Secret Treasures Of Sydney’s Northern Beaches
There’s something special about Sydney’s Northern Beaches. Maybe it’s the laid-back lifestyle, the stunning natural beauty, or the fact that it feels a million miles away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
But whatever the reason, this is a place that always feels like home. And there are plenty of hidden gems to be discovered, if you know where to look.
So let us take you on a little tour of some of our favourite secret treasures on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. From hidden coves and deserted beaches to lush rainforest walks and cascading waterfalls, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.
And who knows? You might just find your own little piece of paradise along the way…
West Head Lookout
If you’re looking for breathtaking views of Sydney’s Northern Beaches, West Head is the place to go. Situated on a headland between Pittwater and the Tasman Sea, the lookout offers panoramic views of beaches, cliffs and bushland. It is also the only place in the world where 5 waterways meet up together, that is Cowan Creek, Hawkesbury River, Broken Bay, Pittwater and the Pacific Ocean.
The lookout is also a great spot for whale watching – during the migration season (between May and November, you might even be lucky enough to see humpback whales breaching from the water. Plus you have amazing views across to Lion Island which is actually home to a colony of Fairy Penguins that breed there!
If you’re feeling energetic, there are plenty of walking tracks to explore in the area. Or if you’re after a more relaxing experience, simply sit back and enjoy the view.
“Whether you’re a local or a visitor”, mentions holiday accommodation experts, “West Head Lookout is sure to take your breath away”. So make sure you add it to your list of places to visit when you’re in Sydney’s Northern Beaches!
North Head Sanctuary Loop Walk:
This easy-to-moderate walk takes you through stunning bushland, with sweeping views of the ocean, Sydney Harbour’s entrance and to nearby Manly Beach.
The loop walk is just over 4 kilometres long and should take around two hours to complete. You can start from either Shelly Beach or Manly Beach, but we recommend starting from Shelly Beach car park as it has the best parking facilities.
The walk starts off with a short climb up to North Fort, where you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of the surrounding area. From here, the track winds its way through native bushland before descending back down to sea level.
As you walk, keep an eye out for native wildlife. You’ll also learn about the area’s history, as it was once used as a quarantine station. Today it has evolved to become a tourist destination, with a 5 star accommodation and to also offer a fine dining restaurant.
The Barrenjoey Lighthouse bush walk takes you through some of the most stunning scenery in Sydney, including rainforest, eucalyptus forest and coastal heathland. The views from the top of the lighthouse are simply breathtaking.
The walk is not too challenging, but there are some steep sections. It should take you under 1 hour to complete the whole walk up and down on two separate tracks. One with views over Pittwater and the Hawkesbury, and the other with vistas over Palm Beach and the Pacific. Truly not to be missed!
Ku-ring-gai National Park:
“The park is located in the Northern Beaches region and offers stunning views of the city skyline and harbour”, points out Julie, owner of a private coach tour business. There are many different trails to choose from, so there’s something for everyone.
If you’re looking for an easy walk, we recommend the Forest Trail. This trail is about 2 kilometres long and takes you through some of the most beautiful parts of the park. You’ll get to see native plants and animals, as well as some amazing views.
If you’re feeling more adventurous, you can try the longer Ocean View Trail. This trail is about 4 kilometres long and takes you to some of the highest points in the park. You’ll be rewarded with stunning panoramic views of the ocean and coastline. “Just be sure to wear good walking shoes and bring plenty of water!”, recommends an Ingleburn real estate agent who recently went.
No matter what trail you choose, you’re guaranteed to have a great time exploring the Kur-ring-gai Chase National Park. Plus it has countless Aboriginal sites showcasing the fascinating art and culture of the Sydney region. With the city’s largest native Rock Art work too!
Pittwater is a hidden gem of Sydney’s Northern Beaches, offering scenic waterways to explore by kayak or canoe. This beautiful natural area is perfect for a relaxing day out, with plenty of opportunity to take in the scenery and spot some wildlife. The largest collection of recreational and sailboats anywhere in Australia. Plus enjoy some sensational Kayaking when you hire from the marina around beautiful Bayview.
Middle Harbour / The Spit:
Situated just north of Sydney, the scenic waterway of Middle Harbour is a popular destination for both locals and visitors alike. Lined with mangroves, the sheltered harbour is home to an abundance of marine life, making it perfect for swimming, kayaking and fishing.
If you’re looking for a more adventurous experience, why not try your hand at stand-up paddle (SUP) boarding or windsurfing? With its gentle waves and scenic surroundings, The Spit is the perfect place to learn. Plus elevated views from Seaforth over Middle Harbour and towards both the City, and the Heads of Sydney Harbour too.
A popular place for boating and fishing. The river flows through a beautiful valley, surrounded by native bushland. There are many different species of fish that can be found in the river, including bass and bream. The Hawkesbury River is also home to a large number of birds, including pelicans, cormorants and the famous Sea Eagle.
There are a number of boat ramps located along the river, which provide access for both power boats and kayaks. The river is also popular with SUP boarders. This is a great way to explore the river at your own pace.
World Class Beaches
If you’re looking for a world-class beach experience, look no further than Palm Beach. Home to the iconic television soap opera Home and Away, this stunning stretch of coastline is home to some of the best beaches in the world.
With its sparkling turquoise waters and pristine white sand beaches, Palm Beach is a true paradise. The beach is also great for surfing, with waves that are perfect for beginners and experienced surfers alike.
If you’re after a more relaxed experience, there are plenty of quiet coves and bays to explore. And when you’re ready to take a break from the beach, there are plenty of cafes and restaurants to enjoy.
The beach was first discovered by Captain James Cook in 1770, who named it after the indigenous Australian tribe that inhabited the area.
It became a popular tourist destination in the early 20th century, when visitors would come to experience its natural beauty and pristine waters.
Today, Narrabeen Beach is one of the most popular beaches on Sydney’s Northern Beaches, with millions of visitors each year, plus this beach was mentioned in the Beach Boys smash hit ‘Surfin USA’.
Whether you’re looking to relax on its golden sands, take a dip in its crystal-clear waters or catch a wave on its world-famous surf break, Narrabeen Beach is the perfect place to enjoy all that Sydney has to offer.
With its world-class surfing conditions, beautiful golden sand and stunning views, Manly is the perfect place to enjoy a summer’s day. It is known as the Birthplace of Australian surfing, as the first ever wave ridden in Oz was caught here just over 100 years ago!
But Manly is more than just a pretty face – it’s also a great place to learn how to surf, with plenty of beginner-friendly waves on offer. So whether you’re a seasoned surfer or a complete novice, you’ll find something to love at Manly Beach.
Whether you’re looking for a relaxing day out or an adventure, you’ll find it all here in Sydney’s Northern Beaches.
So ready to go?
Plus, you will also get to experience the jaw-dropping natural beauty of Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, with its ancient Aboriginal sites, vast waterways, and Australian animals.
This Sydney Tour is your most unexpected treasure of any visit to this breathtaking city!