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  • Sydney
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  • The Best Beach Cafés in Sydney for a Dip & Sip

The Best Beach Cafés in Sydney for a Dip & Sip

From Bondi to Balmoral, here are Sydney's best beach cafés on offer.

Boathouse Balmoral

Hands up who loves to sip coffee by the seaside? That's right, everyone. And for us #blessed Sydneysiders (or visitors alike), our spectacular Emerald City is somewhat of an overachiever when it comes to offering up good cafés with even better views. 

Stretching across both sides of the bridge, Sydney boasts more beach-side cafés than you can poke a sandy Haviana at. So, if you're wondering where the best beachside cafés in Sydney are, look no further. Here's your comprehensive list (just don't forget to pack the SPF and wide-brimmed hat). Read on for the best beach cafés in Sydney. 

Best Beach Cafés in Sydney: Northern Beaches

Dunes Kiosk

Dunes Palm Beach

Sitting atop Sydney's iconic Palm Beach, Dunes Restaurant is beach-side alfresco dining at its best. But when you're looking for something a little more low-key you can't go past their kiosk serving up great coffee, juices and delicious nosh perfect to keep you fuelled for a long day at the beach. Try the vegan roll with hash brown, portobello mushroom, crispy kale and tomato relish and you won't regret it. 

1193 Barrenjoey Road, Palm Beach

The Pantry Manly

The Pantry

As far as 'wow 'factor goes, it doesn't get more jaw-dropping than The Pantry, situated smack-bang on the iconic Manly Beach. The perfect spot for your morning coffee and big brekky, or swing by for brunch, lunch, or dinner. 

Watch as the waves crash right before your eyes as you feast on their delectable offering, which focuses on fresh, local, and seasonal produce. The Pantry is good at any hour, but for locals, it's an unbeatable breakfast location (shout out to the Pantry Breakfast featuring two eggs, sourdough toast, bacon, chorizo sausage, roasted cherry tomatoes, and baby potatoes with rosemary). 

Ocean Promenade, North Steyne, Manly

Boathouse Shelly Beach

The Boathouse Shelly Beach

The Boathouse holds prime real estate on the sandy shores of Shelly Beach. A brunch destination where you can literally feel the sand between your toes, this is the place to sit back and enjoy the rustic-chic surrounds, incredible food, and trademark amazing hospitality the Boathouse has become so well-known for. They don't take reservations so get in quick to score a waterside table. 

1 Marine Parade, Manly

Gusto on the Beach

Gusto on the Beach

Tumble out of the waves and right into Gusto on the Beach. Located inside the South Curl Curl Surf Life Saving Club, the space is bright and beachy, with pops of yellow and uninterrupted views of the ocean pool. Swimmers and surfers mingle at the communal table, while couples gravitate towards the intimate seating around the borders. Oh, and did we mention it's also pup-friendly? 

As for the menu, there's a massive all-day offering. Our fave? Their deli baguette with ham, danish salami, cheese, pickle, salad, and a drizzle of aioli. For something lighter, you can't go past their chilled chia pudding? or their vegan porridge with coconut milk and berry compote. 

52/54 Carrington Parade, Curl Curl

Shaka at Freshwater

Shacka @ Freshwater

There is an undeniable, otherworldly energy that Freshwater Beach radiates. The expansive coastline, which is flanked by a headland on either end, makes it one of Sydney's most spectacular beaches — and a must-visit spot for your next breakfast out. 

Shaka @ Freshwater is nestled right by the beach so you can soak up Freshie's magical atmosphere as you sip on your latte and toss up whether to have the classic double bacon and egg roll, a toasted croissant, or an acai bowl. Come lunch, there are fresh salads, burgers, and of course, your classic beach meal of fish and chips. Yum! 

37 Moore Road, Freshwater 

Best Beachside Cafés in Sydney: Eastern Suburbs

Harrys Bondi


Once a hole-in-the-wall café churning out coffee, Harrys has expanded into an ethical kiosk and bar, and their loyal following has come along for the journey. There’s always a queue but it’s not just for the coffee, the brunch offering is equally as good.

Opt for the Harry’s hotcake which is topped with seasonal berries, organic maple syrup, lemon balm, and double cream… and you can always round out your indulgence with a Botanica cold-pressed juice.

2/136 Wairoa Avenue, Bondi Beach

Sea Salt Café

For the best seat in the city, pull up a chair at Sea Salt Café in Clovelly. This buzzing eatery is North-East facing and looks directly out onto the beach so you can soak up the sunshine and breathe in the fresh sea air. 

Their all-day menu doesn't disappoint either with classic bangers like fish and chips, eggs benedict, house-made banana, and date bread, plus your not-so-average offerings like maple-spiced granola and shakshouka. There's also a takeaway kiosk if you'd prefer to grab and go park up right by the water. 

Victory Street, Clovelly

Promenade Bondi Beach (Image Credit: Jiwon Kim)

Promenade Bondi Beach  

Creating a venue that feels luxe enough for a date night whilst also being appropriate for a beachside snack is no easy feat. But Promenade Bondi Beach is just that – a flexible space incorporating intimate dining spaces, a beachside terrace bar and a kiosk for those with sandy feet. 

The décor, inspired by the sandstone cliffs tucked around Australia’s most famous beach, is both neutral and soft. The menu has been carefully crafted by House Made Hospitality Culinary Director Stephen Seckold and Executive Chef Chris Benedet, with influences ranging from Indonesia to Sri Lanka. But one overarching theme ties it all together – food that’s best-enjoyed beachside. Expect reimagined classics from snapper curry to coral trout crudo. 

Shop 4 Bondi Pavilion, Queen Elizabeth Drive, Bondi Beach  

Best Beach Cafés in Sydney: North Shore

Burnt Orange

Burnt Orange

Whilst not technically beachside, and it doesn't offer that sand-between-the-toes dining experience, it does offer mouth-watering cuisine and idyllic views of Sydney Harbour. Burnt Orange takes refined dining to a new level. Come the weekend, their expansive terrace is brimming with locals all vying for a taste of the delicious breakfast offering, complete with bushland and harbour views. 

1109 Middle Head Road, Mosman

Boathouse Balmoral

The Boathouse Balmoral Beach

For alfresco dining beside the sea, The Boathouse in Balmoral literally juts out over the water. It’s always heaving, especially on weekends, and for good reason; the chic, beach shack vibe comes complete with good food and incredible waterfront views. Don't forget to pack your swimmers for a post-feed dip. 

2 The Esplanade, Mosman

Bathers' Bistro is situated within the Bathers' Pavilion

Bathers' Bistro

For a more relaxed (but equally picturesque view of Balmoral Beach), the Bathers' Pavillion has all-day dining at their Bathers' Bistro. Ideal for breakfast catch-ups, long lunches, and family gatherings, the morning menu has fresh juices, eggs, granola and the super popular Bathers’ blend coffee and more. At lunch and dinner, enjoy classics like steak and chips and gourmet pizzas.

4 The Esplanade, Mosman

Best Beach Cafés in Sydney: The Shire

Next Door

Next Door

Blurring the lines between café, restaurant and bar, Next Door is the latest offering from the Allouche Family. It sits next door to their flagship venue, Sealevel Restaurant, but Next Door is more casual, yet equally stylish. The brunch menu is modern Australian and pairs beautifully with either a wine or cocktail. As for the view, Cronulla Beach is just stunning. 

4/6 Kingsway, Cronulla

Barefoot on the Beach

This small but mighty café is all about 'laxed, laid-back vibes, no shoes needed! Located on Cronulla Beach, this busy beach kiosk is a great place for a fresh smoothie, a warm cup of coffee, a raw slice, or a healthy wrap. There are also loads of paleo and gluten-free options on the menu, too. 

30 Gerrale Street, Cronulla 

Worked up a big appetite after all that café hopping? We get it! Have a read of our round-up of the best hatted restaurants you should check out in 2023. Or maybe you're after something a bit more relaxed. Squiz our edit of the best casual restaurants in Sydney's CBD.

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