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Things To Do In Sydney When Visiting Manly

Photo: Fotolia

Manly is one of my most favourite places in Sydney. I lived there for nearly seven years and still go back to visit when I get the chance. If you are new to Sydney and have never been across the ferry to Manly, here’s what you need to know.


There are plenty of great restaurants in Manly and you will never be short of great places to dine. We have reviewed a number of Manly restaurants on Sydney Chic:

  • Papi Chulo

  • Yok Thai

  • Daniel San

  • Cured Manly

  • Hugos

  • Criniti's

These are just a few restaurants and there are so many more that you will never be short of a great dining experience.


For accommodation you can choose between, guest houses, hotels, motels, self-contained accommodation, bed and breakfast and serviced apartments Manly.


One of my favourite things to do in Manly was take a walk up to North Head. There are plenty of bushwalks around the area, so if nature is your thing, you must check out the scenery around this beautiful area.

I also love the walk between Manly Beach and Shelly Beach. Shelly Beach forms part of Cabbage Tree Bay, a protected marine reserve that lies adjacent to North Head and Fairy Bower. It’s popular with snorkelers and divers because of the large variety of marine life which can be viewed in relatively shallow water. I have personally never dived there but I have been told the marine life is spectacular. Along the walk, it’s not unusual to spot water dragons lazing in the sun or scurrying out of the way, as well as beautiful birds.

Another great place to walk is the Manly Dam. Manly Dam walks vary in distance and on some you may spot evidence of Aboriginal life including rock engravings and paintings as well as axe grinding grooves. For nature lovers there will be plenty to discover at Manly Dam. The Manly Dam is also popular with cyclists.

Photo Credit: Gavin Little


Apart from enjoying the beach and surrounds there are plenty of things to do and visit in Manly:

  • Shopping at gorgeous unique boutiques

  • Surf shop shopping

  • Aboriginal Art Centre

  • Manly Aquarium

  • Markets on the weekend

  • Occasionally the Fairy Penguins breed near the wharf (protected area)

  • Kayaking

  • Food and Wine Festival

  • Jazz Festival

  • Local brewery

  • Bike hire

  • Surfing classes

  • Ghost tours at Q Station (internal link here maybe on story I did)

  • Whale watching tours (you can also spot the whales from the Lookout above Shelly Beach during the winter – May to November


If there is one thing you will never be short of in Manly is finding a place to have a drink. Many of the hotels have been refurbished and also offer good meals. As well as the major hotels there are some really quaint little bars like Hemmingways, where they make the best cocktails and have great food. I would also recommend you check out Daniel San, this place is awesome! Read More

This is just a fraction of the fun you can have in Manly. Just typing this article has made me decide to get back over there very soon.

Sydney Ferries travel every half hour to and from Manly and the Fast Ferry is also available. Download the TRIPVIEW app to check out timetables, including buses to and from Manly. For motorists there are a number of car parking stations available.


I worked in collaboration with Accor Hotels on to write this article which is based on my experiences in Manly.

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