Why are the Blue Mountains blue?

One of the questions you might ask when visiting the Blue Mountains is this: Why are the Blue Mountains blue? The azure hue of the region sure provides a mystical twist to your Blue Mountains tours experience.


An hour drive is all you take to reach the Blue Mountains from Sydney CBD. Its close proximity to the New South Wales capital, about 50 kilometres, make the World Heritage listed national park a popular Sydney tours destination.

Comprising of rugged mountains, sandstone formations and escarpments, canyons, and plateaus the region offers the best highlights to your Blue Mountains tours – the amazing views and panoramic landscapes. The Blue Mountains area is dotted with impressive waterfalls and lined with rivers and waterways, and its verdure rainforests host a range of different varieties of native wild animal species.

A blue haze blankets the region when viewed from a distance, hence the name Blue Mountains. Forests of eucalyptus and gum trees grow in the area. All four different types of eucalyptus trees covered the hills, mountains, valleys, canyons, and plateaus. These eucalyptus forests emit a huge amount of oils into the atmosphere. When eucalyptus oils, dust particles, and water vapour combine, as the sunlight hits, it creates an optical illusion of a blue haze. The light allows the eyes to see the blue pigments in the atmosphere.

So there, that’s the reason why the Blue Mountains are blue. Getting there, however, would not make your Blue Mountains tours blue. In fact, your spirit will be rejuvenated because of such beauteous a hue.

On 29 November 2000, UNESCO listed the Greater Blue Mountains Area as a World Heritage Area. UNESCO cited the dense eucalyptus vegetation of the Blue Mountains and its biodiversity. From the alpine terrains to plateaus, from swamps and wetlands to grasslands, and from woodlands to the waterways, the Blue Mountains hosts a rich biodiversity.

Explore the Blue Mountains by starting with the big-ticket item: The Three Sisters, an iconic rock formation on Echo Point. From an escarpment, you have a magnificent view of the sandstone formation. Not far from the Three Sisters is Mount Solitary, and farther to the right is the Narrow Neck Plateau.

Climb down to the Jamison Valley through the Great Stairway and walk a little further to the base of Katoomba Falls. Or, if you are courageous enough who is not afraid of height, take the Scenic Skyway. You will be rewarded with a bird’s eye view of the magnificent Katoomba Falls.

Explore a little further to the charming town of Blackheath. Near the town is the Govetts Leap Falls where from a lookout, your eyes will feast on the beauty of this natural wonder. The landscape is accentuated by the quaint waterfall, and below is the impressive Grose Valley. The surrounding forests are teeming with wildlife.

On the forks and branches of gums and eucalyptus trees, you may spot some wild koalas either sleeping or chomping on eucalyptus leaves. Be always on the lookout for wild kangaroos and other wild animals. And enjoy the company of lovely parrots and other colourful birds.

Explore more about the region on your next Blue Mountains tours. The experience is guaranteed to be worth it – terrific landscapes, wonderful natural scenery, abundant flora and fauna, rich Aboriginal heritage and culture, and all.


By Kelvene Requiroso, content writer and member of the SEO team of the Melbourne-based Get Lost Travel Group.

| Blog