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Best Picnic Spots Around Sydney Harbour


Sydney Harbour is more than an icon, it’s a place where Sydneysiders can lay back, relax, and watch the world go by. Whether you’re looking for an urban escape, or something a little further off the beaten track, Sydney Harbour has no shortage of options for those looking to make the most of the weather with a picnic.
In this list, we’ll cover off 3 of the most incredible picnic spots Sydney Harbour has to offer with guidance on how you can get there, amenities, and family-friendly info that will help you choose the perfect Sydney Harbour picnic spot this weekend

1. Barangaroo Reserve, Sydney CBD 

Barangaroo Reserve is one of Sydney’s most popular harbour picnic destinations. Thanks to easy access and an abundance of nearby amenities, Barangaroo Reserve is the perfect place to watch the water and enjoy Sydney’s incredible weather.
Getting there: Barangaroo is conveniently located in the heart of Sydney’s CBD which means there is no shortage of transport options. Wynyard Station is the nearest train station and is accessible via Wynyard Walk. Ferries arrive at Barangaroo Wharf and there are also plenty of bus routes that will connect you to Barangaroo with a short walk from King St Wharf. Parking, on the other hand, can be a bit of a challenge – so we recommend sticking with public transport for your Barangaroo Picnic date.
Amenities: Barangaroo has plenty of amenities and is now home to Sydney’s newest harbour beach which means that you can also shower after a dip in the shower. There are plenty of nearby eateries which means that you don’t even need to pack a picnic ahead of time.
Child friendly?: Barangaroo is child friendly, however, we wouldn’t say that it is the most child friendly harbour picnic spot on this list. While there is plenty of room to run free around the rolling green lawns and wide-open spaces, kids may find the ambiance a bit too sensible to really let loose.
You’ll love it if: You’re looking for an incredible view of Sydney Harbour without a trek to get there. An abundance of transport options means that you can get there easily, and you can even use your CBD lunch break to make the most of your time.

Best Picnic Spots Around Sydney Harbour infographic from Sydney Harbour Escapes

2. Sydney Harbour National Park, Port Jackson

Sydney Harbour National Park is nothing if not expansive. Set across some 392-hectares that has been zoned and preserved since 1975, Sydney Harbour National Park is the perfect place to hike, explore, or even just to watch the world go by with a picnic basket and your favourite book.
Getting there: Sydney Harbour National Park is accessible via car and public transport. For those that aren’t shy about paying for parking, you should be able to snag a spot at most times of the day. Alternatively, for those that are looking to get there via public transport, there are buses and trains that depart from Manly and Middle Head that provide access to specific points such as Bradleys Head, Chowder Bay, and Nielsen Park.
Amenities: It really depends on where you end up, however, for those looking to picnic in Sydney Harbour National Park, don’t expect endless eateries to supplement your picnic basket. The park is home to a select number of Kiosks and cafes, however you’ll want to pack a picnic basket ahead of time to avoid the sting in your back pocket. As far as toilets and showers go, these are dotted throughout different points of the park and will be clearly signposted.
Child friendly?: If your children need to let loose, then Sydney Harbour National Park is the place to do it. While you won’t find any brightly coloured play equipment, the Sydney Harbour National Park is home to enough native flora, fauna, and places to explore to keep your little ones entertained all day long.
You’ll love it if: You’re looking to escape the crowds and feel a world away from the hustle and bustle of Sydney – even if only for a few hours.

3. Illoura Reserve, Balmain East

Balmain East is slightly off the beaten track for most, however, for those willing to make the long pilgrimage down darling street, you’ll be rewarded for your trouble with one of Sydney’s best picnic spots - Illoura Reserve.
Getting there: Getting to Illoura Reserve in Balmain East requires a car or a careful knack for planning public transport. There are plenty of 2P parking options in the surrounding streets, however, if you’re coming by public transport, you have two options – a Ferry from Circular Quay/Barangaroo, or a bus from Town Hall. If you’ve got the time, the Ferry is well worth your effort.
Amenities: Illoura Reserve is home to The Fenwick – Café by Day, Hatted restaurant by Night. As far as other amenities go, there are a number of nearby cafes, a corner shop, and no shortage of public toilets that are accessible near The Fenwick.
Child friendly?: You bet. Illoura Reserve has play equipment, a half basketball court, and enough open space to guarantee the kids will have a good nights sleep.
You’ll love it if: You’re looking for uninterrupted views of Sydney Harbour or you’re looking to walk off your picnic bloat with a wander through the historic sandstone homes that neighbour Illoura Reserve.




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