An ode to Manly, possibly my favourite Sydney suburb!
I fell in love with Manly the minute I stepped off the ferry. Before coming to Sydney, I'd never considered visiting this beachside suburb. In fact, I'm not even sure I knew it existed. However, when Gemma invited me to stay in her apartment, I couldn't refuse.
Manly is a beachside suburb in northern Sydney. You can, of course, drive over the Bridge to reach it, but it's far more convenient to take the ferry from Circular Quay. You've got two options here: the slow or the fast ferry. The slow ferry takes just under 40 minutes, it's a lot cheaper, and you can use your Opal card. It's also a really nice ferry ride, especially on a sunny day. If you're pushed for time (or have a slightly larger budget) you can take the fast ferry which takes about 18 minutes, has aircon and a bar - fancy, I know.
For many people, Manly is the perfect place to go for a beach day. I didn't realise quite how many beaches there were - here's a full list - but I only had time to visit Manly beach and Shelly beach (a nice 20 minute walk from Manly beach).
These two are Gemma's recommendations: Hugos and Garfish. Hugos is a trendy little place right on the wharf that's always buzzing whilst Garfish is just across from the wharf and is known for its seafood. Another recommendation is the Manly Yacht Club - usually only open to members, apparently if you take a foreign passport you can get in for free hurrah!
For breakfast - or just healthy food - I can't recommend Bare Naked Bowls enough! Their acai bowls are absolutely delicious. My favourite was their Power Bowl: a blend of peanut butter, acai, banana, strawberries and almond milk, topped with more fruit and nuts. Check them out here :)
If you're on a tight budget like myself, there are plenty of walks to do around Manly to fill your time. On my first afternoon I did part of the Manly to North Head walk, which offers great views of the CBD and the harbour; on my last morning I did the Shelly Beach walk; and the one I wished I'd done was the Manly to Spit Bridge walk - next time, eh? For a full list, have a look at this list.
Sadly I've only got three more Sydney posts to come: the Sydney Opera House, The Rocks, and The Botanic Gardens. After that it'll fiiiiinally be time for my Melbourne posts!