Beyond providing a striking image when you get to the downtown, the Sydney Harbour also provides another great benefit to the city – allowing some excellent bushwalking. One of the most famous bushwalks in the city is the Spit Bridge to Manly Beach walk, a 10km stretch that takes you from a quiet residential area in Northern Sydney all the way to bustling Manly Beach – a great spot to finish a few hours of hiking, as you are once again surrounded by food, ice cream, and get to take a famous ferry back to the downtown.
A short bus ride from the CBD got me to the starting point of the hike on a beautiful day in Sydney. Perfect for several hours outdoors!
Quickly the track left the houses behind and got down to the water level, where you pass through secluded beaches and harbours.
While much of the first part was still residential, it was mid week and only about 20C, so perfect for hiking but not so great for a beach day. I had much of the area to myself.
Eventually the scenery turned from manmade to natural. It’s hard to remember in scenes like this that you are in the middle of a sprawling city of 4.5 million. It feels worlds away, and if anything, reminded me a bit of the Abel Tasman.
Eventually I could see my end goal – the open ocean. I rested here and had my lunch, enjoying the sun and quiet.
My favourite view of the hike, after a good climb the shrubs open up to allow expansive views.
A panoramic showing the ‘true’ view, still stunning but civilization does creep back in. You can see my goal for the day, Manly, to the left and Watson’s Bay (a place for another day) on the right.
After a break for the scenery, you begin the descent back to sea-level and Manly beyond. Manly begins to take shape as you approach.
I also got a view of my way back to Sydney, the Manly Ferry.
Finally I had made it – Manly Beach. Probably Sydney’s second most famous beach after Bondi, Manly was sunny if cool today. And pretty choppy to get in for a swim! I took in the views for a bit, but decided to do some more hiking while I was in the area…which will be covered in my next post!