If you are stepping into the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, be sure to walk the Aboriginal Heritage Walk: a glimpse into the rock art and engravings of the Guringai people of West Head.

The traditional lands of the Guringai Nation being the location of the National Park, the walk takes you through the land of the people where the culture of the Guringai Nation is on display through their art and engravings. The entire walk is about 4.5 km and is estimated to take between two to three and a half hours. If you are not willing to commit the time, a 1km route is also available that takes you to the best-known site in the park – Red Hands Cave. Mere ten minutes from the head of the trail, no evidence has yet been discovered to determine how old the art found in the cave is, but it emanates an ageless glory to all who witness them. If you continue along the larger loop, you would then pass impressive rock engravings that proudly declare a history both rich and wondrous. Walk further along, and you will come to a shelter, a historical remnant where the Aboriginal families would camp in during colder months, lighting a fire that would warm the stones and in turn transform the shelter to a cosy nook.

It is important that the visitor to the walk pays due respect to the land. According to historical sources, the inhabitants of West Head were completely wiped off by an outbreak of smallpox within a year of arrival of the First Fleet. The ground beneath your feet has witnessed so much sadness and heartbreak, that it is vital you stop to feel the thrum of life.

Lodging at a place that is in the vicinity of this historical excursion such as Somerset on Elizabeth Melbourne, one of the many Melbourne Serviced Apartments, or at a hotel in Elizabeth Melbourne would make the experience all the more convenient and enjoyable.

Pushpitha Wijesinghe is an experienced independent freelance writer. He specializes in providing a wide variety of content and articles related to the travel hospitality industry.