Victoria, then Darling Causeway across to Bell, and then a right turn down the mountains from there.


The alternative is to drive to Oberon and then through the Tarana Valley back to the highway. The Tarana Valley is quite a pretty drive (although there's not much to look at by way of attractions), but the main road you probably have been looking at ("Hazelgrove Road") is partially dirt, so I wouldn't recommend driving it. There is an alternative road though that will avoid the dirt. See the route below:


This second route also goes through Lithgow and goes past the Zig Zag Railway to get to the Bells Line of Road.

Make sure you visit Hartley on the way down at least- it's one of the early historic towns in the Blue Mountains which has remained largely intact - some of the buildings are open to the public, but even if they're not it's worth a short walk long the road to see the historic buildings.

3) The tolls you'll want are on the route from the airport to the Blue Mountains. You will take the M5 motorway, part of which is tolled and then the M7 motorway.


The next day you'll need tolls for the M7 again, the M2 (which has cash booths), the Lane Cove Tunnel and the Harbour Bridge.


For all your tolling needs, try this site: http://sydneymotorways.com/

It will give you links to the various toll passes you will need to sign up for (unfortunately you will need to sign up for several of them) and how to apply for each.

Sydney Airport to Katoomba will be $10.61 (M5 and M7 tolls).

Blue Mountains to Sydney (via M2 motorway and Harbour Bridge) will be $12.35 maximum (M7, M2, Lane Cove Tunnel and Harbour Bridge tolls). At some times of day it will be less because the Harbour Bridge toll drops outside of peak hour.

Level Contributor
40 posts
14. Re: Jenolan Caves via Bells Line of Road

Tx Spencer Benjamin and RobSyd for both yr detailed information. I am going to print this out and dont think I'll get lost. But, yes, will get the GPS too. Am feeling more certain of my trip now. Thanks!!

15. Re: Jenolan Caves via Bells Line of Road

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