North Head is a great whale watching location, but also has a lot more to enjoy, making it worthy of a half-day to a day trip. There are picnic areas and walking trails, including the hanging swamp – a wetland area on the head that is a very interesting and enjoyable walk especially after rain.
There are two Aboriginal names for North Head; Boree, referring to outer north head, and Garungal, which refers to inner North Head.
There are several designated walking tracks on North Head. To see the unique nature of the area, a walk through the hanging swamp – a large wetland area on the head, is a perfect short walk. There is also an important military site, and many of the historic buildings can be taken in by a walk.
Picnic and Cafe
There are several idyllic picnic spots, as well as the Bella Vista Cafe that serves food and beverages.
North Head offers views in all directions, including out to sea where at the right time of the year, you can spot migrating Humpback whales. See the whale watching section for more information.
How to get there:
North Head is accessed via Manly.
Car: From Manly follow Darley Road onto Scenic Drive. Turn left off Scenic Drive at the North Head Sanctuary sign. Parking is available on site.
Bus: The 135 service from Manly Wharf to North Head leaves approximately every half-hour.
Ferry: You can also walk from Manly Wharf to the North Head Sanctuary, a walk which takes approximately 45 minutes. Walking tracks link to the North Head Sanctuary from Shelly Beach and Collins Beach.