Over the last decade or so Avalon has become the favoured "sea-change" destination for Sydney-siders looking to adopt the surfer lifestyle. As a result, the board-riding community here is large and enthusiastic but...
Harbour ferry to Manly
Take a ferry from Circular Quay across Sydney Harbour, one of the world's great natural harbours, to Manly. The 30-minute journey includes the Heads, the harbour's spectacular entrance. In Manly, enjoy the famous beach, hire a bike and visit the fabulous Manly SEA LIFE Sanctuary.
Family day trip ideas for Sydney's north
Your family will be delighted with the choices in Sydney's north. Some of the top attractions include Manly Beach, Taronga Zoo, Luna Park and Windsor, one of the original colonial settlements on the banks of the Hawkesbury River, and Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, great for bushwalking.
These destinations, among many more attractions in Sydney's north, are easy to reach by public transport. Get your family Opal cards, a convenient way to pay for buses, ferries, trains and light rail, and benefit from daily travel caps and $2.50 per person Sunday cap.
The ferry ride to Manly is exhilarating. Enjoy lunch at child-friendly cafes and restaurants or buy fish and chips and head for Manly Beach. Hire a bike from Manly Bike Tours, enrol the kids at a surf school or go on a kayaking tour with Manly Kayak Centre.
View the underwater tunnel at the Manly SEA LIFE Sanctuary for a close encounter with the resident sharks, turtles, stingrays and other marine life. The Manly SEA LIFE Sanctuary also has a range of educational and entertaining activities and shows.
For gorgeous Palm Beach, the setting for TV soap Home and Away, take the L90 bus from Wynyard Station. The route meanders through the Northern Beaches and includes Dee Why, Narrabeen and Avalon. On the way back, stop at The Newport for a drink and snack in the pub's kid-friendly garden.
To get to Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, take a train to Mount Kuring-Gai Station and walk down Harwood Avenue to the walking track and visit Apple Tree Bay. Be sure to check the safety tips before you go and bring lunch and water. This bushwalk is not for young children. Another option is a 90-minute train trip to Windsor for the charming Windsor Heritage Walk and a riverside picnic.