I'm a teacher, musician, blogger and uni student living in Sydney and always dreaming about living & experiencing a new corner of the world. Visit my blog at www.youngoldtraveller.wordpress.com.
Published July 16th 2016
Enjoy Sydney's harbour view without the crowd
No matter how much I've travelled, I'm always so proud to tell others than I'm from Sydney, Australia. Even though I've lived here for pretty much my whole life, there are so many walks that I haven't been on, or hikes that I haven't taken in ages. The Taronga to Balmoral Beach Walk was one that I used to walk as a little girl, as you'd get an amazing view of the Sydney skyline and the Eastern Suburbs, which includes some of the most affluent suburbs in Sydney. Not only that, it's a walk that is fairly quiet all year round because tourists don't come here often, but I would definitely suggest you to put this on your bucket list when you're in Sydney.
The official walk starts off at Bradley's Head, which is a short walk from the Taronga Zoo ferry wharf. You can catch the ferry to this wharf from Circular Quay in just over 10 minutes.
As you walk along, you'll see some more of Sydney's city skyline, along with more and more view of the Eastern Suburbs.
Sydney's Central Business District (CBD) and the Eastern Suburbs
Although the skyline is quite something that I'll never get sick of, something that is still very important to me is the ability to be immersed in nature. As a city-girl, I relish every moment of being surrounded by trees, but who would've thought you could be surrounded by trees in the immediate vicinity of the city?
You'll see plenty of gum trees on your walk (These are quintessentially Aussie!!)
As you walk a little bit further along the fairly flat track, you'll eventually reach Chowder Bay. I personally have fond memories of swimming in the pristine water here with my friends when I was 12, but not only that, this place is also nestled between bushland, a marine science institute and famous cafes. It's certainly not as famous as Bondi Beach or Manly Beach amongst tourists, but is a place I'd definitely recommend if you ever come to Sydney.
After Chowder Bay you'll come to a strenuous climb up through the bushes onto Georges Head, where you can see military fortifications from World War II such as interlinking tunnels and passageways. It's easy to see why military experts placed guns over here, as it has a beautiful panoramic view of the harbour.
After that, you can either choose to go the long way and walk through parts of the Sydney Harbour National Park or on suburban roads. At this particular situation, I went with the latter option in order to admire the houses while wishing that one day I could own one of them. As it was a Monday afternoon, I could easily traverse through the roads without much traffic. I was also pleasantly surprised that even though the HMAS Penguin Naval Base was directly to my right, I was still able to walk in peace and silence.
Walking past someone's garden...
Then... You'll finally get to Balmoral Beach! The 6km walk along the water is definitely worth it when you see Balmoral's leisure and recreational activities. Other than the pristine ocean and the golden sand Australia is renowned for, this place is also famous for their restaurants and cafes, including The Boathouse. I personally love it here because of the lack of waves as a result of its geography. Yep, I'm one of those people who likes swimming in a calm ocean that isn't directly on a coast.
Private boats docked at Balmoral Beach
Being a spacious beach that's located in Sydney's suburban area also means that there's enough room to build a pavilion and an oval adjacent to it. Although, my favourite part of this beach is still the fact that you're able to hop on a tiny island to experience some peace and quiet. As a little girl, I always imagined building my own house here.
You can probably tell that I cannot advocate for this walk enough. You get the same harbour view as everyone else who stays in Sydney's Central Business District (CBD), but without the crowds. As a walk favoured by many locals like myself, do yourselves a favour and put this on your bucket list!