Sydney beaches are pretty special but due to their popularity, they can be far from relaxing when the crowds turn up, especially during the warmer months. Thankfully, with over 100 beaches in the city, there are plenty of secret spots if you’re craving some fun in the sun without the crowds. While it’s hard to find a proper hidden gem in the age of social media, there are some beaches in Sydney that remain fairly unspoiled and offer a near-private time. Some might be a little hard to get to, but they’re well worth the effort. From a secret beach with its own private waterfall to a secluded beach in Manly that can only be accessed by water, here are some of our favourite hidden beaches in Sydney that should be on your list this summer.
1. Milk Beach
Milk Beach is one of our favourites not just because it doesn’t have many visitors but also because it offers one of the best uninterrupted view of the Sydney skyline from its shores. Also, you can follow the Hermitage Foreshore Walking track to get there, which is one of Sydney’s most scenic walking tracks so you can expect views upon views at this picturesque spot. Once there, you can swim, snorkel or fish at the isolated beach. Find it at the base of Hermit Bay within the Sydney Harbour National Park.
This is an unusual beach because sometimes it’s simply not there. During high tide, the beach can get completely washed away with only some rocky slabs remaining, hence giving it the name Washaway Beach. When it’s there, the 200-metre stretch of sand offers lovely views and makes for a great spot to sunbathe. It’s tucked away in the classic Spit to Manly walk and is a little tricky to get to but well worth the trouble. It’s also an unofficial nudist beach if that’s your cup of tea.
Keen to visit? Find out how to get there.
Collins Flat Beach is hidden between North Head and Little Manly Cove and if you visit after rainfall, you’ll see a tiny waterfall that runs towards the beach. It’s just a few minutes from the far busier Manly Beach and if you’re looking for a quieter spot for a picnic or to splash around the water, this lovely beach won’t disappoint. Find it at the Sydney Harbour National Park only a 15-minute walk from the Manly wharf. Aside from harbour views and clear waters, it’s surrounded by bushland giving it a tropical feel. Check out the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service website for more.
4. Store Beach
Another beach that can be found at Manly’s North Head is the secluded Store Beach. It can only be reached by water so you’re likely to find very few people there if any. The best way to get there is by kayak or boat. Located between Quarantine Beach and Collins Beach in the Sydney Harbour National Park, this 200m-long sheltered beach is perfect for a little getaway without dealing with the crowds. Read more about it and how to get there here.
5. Kutti Beach
This is one of those hidden beaches that you’d want to gatekeep once you discover. Tucked away in Vaucluse, between the picturesque Parsley Bay and far more popular Watson’s Bay, part of the reason Kutti beach is so obscure is because it’s hard to get to. You’ll have to go down a very narrow staircase at the end of Wharf Road which will lead you to a lovely little stretch of a beach, flanked by boats and waterfront houses. It’s great for a swim as the water is generally but you will have to work hard to find it.
If you want to escape the crowds at Balmoral Beach, seek out Chinamans Beach instead, just 1km away. The 250-metre stretch of sand is one of the best hidden harbour beaches and perfect for swims, barbecques or a quiet picnic. You’ll often find the beach with either very few people or no one around depending on the time of day and weather. Get in early if you want to find a parking spot. Read more about it here.
Read more about hidden beaches in Sydney here.