NSW Family Sunday Drives: Palm Beach

  • Family

Have a relaxing screen-free day with the whole family where kids can check out some new scenery and parts Sydney (and beyond) that iPads and XBoxes just can’t match. A family drive will have you bonding in no time; offering the perfect opportunity to get some uninterrupted chat and car games underway as you give the kids a truly new and exciting experience.

THE DRIVE: 1 hour 10 mins, one way
LOCATION ON GOOGLE MAPS: https://goo.gl/maps/dPuFm

Palm Beach is Home and Away, literally. The live set to fictional Summer Bay in the popular Australian TV series, this idyllic peninsular enveloped between Pittwater and Broken Bay will make you think you’ve walked onto a suburban paradise.

Located 41km north of Sydney CBD, this picture perfect suburb is an easy day trip where you could even leave home mid-morning and get there in time to relax.

Image: NSW National Parks

Why We Love It

Palm Beach is paradise that's close to the buzzing city, yet laid back enough to make you and the family feel as though you’ve hopped on a plane for an island holiday! It’s one of our favourites for screen-free time because no photograph will justify being there.

Things To Do

Explore: Take the easy 1km walk up to the Barrenjoey Lighthouse and keeper’s cottage and be rewarded with expansive panoramic views of the Tasman Sea and Pittwater bay on either side, 91m above sea level. Bring along a pair of binoculars if you’re up there during whale migration season, and you may just be lucky to spot a couple.

If you’re walking with a bub or toddler in tow, we’d recommend carrying them in a backpack or sling. While the walk is relatively easy, it does require a moderate fitness level to get to the top.

Play: Governor Philip Park, Playground & Beach on the east side of the peninsular is a big park, playground and beach rolled into one. Let the older kids run amok with a ball or frisbee, or the little ones clamber the playground while you lay on a picnic blanket basking in the sun.

Fish: If fishing is more your family’s thing, then Palm Beach is your spot! There’s no doubt the calm waters on Pittwater bay is still a good spot to fish for bream, flathead or even squid. Cast a rod with the kids along the Palm Beach Wharf ramp to while the time away.

Image: churchpointferryservice.com

Ferry Hop: Go on a little ferry adventure to explore Pittwater choose to take the 36 minute Ettalong Beach Ferry Ride which leaves Palm Beach Wharf every 90 mins. Or for a short visit to The Basin. At The Basin, you’ll find great facilities along with a picnic area, sheltered beach and an inland lagoon where the littlies could have a bit of water play. Or enjoy a bike ride or spot the local swamp wallabies or kookaburras.

Places to Eat

The North Palm Beach Surf Life Saving Club, also known as the Summer Bay Surf Club is the perfect spot for an ice-cream or cold drink.

But if it’s a civilised lunch spot you’re after, then The Boathouse’s rustic charm will transport you into weekender mode with a view to die for, and what they claim as the best beer battered flathead and chips in the Northern Beaches – and we couldn’t agree more. Kids & parents will adore their super cute  milk jar coolers or bear-shaped jugs holding the tastiest of treats. No need to book here (they don’t take them) just rock up.

Nearby Highlights

On the way back to Sydney, perhaps pop by Pittwater Mini Golf to play 36 holes of fun and adventure.


If you’re dying to make it a Home and Away weekender, check out your options on AirBnB or Stayz.

Image: NSW National Parks

Or for something different, leave Palm Beach on a ferry to The Basin and spend the night camping at The Basin campgrounds.

More Day Trip Ideas

Hot Springs Near Sydney
Guide To Kangaroo Valley
Guide To Bowral

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