Sydney’s world-famous Northern Beaches are fringed by the Pacific Ocean and stretch from Sydney Harbour right down to Manly, Broken Bay and the Palm Beach peninsula. Whether you want to top up your tan, cool off in a sparkling ocean pool or enjoy a leisurely lunch at a waterfront cafe, beach hopping your way through Sydney’s north is considered a rite of passage.
Things to do in Northern Beaches
With its lively harbour and gorgeous shoreline, Manly rivals Bondi for the title of Sydney’s most popular beach. It’s an eternal favourite with surfers, which makes it a great place to sign up for a lesson. Manly also serves up a fantastic selection of contemporary bars, cafes and restaurants.
Sydney is famous for its sparkling ocean pools, and the Northern Beaches boast some of the best. Carved out of rock in the 1930s, North Curl Curl Rock Pool is a stunning spot for a swim. For a more secluded swim, try the ocean pool at Bilgola Beach.
Just north of Manly is family-friendly Freshwater. Fringed by a grassy park, it is a great spot for a picnic. Nearby Collaroy Beach is another popular stretch of sand, with laid-back vibes and an upbeat cafe strip.
Palm Beach marks the end of Sydney’s Northern Beaches and is an ideal spot to enjoy a windswept coastal walk to the historic Barrenjoey Lighthouse. You can also head down to the Palm Beach Wharf where you’ll find a wooden fishing pier and breezy waterside cafe.
Getting around Northern Beaches
The Northern Beaches are serviced by a regular ferry that runs between Circular Quay and Manly. The trip is incredibly scenic, cruising past the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. Renting a car is a great way to hop around Sydney’s Northern Beaches at your own pace.