Balmoral Beach Pram Walk, Mosman 

Although it’s autumn / winter it’s still possible to enjoy the beach. I took our littelest for a stroll along Balmoral Beach in her pram and it was lovely.

Balmoral Beach is great for kids in the summer and I will definitely get to that post soon but this post is about the awesome walk you can do alongside the beach with or without pram, trikes, bikes or scooters in tow. 

There is a wide walking path all along Balmoral Beach from the South End of the Esplanade all the way up to the Bathers’ Pavillion which is perfect for mum’s with prams. There is parking the whole way along, just depends if you’re willing to pay otherwise there is parking off from the Esplanade. 

  

You can put Balmoral Beach or The Esplanade, Mosman into your GPS. I would look for parking  along the Esplanade or for cheaper rates (and some free 2 hour parking) on Lower Almora Street, Park Lane or Hunter Road.   

 

The walk is just gorgeous because of the sea view (you’re right up alongside the beach) and because of the large green areas on the other side. Your pram occupant can get out and have a run if she  gets antsy because there is enough space. 

  
You can walk and stop as and when you please with benches and cafes / kiosks dotted along the way. 

You can also stop with the kids to:

1.  spare some change for the Melanoma Society, University of Sydney for Cancer research. 

  
2. explore the Balmoral Rotunda which was built in 1930. 

  

3. Play in the playground at the South End of the Esplaned (as at June 2016 it is currently undergoing work of some sort.) 

Unfortunately most of the bathrooms along the beach are currently undergoing work.  The following bathrooms are available: balmoral oval pavilion, tram shed and bathers pavillion. 

 
If you have a hyper-active 3 year old with you, the Oval is a great inclusion to the walk. You’ll find the Oval at the South End of the Esplanade on the opposite side of the road from the playground. 

Chinamans Beach, Mosman 

Mosman has got it’s fair share of gorgeous beaches – Balmoral Beach / Clifton Gardens but this beach is so far my favourite in the area. Quietly tucked away and generally empty this is such a gorgeous place and it’s perfect for kids. 

  
To get to Chinmans Beach you should aim for Roscherville Reserve or McLean Crescent, Mosman 2088. You’ll find yourself winding down a hill, don’t worry – this means your going the right way. You know you’re in the right spot when you enter a car park with the park on your left and in front of you and houses on your right. 

   
The beach is just beyond the Reaerve. 

  
In order to get to the beach you have to walk through Roscherville Reserve. There is parking along Roscherville Reserve which varies – some areas are 3 hours, tickets, while others are unticketed 2 hour spots. 

There are a number of entrances on to the beach (from the Reserve) through the trees making you feel like Alice going down the rabbit hole or the Narnia children going through the cupboard… 

   

 Chinamans Beach is in Middle Harbour safely tucked away from any serious winds or waves. The 250m of sand is soft and clear and great for digging mini-swimming pools and building sandcastle. We have two 1 year olds with us on the day we visited and they loved every second. While Sydney was a little bit windy on the day we visited we were shelter from it and felt like we were in the middle of summer. 

This is the second time our family has been to this beach and on both occasions it was virtually empty. There were more people in the water, boating or stand-up paddling than there were on the beach. 

  
Dogs are not allowed on the beach but they can run wild in the Reserve so make sure you keep your eye on your little on as you walk through to the beach. 

There are bathrooms in the Reserve which you walk past on the way to the beach so they’re relatively close by. 

There aren’t any cafes or shops by so you will need to take your own snacks and drinks. 

If you’ve got little ones with you make sure to point out the little hermit crabs, these can provide at least 1 minute of intense interest 🙂 

Bilgola Beach

Seems like it’s a hidden secret, so low key, empty yet beautiful. Feels very raw with the waves breaking heavily and a small area for swimming but it’s stunning stunning stunning. 

It’s between Avalon and Newport Beaches. The web and GPS is generally corner Bilgola Avenue and Allen Avenue, 2107 but you should turn off before that if you want better parking. 

  

You know you’re going the right way if you’re heading north along Barrenjoey Road, take the left shoot into The Serpentine and then take the first left. 

  

Not that much parking in the primary parking place but we got there just before 10am and there were still plenty of spots. It is ticketed and $3.40 an hour. Most of the parking is shaded which is great and there are toilets and a cafe at this parking lot. 

 

the cafe in the main car park
 
There (is what I would call) secondary parking if you go past the first parking lot on the right you’ll find it on the left.

As you walk out of the main parking lot left will take you to the north and right to the south (makes sense seeing as it’s the east coast, ha ha). 

We set off for the North end today as the life guards were at the north end (don’t know if this is always the case) but the north end also appears to be the surfing spot and at the very end are some rocks. 

  
  
The south end has the ocean pool and we will def check this end out next time. 

   
 
We really enjoyed this beach and you should be able to gauge why from my awesome pictures. If I can get good pictures, even with my thumb in the way of the camera you must know that it’s a good looking place. 

I’ve just discovered a new site from which you can check out their weather and the conditions: http://magicseaweed.com/Bilgola-Beach-Surf-Report/2927/ (it’s a surf report but it covers some good basics like air and sea temp).   

Only downside is how long it takes you to walk from the parking to the beach. You can get closer by driving all the way to the end of Allen Road as there is access and the end of Allen Road, but there are only 10 spaces.
Will update this post following our next visit which I’m hoping will be soon, if summer will hang around a bit longer. 

Dee Why Beach 

It’s a beach perfect for slightly older kids, I feel like the beach itself isn’t great for a 3 year old unless it’s low tide and really calm day but the sea pool and playground are a hit for the youngsters.    
The playground (located in what the map below calls the Ted Jackson Reserve) represents the South End of the beach and this is where you’ll find the grassy spots, ping-pong tables, ramp access to the promenade and sea pools. 

The above pic is the South end at high tide and the below is of the same spot at low tide.

  
The South End is also great for swimming with little ones on low tide and it provides ramp access. 

If you’re child-free and its high tide, go swimming in the south end, the way the walkway is structures means that a pool is created and it’s just beautiful. Below is a pic I managed to grab on such a day. 

  
The North End, at which the surf life saving club stands, is where you’ll find the surfing area and main swimming area for children in high tide. It is also the area closest to the life guards and has a bigger area for the kids to play in. 

There is a wide promenade along the beach which is often packed with scooters, trikes and prams. It makes for a nice walk early morning or late afternoon if you’re keen for a short stroll (it’s not as long as the manly or balmoral promenade) and then a dip in the sea. 

There are two parking spots to aim for when visiting Dee Why, the south end parking is along Oaks Avenue: 
  

  
The North End parking is within the area the map below calls the James Meehan Reserve. You would aim for Dee Why Parade and keep going East until you found the entrance to the open parking on your left.

  

The playground is very cool, it’s the best beach playground I think (Manly’s playground has nothing on this one). There are plenty of climbing areas, slides and swings for everyone to enjoy.  

The other cool aspect of Dee Why Beach is the sea pools. 

  
There is a shallow sea pool which my 3 year old navigated perfectly (in the front of the above pic). Adjacent is a deeper sea pool being enjoyed by adults and children, the depth varies and there is a ramp and stairs to access it. 

There are plenty of good spots to grab coffee along the Strand and a little place on the promenade itself, between the playground and the pools. 

Palm Beach

Palm Beach is a suburb in Sydney, the top most Northern Sydney beach, it is made up of two beaches Palm Beach (the south part of the beach) and Barrenjoey Beach (the north part of the beach). 

To get to either beach you’ll most likely travel the same way (along Barrenjoey Road)- just aim for Beach Road because then you can decide to go left (past Dunes Restuarant) to go to the North end of the beach or right (along Ocean Road) to the South end of the beach. 

 
 

Little Manly: Best Kid Friendly Beach?

Prior to our last visit a couple of days ago Shelly Beach, just around the corner and Palm Beach, further up north, held my vote as top two Beaches for our family but this last weekend Little Manly came to the party!
Little Manly is just around the corner from the Manly Wharf but I’ve stuck a map below. It’s on our GPS which is surprising given how useless it is (it tried to make me do a U-Turn on the harbour bridge… But I digress).


Map indicating location of Little Manly – I apologize for the map, I’m new at this and don’t know how to generate maps yet.

I would use the address as the Little Manly Beach Kiosk or either of the following:

– Stuart Street, Manly 2095, Australia

– Marshall Street, Manly 2095, Australia

Alternatively you can get to the Wharf and drive from there using the picture I inserted above or walk from there, it’s allegedly a 10 minute walk but it’s up a hill and with kids, um no thanks 🙂

While I have put the two addresses in above you will find when you get there that there is a grassy reserve further along Marshall but try avoid parking there, personally.

I would aim for the entrance nearest to the Stuart and Marshall intersection for three reasons:

A) you can easily access it with a pram

B) you avoid the main parking lot which is up a massive hill

C) it takes you into the middle of the beach (left to the enclosed swimming area and right to the open water area).

The only problem with parking on Stuart or Marshall is that your parking time is limited, to 2 hours in some instances.

The other transport option is the Manly Hop Skip and Jump Bus but as I haven’t tried this I can’t attest to it, I have inserted the link below anyway in case someone wants to give it a go. http://www.manly.nsw.gov.au/attractions/transport/hop-skip-jump-bus/

[QUICK SIDEBAR: if you want to go to a Manly Beach when coming off the Ferry at Manly Wharf it’s easiest walking to just get to Manly itself, it’s flat and there are plenty of walkways]

Back to the beach at hand: Little Manly. What an awesome place for families with young kids!! There were still some families with older teenage kids floating around and a few couples too but no topless bathing which is great because I do not want to have to explain that to my 3 year old just yet (he can’t see me when I’m holding out his backpack for daycare but I’m sure he’d spot that a mile away and question me for days).

  

If the pictures don’t sell you on this beach, let the following do so:

  1. The sand is super soft.
  2. The water is generally crystal clear.
  3. There is an enclosed area for the kids to swim in.
  4. There is shade.
  5. Should you get sick of preventing your baby from eating mouthfuls of sand there is a lovely grassy patch to sit on, picnic on etc
  6. A small swing set is situated at the entrance.
  7. The coffee is fantastic at the Little Manly Beach Kiosk and if the smell of the food is anything to go by, the food can’t be half bad.

If you’re looking for a great kid friendly beach on the north shore, this is a must do! Just don’t tell my husband I said so because he discovered it 😉