Last updated: September 6, 2020
Sydney is blessed with lots of beautiful beaches, some big and world-renowned, others much smaller and not so well-known. With so many quality beaches on offer, Sydney is almost unrivalled in the world.
While it’s great to spend a day at Cronulla Beach, Manly Beach, Coogee Beach or Bondi Beach, chances are you’ll be surrounded by thousands of other beach-goers and sunbathers. But sometimes we just want to escape the world and have a whole beach to ourselves.
While that may be virtually impossible these days, there are still beaches in and around Sydney that are a bit of a secret. Beaches with very few facilities, but where you can still appreciate Sydney’s natural beauty in peace and quiet.
15 Secluded Beaches in and Around Sydney
Below are our 15 favorite secluded beaches in and around Sydney. Underneath each picture is a link to the map location of the corresponding beach, so you know where to find it.
Be mindful that most of these secluded beaches are unpatrolled, and don’t have surf life saving services available. So if you’re planning to go for a swim, please be cautious and ideally bring someone with you.
Check out our list of top beaches in Sydney for some ideas. Or if you’d like to travel a bit further, have a look at our list of great beaches in New South Wales.
1. Resolute Beach, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park
With panoramic views of Pittwater and the Barrenjoey Headland, Resolute Beach is a true hidden gem in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park with beautiful emerald green water and virtually no tourists around.
2. Milk Beach, Vaucluse
Overlooking Hermit Bay and Sydney Harbour, right in front of the famous and historic Strickland House, Milk Beach is a 50 metres long and 5 metres wide strip of sand, quietly tucked away in Vaucluse.
The best way to get to the beach is by following the Rose Bay to Watsons Bay walking track starting at the Rose Bay ferry wharf. A refreshing swim after a bit of hiking makes the experience even better.
Keep in mind though that as secluded as Milk Beach may be, it’s not always as quiet as it once was.
It can get a bit crowdy on warm summer days, but regardless, it’s still a beautiful spot to go for a refreshing swim and enjoy the Sydney Harbour views.
3. Whale Beach, Northern Beaches
Not as famous as its bigger neighbour Palm Beach in the Northern Beaches region, Whale Beach is a beautiful 600 metres long strip of sand.
Whale Beach has a very pleasant, secluded atmosphere and hardly ever gets crowded. Whale Beach also has a man-made 25 metres long rock pool, located at the southern end of the beach.
4. Queens Beach, Vaucluse
Queens Beach is a super small secluded strip of sand along the Hermitage Foreshore Walk in Vaucluse, not too far away from Milk Beach.
In our opinion, Queens Beach is quieter (and also smaller) than Milk Beach, so if you really want to have a beach all to yourself, Queens Beach may just be the better choice.
The views from the beach to the city and Sydney Harbour are superb, and make the secluded beach experience all the better.
When visiting Queens Beach, just be mindful of the tides, because part of the beach may actually disappear at high tide!
5. Reef Beach, Balgowlah Heights
Reef Beach is a very small strip of sand at Dobroyd Head, boasting scenic views of Sydney’s North Harbour and Manly Cove on the opposite side.
A wooden walkway just behind the beach forms part of the famous walking track between the Spit Bridge and Manly Beach.
Reef Beach used to be a popular nude beach in the 1970’s and 1980’s, but nude bathing has been prohibited there since 1993.
6. Kutti Beach, Vaucluse
The best thing about Kutti Beach is that most people can’t find it, apart from the locals of course.
Quietly hidden away between Parsley Bay Reserve and Watsons Bay, Kutti Beach can be really hard to find. Until now that is…
The beach is accessible via a very narrow staircase right next to the Vaucluse Amateur Sailing Club located at the end of Wharf Road. It may look like a dead-end, which it essentially is, but don’t walk away as the staircase is right there.
Kutti Beach is also one of Sydney’s very few dog-friendly beaches, so there’s a big chance you’ll have to share the sand with a bunch of happy dogs.
7. Collins Flat Beach, Manly
Located just a few minutes from Manly between North Head and Little Manly Cove, secluded Collins Flat Beach is a great spot to escape the crowds and enjoy a quiet swim.
Bring a picnic blanket, a bottle of wine and take in the peaceful surroundings with scenic Harbour views, moments away from civilisation. There’s even a little waterfall!
8. Lady Martins Beach, Point Piper
One of Sydney’s best kept secrets in the wonderful world of beaches is Lady Martins Beach in Point Piper.
You can access this long but very narrow strip of sand by heading down a little lane next to the Royal Prince Edward Yacht Club on Wolseley Road.
Keep in mind though that this really is a narrow beach, and you can only access it (and lie on dry sand) when the tide is low.
The beach is named after the wife of Sir James Martin, Premier of New South Wales in the 1860’s and 1870’s.
9. Store Beach, Manly
Store Beach is a little strip of sand just off Manly’s North Head in Sydney’s Northern Beaches. The best way – or perhaps the only way – to get to this gem of a beach is via water.
Hire a kayak from Manly Wharf and paddle towards North Head. You’ll find the beach close to the old Quarantine Station.
Fringed by bushland, hidden away from civilisation, chances are you’ll have this beautiful spot all to yourselves. Pack a picnic, relax on the beach and watch all the boats go by like there’s no tomorrow.
If you’re a after a secluded beach with better access and more facilities, choose Little Manly Beach instead. It’s only a couple hundred metres away from Store Beach, and is a great strip of sand for families.
10. Hermit Bay Beach, Vaucluse
The small strip of sand facing Hermit Bay in Vaucluse is the third secluded beach along the Rose Bay to Watsons Bay walking track, located between Queens Beach and Milk Beach.
Facing Sydney Harbour and the city skyline, the views you get to enjoy from Hermit Bay Beach are superb.
Slightly north of the beach is a beautiful grassy area, the perfect spot for a picnic after a nice relaxing swim at the beach.
And if you’d like to walk a little further, Shark Beach and Nielsen Park are not too far away. Shark Beach is a family-friendly strip of sand with an enclosed swimming area, and a cafe just behind the beach.
11. Double Bay Beach, Double Bay
With a beautifully secluded location along the foreshore of Double Bay right next to the ferry wharf, Double Bay Beach is a rather quiet stretch of sand.
It’s the perfect beach to go for a quick swim and to relax and enjoy the scenic views from the sand or from one of the benches along the promenade.
12. Clareville Beach, Clareville
Facing Pittwater, Clareville Beach is a quiet and secluded strip of sand just south of the suburb of Palm Beach.
With its sheltered waters, Clareville Beach is a popular spot to start a stand-up paddling or kayak session on Pittwater.
Swimming at the beach is very safe too, and with a car park, a grassy reserve, and a picnic area just behind the beach, Clareville is a perfect weekend destination for families.
13. Bellamy Beach, Rose Bay
Bellamy Beach is a bit of a hidden secret, quietly tucked away between Point Piper and the western end of Rose Bay.
Apart from swimming, Bellamy Beach is a also a great spot for kayaking and stand-up paddling, with a canoe and kayak rental service located north of the beach.
Bellamy Beach can be accessed via a set of stairs towards the end of Wunulla Road, or otherwise via Rose Bay Park along New South Head Road.
14. Wattamolla Beach, Royal National Park
The lagoon with its calm water is the perfect spot for kayaking, swimming and snorkeling.
Wattamolla also has great facilities such as parking areas, a huge picnic field with BBQs and a toilet and shower block. While this may be a very popular weekend family destination, the area is so big that there is always enough space for everyone.
It does often get busy at Wattamolla though, especially during summer weekends, but luckily there are quite a few more secluded beaches in Royal National Park to visit.
15. Maitland Bay Beach, Bouddi National Park
The Maitland Bay Track is a popular bushtrail in Bouddi National Park that takes you right down to the beautiful beach of Maitland Bay, one of the most beautiful secluded beaches in the greater Sydney area.
And because the beach is so stretched out, you won’t find it very challenging to claim your own private spot with no one else around.
While you’re there, make sure you go and explore the eastern end of the beach where you can find the remains of the S.S. Maitland Shipwreck that ran aground in May 1898. At low tide, some of the remains of the shipwreck are still visible.