ABOUT THE AREA
About Shelly Beach
Along the path from Manly’s main beach is the sheltered and delightful Shelly Beach. It has sand, trees, people and a divine small cove that is magnificent for swimming, snorkeling and diving.
Snorkelers and divers enter the tranquil waters of Shelly Beach to gently flipper their way around the rock face or traverse waters a little more adventurously towards North Head.
Sydneysiders and tourists trek the path from the main beach, where there are some brilliant spots to lay your towel and take in the views across the green blue waters.
Past the Manly Lifesaving Club and its iconic clock, down the path entering Cabbage Tree Eco Foreshore Walk is a leisurely 1.3 km. All the time being able to see views across Manly main beach and towards Shelly Beach, with spots to sit on the rocks and around the ocean pool.
Well upon the Cabbage Tree Eco Sculpture walk, you will find picturesque views, nature, art and food along the path to Shelly Beach. There sits the Bower Cafe/Seafood Restaurant and Sea Poppies, where you might like to sit sipping Toby’s Estate Coffee and take in the elements surrounding you. Sea Poppies also provides Bed and Breakfast accommodation.
Nestled into the gentle bend of the rocks and pathway sits the Fairy Bower Baths. Triangular in shape and the southern most rock pool on the Northern Beaches. Young and old swim, paddle and play here with protection from the ocean waves, while others sit on the surrounding rocks to sunbake with views of Manly Beach, sea and skyscrapes to gaze upon.
Walkers, daytrippers, joggers and cyclists all meander along the path past sculptures, some sit upon the grassy edge shaded by trees and rocks and look out to the ocean waves. Look for the small eco sculptures that reside upon the rocks representing marine and wildlife.
Le Kiosk restaurant, which serves modern Australian cuisine, is also located nearby Shelly Beach. They have the most divine seafood and exquisite steaks. They are open for lunch daily and for dinner from 6pm Monday to Saturday.
The very laid back Sandbar Café provides take-away foods as well, as beach side deck dining. “Stroll in straight off the beach with sand on your feet” for burgers, salad, fish and chips, salads, a wine or cool drink or coffee. Saturday and Sunday breakfasts are also served and opening hours are 9am to7pm, Friday to Sunday (and public holidays), 9 -5pm Monday through to Thursday. (Please note the cafe closes if the weather is wet).
Shelly Beach, small and protected, is a beautiful spot to take enjoy a summer’s day and it is apparently the only beach on the east coast of Australia that faces west. With superb views surrounding this small paradise, there is also abundant marine life to observe.
Snorkelling and diving groups often start from Shelly Beach as the waters are ideal for both activities.
Just up beyond Shelly Beach is the North Head Sydney Harbour National Park walk, which will take you along a bush path with the Manly seascape looking out towards the Northern Beaches.
You will find superb flora and birdlife, bandicoots and even blue tongue lizards and water dragons along the path. You may take a quick wander up the rocky pathway and back down to Shelly Beach or if you are really adventurous, make your way around North Head and discover all the wonderful flora, fauna and history of if.