Sydney Waterside Restaurants

With a glittering harbour and more than 100 beaches, the best table in Sydney is one right by the water. Dine on fresh local seafood, modern Australian or cuisines from across the globe while overlooking world-famous buildings, working marinas, sandy beaches and sleepy bays.

For showstopping views, it’s hard to go past Quay. Frequently named one of the world’s best restaurants, its floor-to-ceiling windows frame a postcard perfect view of Sydney Harbour. Cafe Sydney also has an enviable position, perched on the roof of the Customs House building and looking our over the harbour. For something more casual, order a dozen oysters at the lively Opera Bar.

People enjoying food and drinks with a view at Opera Bar, Sydney Harbour

In Barangaroo, a row of stylish restaurants lines the waterfront including Cirrus,, Anason and Banksii. In Pyrmont, the sleek LuMi has glass walls for views of twinkling harbour lights. In Rose Bay, Catalina has been a Sydney favourite for 25 years and has a large outdoor area jutting out over the water. Nearby at Watsons Bay, sit down for fresh fish at the original Doyles – opened in 1885 – or join the party at the Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel.

Friends enjoying lunch at The Boathouse Palm Beach, Sydney

When the Woolloomooloo Finger Wharf was built in 1915 it was the largest wooden structure in the world. It’s now lined with excellent al fresco restaurants, including Otto, China Doll, Manta and Kingsleys. Across the harbour, Ripples Chowder Bay is inside a beautifully refurbished 19th century submarine depot.

Grab a table across from Sydney’s most famous beach at North Bondi Fish or sit by the windows at Icebergs Dining Room for views out over the iconic pool. In the north, The Boathouse Palm Beach is just a few steps from the sand, while the newly-opened Bert’s in Newport has 180-degree views of the water.

Scenic dining at Icebergs Dining Rooms and Bar, Bondi

Make a day of it with lunch or dinner at one of the city’s more remote waterside restaurants. Jonah’s looks over the golden sands of Whale Beach, while Cottage Point Inn and Berowra Waters Inn are tucked in the gentle waterways of the Hawkesbury River. You can even make a grand arrival by seaplane.

More Sydney Waterfront Places to Eat