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Destinations

Five of Sydney’s best harbour beaches

Summer is fading fast but there is still time to explore one of these beauties before winter sets in.

Speak to those not from the Emerald City (and even some natives) , and though they will point out what’s wrong with this great city, one thing they can’t deny is the beauty of the harbour and its surrounding beaches. Here are five of the best to escape the crowds and cruise the locals.

1. Milk Beach, Vaucluse

Somewhere between Redleaf and Nielson Park, Milk Beach is a tiny stretch of sand in front of Strickland House (if you’ve seen Baz Lurman’s Australia you’ll recognise it). Its view of the Harbour Bridge, city skyline and Shark Island is one of the best in Sydney. Five stars!

2. Seven Shillings Beach, Double Bay

Not as well-known as its fancy neighbour Redleaf, Seven Shillings is an escape from the more crowded beaches, with a very local feel. No one can deny that a couple of hours here make you forget that you’re just 15 odd minutes from the hustle and bustle of the largest CBD in Australia.

3. Congwong Beach, La Perouse

For those looking for something a little further down the coastline, La Perouse is situated on the northeastern tip of Botany Bay. Given its rich Aboriginal and colonial history, La Perouse has more to offer than just its stunning beaches. If you’re in the mood to get rid of those tan lines though, head along the track east of Congwong Beach to reach the more secluded nudist haven Little Congwong.

4. Lady Bay Beach, Watson’s Bay

Located on the South Head Heritage trail, Lady Bay is a clothing optional beach. And while nudity is technically only legal on the beach, the rocks further along towards the headland prove to be a hive of activity for those seeking company instead of tanning on their own. If you’re up to give this beach a try and think you may hook up, don’t forget to come prepared.

5. Obelisk Beach, Mosman

Obelisk is located in Mosman not far from Taronga Zoo along Middle Head. This scenic nude beach is becoming increasingly popular and very gay friendly. What does this mean? You’ll most likely be sharing a small patch of sand with more people than would usually be tolerable. But who cares when a beach is this stunning? If you wander off the sand and into the neighbouring bush, you’ll come across relics of military fortifications and the occasional sunbaker gone astray in what’s been dubbed “the enchanted forest” by locals. Just be mindful that these well-beaten paths are technically outside the clothing optional area.

There you have it, five harbour beach gems that can’t be beaten for relaxation, recreation and de-stressing. The warmth is not gone yet, so get out there exploring this weekend before you have to shelve the plans until next summer!

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