There are so many popular National Parks, waterfalls and gardens to explore in and around Sydney. Then there are the ones whose beauty remains largely unknown to the masses, perhaps a blessing in the age of TikTok. One such oasis is Parsley Bay Reserve, tucked away in the heart of Vaucluse and it comes with an enclosed swimming area, a playground for kids, dense bushland and even a short bushwalk that leads to a little waterfall. There’s also a picturesque 100-year-old wooden bridge stretching overhead and above the water. Swim off the beaten path and cool off at arguably one of Sydney’s prettiest harbour beaches.
Parsley Bay Reserve
Nothing is more enticing than spending a day in the water during the warmer months and thanks to its calm waters and shark netting, Parsley Bay Reserve is one of the best family-friendly swimming spots in the city. It’s also an excellent spot to hit if you’re tired of the busier beaches in Sydney. It offers a variety of activities to suit everyone’s interests with options to swim, enjoy a coffee at the nearby cafe, or soak up all the stunning seaside views. It’s also a popular spot for scuba diving. Its prominent feature is the photogenic Parsley Bay Bridge which extends overhead and in front of the beach.
The footbridge, which was constructed in 1910, leads bushwalkers on a short, 20-minute return circuit with lovely views over Parsley Bay. The resident Eastern Water Dragons tend to pop up on the boulders during the summer season. Please note that dogs are prohibited here.
How to get to there
To get to the beach, a small car park is available from Horler Avenue which is open from dawn until 8pm during daylight savings. Pedestrian access is available from The Crescent, Hopetoun Avenue and Horler Avenue. If visiting, don’t miss out on exploring the nearby Milk Beach which offers some of the best views of the Sydney skyline. Parsley Bay Reserve can be easily reached by car, just a 30-minute drive from the CBD or a 20-minute walk from Watsons Bay Wharf.
Get more information about Parsley Bay Reserve here.