Sydney's 15 Best Beaches

Sydney, Australia is home to some of the world’s most beautiful beaches. Whatever your style, this insider's guide will find a beach for you.

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Photo By: Destination NSW

Photo By: Tourism Australia

Photo By: Destination NSW

Photo By: Destination NSW

Photo By: Destination NSW

Photo By: Destination NSW

Photo By: Destination NSW

Photo By: Filippo Rivetti

Photo By: Destination NSW

Photo By: Andrew Gregory Destination NSW

Photo By: Destination NSW

Photo By: Andrew Gregory Destination NSW

Photo By: Tourism Australia

Photo By: Andrew Gregory Destination NSW

Photo By: Destination NSW

Manly Beach

Manly’s beautiful yellow sand will make you want to stay all day. This is one of the larger beaches in Sydney, and the Australian Open surfing competition is held here every February. We suggest taking a ferry from Circular Quay you’ll ride right by the Opera House and exploring the Corso, a pedestrian-only strip filled with shops and eateries, before hitting the shore.

Bondi Beach

There’s a reason this is Australia's most famous beach. Bondi embodies Sydney's laid-back surfer vibe and is home to the world-famous Icebergs Club. We suggest starting the day with brunch at Speedo’s Cafe then visiting the graffiti wall, skate park and shopping area before hitting the shore. If you're visiting on the weekend, make sure to hit up the Bondi Markets to find everything from handmade jewelry to vinyl records.

Nobbys Beach

Nobbys is Newcastle’s most well-known beach and is 2.5 hours outside of Sydney's city center. After you’ve had your fun in the sun, make sure to check out the Newcastle Ocean Baths and the 150-year-old Nobbys Lighthouse.

Coogee Beach

Coogee is the ideal beach for families and is only a 20-minute drive from Sydney's city center. The beach features three ocean pools, each with a sunbathing area, change rooms and clubhouse. Make sure to check out one of the beachfront restaurants like Coogee Pavilion, the beach's staple dining area, to recharge before heading back to the shore.

Palm Beach

Palm Beach is the set of the iconic Australian television soap opera Home and Away. Along with soap stars, it’s not unusual to spot A-list celebs like Chris Hemsworth, Keith Urban and Nicole Kidman strolling along the shore. We suggest taking the walking trail up to Barrenjoey Lighthouse for the perfect view of Sydney’s northernmost point.

Shelly Beach, Manly

This small, secluded beach forms part of Cabbage Tree Bay and is an ideal spot for snorkeling and viewing magnificent marine life. Shelly is next door to Manly, so you can spend a day exploring both of these beautiful destinations.

Camp Cove, Watsons Bay

Catch a ferry from Circular Quay across the Sydney Harbour and spend the afternoon basking in the sun at Australia’s oldest fishing village. With its calm waters, Camp Cove at Watsons Bay is perfect for paddle boarding and snorkeling.

Bronte Beach

Bronte Beach is a gem nestled between Bondi and Coogee and is known as a surfer spot. For the adventurous types, there are cliffs with breathtaking views of the Pacific, rock pools for snorkeling and the Bronte Baths, an ocean pool constructed in 1887. For families and laid-back crews, check out the park with a barbecuing area and picnic tables.

Dee Why Beach

Dee Why is a family-friendly beach located on the Northern Beaches. It’s typically less crowded than its well-known neighbor Manly and is perfect for laying out and throwing around a football. The beach hosts a popular Australia Day event (pictured above) which brings in large crowds each year.

Balmoral Beach

Pack a picnic lunch and head to Balmoral for amazing views of Sydney Harbour National Park, "the Heads" — the gateway to Sydney Harbour and to the Pacific Ocean. After lunch, join locals in popular activities like rollerblading, biking or lounging on the beach.

Curl Curl Beach

This beach is a well-kept secret in the Northern Suburbs. Curl Curl is a natural beauty with two ocean pools, an endless shoreline and open parklands. Surfing is hot here, so rent a board on your way over.

Milk Beach

If you want to avoid the large crowds of Bondi, Coogee and Manly, this is the spot for you. Milk Beach offers great views of the Sydney skyline in a small, isolated area. It’s well-removed from the Central Business District, so access is limited — try public transport or off-street parking to get there.

Hyams Beach

Trust us, it is worth the three-hour trip from Sydney. Hyams Beach is known for its powdery white sand and clear blue water. In fact, the Guinness Book of World Records reported that Hyams has the whitest sand in the world. Located in Jervis Bay Marine Park, Hyams is a secluded area, with only one road leading to the area and one shop, the Hyams Beach Store & Cafe. Once you get settled into this cute beach town, you won’t want to leave.

Avalon Beach

Avalon attracts a younger crowd that enjoys swimming, windsurfing and fishing. The area has other activities like a local cinema, bowling and sailing club and various shops and cafes. Fun fact: Avalon is home to the few remaining koalas able to survive in an urban area.

Mona Vale Beach

Mona Vale is one of the few remaining beaches with unlimited parking (towards the south end), so stop by to enjoy the ocean pool, picnic area and playground.

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