Dobroyd Head, at Clontarf, with North Head in the distance, Sydney Harbour National Park

Dobroyd Head, at Clontarf, with North Head in the distance, Sydney Harbour National Park

Sydney Harbour National Park consists of a number of disconnected sections of bushland fronting many of the headlands and bays to the east of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, on both the north and south side of Sydney Harbour, as well as five of the harbour islands. On the north side, the major areas are North Head (Manly), Dobroyd Head (Clontarf), Middle Head (Balmoral) and Bradleys Head (Mosman). The areas on the south side include much of South Head and Neilsen Park (Vaucluse). In addition, Rodd, Clarke, Shark and Goat Islands, as well as Fort Denison are all part of the park.


With the exception of North Head and Middle Head, most of the mainland parts of the park can easily be reached by public transport. Check timetables for details. North Head is easily accessed by car from Manly, and Middle Head is a short walk from Balmoral Beach. The islands can only be reached by boat, and most of the them require bookings to access. Talk to the NPWS for details.



As most of the sections of park are very small, the walks tend to be very short. One of the best walks is from the Spit Bridge to Manly, passing through the Dobroyd Head section of the park. Other short walks include out to The Gap at South Head, the foreshore track at Nielsen Park and the track from Ashton Park to Clifton Gardens around Bradleys Head.


All of the sections of the park can be visited by water. Sea kayaks can be launched off many of the nearby beaches for easy paddling.


Under the 1998 plan of management, rock climbing is specifically disallowed in Sydney Harbour NP. This includes previously popular areas such as The Gap and North Head, as well as Camp Cove (near The Gap). Nearby climbing can still be had around some of the bays south of South Head.


Spit to Manly

Time: 3 hrs Distance: 10km Fitness: E Skill: E Ascent: 90m

One of Sydney's classic harbourside walks finishing at the beach at Manly