Situated a scenic 6-hour drive from Melbourne, a 5-hour drive from Sydney, and only 20 minutes from the lakeside town of Jindabyne, Kosciuszko National Park is one of the top-rated attractions in the Snowy Mountains of NSW.
Kosciuszko National Park encompasses 6,000 square kilometers of rugged alpine landscapes with limestone caves and gorges, snow gum forests, meadows of wildflowers, glacial alpine lakes, the Australian Alps, and the headwaters of the mighty Snowy River.
This exceptionally scenic region of NSW is a popular playground for outdoor enthusiasts in all four seasons. The winter months bring world-class winter sports at Australia’s top-rated ski resorts, vibey après ski, and endless adventures in the snowy mountain landscapes. As the summer season sets in, visitors have miles of wildflower trails for bushwalking, biking, and horse riding, and scenic rivers, streams, and alpine lakes for trout fishing, kayaking, river sledding, and boating.
A scenic drive on Alpine Way and Snowy Mountain Highway is a wonderful way to explore the park. Some of the roads are closed in the winter months so always be well-prepared for winter driving in the Snowy Mountains.
If it’s your first time in the area, we highly suggest adventuring with a backcountry tour guide for the ultimate touring experience of Kosciuszko National Park. Our local tour guides have been operating in the Snowy Mountains for years and have an intimate knowledge of the history, unique alpine ecosystem, and wildlife in the park and surrounding areas.
Our team at Alpine Country Holidays live and play in the Snowy Mountains all year long. We love sharing our local experiences and have compiled our top 10 things to do in Kosciuszko National Park with bucket-list adventures for your trip to the Snowy Mountains of NSW.
#1 Visit Perisher & Thredbo Ski Resort
Kosciuszko National Park is home to four ski areas – Perisher Ski Resort, Thredbo, and Charlotte Pass Snow Resort near Jindabyne, and the Selwyn Snow Resort in the northern section of Kosciuszko National Park. In the winter months, you can ski or snowboard the highest runs in Australia (day and night), cross-country ski the Nordic trails, toboggan the slopes, and enjoy classic snow play in the Australian Alps.
The alpine activities at Thredbo continue on through summer with Australia’s only lift-access MTB Park, an Alpine Bobsled, Australia’s highest golf course, shopping and restaurants in Thredbo Village, a huge summer events calendar, and scenic summer chairlift rides.
#2 Ride The Kosciuszko Express Chairlift
Riding the Kosciuszko Express Chairlift at Thredbo is one of the best summer activities in the Snowies. The 15-minute journey covers a distance of nearly 2km, climbing 560 vertical meters, and delivering panoramic views of Mount Kosciuszko, the majestic Snowy River, and the Ramshead Range of the Snowy Mountains.
Break for a bite to eat and a cold Kosci Pale Ale at the Eagle’s Nest, Australia’s highest restaurant, then head out on the walking track behind the chairlift station to the Kosciuszko Lookout or on to the summit of Mt. Kosciuszko.
#3 Hike the Highest Mountain in Australia
At an elevation of 2,228 meters above sea level, Mount Kosciuszko is Australia’s highest peak and a bucket-list adventure in Kosciuszko National Park. The easiest route to the summit is from the top of the Kosciuszko Express Chairlift for a 13km return trip of approximately 4-5 hours. The trail passes Lake Cootapatamba and onto Rawson Pass where it meets the Summit Walk from Charlotte Pass (and the location of Australia’s highest toilet!). The track from Charlotte Pass is a longer 18.6km all-day return trip.
The Mount Kosciuszko summit hike or mountain bike boasts breathtaking alpine views of the Snowy Mountains, Snowy River crossings, historic huts, weathered snow gums, and fascinating rock formations. This bucket-list hike is best done between December and March after the snowmelt with the wildflowers in full bloom. For more epic trails, check out our guide to the best hiking trails and mountain bike trails in the Snowy Mountains.
#4 Drive to Charlotte Pass Lookout
Situated past Thredbo and Perisher at the end of Kosciuszko Road is Charlotte Pass Snow Resort, the highest resort in Australia at 1760 meters above sea level. The resort is snowbound in the winter and accessible only by over-snow transport from the Perisher Skitube, but is easily accessible in the summer.
Charlotte Pass is the starting point for the Mt. Kosciuszko summit walk, but a short stroll on the Snow Gums boardwalk to the Charlotte Pass Lookout delivers equally awe-inspiring views of the spectacular Snowy Mountains.
#5 Stroll or Snowshoe the Thredbo River Track
One of our favorite things to do in the Mount Kosciuszko region is stroll or snowshoe along the Thredbo River Track. The trail follows the Thredbo River for 4km from the Thredbo Golf Course to Dead Horse Gap with footbridges across the river, snow gum woodlands, granite boulders, and fields of wildflowers in spring and summer.
For a longer walk, continue along the Dead Horse Gap walking track with snow gum forests, alpine heaths, wildlife sightings of wombats, kangaroos, and wild brumbies, and breathtaking views of the Ramshead Range, Crackenback Mountain, and the Thredbo Valley.
#6 Horse Riding with Wild Brumbies in the Thredbo Valley
Wild brumbies are a quintessential experience in Kosciuszko National Park and are regularly spotted roaming free in the backcountry. You may not be able to ride them, but there’s an opportunity to experience them in their natural habitat on a horse riding tour of the wild and scenic Thredbo Valley in Kosciuszko National Park.
Thredbo Valley Horse Riding in Crackenback offers a range of trail rides in all four seasons! Owners, Nev and Linda, love to share stories of the iconic horseman of the Snowy Mountains while touring the untouched wilderness on their mountain-bred horses.
#7 Paddle & Fish the Snowy River
The headwaters of the mighty Snowy River originate on the snowy slopes of Mt. Kosciuszko in Kosciuszko National Park and flow through to the Pacific Ocean in the sleepy seaside town of Marlo, Victoria. Whether you’re after a gentle paddle and fishing excursion, a guided kayaking tour, or adrenaline-infused white water rafting adventures, unique experiences await on the Snowy River.
#8 Yarrangobilly Caves
Take a scenic drive on the Snowy Mountain Highway to explore the Yarrangobilly Caves in the wild northern region of Kosciuszko National Park. Dating back an estimated 440 million years, the unusual limestone caverns feature 217 steps, soda straw stalactites, towering stalagmites, and fascinating underground rock formations stretching through 6 amazing caves. Guided tours are available year-round, dress warm, and bring your bathers!
After exploring the Yarrangobilly Caves, follow the short but steep track from the car park down to the thermal pools, heated to a warm 27 degrees year-round. The thermal pools are situated in a tranquil wooded setting on the banks of the Yarrangobilly River with a picnic area, restrooms, and changing facilities to make a day of it!
#9 Food & Drinks in the Australian Alps
There is a fun foodie and aprés ski vibe year-round in Kosciuszko National Park. You’ll find a wide selection of cafes and coffee shops, slopeside restaurants, and aprés ski bars at Thredbo and Perisher Ski Resort, casual and fine dining at Lake Crackenback Resort, the famous Wildbrumby Schnapps Distillery on Alpine Way, and fun pubs and restaurants with international and local cuisine of every kind in the charming town of Jindabyne.
#10 Visit Lake Jindabyne
Jindabyne is the gateway town to Kosciuszko National Park, and a cool destination to visit in its own right! You’ll need to make a stop at the Snowy Region Visitor Center in Jindabyne to pick up maps, brochures, and your pass for Kosciuszko National Park, but we encourage you to take some time to explore the town of Jindabyne and the waters of Lake Jindy.
Alpine Country Holidays offer a wide range of holiday accommodation options in Kosciuszko National Park from the shoreline of Lake Jindy to the alpine settings of Lake Crackenback and Thredbo Resort. Book your Snowy Mountain holiday online, or give a team a call today on 1300-916-454.