“Royal National Park…home to the Figure of 8 Pools…”
Emma & Nathan’s Travels
After wolfing down a dominos pizza in record time Tuesday evening following our day out at the Blue Mountains National Park, alarms were set for Wednesday to visit Royal National Park, hoping to catch a glimpse of the stunning Figure of Eight Pools. I was directing, which never ends well and in true tradition with my shitty direction giving, the place I took us to wasn’t where we were meant to be. Instead we were about fifteen miles out from the actual place we were meant to park, Garawarra Farm. With my brother at the helm that meant rally driving those last miles until we reached the car park and my feet could be planted firmly on the ground. There were five cars in the car park and with our bags filled with snacks and drinks off we went.The first park of the walk was descending through the forest along stoney, tree door covered tracks. The walk was meant to be a six hour round trip somehow but we made it down pretty quickly.We found ourselves at an opening in the forest to views that were just breathtaking. The path had gone from a beaten trek to a mesh boardwalk amongst the greenery overlooking the ocean.As we walked along the cliff top we were greeted by houses, yes houses, perched along the edge. One grumpy man told us in no uncertain terms that we aren’t to climb over the rocks to the figure of eight pools. Ok we had realised it wasn’t low tide so we had no chance of hopping over the rocks to see the pools, but still, clearly we looked stupid to this man. Nevertheless, onwards we trekked until we found ourselves down on the beach.The waves were huge crashing down on the beach washing up several blue jellyfish. I say several, there must have been hundreds!After much deliberating about what to do as we couldn’t get round to the pools, my brother ventured off up a hill and about ten minutes later we followed.We reached the top and decided then would be as good a time as any to feast on our donuts and muffins! Stomachs filled, onwards we went, no idea where to mind, but forwards. We came to a sign that showed an original trek back down to the figure of eight pools, but it was closed. That being said, ‘Dora’ and ‘Duracell’ went down to explore.They couldn’t see a way down to the pools so we decided to head up the track in front of us and then back along the Garawarra Trail to the car park.The water was so blue. We had no idea where the trail was taking us but persevered anyway through the trees and up so many steps it felt like I was on the Inca Trail again.We came to a lookout which seemed to show up pretty much at the top of the trees so surely that had to be near the end right? Wrong! After climbing even more stairs for about another half an hour we reached the sign and a huge pathway for the Garawarra Trail. The home straight! The last part of the trail was 2.5 miles long and we were even greeted by a swamp wallaby chilling in the grass by the car! What a way to end the walk!So even though we had walked for miles with no idea where we’d end up, the views were amazing despite not seeing the figure of eight pools and we managed to see a wild wallaby!