With a picture-perfect location right on Sydney Harbour, Mosman is one of the most delightful waterside suburbs north of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, making it a great spot to discover harbour walks. Not only is it home to one of the best zoos in the country, but it also has a charming, old-fashioned high street.

Things to do

Taronga Zoo is home to more than 4,000 animals and your one-stop-shop if you want to see native Aussie animals including koalas, kangaroos and platypuses. The giraffe enclosure also has one of the best harbour views. And if you want to stay the night, its new Wildlife Retreat is a luxury eco-experience you'll remember forever.

Family enjoying the seal show at Taronga Zoo, Mosman.

For those that prefer the fresh air of high street shopping to the air-conditioning in mega-malls, head to Military Road. Designer boutiques are housed in heritage listed buildings, independent homewares and speciality stores offer something different and it's peppered with cute cafes when you need to stop for a coffee break.

While there are a number of harbourside beaches, the main attraction is Balmoral Beach. It's a European-style swimming spot with calm waters rather than big waves, making it a more relaxing option than Bondi. There are also enclosed harbour baths and enchanting picnic spots to while the day away.

Aerial of Balmoral Beach at Mosman, Sydney North

Nearby is Middle Head, where you’ll find an 1801-built fort and other defensive structures as well as mesmerising views where you can marvel at Sydney Harbour’s entrance, known as The Heads - beyond that is the sparkling Pacific Ocean. South of Middle Head is Chowder Bay, a popular spot for snorkelling and diving.

The natural beauty of Mosman offers superb foreshore walks, such as the Bradleys Head to Chowder Bay walk. On the northern side of Mosman is The Spit, where you can start, or finish, the Manly to Spit Bridge Walk. Alternatively, join a kayaking tour on one of the world’s great natural harbours or explore the area's other attractions.

Woman exploring the historic fort and military relics at Middle Head in Sydney Harbour National Park in Mosman

Eat & drink

The acclaimed Bathers’ Pavilion restaurant, in a heritage-listed white pavilion, on Balmoral Beach has recently had an update and includes a rooftop bar. For a more casual option, there's The Boathouse Balmoral Beach and there's a reason there's always a queue for takeaway fish 'n chips at Bottom of the Harbour Seafoods.

The Spit is home to fine dining Italian restaurant Ormeggio and its more casual sister restaurant, Chiosco by Ormeggio which are both set right on the water. Military Road has you covered with lots of options but if you want views, the rooftop bar at The Fernery is hard to beat or go for high tea at Gunners Barracks.

Couple enjoying food and drink with views of Balmoral Beach at Bathers Pavilion, Mosman

Getting there

The easiest, and most enjoyable way to get to Mosman is by catching a ferry from Circular Quay. The scenic trip is only 12 minutes and you also get to enjoy the harbour. If you'd prefer to drive over the Harbour Bridge, catch a bus from the CBD which will get you there in about 20 minutes.