I have a friend visiting me in Sydney and we plan to take the early train to Katoomba Nov 24, staying one night at the Carrington Hotel. We plan to drop off our bags and then head to off to the National Pass hike. The second day I want to do the giant staircase to the lift up to Scenic World(which I've done before) but am not interested in spending time on any other rides. I have been to the Blue Mountains/Three Sisters area before and want to see more - views, waterfalls - and more of the area.
1) What is the best transportation from Carrington Hotel to the starting point for the National Pass?
If we use the HOHO, will we be wasting money since the hike takes so long, don't need all the other stops? Or maybe we do? I've heard that the HOHO takes you exactly where you want to go vs. long walks from train or bus stops to the actually place you want to see.
2) After the National Pass what is the best way to get back to Katoomba? Other posts have said to walk through town or take the Darwin walk to the train station. Is that the consensus or is there other transportation?
3) Leura seems like a nice town. Is there anything other than tea and shopping?
4) Any suggestions on shorter hikes to other waterfalls in the afternoon? I love waterfalls. I have a hard time understanding the hike listing on the links posted on other questions so appreciate input.
5) Any restaurants or hotels with terraces or views to stop for a drink at the end of the day if you are staying in Katoomba?
We'll both have Opal cards. Thank you for your help and input.