PERFECT PICNIC SPOTS

Picnics are certainly making a comeback in the post-COVID era, and with the outdoor setting preferred and picnics being the current trend, parks and beaches across Sydney have been filling to the brim on weekends.

We like the idea of “floating picnics” or picnics on a boat, but if you want to stay on dry land and are looking to explore a different park or beach to the usual, here’s a summary of the Sea Sydney Harbour team’s favourite picnic spots in Sydney.

BALMORAL BEACH, BALMORAL

Located in Mosman on the North Shore, there are two sides to this beach, each separated by a rock island. Balmoral Beach has a grass area which is a perfect picnic spot. You can enjoy some takeaway fish and chips or some wine and cheese and if you want to bring your four-legged friend along, the grass area is also pet friendly.

Balmoral Beach is fun for the whole family! Enjoy the soft sand between your toes and have your picnic directly on the beach, get your tan on, and jump in the water for an end of day swim. If you’re not a huge fan of the open water, there is a shark netted area nearby and there is even a diving board – a great area for the kids to enjoy. If you don’t want to go swimming, Balmoral still has lots to offer, with a playground along the pathway to keep the kids entertained, while you take some time to relax.



BRADLEYS HEAD AMPHITHEATRE, MOSMAN

This picnic spot with a view is located on the North Shore, overlooking the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House. The amphitheatre is part of Sydney Harbour National Park, and is surrounded by bushland, making it feel like you have left the city for the day.

Bradleys Head has a pier that you may like to take a leisurely fish from and watch the sunset as you enjoy a glass of wine. Alternatively, have your morning coffee from the local coffee shop and watch the sunrise before heading for a morning walk.

If you are picnicing on the weekend, you might even get a glimpse of a beautiful wedding and watch the bride walk down the aisle – it’s a picture-perfect location for wedding ceremonies.



ROBERTSON PARK, WATSONS BAY

Robertson Park is a great picnic area with lots of grass area to set up a picnic in the park. It is located next to the beach and there are lots of trees for shade and half a dozen picnic tables. Just a short stroll away, you will find Camp Cove Beach, South Head and even the famous Gap lookout. Located in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, Robertson Park overlooks Sydney Harbour, so your day will be filled with stunning views.

If picnicing isn’t something you love, but you would still like to enjoy the Sydney Harbour views, Watsons Bay Hotel is next door – have a drink in the beer garden and enjoy the water views (outside of lockdown times), as you watch the ferries come and go.

With fantastic harbour views, a small harbour beach, picnic tables, a playground and a netted swimming area, why not plan your next picnic at Watson’s Bay? It is the perfect spot for families, groups of friends and couples.



MACCARRS CREEK RESERVE, CHURCH POINT

Just down the road from Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, MacCarrs Creek Reserve is a great place for BBQs and picnic lunches. Perfect for swimming, fishing and playing on the grass, you can go exploring alongside the water’s edge down to the end of the river, or even take your kayak, paddleboard or a small dingy down the stream.

MacCarrs Creek has many shaded trees to set your picnic rug under, with lots of parking spots right next to where you can put the rug down – a very convenient picnic spot.

A great reserve for groups of all ages with views of the water, the option to enjoy lunch or a meal at sunset, and areas for kids activities, such as bike riding.



SYDNEY PARK, ALEXANDRIA

Sydney Park is one of the Inner West’s most popular parks. You will find amazing rolling hills, a playground, a skate park, gardens, and hidden wetlands you can walk through.

The park has public BBQs to cook your lunch, with lots of grass areas to kick the ball around with the kids and find a shady spot for your picnic blanket. There is a track that curves through the park for cycling, walking, and running, and there is a skate park for the kids to ride in and learn to do some tricks. The park is pet friendly also, so no member of the family has to miss out on the fun.



BERRY ISLAND RESERVE, WOLLSTONECRAFT

Hidden on the western side of Sydney Harbour close to the Harbour Bridge, this is a great park for a romantic picnic and harbourfront walk for two. It’s also a perfect location for a family picnic or gathering with friends, with lots of grass areas for some active playtime or relaxation time. The reserve is dog friendly, so you can bring along your four-legged family member for the day also.

While the name is Berry Island, the reserve is not an actual island, and road access is via Shirley Rd, Wollstonecraft, which provides easy access for wheelchairs and prams. There is a 20-minute bush walk called the Gadyan track that takes you around the perimeter of the reserve.

The large, flat, grassy area at Berry Island Reserve is perfect for picnic blankets, and there are also public BBQs available and a children’s playground insight.




Do you have the picnic fever??? With the weather warming up, it’s time to get out and explore these perfect picnic spots! Pack your picnic rug, picnic basket and some activities to enjoy at the park, and have fun with your family and friends.

#seasydneyharbour #onaboat #sydney #sydneyharbour #picnic #picnicspots #perfectpicnicspots #exploresydney #allthingsnautical

WATERFRONT WALKS

SPECIAL EDITION 6 - NAUTICAL FUN FOR ISOLATION

With Sydney still in lockdown, it is important to keep active and healthy, and as the sun is getting warmer and the days are getting longer, it’s that time of year when we start to enjoy the outdoors a little more. Why not take a walk around your local area, or try a new walk that you haven’t tried before?

The Sea Sydney Harbour team have put together a list of the best waterfront walks in Sydney. Choose the one that fits you and get out into the sunshine on the weekends or your days off (of course, keeping within your 5km radius).

BARANGAROO FORESHORE & RESERVE

This walk is an inner-city track that is approximately 2km one way and takes up to 1-2hrs to complete. It is an easy, mostly flat walk, and is suitable for all fitness levels.

The walk contains the sights of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Darling Harbour, Barangaroo Reserve, Stargazer’s Lawn, and the Cutaway. Viewing all that Sydney has to offer including the ocean, landmarks, parklands, and amazing picnic spots, this walk will see you scouting and planning, ready for when lockdown lifts and we can enjoy experiences with family and friends.

The walk starts at the Hickson Road entrance and encircles Barangaroo Reserve before finishing at Towns Place roundabout on the other side, but there are several paths branching through the reserve, so take the time to stop and look around.


This walk is dog-friendly so you can take your whole family with you, including your four-legged friends. Kids can ride their bikes or scooters on the track, or simply just walk alongside you and your dog.

For those solo morning runners and walkers, this is a great walk to get the morning started and watch the sun come up around Sydney Harbour.

MANLY TO SPIT BRIDGE

This walk is located on the south side of the Northern Beaches. It is one of the longest Northern Beaches walks stretching out to 10km one way and taking up to 4 hours one way. This walk is suitable for medium-pro fitness levels that are setting out for a long day’s adventure.

The journey will cover all of the Northern beaches’ best stops including Grotto Point Lighthouse, Sydney Harbour National Park, Fairlight Pool, Clontarf Beach, Reef Beach, and Crater Cove.

Starting near Manly Wharf and working its way up to the stunning Spit Bridge this walk covers the Sydney Harbour National Park and a mix of subtropical bushland. It includes several short tracks crossing between the stunning beaches, bays, and rock sides of North Sydney – this walk has it all!


When selecting this journey for your daily dose of exercise, keep in mind that it covers lots of different ground types, including some very uneven steps along the way and even walking on a rock cliff.

This walk covers some of the Northern Beaches’ best-kept secret beaches to stop and have some lunch or simply rest up before heading onto the rest of the track.

BONDI TO COOGEE

Located in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, this walk is around 6km and will take around 2-3 hours, including frequent stopping and checking out all the coast has to offer.

The walk is a classic tourist adventure, starting at the famous Bondi Beach and going all the way to the stunning Coogee Beach. The route takes walkers past the famous and stunning Bondi Icebergs swimming club and there are lots of opportunities to take that classic Instagram picture before moving along.


This walk can be a morning starter, a sunset watcher, or even a full-day adventure stopping at the beaches and pools along the way. The pathway passes through Bondi Beach, Bondi Icebergs Pool, Coogee Beach, Tamarama Beach, Bronte Beach, Clovelly Beach, and Gordon’s Bay.

Everyone can enjoy this walk; it’s ideal for families, friends, getting the kids out and about, and even the older generations, as this walk is mostly flat with lots of stopping and resting areas. There are also some great takeaway coffee stops for that morning caffeine hit or an energy boost later in the day.

ABORIGINAL HERITAGE WALK, KU-RING-GAI CHASE NATIONAL PARK

This walk is located on the Northern Beaches/North Shore. It is a circular walk that is approximately 4.5km and will take roughly 2-3 hours to complete.

The walk goes through the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park and is a gorgeous walk for the whole family, including the kids, to explore the bushland and learn about the stories and heritage of the local Aboriginal people and the animals that live in the bush.


Starting from the Resolute picnic area at the end of West Head Road, follow the path to the sacred Red Hands Cave towards the West Head Lookout looking over all the bushland around and across to Palm Beach. Don’t forget to stop and look at all the Aboriginal engravings and artworks, as these are special gems!

On this walk be sure to bring some food and plenty of water, as being in the bush there are no shops along the way. You can also bring your swimmers for a quick dip in one of the secret hidden beaches before heading back onto the track.

BRADLEY’S HEAD TO CHOWDER BAY

Located on the North Shore, this walk is approximately 4km one way and the journey will take around 1-2 hours.

Being a pleasant coastal walk, it is one of the North Shores’ hidden gems, with picture-perfect views of Sydney’s landmarks along the way, including the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House.


The walk starts at Taronga Zoo and ends at Chowder Bay, going around the beautiful beaches and harbour headlands looking directly at the Sydney Harbour Bridge with a perfect postcard view. Following the track from Taronga Zoo will take you around to Bradley’s head, sighting views across the water of Shark Island, Bradley’s Head, and Rose Bay. The track also goes past the 19th century convict-built military relics that still lie there today, giving both adults and kids a history lesson along the way.

On arrival to Chowder Bay, there are some great places to get some lunch or a snack before heading back onto the track to Taronga Zoo. You can even stop for a quick dip or play in the fenced playground if you have the kids with you. This walk is a great outing for all the family, couples, friends, and solo walkers to start the day off with some fresh air.


Sydney is full of amazing walks to explore in your downtime, whether this is waterfront, in bushland, suburbia, or in parklands. Try one of these suggested waterfront walks or discover an alternative option that is local to your home.

#seasydneyharbour #onaboat #sydney #sydneyharbour #walks #waterfrontwalks #exploresydney #stayhome #isolation #allthingsnautical

BORED AT HOME ?

SPECIAL EDITION 4 - NAUTICAL FUN FOR ISOLATION

As we sail through the weeks of lockdown (not for the first time), many individuals and families are starting to feel a level of boredom. If you’re looking for some guidance or new activity ideas, our team has collated a list of 10 fun things to do at home with your family.

With such a diverse range of activities listed, there is sure to be something for every household to love.

10 FUN THINGS TO DO AT HOME WITH YOUR FAMILY

Listen to a podcast – Want something to boost your mood or expand your mind? Or want to listen to your old favourite TV show cast members and artists talk about their time in the spotlight? Podcasts range in genre – from murder mystery to Q&A’s, educational and nautical topics, to best friends just talking about life podcasts – and have it all these days.


If wanting to take some time out, you can find self-meditation and inspiration podcasts, which can motivate you to work hard in these times to better your mindset. Listen on your daily walks/runs or when you are doing the household chores.

Catch up on your reading – Discover the best books released in 2021 or catch up on some old classics. These days most books can also be purchased as an audiobook, so that you can listen on the go. Fiction or non-fiction, the list of books available to read is endless.


The team at Sea Sydney Harbour have selected some of their reading favourites to get you started:

  1. The Wife Upstairs; by Rachel Hawkins
  2. The Kitchen Front; by Jennifer Ryan
  3. The Beauty of living Twice; by Sharon Stone
  4. Somebody’s Daughter; by Ashley Ford
  5. Last Call; by Elon Green

Take up a hobby – Find something new to do, to show off when the time comes! This could be anything from photography or arts and craft, learning a musical instrument, learning about sailing and boats, to perfecting cocktail making.

Finding a hobby will keep you happy and positive, keep your mind occupied and see you strive to make yourself and the way you live better. Why not focus this time on doing things you love?!?



Create a mood board or bucket list – Get inspired to move forward in lockdown and think ahead to the sunnier days! Take images of places and things you want to do in the coming years. Create some goals you want to achieve in the future. Put it up somewhere you can see every day to keep yourself motivated to complete these activities and goals.


Expand your wine tastes (one for the 18+) – Take a leap into the expansive world of wine and create your own wine tasting tour in the comfort of your home. Buy different wines from your local bottle shops that you wouldn’t buy on a regular basis, trying new varieties every night. You can add some cheese and appetisers to make it even better, or cook meat to go with your wine selections. Expand your taste in wine and be ready for the better days to come, when you can enjoy a glass with your family and friends.



Get active – Missing the gym? It’s time to create your own home workout. This will keep you motivated and make you feel good at the same time. You can have gym equipment delivered to your house or create workouts that don’t need any. Look online and find your inspiration, stay fit and be ready for when the gyms re-open. You can even do some yoga in the morning to make you feel good and get you up and out of bed before you start working from home or doing your chores for the day.


This will keep you active and make you feel good all the way down to your soul. Make the most out of lockdown, don’t wait for tomorrow, start now and make every minute count!

Get your gardening on – Roll up your sleeves and get into the garden – it’s the perfect time of year to do it just before spring! Turn your garden into a beautiful, happy garden and watch it flower the first flowers of Spring, bringing you joy along the way every time you look at it. You can even just clean up your garden, the parts you have been looking at for months which have been on the to-do list. Now is your time to get it done.



Clean out and organise your house – Do your annual Spring clean in Winter this year and clean out all the junk in your house. It’s time to hit that corner of the house that you have been avoiding for a long time. Clean it all out – this will make you feel good; if you don’t need it get rid of it!

If you need some inspiration The Home Edit is where to find it. They have a show on Netflix, and after watching just one episode, you will be inspired to clean and tidy up your house. They also have a book if you prefer to learn and read. These girls are amazing – they really know how to clean and organise a house.


Baking and cooking – Get the kids in the kitchen or do it yourself, and bake the meals you always dreamed of making. Expand your skills in the kitchen and become a master chef. Your family/house mates will love you for it.

There are some great recipes online at the moment (even via Woolworths and Coles), so try making them any day of the week, for dinner, lunch or breakfast. There are also lots of great decorative ideas online for those baking lovers, including nautical-inspired designs. It’s never too late to try something new and make the best out of your time at home!


Game on – Get your game on with your family/house mates! Whether it be board games or puzzles or everything in between, this will keep the fun in the house and expand everyone’s minds, while keeping some healthy and exciting rivalry going within the house.

Be sure to get the family involved, don’t just let the kids do it alone in their rooms. Find a game to involve everyone of all ages in the house. For the older kids/flatmates that love to put their mark on the games, think about making one to suit your group – it’s a fun activity to make the game and also play the game.


Pick just one or two activities to keep you and your family occupied during the lockdown, or why not try out all ten fun ideas!?! You may have to do it indoors (or in your backyard), but you can certainly still have lots of fun at home, keeping yourself focussed, active, and in high spirits.

#seasydneyharbour #onaboat #sydney #stayhome #isolation #boredom #activities #family #allthingsnautical

OUR FUR CAPTAIN, ‘SKIPPER’

We have a new fur baby in the Sea Sydney Harbour family, and he is a bundle of cuteness and joy! With a nautical-inspired name, he is set to be the head of the boat and he has already begun learning the ropes.

THE CUTEST MEMBER OF THE TEAM

INTRODUCING ‘SKIPPER’ !

Skipper is a black (and white) schnoodle and he is a handsome boy. He is extremely affectionate, gentle, and friendly, and he loves to play with other dogs and humans, particularly young children. He has a child-like spring in his little step that is adorable, and while he loves to play indoors with his toys (he is so small he sometimes thinks he is a toy), the outdoors is an exciting adventure for him every time – at just 3 months old, the world is a very big and exhausting place!

In his short time with us, Skipper has already begun his boating adventures! He has visited a number of marinas and taken walks along the berths, and he has ventured out onto boats already, so he finds his sea legs at a young age. Fleetwing II seems to be his favourite vessel, and he didn’t take long to find his seat on the boat – move over Captain Frank!

Captain Frank has fallen head over heels for our little fur Captain, Skipper, and their bond is growing every day. They love sharing special captain cuddles and kisses, and having fun together both on and off the water. We can only imagine what adventures they will be getting up to in the future…



Stay tuned for Skipper’s adventures and amazingly cute pictures (we are sure there will be many) to come! Follow Sea Sydney Harbour on Instagram and like our Facebook page for all the fur fun!

#seasydneyharbour #onaboat #sydney #sydneyharbour #skipper #furcaptain #dog #boatdog #puppy #schnoodleonsydneyharbour #boat #catamaran #floatingvenue #allthingsnautical

THE BOATIE QUIZ NIGHT

SPECIAL EDITION 2 - NAUTICAL FUN FOR ISOLATION

Themed pub trivia quizzes are much-loved pass times, so with pubs and bars currently closed, who said you can’t create your own quiz fun at home? Quizzing on a video call is a great way to connect with friends (and show off all of your boatie knowledge), so for your next virtual catch up, Captain Frank has you sorted with a boatie trivia quiz night.

Take the quiz yourself and check your answers at the bottom of the post, before testing the knowledge of all your boatie friends!

BOATIE TRIVIA QUESTIONS


Q1

If you are on the water, and you see this iconic landmark, what harbour are you in?


Q2

If someone were to say they are on the starboard side of the vessel, where are they positioned?


Q3

A catamaran will always have two of these, as a distinguishing feature?


Q4

Where is the ‘bilge’ on a vessel?


Q5

What is the name of the process, where you join or connect (a rope or ropes) by interweaving the strands at the ends?


Q6

If someone was to say that they are going ‘aft’, where are they going?


Q7

What is the main purpose of the navigation lights on a vessel?


Q8

When is it COMPULSORY to carry an EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon)?

  • (a) When crossing a coastal bar
  • (b) When operating a vessel less than 5 metres in length on enclosed waters
  • (c) At all times
  • (d) When operating a vessel 2 or more nautical miles off the coast

Q9

Someone asks you, “How much does she draw?” They want to know your boat’s… ?


Q10

If a vessel sounds three short blasts, what does this signal mean?


Q11

At night, a vessel at anchor MUST display:

  • (a) Sidelights
  • (b) Masthead light forward
  • (c) All-round white light
  • (d) No lights are required

Q12

What channel on a VHF radio is the distress channel?


Q13

When crossing a bar, do life jackets need to be worn by all people on board?


Q14

Where should you drive a vessel when in a channel?

  • (a) On the port (left-hand) side
  • (b) In the middle of the channel
  • (c) On the starboard (right-hand) side
  • (d) On any side – it does not matter as long as a collision does not occur

Q15

What is an anchor used for?



Answers: 1. Sydney Harbour / 2. On the right side when facing forward / 3. Two hulls / 4. The lowest compartment at the boat’s bottom / 5. Splice / 6. Going towards the rear of the boat / 7. To indicate a vessel’s position to other vessels between dusk and dawn / 8. (d) When operating a vessel 2 or more nautical miles off the coast / 9. Draft / 10. Vessel manoeuvring astern (reversing) / 11. (c) All-round white light / 12. Channel 16 / 13. Yes, this type of crossing can be dangerous so life jackets are compulsory for all / 14. (c) On the starboard (right-hand) side / 15. It is used to secure the vessel to the sea bed.

#seasydneyharbour #onaboat #sydney #stayhome #isolation #boat #boatiequiznight #trivia #boatgames #allthingsnautical

THE BEST BOAT MOVIES

SPECIAL EDITION 1 - NAUTICAL FUN FOR ISOLATION

Moving through the days in isolation and staying home, Captain Frank is undoubtedly experiencing some boating withdrawals, so together our team has collated a list of memorable boat movies to help everyone stay entertained and on the water from the comfort of your very own home. There is no better time to binge-watch some boat movies and feel like you are cruising the waters with a bowl of popcorn in hand.

With movies from a diverse range of genres selected, there is sure to be a title suitable for everyone in your household.

BOAT MOVIES WORTH THE WATCH

Captain Ron – a comedy that follows a family Caribbean vacation onboard an inherited vintage yacht. With Captain Ron’s “anything-goes” attitude it is no surprise that the family run into plenty of trouble along the way.



Pirates of the Caribbean (film series) – a series of fantasy films that see pirate alliances formed to fight battles. Set in an era when villainous pirates scavenged the Caribbean seas and loosely based on Walt Disney’s theme park attraction, this series is perfect to watch with the whole family.

Titanic – an epic romance and disaster film that takes place on board the infamous luxury British steamship ‘Titanic’, which tragically sinks during its maiden voyage after striking an iceberg. A movie that most have seen before, this award-winning film is well worth another watch!



Jaws – a thriller filled to the brim with terror, as a white shark terrorises a quiet island and unleashes chaos on a beach community. This is the film that included the infamous line “You’re gonna need a bigger boat”, and it is a lasting classic in American cinema. Watch if you dare!

Life of PI – an adventure that follows a young man who survives a disaster at sea and is hurtled into an epic journey of discovery and hope. While cast away, an unexpected connection is formed between the man and a fearsome tiger.



Captain Phillips – an action film with a storyline focussed on pirates attacking a container ship, while it is on course to Kenya. The captain of the ship (Tom Hanks), uses his wits to negotiate for his crew’s safety.

The Perfect Storm – an intense drama that is based on a true story, which sees some commercial fisherman caught in “the middle of a monster” – three great storm systems colliding together out at sea. This movie will keep you on the edge of your seat!



Moby Dick – a classic story of revenge that revolves around the tale of a captain’s self-destructive obsession to hunt the white whale, Moby Dick. Determined to seek revenge and kill the whale due to an incident years before, the sacrifices are high, including life, crew members and his ship.


Pick just one or two movies to watch, or better yet, have a boat movie marathon to pass your time! Watch them solo or with company – either way, you’ll be cruising on the water and across the seas from your very own couch, as you get caught up in these storylines!

#seasydneyharbour #onaboat #sydney #stayhome #isolation #boat #boatmovies #movies #allthingsnautical