AA’s Guide To Private Beaches in and Around Sydney

As a Sydney native, it makes me cringe every time I see a TV spot talking about Bondi beach as if that’s THE beach to hit. Don’t get me wrong. I love Bondi. What bothers me is that it does overshadow all the private beaches in Sydney that most either don’t know about or won’t talk about.

Look. Bondi is definitely worth checking out if you want to get a glance at the Sydney beach scene. But if you are a real beach bummer looking for the very best, then you must add the following 5 private beaches to your itinerary:

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Congwong Beach, La Perouse

Congwong beach is the perfect spot to lay around for a laid back beach experience. If you are a family, you won’t have to worry about sheltering your children from surfers crashing into the waves as the water here is calm and peaceful. It is located just off Anzac parade in Botany Bay National Park. If you are checking it out on a weekend, be sure to grab an ice cream from the ice-cream boat that pops in. You can get there by bus on the L94 from the city.

Checkout their official site here for more details on this private gem

Bungan Beach, Barrenjoey Peninsula

Looking to combine your beach day with some stunning nature? Then head to Bungan beach. Sydney is a lovely city but the chaos of it can be overwhelming which is why I like to escape to Bungan beach when I need a relief from the crowds. The raw beauty of the surrounding cliffs make you feel as though you’re going on an adventure and walkers will love the scenery that wraps around the beach. The tides here can be pretty rough so just make sure you stick between the flags. The beach is located by access along Barrenjoey road, just before it descends into Newport.

Store Beach, Manly

This exclusive beach is a bit of a mission to get to as you can only arrive by boat or through kayaking. I suggest doing the kayak which you can rent from the hire shop at Manly Wharf. When you get there, you will quickly forget that you are even on city beach as the beach is surrounded with lush vegetation. There are no amenities there so what I love to do is pack some food and have a relaxing picnic on the beach. As a bonus, you could even pop by another hidden beach, Collins Flat beach on the way back to see the marvellous waterfall. The easiest way to get to Store beach is to catch the Manly Ferry from Circular Quay.

Milk Beach, Vaucluse

This beach is probably one of Sydney’s best hidden gems. Whether you just want to work on your tan, go snorkelling or do some fishing, you’ll be able to do it all at Milk Beach while enjoying the suburb views of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and city skyline. You can access it through a track from Strickland House, or the track which goes from Hermitage Foreshore Reserve to Nielsen Park.

Gordon’s Bay

Gordon’s bay is perhaps one of the most unique hidden beaches in Sydney as it is the only one with an underwater nature trail. Located in the heart of the Eastern suburbs, this tiny gem is for those who appreciate calm waters, making it a fantastic spot to snorkel. The local fishing beaches which line the beach along with the apartments and surrounding nature create a majestic backdrop. You will also enjoy some of the most stunning coastal walking trails in the city. The beach can be accessed via a coastal walk on Gordon Avenue in South Clovelly.