Katoomba is deemed the ‘capitol’ of the Blue Mountains. When visiting Katoomba, be sure the weather is favourable. If the weather is off, cloudy or misty there is nothing to see, and worse nothing to do but leave. Katoomba is that sort of place. The converse applies when the weather is on song, and then this place is joyful.
Kedumba or Katta-toon-bah is an Aboriginal term for "shining falling water" or "water tumbling over hill" and takes its name from a waterfall that drops into Harrys Amphitheatre escarpment. The name Katoomba was adopted in 1877 and the town achieved municipality status in 1889.
Katoomba was first developed as a tourist destination towards the end of the 19th century when the Carrington Hotel was built and then repeatedly extended. Both of the traditional pubs are also 100 years old. The Hotel Gearin is a great railway hosting classic.
In the 1980s, the guest houses and hotels again became fashionable and many were restored to their former glory. However, since the late 1990s tourism to the area has once again leveled off. Tourism though is totally dependent on the weather.