Sydney, Australia

Manly Beach: Manly to North Head Loop

Both of these routes begin by taking the scenic half-hour ferry ride from Circular Quay across Sydney Harbour to the suburb of Manly, a narrow strip of land between Sydney Harbour and the Pacific. Once in Manly, there are a few scenic walkways that provide great trails to run on. We have two routes from Manly Wharf: to the beach and National Park; and to Spit Bridge.

Manly to North Head Loop Start from the ferry wharf in Manly and follow E Esplanade to Stuart St. Brace yourself to gain 260 feet in just under a mile along Collins Beach Rd and N. Head Scenic Drive. The ocean views at the top are worth all your hard work. You’ll run around Sydney Harbour National Park and to the Fairfax Lookout. After you have thoroughly enjoyed the views, head back down N. Head Scenic Drive to Manly Beach — and reward yourself with a refreshing dip in the ocean. Return to the start by following the mall back to the wharf.

Manly to Spit Bridge: To follow the Manly to Spit Bridge path, look for the “Scenic Walkway” information posts on the wharf when you dock. Head left out along the 6-mile Manly Scenic Track. The walk is well-signed and passes by aboriginal engravings (marked by kangaroo logos) as it twists and dips its way through pockets of rain forest and along sandstone cliffs, all the while providing smashing across-the-water views of Sydney. There are a number of detours for those looking to get off the “beaten track”, such as the views of the harbor from the old Grotto Point Lighthouse. Once you get to Spit Bridge, you can hop on a bus back to the city!

  • Manly to North Head: 9.1 km (5.7 miles) loop; Manly to Spit Bridge: 8.9 km (5.5 miles) one-way
  • 400 feet
  • Manly Wharf
  • Car, or 1/2 hr. ferry ride from Circular Quay in Sydney