Australia's oldest fishing village? Sounds perfectly peaceful. In the middle of Sydney? You've got to be joking? But Sydney doesn't disappoint when it comes to harbourside settlements so why not visit one of the best in Watsons Bay. Steeped in history, dating back to the early colonial settlers, Watsons Bay stays true to its roots while providing all the quintessential amenities the modern traveller could desire. With fine food, quaint beaches, historical ruins, all surrounded by natural foliage on the South Head peninsula; there really is no better place you could be!
Leap into history with a shipping-related archaeological site
The Wreck of the Dunbar is situated just south of The Gap, an ocean-facing cliff. The Dunbar was wrecked in 1857, leading to the loss of 121 of its 122 crew, with heavy rain making it difficult to spot the entrance to Sydney Harbour. It is believed that the Captain mistakenly thought he was overshooting the North Head entrance and turned too soon, wrecking the Dunbar on The Gap. The Dunbar was well-known among Sydneysiders of the day, as a passenger voyage which made the tragedy that much more affecting – a funeral procession was held on George Street with workplaces closing for the day and ship flags flown at half-mast. Remnants from the wreck have been few and far between but its anchor is displayed at The Gap as a memorial to those who lost their lives in New South Wales worst maritime disaster during peacetime.
You were truly surprised at how the natural flora and fauna thrived so close to the 'Big Smoke'
Indeed, it inspired you to discover a new-found appreciation for naturalism. So much so that you ventured forth to Watsons Bay harbourside inlet for like-minded folks (although, not one to bring the kids to). Lady Bay Beach is tucked away in between South Head and Camp Cove beaches, and although it is a little on the small side, Lady Bay Beach more than makes up for it with expansive views of Sydney Harbour. Swimming costumes (or cozzies as the locals call them) are optional at this designated nude bathing area.
If you felt like the views from the beach weren't expansive enough for your expensive tastes, then we have another place for you to check out. Throw on some clothes and head to South Head for truly 360 degree panoramic vistas. As an added bonus, you can also stop by Hornby Lighthouse to dabble in a little culture related to the aforementioned Dunbar. After the ship was wrecked in 1857, the red and white striped lighthouse was built in 1858 by Alexander Dawson. Fun fact: it was just the third lighthouse to be built in New South Wales. Pro tip: if you can brave the cold of winter, this spot is perfect for whale watching!
It was surprising how affordable staying in the Eastern Suburbs could be!
Especially since Sydney's Eastern Suburbs have a reputation for being a little bit posh. And you can indulge that desire to be a little luxurious at Doyles on the Beach! Family owned and run since 1885, Doyles original site in Watsons Bay is right on the Watsons Bay foreshore. Why is it a little luxurious you ask? Well, it's a favourite of the locals who happen to reside in the 5th highest earning postcode in Australia. A perfect spot for people-watching as you revel in the lifestyles of the rich and the famous.
Naturally, Australia's first seafood restaurant has the finest quality and freshest seafood available including Bass Strait Scallops, Dover Mussels and their very own Jumbo Prawns. Or else, you can go a little more old school with beer batter Barramundi, Flathead, John Dory, Snapper or Whiting, served with traditional hot chips. An extensive accompanying wine list makes this the place to be for any and every evening meal!
Spend Less, Do More
Your Cheaperthanhotels Team