Cobblers Beach

Sydney Harbour National Park

Open, check current alerts 

Overview

Just north of Middle Head in Sydney Harbour National Park, Cobblers Beach offers scenic water views, paddling, snorkelling and nude bathing.

Entry fees

Park entry fees do not apply in this part of the park but you may need to pay for parking

What to
bring
Drinking water, hat, sunscreen
Please note

Cobblers Beach is a designated nude bathing area. But clothing is required in the surrounding bushland and on the grassed area directly behind the beach.

For a mini holiday without leaving town, Cobblers Beach is a picturesque cove ideal for swimming and picnicking, great for taking time out from a hectic city schedule. Nestled in bushland on the northern edge of Middle Head near Mosman, enjoy expansive views across the scenic foreshore to Dobroyd Head and Grotto Point Lighthouse.

Spend a relaxing afternoon snorkelling or paddling the tranquil waters. If you forget your swimmers don’t worry-it’s a designated nude bathing spot.

If you’re in the mood to explore, walk the Don Goodsir track to the 1801 Forts, which highlight Sydney’s colonial past.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Map


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Current alerts in this area

There are no current alerts in this area.

Local alerts

For the latest updates on fires, closures and other alerts in this area, see https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/swimming-spots/cobblers-beach/local-alerts

General enquiries

Park info

  • in Sydney Harbour National Park in the Sydney and surrounds region
  • Sydney Harbour National Park is open sunrise to sunset but may have to close at times due to poor weather or fire danger.

  • Park entry fees:

    Bradleys Head: $8 per vehicle per day. North Head: $5 per vehicle per day. Tap and pay card or phone payments accepted at pay machines. Coin payment available at Fairfax carpark machines only. Chowder Bay: Monday-Friday: $3 per hour, to a maximum of $16 per day. Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays: $4 per hour, to a maximum of $20 per day. If you hold an NPWS All Parks or Multi Parks Pass, you can park free for up to four hours per day - additional time can be purchased. Car parks operated by Sydney Harbour Federation Trust or Mosman Council are not covered by your pass. Please check signs carefully. Park’nPay: You can also pay for your visit to any area via the Park’nPay app.

    Other fees:

    Landing fees or tour fees apply to visit Sydney Harbour islands. All public visitors to Shark, Clark or Rodd Island, need to pay a $7 per person landing fee. To arrange, please contact 1300 072 757 (13000 PARKS). Annual NSW Parks Passes do not cover landing fees.

    Buy annual pass (//pass.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/).
See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Cobblers Beach.

Getting there and parking

Get driving directions

Get directions

    Cobblers Beach is in the Middle Head precinct of Sydney Harbour National Park. To get there:

    • From Mosman, follow Middle Harbour Road to the end
    • Cobblers Beach is accessed via a walking track on the northern side of Middle Head.

    Road quality

    • Sealed roads

    Vehicle access

    • 2WD vehicles

    Weather restrictions

    • All weather

    Parking

    Paid parking is available at Middle Head carpark. Follow Middle Head Road past the Chowder Bay Road roundabout, to the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust managed carparks.

    Four hours free parking is available for NPWS Annual Pass holders along sections of Chowder Bay Road. Please check the parking meter for the NPWS logo to ensure your vehicle is parked in an NPWS managed carpark.

    Facilities

    Toilets are located in the park at Middle Head and at Middle Head oval.

    Carpark

    Maps and downloads

    Safety messages

    This is an important natural habitat for sting rays. Please be careful when in the water at all times.

    Beach safety

    Beaches in this park are not patrolled, and can sometimes have strong rips and currents. These beach safety tips will help you and your family stay safe in the water.

    Mobile safety

    Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency Plus app before you visit, it helps emergency services locate you using your smartphone's GPS. Please note there is limited mobile phone reception in this park and you’ll need mobile reception to call Triple Zero (000).

    Paddling safety

    To make your paddling or kayaking adventure safer and more enjoyable, check out these paddling safety tips.

    Prohibited

    Pets

    Pets and domestic animals (other than certified assistance animals) are not permitted. Find out which regional parks allow dog walking and see the pets in parks policy for more information.

    Smoking

    NSW national parks are no smoking areas.

    Learn more

    Cobblers Beach is in Sydney Harbour National Park. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

    A world of history

    Fort Denison, Sydney Harbour National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

    Although British authorities first planned to set up their penal colony in Botany Bay, the First Fleet of convicts only stayed in Botany Bay for a few days and then set sail around the coast to Sydney Harbour, where the colony was established. Since then, Sydney Harbour has continued to play an important part in the development of the nation and a number of places in the park have strong links to Sydney's history. You'll find buildings constructed using convict labour, maritime and military fortifications, and the Quarantine Station which once housed new boat arrivals to Sydney, protecting Sydneysiders from infectious disease.

    • Bradleys Head guided walking tour in Sydney Join your friendly guide from EcoWalks Tours for a fascinating harbour-side excursion at Bradleys Head in Sydney. You'll experience local history, enjoy stunning views and see native wildlife.  
    • Bushland secrets at Bradleys Head self-guided tour Take a self-guided tour around Bradleys Head and discover the hidden secrets of this special place. Stroll through bushland along an elevated boardwalk and learn about the history of the area as you drink in the magnificent views of Sydney Harbour.
    • Convict kids on Goat Island 'Guilty of petty theft – your punishment is penal transportation to Australia for the term of your natural life.' Discover what life was like for the first convicts of Australia in this unique Stage 2 (Years 3-4) History excursion on historic Goat Island.
    • Fort Denison – Muddawahnyuh Fort Denison – Muddawahnyuh (mud-uh-'wahn-yuh) is a heritage fort on a Sydney Harbour island. Once called Pinchgut Island, the former military facility is a popular New Years Eve vantage point.
    • Goat Island convicts, castles and champagne tour Discover Sydney’s colourful convict past on a unique tour with Sydney Harbour Tall Ships. Visit historic sites on Goat Island and take in beautiful views as you cruise around Sydney Harbour.
    • Greycliffe House and Nielsen Park heritage tour Enter the world of the mid 1800s when you visit Greycliffe House. It's been a part of Sydney's history since its first residents moved in. Pack a picnic lunch to enjoy in the grounds after the tour.
    • Guided walks in Sydney's national parks Connect with nature in one of Sydney’s most beautiful national parks on a guided bushwalk with Trip Slow. You’ll learn about local wildlife and the history of the area.
    • Military relics at Bradleys Head Discover Sydney's military history at the Bradleys Head Fortifications Complex. Bradleys Head is next to Tarongo Zoo in Mosman NSW.
    • South Head Heritage trail The short, easy South Head Heritage trail takes in scenic beaches and Sydney Harbour views, historic gun emplacements, and great whale watching from the distinctive red and white striped Hornby Lighthouse.
    • Spectacular Sydney Harbour National Park tour Explore Sydney’s most magical places from a local’s perspective on your own private outing with Personalised Sydney Tours. Enjoy an unforgettable day with your friendly guide as you visit iconic landmarks and discover hidden coastal gems.
    • Strickland Estate Step back in time as you walk up the lush lawn to Carrara House on Strickland Estate in Vaucluse. This 19th-century estate is a heritage treasure and boasts one of the best picnic spots with a harbour view anywhere in Sydney.
    • Strickland House heritage tour Wind back the clock and explore the varied history of Strickland House on a guided tour. With stunning harbour views, it was home to leading figures of Sydney's establishment in the 19th century.
    • Sydney Harbour kayak adventures to Goat Island Explore Sydney Harbour by sea kayak on this guided tour with Paddle Pirates. You'll experience marine life and discover the fascinating history of Goat Island, in Sydney Harbour National Park.
    • Sydney top 10 hidden harbour beaches tours Live like a local and experience stunning harbour beaches and beautiful nature in and around Sydney Harbour National Park on these relaxed tours for very small groups.   
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    Aboriginal culture and heritage

    Arabanoo lookout, Sydney Harbour National Park. Photo: John Spencer

    Before Australia became a British colony, the area around Sydney Harbour was occupied by the Eora and Daruk Aboriginal Nations. Upon the arrival of settlers and convicts, land was cleared to make way for the developing colony, and Aboriginal people were forced further and further away from their traditional camping and hunting grounds. As the colony spread, more evidence of Aboriginal life and culture was destroyed. Today, despite the great spread of the city, you can find many Aboriginal sites like rock engravings and middens - examples of an ancient and enduring cultural heritage and a record of the Eora Peoples' culture.

    Burragula and Yiningma lookouts were designed to reflect Aboriginal connection to Country. They’re a great spot to share stories while relaxing on the beautiful sandstone seating in the shape of a bara or fishhook.

    • Arabanoo lookout at Dobroyd Head Arabanoo lookout at Dobroyd Head is named in honour of Arabanoo, the first Aboriginal man to live among European settlers. It's a great spot for whale watching, offering views over North and South Head and the Pacific Ocean.
    • Grotto Point Aboriginal engraving site Sydney Harbour National Park’s rock engravings immerse you in Sydney’s Aboriginal heritage. Head to Grotto Point at Dobroyd Head for historic rock art and scenic views.
    • Living world WildTracker: Bradleys Head On a WildTracker excursion, Stage 3 (Years 5-6) students investigate and analyse the natural environment of Bradleys Head. Students identify and group species and discuss adaptations that help these species survive and thrive here.
    • Living world WildTracker: Nielsen Park On a WildTracker excursion, Stage 3 (Years 5-6) students will explore and analyse the natural environment of Nielsen Park. We'll identify and group species and discuss the adaptations that help these species survive and thrive here.
    • WildThings at Bradleys Head Book your WildThings school excursion for Stage 1 (Years 1-2) students in Sydney Harbour National Park. Together we'll explore the living world and identify the features that help native plants and animals thrive here.

    An island paradise

    Bradleys Head, Sydney Harbour National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

    The park protects five historic harbour islands. Discover the rich convict and maritime heritage of Me-Mel or Goat Island, along with stunning views from all angles. Why not picnic at Rodd or Shark Island? Set aside for public enjoyment as early as 1879, both offer picnic areas, beaches and paths for you to explore. The park’s exceptional landscapes are the perfect setting for fishing, swimming, and soaking up the views. Head to Clark Island for an Aboriginal cultural experience or enjoy the city lights when you stay at Middle Head Officers Quarters. Sydney Harbour National Park is beloved by landscape photographers, so why not bring your camera and take a few shots? 

    • Arabanoo lookout at Dobroyd Head Arabanoo lookout at Dobroyd Head is named in honour of Arabanoo, the first Aboriginal man to live among European settlers. It's a great spot for whale watching, offering views over North and South Head and the Pacific Ocean.
    • Bradleys Head – Booraghee Amphitheatre Bradleys Head – Booraghee ('boo-ruh-gee) Amphitheatre is an exceptionally popular place within Sydney Harbour National Park. A fabulous lookout, it's also a great picnic area and fishing spot.
    • Bradleys Head to Chowder Bay walk Take the Bradleys Head to Chowder Bay walk for beautiful views of Sydney Harbour. This easy walk takes you from Taronga Zoo to the beach and cafes at Chowder Bay.
    • Fairfax walk Fairfax Walk is paved, making it an easy stroll and ideal for walking with children. Located at North Head in Sydney Harbour National Park, it's a great walk for whale watching.
    • Luxury 3-day Sydney Harbour hiking tour Experience the best of Sydney Harbour National Park on this luxury multi-day hike with Harbour Trax. From scenic walks to gourmet dining and boutique accommodation, it’s the ultimate Sydney adventure.
    • Manly Beach sunset cycling tour Pedal along the iconic Manly Beach and enjoy views of Sydney Harbour at sunset on a guided cycling adventure with Bonza Bike Tours.
    • Sydney seaplane flight and Shark Island picnic Discover a whole new side to Sydney Harbour on a scenic flight with Sydney Seaplanes. You’ll fly through to Bondi before enjoying a decadent picnic on Shark Island.
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    Diverse landscapes

    Arabanoo lookout at Dobroyd Head, Sydney Harbour National Park. Photo: David Finnegan

    You'll find everything from sandstone cliffs and rocky foreshores to quiet beaches and bushland in Sydney Harbour National Park. Cliff instability and rockfalls have shaped Sydney's dramatic coastline over thousands of years. Visit the lookouts at North Head and enjoy the perfect vantage point for whale watching. With panoramic views you'll be able to absorb the sheer size of Sydney Harbour. Explore the bushland at Nielsen Park, South Head, Bradleys Head or along the Manly scenic walkway and find yourself beneath gigantic Sydney red gums and Port Jackson figs.

    • Aboriginal cultural cruise in Sydney Harbour Join the friendly and knowledgeable guides of Tribal Warrior for a fascinating boat and island tour as you learn about the Aboriginal culture of Sydney Harbour.
    • Bottle and Glass Point Bottle and Glass Point is an ideal picnic spot in Nielsen Park in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs. Enjoy lovely harbour views and relax in Sydney Harbour National Park.
    • Bradleys Head guided walking tour in Sydney Join your friendly guide from EcoWalks Tours for a fascinating harbour-side excursion at Bradleys Head in Sydney. You'll experience local history, enjoy stunning views and see native wildlife.  
    • Guided kayak tours at Manly Beach Join the friendly local guides of Manly Kayak Centre for an unforgettable paddle and scenic walk. From ocean to hilltop, it’s a great way to enjoy the highlights of Sydney’s beautiful North Harbour, near Manly Beach.
    • Guided walks in Sydney's national parks Connect with nature in one of Sydney’s most beautiful national parks on a guided bushwalk with Trip Slow. You’ll learn about local wildlife and the history of the area.
    • Manly hiking tour Join Fit City Tours for a guided hike in Sydney Harbour National Park. Setting out from Manly, you’ll walk for 10km along a rugged coastal track with iconic harbour views.
    • Manly scenic walkway Also known as the Spit Bridge to Manly Walk, Manly Scenic Walkway is among Sydney's best walking tracks. Enjoy bush, beach and beautiful views on this excellent day walk.
    • Spectacular Sydney Harbour National Park tour Explore Sydney’s most magical places from a local’s perspective on your own private outing with Personalised Sydney Tours. Enjoy an unforgettable day with your friendly guide as you visit iconic landmarks and discover hidden coastal gems.
    Show more

    Native birds and animals

    Water dragon (Physignathus lesueurii), Sydney Harbour National Park. Photo: John Spencer

    You'll probably spot at least one of the park's 150 bird species on your visit, like a white-bellied sea eagle or a New Holland honeyeater. If you're near Manly, you may be lucky enough to glimpse an endangered little penguin as it is the state's only known mainland colony. If you happen to see unusual webbed footprints on a beach or shoreline, they may well belong to a native water rat looking for seafood in shallow water close to the shoreline.

    • Aboriginal cultural cruise in Sydney Harbour Join the friendly and knowledgeable guides of Tribal Warrior for a fascinating boat and island tour as you learn about the Aboriginal culture of Sydney Harbour.
    • Bradleys Head guided walking tour in Sydney Join your friendly guide from EcoWalks Tours for a fascinating harbour-side excursion at Bradleys Head in Sydney. You'll experience local history, enjoy stunning views and see native wildlife.  
    • Fairfax walk Fairfax Walk is paved, making it an easy stroll and ideal for walking with children. Located at North Head in Sydney Harbour National Park, it's a great walk for whale watching.
    • Guided walks in Sydney's national parks Connect with nature in one of Sydney’s most beautiful national parks on a guided bushwalk with Trip Slow. You’ll learn about local wildlife and the history of the area.
    • Living world WildTracker: Bradleys Head On a WildTracker excursion, Stage 3 (Years 5-6) students investigate and analyse the natural environment of Bradleys Head. Students identify and group species and discuss adaptations that help these species survive and thrive here.
    • Living world WildTracker: Nielsen Park On a WildTracker excursion, Stage 3 (Years 5-6) students will explore and analyse the natural environment of Nielsen Park. We'll identify and group species and discuss the adaptations that help these species survive and thrive here.
    • The earth's environment at Bradleys Head The earth's environment is a fun, Stage 1 (Years 1-2) geography excursion at Bradleys Head. Students will identify the physical features of this beautiful place. They'll discuss how people interact with the place in both past and present contexts.  
    • WildThings at Bradleys Head Book your WildThings school excursion for Stage 1 (Years 1-2) students in Sydney Harbour National Park. Together we'll explore the living world and identify the features that help native plants and animals thrive here.
    Show more

    Plants and animals protected in this park

    Animals

    • Humpback whale breaching. Photo: Dan Burns

      Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae)

      The humpback whale has the longest migratory path of any mammal, travelling over 5000km from its summer feeding grounds in Antarctica to its breeding grounds in the subtropics. Its playful antics, such as body-rolling, breaching and pectoral slapping, are a spectacular sight for whale watchers in NSW national parks.

    Plants

    • Grass trees, Sugarloaf State Conservation Area. Photo: Michael Van Ewijk

      Grass tree (Xanthorrea spp.)

      An iconic part of the Australian landscape, the grass tree is widespread across eastern NSW. These Australian native plants have a thick fire-blackened trunk and long spiked leaves. They are found in heath and open forests across eastern NSW. The grass tree grows 1-5m in height and produces striking white-flowered spikes which grow up to 1m long.

    • Blueberry ash. Photo: Jaime Plaza

      Blueberry ash (Elaeocarpus reticulatus)

      The blueberry ash is a rainforest shrub which produces blue olive-shaped berries and spectacular bell-shaped flowers, which often appear on the plant together. It is a tall slender shrub or small tree found in rainforest, tall eucalypt forest and coastal bushland in eastern NSW, south-east Queensland and Victoria.

    • Flannel flowers in Wollemi National Park. Photo: © Rosie Nicolai

      Flannel flower (Actinotus helianthi)

      The delicate flannel flower is so named because of the soft woolly feel of the plant. Growing in the NSW south coast region, extending to Narrabri in the Central West and up to south-east Queensland, its white or pink flowers bloom all year long, with an extra burst of colour in the spring.

    • Smooth-barked apple. Photo: Jaime Plaza

      Smooth-barked apple (Angophora costata)

      Smooth-barked apple gums, also known as Sydney red gum or rusty gum trees, are Australian native plants found along the NSW coast, and in the Sydney basin and parts of Queensland. Growing to heights of 15-30m, the russet-coloured angophoras shed their bark in spring to reveal spectacular new salmon-coloured bark.

    Environments in this park

    Education resources (1)

    School excursions (8)