Australia // Lazing on a sunny afternoon in Palm Beach
Being based in Sydney not only means you’ll have tons of stuff to see and do within the city limits, it’s also an excellent starting point for some awesome day trips!
As we are nine-to-fiving on weekdays, we always try to get the most out of our weekends and this time we felt the need for escaping the bustle of the city.
So we hopped on a bus and headed for one of the most beautiful coastlines of Sydney’s Northern Beaches: Palm Beach – or ‘Palmy’ as abbreviation-crazy Aussies like to call it :)
Soap opera fans might recognize it as the fictional setting of Summer Bay from Home And Away, for us it was just a wonderful place to spend a sunny Sunday afternoon.
The town is stretched along a small hammer-shaped peninsula with Pittwater and Broken Bay on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other side. The peninsula ends in the Barrenjoey Headland where the famous Barrenjoey Lighthouse stands at 91m (300ft) above sea level overlooking the ocean and bays surrounding the peninsula.
To get to the lighthouse we walked along the oceanside beach from the town center and crawled our way uphill through the bush to get to the so-called Smugglers Track that runs to the top of the hill.
Fyi, wouldn’t recommend this shortcut, but we were just too lazy to walk back the same way we came ;)
After getting scratched a few times along the way we finally reached the charming lighthouse and sat down for a quick – and well-deserved :) – picnic.
The lighthouse was built in 1881 to guide ships on their way to Sydney during stormy weather. It nearly went up in flames when a bushfire ravaged the headland 2 years ago. As a result the vegetation consists of hundreds of small scorched black trees amidst young and freshly green plants and grasses.
The panoramas at the top were ab-so-lu-te-ly incredible! It didn’t matter which direction we looked, the top of the headland provides almost 360 degrees of jaw-dropping vistas.
It’s also an excellent vantage point for watching migrating whales (we spotted a few of them breaching in the distance!).
After having gazed at the incredible panoramas in every possible direction, we took the path back down towards Palm Beach – this time without adventuring ourselves through the bush – and got comfy on the sunny terrace of The Boathouse for some late afternoon coffee and cake with yet another nice view over the Pittwater bay. This popular restaurant offers a wide selection of modern Australian cuisine… yummmmmm.
There are several ways of getting to this beautifully located restaurant from Sydney, but if you want to arrive in style I bet the best (and most decadent) way to go is to take a seaplane from Sydney Harbour.
This was obviously a bit out of our league, so we were happy just looking at the planes landing on Pittwater, while looking up the bus schedule to get back home ;)
Before we knew it the sun started setting and created an amazing spectacle of light that seems to be a daily routine here in Australia. Time had come to say goodbye (but not farewell) and to return homewards.
So long Palmy!