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




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.

Little Manly Beach is a beaut spot in itself, but having the cafe there too really makes it a family mecca, and it’s as good on sunny winter days as it is in the ice block melting scorching days of summer.

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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Palm Beach On Sydney’s Northern Beaches: Sydney Best Beaches For Kids

Palm Beach Northern Beaches Sydney For our family, an expedition to Palm Beach is a special treat. It feels like a holiday hot spot that’s a million miles away from home, but in fact it’s only 30 minutes up the road.

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Camping At The Basin on Pittwater- Sydney’s Best Secret Camp Site

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Please welcome today’s guest poster, the lovely Robyn from MrsDPlus3. Robyn and her family have just celebrated three years of living here in Sydney. They have found lots of great spots to visit, and here is one of them: The Basin up on Pittwater, a wonderful spot for family camping or just for a gorgeous day trip.

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Shelly Beach, Manly – Sydney’s Best Beaches for Kids

Shelly Beach Manly-001 So I’m a few weeks into my photography course now, and getting more and more appalled at some of the photos used in the early days of this blog.

Some with horrible watermarks – too big and ugly.  I don’t believe in watermarks any more at all.

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Jervis Bay Beach Walks: The White Sands Walk And A Bit More

20131203-8 Jervis Bay-017 It’s not often that I get to escape out of the beach side garden gate alone… so when the chance came recently, I grabbed it with both… well, with both feet really.

I fancied a walk… and I had a good few hours’ ticket of leave… so I thought I’d walk over to Hyams Beach; why not?

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South Curly Beach Cafe – Child-Friendly Beach Cafes in Sydney

South Curl Curl Cafe beach Love a cafe right by the beach.

I’m updating this post as South Curly Beach Cafe is under new management and has a lovely new look with excellent coffee.

This post also needs a lovely new look, some of the photos had terrible watermarks on them – all cleaned up now.

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North Bondi Classic Ocean Swim: Beaut Day For It

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 Not in a million, billion, quadrillion years would I ever swim this course on my own.

Are you mad?

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Wylies Baths in Coogee – A Review For Families

Wylies Baths Coogee

Please welcome on the blog today writer Brenda Janschek with a post about one of Sydney’s most famous rock pools, the sparklingly superb Wylies Baths.

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Fairy Bower Rock Pool Manly

Fairy Bower Manly rock pool

Sydney’s rock pools are a pretty unique feature of our city’s coastline. The harbour pools are pretty cool too.

They don’t come cuter and more appealling than the baby of them all, little Fairy Bower Pool at Manly.

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Bondi Beach With Kids – Sydney’s Most Family-Friendly Beaches

bondi beach families kids

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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Dawn Fraser Pool, Balmain – Sydney Harbour Pools and Beaches

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 Here’s a place that makes my heart sing and sums up so many things I love about Sydney.

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

Our coach Adam shows how it’s done

If you’re at a Sydney beach on a Saturday morning and you see a sea of orange - don’t panic!

It’s just we CanToo swimmers getting into the surf  to train for our ocean swims.

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

Freshwater beach sydney kids families

G’day and welcome to one of my family’s very favourite local beaches here in Sydney.

We have twin friends who live near to Freshie and there’s nothing better than a multi twin trip down here to swim and play.

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Swimming as Exercise 2 – An Interview with Hayley Lewis

Hayley Lewis Swim Plan

I posted yesterday about swimming for my sanity and a bit about how good it is as exercise.

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

Swimming at Freshwater Pool

Doing laps at the ocean pool at Freshwater Beach

I went swimming a few times last week and my mental health is far better for it.

What is it about being immersed in water that makes one feel better all over, inside and out?

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Sydney’s Best Beaches- Snorkelling at Balmoral {Updated}

Balmoral snorkellers

Did you know there are many terrific places for children to enjoy snorkelling in Sydney?

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Beautiful Beaches of Scotland’s Outer Hebrides – A Guest Post From My Sister Morag

I’m thrilled today to have a post sent over from Scotland by my younger sister, Morag.

Mo, her husband and wee boys and my mum went to North Uist for their summer holidays in late July this year.

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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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bluebottles sign on beach

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?

Happy swimmingSignature

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…..