Watsons Bay is a harbourside suburb on the eastern side of Sydney, known for being the city’s oldest fishing village, and for having the best fish and chips in the city.
I had never heard of this place before Easter, even after living in Sydney for almost 5 years, but with a scorcher of an Autumn Good Friday ahead, we decided to check it out.
I have to say that I loved it here; straight away I could feel an almost old-British charm as if I was in Cornwall.
From Circular Quay, it’s only a short 20-25 minutes ferry ride to Watsons Bay, and you can use your Opal Card to travel. As soon as you step off the boat, you’re greeted by a bustling pier along Camp Cove Beach. The calm waters make the beach a great place for swimming, snorkelling and relaxing.
Along the pier, you’ll find the longstanding seafood restaurant, Doyles On The Beach, where you can sit at a table overlooking the water. It has amazing reviews, but it looks a little too pricey for my budget. However, the great news is that they have a sister site, Doyles On The Wharf Takeaway just a few metres away and their menu is much more affordable. Fish and chips always taste better in the paper anyway!
There’s also a Beach Club along the pier, which has a really vibrant atmosphere and fills the pier with its music. I’d love to try out this place for lunch too on a quieter day as unfortunately with it being a public holiday, it was absolutely packed.
Instead, we wandered through Robertson Park (a great spot for a book and blanket) to Dunbar House, a chic daytime cafe in a gorgeous 1830s waterfront Georgian mansion. This was a really lovely place to enjoy sandwiches and a Devonshire Tea.
The main attraction of Watsons Bay is the South Head Heritage Trail – the perfect walk to work off that jam and cream. Starting from the pier, it’s a stroll along Camp Cove Beach, which leads you to a 1870s cobblestone road. Further up, you walk past Lady Jane Beach (a legal nudist beach), before reaching historic Hornby Lighthouse with its distinctive red and white stripes. It’s perched atop “The Gap” – a dramatic ocean cliff, where you can stand above to enjoy spectacular views of Sydney and just take it all in.