Bushland bathing

I recently learned of Shinrin-yoku, a Japanese term that loosely translates to forest bathing; the idea that taking a long walk through a forest has restorative health properties. I don’t know about you, but I know exactly the feeling. I recently did some forest bathing of my own, when S took me for a walk along the Cascades Track, in the Garigal National Park in northern Sydney.

Now this is about as close to forest bathing as I think you’ll get in Sydney – except the word ‘forest’ isn’t commonly used in Sydney. But bushland is. And that’s basically a forest. So I’m going to adapt the term for Australian market, and henceforth refer to bushland bathing.

And here we have the ultimate: bushland with a bathing pool. These used to be public bathing pools back in the day, but fell out of use – I think due to water quality issues. Thus, I wouldn’t recommend you actually bathe in the truest sense of the word in this water.

The pools are fed by a cute series of cascades, which trickle over flat rocks containing a scattering of intriguing potholes.

Why they were there, where they went or how they got there I have no idea. But I watched my step very carefully.

I loved the craggy overhangs, the still water, and the dogs who arrived halfway through our walk to go for a swim and kept falling in the potholes (I really wish I could get a dog).

Sometimes I forget how much I like bushland bathing.

And then I get out and put my feet on something that’s not asphalt, listen to the sound of nature, and get too sweaty and tomato-faced. And it’s always worth it.

More about shinrin-yoku here.




  1. 8th February 2018 / 23:29

    I’ve never heard of this term before but I like it! 🙂 I don’t often get out into nature, it’s not easy with the little ones, but a trip to the park and even just sitting outside in the sun can really make a difference! 🙂

    Hope you’re having a good week so far. I’m busy, but not as much as last week, so that’s nice! 🙂

    Away From The Blue Blog

  2. Jen
    9th February 2018 / 13:49

    How cool!!!! It’s amazing how good it can feel to enjoy the sunshine!

  3. 10th February 2018 / 02:48

    Wauw it looks so cool! I hope to visit something similar this year, although it will be all the way in Mexico. Here in the Netherlands, you would never find anything similar sadly.

  4. 12th February 2018 / 20:42

    I’ve never heard of this term either!

    I’m a bit of a weirdo because I don’t like water. I love showers – but swimming or bathing? Nope!

  5. 13th February 2018 / 01:13

    Given the size of that alligator on your stories this weekend, I don’t think I’ll be getting in any bushland water… though this looks absolutely lovely for a walk. I’ve heard that alligators can only sprint, essentially, due to the size of their legs, so maybe I could outrun one if they popped up for a visit.

  6. 17th February 2018 / 04:07

    Definitely all about the nature bathing – by the sea would be my favourite, but I agree, anytime I remember to get out into the green I enjoy it so much!

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