For those living in the Northern Hemisphere the iconic Australian image is a surfer having fun and tanning on Christmas Day. So it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the first thing we want to do when we get to any Australian city is… head to the beach.
It’s not that hard to realize that that there are hundreds of beaches all over Australia. So this page won’t bore you to death by describing each and every one of them. Instead, it’s going to be about some of the nude beaches, the secret beaches –- well, maybe not so secret anymore -– and the best beaches located near capital cities.
Beaches near the Capital Cities
Although there are a lot of beaches really close to Sydney, you should visit Durras, located at about 3 hours drive south of the city. The lake is protected and is home to beautiful wildlife. The trails take you through lush rainforests. The beaches are popular among surfers as well. You can also go canoeing or fishing.
One of the most popular beaches in Sydney is Bondi Beach. It’s popular both among surfers and sun-bathers. The trendy resort is filled with cafes and restaurants, while the parkland offers the best place to play sports and take relaxing walks. On the outskirts of the northern suburbs lies Manly Beach, often said to be the less-touristy version on Bondi.
Batemans Bay is the closest beach to Canberra, at about 2 hours drive. The bay is home to natural parks and lovely beaches. Surfing and deep sea fishing are popular activities here.
Cottesloe Beach is the most popular beach in Perth. Very popular among surfers, it’s also one of the best places to view a beautiful sunset. A reef located at the southern end of the beach offers the perfect location for snorkeling.
Secret Beaches – Not so secret Anymore?
The beach is part of the Bournda National Park located at about 440 km / 273.4 miles from Sydney. Once a very popular surf spot, the beach is surrounded by a lush rainforest and is home to both salt and freshwater lakes. A 6 km / 3.7 km walking trail takes you along the rainforest. By the way, don’t be surprised if you end up face to face with a grey kangaroo. They really like to graze here.
Cape Le Grande National Park
Located in Western Australia, about 30km / 18.6 miles south-east of Esperance, this national park is famous for a lot more than the white sandy beaches, crystal clear water and beautiful landscape. The “furry” residents – kangaroos and possums – seem to be very used to the camera and like to “pose” for the tourists. When you get bored of tanning or taking photos of the “local residents”, you can take the coastal trail and head to Rossiter Bay. The trail is 15 km / 9.32 miles long and offers some of the best views in the area.
On Maria Island in Tasmania you will find Riedle Beach. To get here you should take a ferry from Triabunna. You can also take a bike ride (90 min) or walk ( 4 and ½ hours) from Darlington. It definitely rivals with Wineglass Bay, but it’s not crowded at all. The island is car-free so you will have to walk or bring a bike with you. The national park is teaming with wildlife while the beach is absolutely gorgeous. If you want to spend the night here, you can camp for free at Encampment Cove or French’s Farm.
Located in Queensland, south of Agnes Water, this beach is tucked away behind sand dunes, offering the perfect place to relax and catch some tan. It’s very popular among surfers as well, while the crystal clear waters of the Coral Sea are perfect for swimming.
At only 200 km / 124.3 miles east of Melbourne, you will find Waterloo Bay. The white sand and turquoise waters can fool you to believe that you’ve reached the tropics…until you enter the cold waters of the bay. The beach is hidden and you’ll have to spend some time looking for it. From Tidal Rivers start the 12 km / 7.5 miles trail to the sheltered eastern coast. Once here, head to the camping site at Little Waterloo Bay if you want to stay overnight. The cam permits are very cheap but try to avoid the peak season when it gets very crowded.
Clothing Optional Beaches
Another popular option for enjoying the beaches in Australia is to spend some time in the clothing optional ones. There are several legal nude beaches in Australia where stripping down and letting it all hang out is just part of the fun (Maslin Beach in South Australia was the first). And, you don’t have to venture out to the middle of nowhere to find these areas; there are nude beaches near Sydney and nude beaches just near Melbourne as examples.