Equestrian Tips

January 17, 2023

Sydney National Parks with horse trails

Looking for a place to take your horse trail riding in Greater Sydney?

Check out these horse friendly National Parks below! Each includes a bit of information about the trails offered, float parking and more.

Have more I should add? Leave a comment at the end!

Pictured: Scheyville National Park

Hawkesbury & the Blue Mountains:

Scheyville National Park

The Scheyville National park is located in Maraylya, so is easily accessible for those in the Hawkesbury and parts of the Hills District. Scheyville offers 12km of easy riding trails for riders of all experience levels. There are nice spaces for float parking, and a sweet clearing right nearby, perfect for photo sessions. The park is open from 8am to 5pm (8pm during daylight savings) and is completely free. These trails are used by mountain bikers and walkers as well as horse riders. Dogs aren’t permitted, which can be a pleasant bonus for some equestrians. The trails will be closed in wet weather due to the risk of damage to the trails. These are reasonably flat, easy trails with no steep or difficult terrain. 

Wollemi National Park

Part of Wollemi National Park is the horse-friendly Wheeney Creek Campground trails. Head down Comleroy Road to find this trail. Parts of the track get quite steep for a float, so parking at the bottom, and crossing the creek on horse is recommended. This is a great track if you’re a fan of hill work, with challenging hills on offer. Parts are a 4WD track, and on weekends can be very busy with bikes and cars.

Blue Mountains National Park

One of the Blue Mountains National Park’s offerings is the 5.1km Riley’s Mountain Trail in Mulgoa. Parking is at the end of Fairlight Road (approximately 2km of dirt road.) This track is a popular spot to take your horse for a trail ride, and offers a relatively easy ride and beautiful views. This can be frequented by bikes, but dogs aren’t permitted.

Gardens of Stone National Park

A great option for equestrians in the upper Blue Mountains and Lithgow is the Crown Creek firetrail. It’s part of the Gardens of Stone National park in Capertee, Central West. The Crown Creek trail is part of the Bicentennial trail that stretches from Cooktown in QLD to Healesville in VIC. The Gardens of Stone national park is always open, but this is a remote location so make sure you are self reliant and confident in your abilities before tackling this trail. 

The Ben Bullen trail is another section of the Bicentennial trail in the Gardens of Stone national park. This trail is used by 4WDs but there are lots of places for a picnic stop and a rest. Mobile phone reception is limited on this trail. 

Hills, North Sydney & the Central Coast

Also see Scheyville National Park.

Marramarra National Park

The Canoelands Ridge trail in the Marramarra National park, past Maroota, is an 18km return trail through gullies and over ridges. This is a medium difficulty trail with some steep sections and some rough gravel. The trail is shared with walkers and cyclists. Make sure to bring your own drinking water as this is a long ride and there are no facilities. The park is always open and there is no cost to ride here. It’s most accessible by Hawkesbury, Hills & North Sydney equestrians.

Garigal National Park

The Cascades trail in Garigal National Park is a great option for equestrians in North Sydney. Cascades is a short, 3.2km trail along a firetrail, including a creek crossing. There’s a fee for parking ($8 for a day stay) at the Davidson end, but not at the St Ives end. It’s open from 6am to 6.30pm (8pm during daylight savings) and is a popular spot for bushwalkers and mountain bikers. 

The Cascade trail also connects to the Heath and Bare Creek trails which cover tougher terrain with a steeper grade. It’s about 3.7km one way. The downward slope is popular with mountain bikers. 

Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park

The Perimeter trail in the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park includes 21km of scenic trails designated for horse riding. The Perimeter trail is a 7km loop around the edge of the park, which also connects to other trails such as Long Trail for further exploration. The park is open from sunrise to sunset. There is a $12 parking fee per day. Mountain bikes and walkers also use these trails. It’s a great option for horse riders in North Sydney or parts of the Central Coast.

Popran National Park

The Mount Olive trail in Popran National Park, near Glenworth Valley on the Central Coast is a 4km (one way) trail through a scenic wilderness to a lookout that provides stunning views over the Hawkesbury. Make sure to bring water as there are no facilities here.

The 248 trail (so named because it’s 248m above sea level) is an easy 2.5km (one way) trail with plenty of areas to stop and rest. 

The Popran National Park is always open. Mountain bikers do use this trail but are requested to give right of way to walkers and horse riders. The carpark is also dirt and isn’t recommended for low clearance vehicles. 


Want to keep up to date with the status of National Park horse riding trails around Sydney?

You can keep an eye on the closure status of these parks on the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service’s page. Filter for horse riding under ‘things to do’ and you’ll see if it’s closed due to floods, fire, or have limited hours due to pest control. Find that information here.


Want to find more trails around Sydney?

You can head to a new app called Ponyventure where people can upload their favourite trail riding spots!


Looking for people to trail ride with in Sydney?

You can join the Australian Trail Horse Riders Association group and find your local club. You can also join the Western Sydney Weekday Riders group on facebook.


Hope that helps!

These National Parks are fantastic options for cross training, a relaxing weekend, or a photo session!

Want to learn more about HSP photo sessions?

9 reasons why you should be in photos with your horse

what if my horse won't stand still?


I always recommend being IN the photographs with your horse.
Find out why here.


Spoiler: no horse does! Read about some ways you can prepare your horse, and how we manage spicy horses on the day.


presentation tips for your equine photoshoot


what if i don't have a pretty property?

Take a behind the scenes look at some locations I've photographed, and see some options for if you're still unsure about your property!

Take the stress out of your day with tips for getting your horse picture perfect! 

blog faves

(very important horse person)

are you a v.I.H.P?

I believe that everyone, at every price point, deserves stunning photographs with their horse.

That's why I offer a taste-test of the HSP experience on selected occasions:

Pop-up studio at horse shows
Group sessions with friends or at your agistment available on request
Seasonal mini sessions (sunflower, autumn, lavender, wattle, Christmas mini sessions)

Pop-up studio at horse shows

Group sessions with friends or at your agistment available on request

Seasonal mini sessions (sunflower, autumn, lavender, wattle, Christmas mini sessions)

Be the first to hear about these events by getting on the V.I.H.P list. 
Don't worry - I'm not into spam... too busy riding!