North Narrabeen Beach + Rock Pool

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Forgive me if I start getting all emotional and frothing gently at the mouth.

I just adore North Narrabeen Rock Pool, and the famous beach to its south.

These places aren’t just some of the most beautiful on the Northern Beaches, they’re a state of mind for me. They’re the places I visualise to calm me when stressed. They mean health, fitness, adventure, family and love… 

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This part of the rock pool is 70m long, that’s what I call a lap.

North Narrabeen Beach

North Narrabeen Beach has the most spectacular views south along the 3km sweep of sand all the way down to Long Reef. It’s a famous surf beach and also has one of the most beautiful rock pools of the Northern Beaches.

You can see the entrance to Narrabeen Lagoon in the photo at the top of this post. The rock pool is to the north of the estuary, the main surfing beach to the south.

Surfing: North Narrabeen is a National Surfing Reserve, with some world-famous breaks. Read all about it here on the National Surfing reserves website.

North Narrabeen SLSC is at the end of Malcolm Street, off Ocean Street. Birdwood Park is alongside, lots of grassy space to play in and a small playground, in need of an upgrade.

Parking: For North Narrabeen beach, park in the car park off Malcolm Street which is off Ocean Street.

Cafes: My family’s fave, Lifesavers Cafe is opposite the SLSC car park on Ocean Street

North Narrabeen lagoon entrance horse

One day we enjoyed watching this horse and rider crossing the lagoon estuary.

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A panoramic shots of the pool on a cloudy day.

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North Narrabeen Rockpool

Like the famous surf beach, this rock pool is one of the most renowned along Sydney’s 16 Northern Beaches. It is a particularly beautiful pool, with a wooden boardwalk which divides the lap pool area from the larger area of pool.  The rock pool has a shallow area on it’s northernmost point which is great for kids to splash in. Just over the wall of the pool is a large flat area of rock which the kids enjoy exploring, there’s often a large natural pool of water there too.

North Narrabeen Rock Pool was built in the 1930s under the Unemployment Relief Scheme, the boardwalk and timber decking are original features though they have been replaced over the years.

From the 1940s local swimming clubs met at the pool, including the winter club, the North Narrabeen Shivering Sharks. Swimming clubs still meet at the pool at weekends.

All seven of Pittwater Council’s rock pools and its three swimming enclosures can be hired out. Contact the council for more information.

Swimming Clubs: Two clubs meet at this pool, Narrabeen Lakes Amateur Swimming Club and Narrabeen Amateur Swimming Club.

Parking: For North Narrabeen Rock Pool, travelling from the south along Ocean Street, pass over the bridge over Narrabeen Lagoon’s entrance, the road is here renamed Narrabeen Park Parade.  Take the first right into the car park. Don’t forget to pay for a ticket in your haste to get to the rock pool.

Cafe: There is a cafe at the car park

Picnics and BBQ: There is grassy reserve by the car park, with a BBQ and picnic tables.

Photography: A very scenic pool and popular with photographers. Check out the info on Photography Hot Spots here.   Check out a 360° view of the pool on Panedia here.

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This is the carpark, just off Narrabeen Park Parade, you can see the holiday park just across the road, and the bridge to the left.


What are you doing right now?

Shall we drop everything and dash down for a few laps and a coffee?

Let’s get splashing

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Great Picnic Spots of Sydney – Clontarf Beach on Middle Harbour

Clontarf Beach text Well, we just had the most lovely lunchtime picnic and long afternoon play at Clontarf Beach. My twins had the day off school, after their very exhausting Open Day and Fair yesterday.

One of the mums suggested a picnic and play at Clontarf and a few of us leapt at the chance. Could there be a better spot to spend such a glorious autumn day in Sydney?

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Little Manly Beach Kiosk – Sydney’s Best Beachside Cafes For Kids {Updated}

Little Manly Beach cafe kiosk A safe harbour beach, a netted pool with fantastic places to climb and leap joyfully into the water. A kiosk and cafe with fantastic views. You’d seriously have to be bonkers not to get straight down there with the kids.

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There’s something there for all ages of kids. My daughter loves the rock pools with their crabs and anemones. Rusty Rocket loves leaping off the shark net walkway.  Dexbox wore goggles and chased fish for ages.  Giant Teen loves jumping too, showing off for the pretty girls I suspect.

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North Bondi Classic Ocean Swim: Beaut Day For It

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Wylies Baths in Coogee – A Review For Families

Wylies Baths Coogee

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Fairy Bower Manly rock pool

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I remember coming down to Bondi years ago with baby, toddler and some child-free friends.

The friends spread out their towels and sat down.

‘What are they thinking!?’ flashed through my mind.  It had been two years since I had sat down at a beach or pool…. my boys were so wild and dangerous around water, I could never stay still.

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A harbour pool, beautiful old buildings, a little pocket of calm yet so close to the heart of our scintillating city. If you like to swim and your kids like to splash, make a date this summer for a visit to this gorgeous harbour pool.

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Getting Back Into The (Ocean) Swim Of It – Training With CanToo Starts

CanToo Ocean swimming

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Freshwater Beach, Sydney – Sydney’s Best Beaches For Kids (Updated)

Freshwater beach sydney kids families

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Swimming as Exercise 2 – An Interview with Hayley Lewis

Hayley Lewis Swim Plan

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Here’s an interview I did with swimming champ Hayley Lewis on just these topics.

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Swimming For My Sanity – And Why Swimming Is Such Great Exercise For Mums

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Doing laps at the ocean pool at Freshwater Beach

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How To Treat Bluebottle Stings – Sydney’s Most Annoying Sea Creatures!

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Yes, these stings were as painful as they look.

Ouchy ouch!

Bluebottles are commonly found on Sydney beaches, and indeed, around all of Australia.

The official name for these marine maniacs is physalia. But I much prefer the name I learned as a child Portuguese man o’ war.

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These jellyfish aren’t found in Scotland but we grew up with dreadful images of them, and the sure knowledge that, if you were ever stung, you were a goner.

Not true at all!

Luckily for me, most bluebottle stings are not too serious, though they can be very painful. (But there are rare exceptions – see below.)

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You’ll see this sign up at Sydney beaches when there are bluebottles around. Thanks Carolyn from Desire Empire for this lovely photo.

These nasty stings that I got last summer were ENTIRELY my own fault. I saw lots of bluebottles washed up on the beach, so I knew that If I swam I’d be asking for a sting.  But I just couldn’t resist the lure of an ocean swim.

These stings really were sore at the time, but I just showered and then they weren’t too bed and didn’t itch TOO much. Most bluebottle stings will be in long welts like mine, caused by the trailing long tentacles.

Treating Bluebottle Stings

Modern treatments for bluebottle stings around our Sydney beaches do not involve papaya, vinegar or urine.

Rinse the stung area with seawater, it’s fine to pick tentacles off with the fingers.

Rinse with warm to comfortably hot water, or soak if that’s possible.

If the person stung is a child, or has asthma or allergies it may be adviasable to visit a doctor as rare cases of severe breathing difficulties have occurred.

If any swelling occurs around stings to the face or throat, call an ambulance immediately.

Have you survived a sting from one of these savage jellyfish?

Can you share a top tip?

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I’ve also been bitten by leeches and stung by sea lice, see those posts for tips on prevention and what to do if not prevented.

What’s next, I wonder…. err…..