Combining a man-made pool with a naturally fed spring, the Yarrangobilly Caves Thermal Pool has become the main attraction in Australia’s Kosciuszko National Park. The perfect place to relax after a long bushwalk, visitors can enjoy the pool’s warm waters.
Sitting along the edge, the pool is backdropped by an impressive forest with hiking trails, caves, and picnic areas. Nestled in a valley of eucalyptus trees, the pool is close to the Yarrangobilly River. With much warmer water than the river, the thermal pool is suitable for swimming all year long.
Featuring one large main pool, a shallower pool at the end is perfect for visiting youngsters and families.
Somewhat remote, the hike to the Yarrangobilly Caves Thermal Pool is challenging but doable for most tourists. The walk to the pool takes about 35 minutes and it is very steep. Additional attractions near the thermal pool include the caves, river, and various trails.
Emerging from the forest, the thermal pool feels magical with its deep blue hue and balmy water. When combined with a picnic, visitors can easily spend the day lounging poolside while enjoying time in the great outdoors.
The Yarrangobilly Caves Thermal Pool is naturally fed by an underwater spring that is located about 0.6 miles (1km) underground. Bubbling to the surface, the temperature of the water is a perfect 80.6°F (27°C) all year long.
As the subterranean water travels to the surface, it is mildly mineralized by the rocks and soil. Minerals that are found in the water of the thermal pool include magnesium, calcium, sodium, as well as a little calcium carbonate.
There are technically two thermal pools at the Yarrangobilly Caves. However, they are connected and use the same thermal water. The first pool is 65.6 feet long (20 meters) and 8.2 feet (2.5 meters) deep. As the largest pool, it is suitable for adult swimmers. It is normal for a layer of algae to grow on the sides of the large pool and it is not harmful to swimmers.
At the end of the large pool is a smaller wading pool for children. Water from the large pool flows into the children’s pool to ensure that it also maintains a consistent temperature throughout the year. Swimmers can use ladders to access the larger pool, while the shallower pool is just a few feet deep to ensure that it is safe for wading children.
Even though the thermal pool is man-made, the water is very natural as it flows from underground through the pools and to the Yarrangobilly River. Although the pool is regularly cleaned by park rangers, the water is never treated with chemicals. It is common to spot Eastern Banjo Frogs in the pool. The frogs can secrete poison when touched, so it’s best to leave them alone.
Surrounding the pools are a grassy hill and a large lawn. The flat grassy areas are perfect places to lay down a picnic blanket. There are also a few picnic areas around the pool with tables and benches. Nearby trees provide shade during the hot summer months.
In addition to the picnic area, facilities at the Yarrangobilly Caves Thermal Pool include changing rooms and toilets. There are also trash cans throughout the area, so people won’t have to pack out any garbage.
Currently, the pool is not handicap accessible. The walkway to get to the thermal pool from the parking lot is very steep, but well-maintained. Visitors will have to walk 0.43 miles (0.7km) to get to the thermal pool along a wide, dirt road. The trip down to the pool can be just as difficult as the trip up because of the steep grade.
Depending on the hiker, most people will be able to reach the pool in 15-30 minutes of walking. The trail is very clearly marked, so visitors won’t have to worry about getting lost in the surrounding bushland. Visitors who would like to avoid the steep walk back to the parking lot can loop back to their car by taking the Yarrangobilly Caves – River Walk instead.
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Camping overnight at the Yarrangobilly Caves Thermal Pool is not permitted. Both the thermal pool and Kosciuszko National Park are remote destinations. There are not many accommodations in the area. The closest overnight accommodation to the thermal pool is the Yarrangobilly Caves House, which is owned and operated by the National Park.
The Yarrangobilly Caves House has luxurious guest rooms situated in a heritage building. The house is within walking distance of the thermal pool, caves, river, and various hiking trails. Guests who are staying overnight at the Yarrangobilly Caves House will have to bring all of their own supplies including food, water, and fuel.
There is limited space at the house, so visitors should contact the National Parks Contact Centre to make reservations in advance. During both summer and winter holidays, the Yarrangobilly Caves House is often booked months in advance.
The only other places to stay are in the larger towns of Tumut and Adaminaby. Both towns are about a 1-hour drive away from the Yarrangobilly Caves Thermal Pool. Tumut and Adaminaby will have plenty of accommodation options including hotels, motels, and camping parks.
Check prices, availability or book Yarrangobilly Caves House
The Yarrangobilly Caves Thermal Pool is 3.9 miles (6.4km) outside of Yarrangobilly, New South Wales, Australia. As of Australia’s 2021 census, Yarrangobilly has a population of 0. While there may be a few unrecorded permanent residents, most of the people staying long-term in the area are park rangers.
Yarrangobilly can still be found on a map and for people trying to visit the thermal pool, the directions from the rural locality are easy to follow.
To get to the Yarrangobilly Caves Thermal Pool from Yarrangobilly:
- Head south on Yarrangobilly Caves Road towards Karst Loop.
- To stay on Yarrangobilly Caves Road, turn left.
- Follow Yarrangobilly Caves Road until you get to the Thermal Pool Car Park Road/Thermal Pool Trail.
- Turn right.
- The parking lot for the thermal pool will be on the right.
To get to Yarrangobilly from Tumut:
- Head south on Blowering Road/Snowy Mountains Highway/B72 towards Blowering Service Road.
- Continue on the Snowy Mountains Highway/B72 until you reach Yarrangobilly.
To get to Yarrangobilly from Adaminaby:
- Head south on Denison Street towards Baker Street.
- Turn right on Baker Street.
- Turn left on Denison Street.
- Turn right onto the Snowy Mountains Highway/B72.
- Continue on the Snow Mountains Highway/B72 until you reach Yarrangobilly.
Address: Thermal Pool Walk, Yarrangobilly NSW 2720, Australia
Coordinates: 35.7311°S, 148.4860°E
Phone: (+61) 02 6454 9597 – Yarrangobilly Caves Visitor Centre
Accommodation Reservations: (+61) 9995 6500 (overseas number), (+61) 1300 072 757 (local number) – National Parks Contact Centre
Age Restrictions: No
Pets: Not permitted
Entry: Fee per vehicle, per day