Sydney is home to some of Australia’s most spectacular coastline and has hundreds of kilometres of trails to choose from. Here we list some of our favourites coastal walks in Sydney.


From well-known walks like Bondi to Coogee and Spit to Manly to lesser-known gems like the Cronulla Coastal Walk and the Cape Banks Circuit, if you’re after a list of the best coastal walks in Sydney, look no further.

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11 of the Most Beautiful Coastal Walks Sydney Has to Offer

1. Bondi to Coogee

Distance: 6km one way
3-4 hours
Skill level:
Beginner – intermediate

The most iconic Sydney coastal walk of them all, the Bondi to Coogee walk begins at the famous Bondi Beach and ends 6km later at the smaller, yet equally stunning Coogee beach.

With breathtaking panoramic ocean views at every step, it’s easy to see why this is one of the most popular coastal walks in Sydney.

The trail isn’t flat, but it’s very well maintained, making it the perfect choice for anyone with a reasonable fitness level. Plus, the stunning sandy beach at the end makes it worth it.


Coogee to Bondi Coastal Walk

Photo thanks to Hamilton Lund / Destination NSW


You could probably smash this walk out in a couple of hours, but give yourself three or four to really make the most of it.

There are so many places to stop and swim, sunbathe, eat, drink, snorkel and more. Why rush? If you have time, pack a snorkel and discover the underwater playground at Gordons Bay. It’s a true hidden gem.

Where does the Bondi to Coogee walk start and end? The walk starts at the south end of Bondi Beach near the Icebergs Dining Room & Bar and ends at the north end of Coogee Beach.

How long is the Bondi to Coogee coastal walk? The walk is 6km one way and will take around three hours, depending on how much you stop to swim and/or admire the views.


Coogee to Bondi Coastal Walk

Photo thanks to Hamilton Lund / Destination NSW

2. Bundeena to Wedding Cake Rock, Royal National Park

Distance: 3.5km one way
1-1.5 hours one way
Skill level:

Alright, this coastal walk is a little bit of a distance from Sydney city. But we reckon it’s well worth the one hour drive to the Royal National Park, Australia’s oldest national park.

The now Insta-famous Wedding Cake Rock — part of the Bundeena to Otford Coast Track — is named because it really, really does look like a slice of wedding cake. Yep, we’re not lying.

Although plenty of people want that iconic Insta-photo of them dangling their legs over the edge of Wedding Cake Rock, please don’t do this.

There’s a big fence (which hint-hint, is not for jumping over), to keep people safe. Wedding Cake Rock is made from sandstone meaning it’s unstable and at high risk of collapse. Despite this, this is still a favourite coastal walk for so many locals and visitors alike.

On a sunny day, the colours will blow your mind. Azure ocean, green bushland, golden sands, and — if you time it right — bursts of colour from wildflowers. Panoramic views that will take your breath away.

Where does the Bundeena to Wedding Cake Rock walk start and end? It starts in Bundeena, which is easily accessible via public transport from Sydney or you can pay $12 for a day pass and take your own car. It ends back in Bundeena — this is an out and back trail.

How long is the Bundeena to Wedding Cake Rock walk? The walk is 3.5km one way, 7km total and will take around one-and-a-half hours.


3. Botany Bay Coastal Walk

Distance: 12.7km one way
Duration: 4 hours
Skill level: Beginner

This incredible coastal walk follows the coastline and clifftops from Kurnell to Cronulla, in the south of Sydney.

As well as the ocean views you’re there for, you’ll also walk past the Cape Baily Lighthouse, numerous mossy-green hanging swamps, and plenty of rock pools for a chance to spot native marine life.


It’s a fairly long walk compared to others on this list, but the good news is that it’s pretty much flat all the way. There’s also the huge Cronulla Ocean Pool at the end, which is the perfect place to cool down after a few hours of walking in the hot Aussie sun.

Time your walk during whale watching season (May to October) and you’re likely to see humpback whales making their annual migration.

Where does the Botany Bay walk start and end? The walk starts in Polo Street in Kurnell and ends at Wanda Surf Life Saving Club in Cronulla beach. You can either do a car shuffle or use public transport to get back to the start.

How long is the Botany Bay walk? The hike is around 12.7km one way and should take around four hours.

4. Malabar Headland Walk

Distance: 6.5km loop
3-4 hours
Skill level:
Beginner – intermediate

Of all the coastal walks in Sydney, this one is one of my favs. The coast track starts at my home beach of Maroubra, heads to Malabar and then loops back. To get started, head down to the south of Maroubra beach and you’ll see the metal gate that takes you onto the trail.

Read more: Hike Maroubra to La Perouse For Stunning Seascapes

The first part of this coastal walk to Magic Point is on boardwalk, but after this, the track changes from sandy, to rocky, back to boardwalk, with a touch of fire trail thrown in for good measure. Boora Point is a highlight, with never-ending ocean views.

Honestly, the views are unbelievable, and on a wild day, there’s nothing quite like watching the swell smash into the cliffs below. There are also tonnes of native birdlife and animals around thanks to the abundant bushland.

One thing to remember if you’re doing the Malabar headland walk is that it navigates around the ANZAC Rifle Range. This means that some sections of the track are occasionally closed during rifle range activities. Check the NSW National Parks website before your visit to be sure.

To add some length to your hike, why not add the Malabar Headland Walk onto the Coogee coastal walk for an epic day out, seeing some of the best coastal views in Sydney.

This Sydney walk is also another perfect spot for whale watching during migration season (May to October). And, if you like an urban touch to you walks see if you can discover the alternate route through the old graffitied military tunnels.

Where does the Malabar Headland walk start and end? The walk starts at the south end of Maroubra Beach and ends at the same location. You could also start from Malabar Beach.

How long is the Malabar Headland Walk? It’s a 6.5km circular route and takes most people around 1.5-2 hours to complete.


5. Coogee to Maroubra Walk

Distance: 4.9km one way
1 hour
Skill level:

This one-way coastal walk is often forgotten, overshadowed by the iconic Bondi to Coogee beach hike to the north and the Malabar Headland hike to the south. But don’t let that put you off, this Coogee coastal walk stands up on its own.

The walk features spectacular ocean views across much of the route and passes some of Sydney’s best beaches as well as rock pools and swim spots.

There’s a little bit of road walking at one point, but even that’s spectacular thanks to all the fancy people’s houses you get to wander past and see how the other half lives. But the best thing about the Coogee to Maroubra walk has to be how quiet it is compared to its more famous counterparts, yet the views are just as good.

Where does the Coogee to Maroubra walk start and end? It starts at the south end of Coogee Beach and ends on the sweeping sands of Maroubra Beach.

How long is the Coogee to Maroubra walk? The walk is 4.9km one way (there are plenty of buses to get you back to the start if you’ve left your car there). It should take around an hour.


6. Barrenjoey Lighthouse Walk

Distance: 3km return
1 hour
Skill level:

Head to Sydney’s Northern Beaches for this walk to Barrenjoey Lighthouse, which — if you’re a fan of Aussie soap opera Home & Away — you might just recognise.

This is a short but sweet walking track that’s known for its sweeping views of the peninsula with Palm Beach on one side and Pittwater and Broken Bay on the other.

The views are unlike any others on this list and have to be seen to be believed. For something extra special, head there during a meteor shower or moonrise.

There are a few different ways to reach the lighthouse and our recommendation is to take the Smugglers Track, which is fairly steep in places with some stone steps to navigate. You can return via the same route, or take the Access Trail back down to create a loop walk.

Where does the Barrenjoey Lighthouse walk start and end? The walk begins at Governor Phillip Park car park and ends at the same location.

How long is the Barrenjoey Lighthouse walk? Approximately 3km return depending on what track you take and we’d recommend giving it an hour for the return trip so you have plenty of time to enjoy the views.

7. Cape Banks Circuit in La Perouse

Distance: 7-9km return
3 hours
Skill level:

Next on our list of coastal walks in Sydney, this is the perfect stroll if you prefer your walks a little quieter. The Cape Banks Circuit in Botany Bay National Park is a fairly flat walk, and a loop, making it an easy one to tick off your Sydney coastal walk bucket list.



Fusing coastal views with plenty of history, this is a diverse walking track that includes secluded beaches, a golf course, World War forts, an island and even a nudist beach.

Cape Banks is a highlight. It’s an Aquatic Reserve and you’ll need to cross a little bridge to reach the island. It’s the perfect spot for whale watching during the migrations season of May to October.

Keep an eye out for any side trips that take your fancy too, including the Cemetery Trail, to experience even more history, or the Jennifer Street Boardwalk to be immersed in a pocket of endangered eastern suburbs banksia.

Where does the Cape Banks Circuit walk start and end? The hike starts and ends at Congwong Beach in Botany Bay National Park, La Perouse.

How long is the Cape Banks Circuit walk? The hike is approximately 7-9km return depending on your side trips and should take around three hours to complete. Take the time to explore the World War I and World War II fortifications; a unique insight into Australia’s war-time history.


8. Federation Cliff Walk

Distance: 5km one way
Duration: 1.5 hour
Skill level: Beginner

The Federation Cliff Walk winds its way from Watsons Bay to Dover Heights. You can expect towering sandstone cliffs, ocean views that stretch for miles, and peaceful parks and bushland. For a 5km hike, it sure does fit in a lot.

You can complete the Federation Cliff Walk in either direction but starting at Watsons Bay means you’ll get to enjoy the views from The Gap, one of Sydney’s most famous coastal lookouts.

If it’s a hot day, it’s also the perfect place to start as you can grab an ice cream from a local gelato shop before you get going (hiking + ice cream = the dream, amiright?).

Whatever way you walk, there will be a little bit of residential walking but it’s all made worth it thanks to the ocean views and other treats like Macquarie Lighthouse and Diamond Bay Reserve, a little patch of unexpected rainforest.

Where does the Federation Cliff Walk walk start and end? The walk starts and ends at Gap Park in Watsons Bay or Raleigh Reserve in Dover Heights, depending on which way you walk the circuit.

How long is the Federation Cliff Walk? The Federation Cliff Walk Distance is approximately 5km one-way and should take around 1.5 hours to walk.

9. Cronulla Beach Coastal Walk

Distance: 6km loop
2 hours
Skill level:

Starting at Wanda Beach, the Cronulla Coastal Walk is a lesser-known gem that follows Cronulla’s incredible coastline and explores rock pools, bushland, and sweeping views out to the horizon.

The walk takes in North Cronulla Beach, South Cronulla Beach, the Esplanade, Salmon Haul Reserve, Hungry Point and Darook Point, Gunnamatta Bay, and Gunnamatta Park.

As you’d probably expect, there are plenty of places to swim along the way but if you’re not keen on the open ocean, a stop at the Shelly Beach Pool is a must. This huge ocean pool also has BBQ facilities if you want to bring a picnic.

Being located in Cronulla, this coastal walk is well-serviced by public transport but there’s also plenty of free parking at the start, either in the council car park or out in the residential streets.

Where does the Cronulla Beach Coastal Walk start and end? The hike starts and ends at Wanda Beach. It’s a circuit though so you can pretty much start/end wherever you like.

How long is the Cronulla Beach Coastal Walk? The track is approximately 6km and should take around two hours. Take it slow and admire the impressive beach-side houses that line the route. We can dream, right?


10. Wattamolla to Eagle Rock, Royal National Park

Distance: 7.4km
3 hours
Skill level:

Another section of the Royal National Park Coastal Track, the Wattamolla to Eagle Rock Walking Trail features some seriously impressive views, including a waterfall that cascades into the ocean below.

It ends at Eagle Rock — which, just like Wedding Cake Rock — looks exactly like its namesake. An eagle. Funny that.

This is an out and back walking track, or you can easily turn it into an epic overnight adventure and do it as part of the Royal National Park’s Coastal Track and stay the night at North Era Campground.

Where does the Wattamolla to Eagle Rock Walk start and end? The hike starts and ends at Wattamolla Beach which has public toilets available. Make sure you check out Wattamolla Lagoon for a swim.

How long is the Wattamolla to Eagle Rock Walk? The walk is around 7.4km long and will take around three hours. It’s a moderate track with just over 290 metres of elevation gain.

11. Spit to Manly Walk

Distance: 10km
4-5 hours
Skill level:

The Spit to Manly walk forms part of the 20km Manly Scenic Walkway which runs all the way from Spit Bridge to Manly North Head.

North Head is another great walk to add to your list, but, if you were to only choose one Manly walk, this one would be it. Trust us, this mini version packs in a helluva lot into 10km.


Photo thanks to Destination NSW


You’ll start at the northern end of the Spit Bridge and follow the coastal path through native scrubby bushland, past Aboriginal rock carvings, through peaceful parks and reserves, along golden beaches, before ending at Manly Beach where you can indulge in some celebratory food or drinks on the wharf before catching the ferry back to Sydney Harbour.

Where does the Spit Bridge to Manly Beach Walk start and end? It starts at the northern end of Spit Bridge which is most easily accessed via public bus (unless you want to do a car shuffle). It ends at the bustling Manly beach.

How long is the Spit Bridge to Manly Beach Walk? The walk is 10km long and will take around four or five hours depending on how much you stop to admire the views.


Photo thanks to Destination NSW

FAQs Coastal Walks Sydney

Where can I walk in Sydney?

This is our list of favourite coastal walks in Sydney, but honestly, you’re spoiled for choice everywhere you look. Sydney’s coastline feels neverending.

From the tip of the Northern Beaches to the heart of Sydney Harbour National Park, to the Royal National Park down south, you could walk for years and never tick off all the walks available.

Which is the best Sydney coastal walk?

While you’re pretty much guaranteed insane views over sandy beaches and towering cliff lines, the diverse range of Sydney coastal walks offer plenty more than just that.

Incredible snorkelling just a few metres from the shoreline? Walks steeped in World War history? Hikes with panoramic views over the city skyline? Whatever you want, Sydney’s coastline is the gift that keeps on giving.

What Sydney coastal walks did we miss?

This is just our list, but what other Sydney coastal walks would you add? Let us know in the comments!

Feature photo thanks to @travelmademedoit_