Amazing beaches to enjoy in your capital city
Australia’s beaches and ocean pools are among the world’s best, so if you want to enjoy a leisurely swim, perfect your freestyle or to explore the diverse and beautiful marine life in our oceans, grab your snorkel, mask and fins and make your way to these waterways.
Adelaide – Maslin Beach
Infamous Maslin Beach is about an hour south of Adelaide – infamous because the southern end of the beach is South Australia’s first legal nudist beach. However, as beautiful as the beach is and as interesting as the sunbakers may be, it’s what you see under the water that will keep you coming back for more. Snorkellers will love the shipwrecks and amazing marine life. If you’re really lucky, you’ll catch a glimpse of the leafy seadragon, which lives only in Australia’s southern waters. This delicate creature is related to the seahorse, and looks like a combination of seahorse and seaweed!
Sydney – Maccallum Pool, Cremorne Point
Hop on the ferry at Circular Quay, hop off at Cremorne Point and stroll the scenic walkway to one of the city’s true hidden gems: Maccallum Pool. This public ocean pool enclosed by a picket fence offers not only a refreshing place to take a dip but also spectacular views of the harbour and skyline. Sunbathe on the timber deck or relax with the latest beach read under the shade of the massive trees. The locals have been doing just that since the 1920s. What’s more, swimming at Maccallum Pool is free!
Brisbane – Tallebudgera Creek Inlet, Gold Coast
For great swimming without great crowds, head south for about an hour towards Burleigh Heads, but don’t stop there. Make your way around the headlands to the junction of Tallebudgera Creek and the Pacific Ocean. You’ll find not one but two quiet, picturesque beaches with calm waters – perfect for a relaxing dip.
Canberra – Murrumbidgee River, Casuarina Sands
Casuarina Sands, about 30 minutes outside Canberra, is the perfect spot for a family outing. Have a refreshing river swim in the Murrumbidgee, and then take advantage of the other river and riverside activities the area offers: canoeing, kayaking, fishing, picnicking or barbecuing, and bushwalking. There’s a playground for the kiddies too.
Darwin – Berry Springs Nature Park
Make a day of it at Berry Springs Nature Park, less than 50 kilometres from Darwin. Spend some time getting to know the animals at nearby Territory Wildlife Park, then cool off with a refreshing swim in the pools of Berry Springs Nature Park. Wear swimming goggles to see an abundance of native fish and other marine life.
Hobart – Hastings Caves and Thermal Springs
Need a rejuvenating daytrip? Just 90 minutes south of Hobart, you can kick back in the warm waters of Hastings Thermal Springs, where the temperature sits at approximately 28°C. You’ll pay a small fee – less than $5 per person or $12 per family – to use the pool for the whole day, including change rooms, showers and barbecue facilities, plus a 10-minute platypus walk and 30-minute hot-springs forest walk.
Melbourne – Port Phillip Bay, Rye Pier
Families and snorkellers alike will appreciate the shallow and temperate waters around Rye Pier in Port Phillip Bay – just an hour and a half from the city. Signs on the pier’s pylons indicate the marine life you should be on the lookout for, from feathery fan worms and colourful sponges to stingrays and seahorses.
Perth – South Beach, Fremantle
Plan a beachside afternoon of swimming at South Beach in Fremantle. Take a leisurely dip with views of Rottnest, Garden and Carnac Islands. Bring a picnic and stick around till the end of the day for a spectacular Western Australian sunset over the Indian Ocean.