Congwong Beach

La Perouse area in Kamay Botany Bay National Park

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Overview

Visit beautiful Congwong Beach, in La Perouse, perfect for swimming, picnics, snorkelling and fishing. Only 15km from central Sydney, this family friendly beach is also close to cafes and walks.

Where
La Perouse area in Kamay Botany Bay National Park
Accessibility
No wheelchair access
Price
Free
What to
bring
Hat, sunscreen, suitable clothing
Please note
  • Congwong Beach is accessed via a 100m path at the southern end of Cann Park. The path has a number of steps.
  • You can also take Congwong trail, which starts along Henry Head Lane, near the park entry gates.
  • It’s a good idea to avoid swimming at Congwong Beach during and for 24 hours after heavy rain.

Congwong Beach is a perfect spot for a relaxing family day out in Sydney’s Kamay Botany National Park. Easy to reach from Cann Park in La Perouse, via a 100m path with steps, this sheltered sandy beach is great for children.

Lounge on your beach blanket, surrounded by nature, and take in beautiful views of Botany Bay and Bare Island. Bathe in gently lapping waves, or head to the rocky outcrops at either end of the beach to cast your fishing line. Congwong Beach and nearby Bare Island are popular spots for snorkelling and scuba diving, especially in spring and autumn.

It’s an ideal spot to cool off after hiking the return walking tracks to Henry Head and Cape Banks, or cycling the La Perouse loop.

Watch seabirds dip and dive and keep an eye out for passing dolphins as you enjoy a beach picnic. Or, head to local cafes for lunch or dinner. Don’t forget to take in the local history at Bare Island Fort and La Perouse Museum.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Also see

  • Lyre bird

    Happy Valley camp

    Visit the site of Happy Valley camp, an historic Depression-era community located behind Congwong Beach, in La Perouse. It’s one of many fascinating historic sites in Kamay Botany Bay National Park.

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/congwong-beach/local-alerts

General enquiries

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

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

Getting there and parking

Congwong Beach is in the La Perouse area of Kamay Botany Bay National Park, around 17km from Circular Quay. To get to get there from Sydney follow Anzac Parade south to La Perouse.

To access Congwong Beach:

  • From the sign at the south end of Cann Park, take the 100m path down to the beach.
  • From the carpark on Anzac Parade, opposite Endeavour Avenue, follow the Congwong trail

Road quality

  • Sealed roads

Vehicle access

  • 2WD vehicles

Weather restrictions

  • All weather

Parking

  • Parking is available at Cann Park, near La Perouse Museum.
  • You can also park near the park entry gates, on Anzac Parade, opposite Goorawahl Avenue.

By public transport

Take bus L94 or 394 to La Perouse from Circular Quay, Martin Place, or Hyde Park via Maroubra Junction. Visit Transport for NSW for details.

Facilities

  • Public toilets are located on Anzac Parade, around 50m from the start of the track, near Cann Park.
  • Drinking water is also available in this amenities block, and from taps in Cann Park.
  • The closest shops and cafes are around 100m from the start of the track, on Anzac Parade.
  • There are no bins at the beach, so please take all rubbish with you.

Carpark

Maps and downloads

Safety messages

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.

Fishing safety

Fishing from a boat, the beach or by the river is a popular activity for many national park visitors. If you’re planning a day out fishing, check out these fishing safety tips.

Mobile safety

Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency + 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).

Accessibility

Disability access level - no wheelchair access

Permitted

Fishing

A current NSW recreational fishing licence is required when fishing in all waters.

Prohibited

Amplified music, alcohol and glass bottles, and nudity are not permitted at Congwong Beach or Little Congwong Beach.

Camp fires and solid fuel burners

Camping

Cycling

Not permitted on walking tracks or beaches. You can cycle on public roads leading to Congwong Beach and secure your bike in Cann Park.

Gathering firewood

Generators

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.

Visitor centre

Learn more

Congwong Beach is in La Perouse area. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

Aboriginal culture

Burrawang walk, Kamay Botany National Park. Photo: Andrew Richards

At the time of the first encounters with Europeans, Aboriginal people of 2 different nations - the Goorawal People and the Gweagal People - were living in the area which now includes Kamay Botany Bay National Park. Over 30 Aboriginal sites have been recorded in the park, including rock art and engravings.

  • Aboriginal culture: Expanding contacts Aboriginal culture expanding contacts in Kamay Botany Bay National Park is a Stage 4 (Years 7-8) school excursion which focuses on history as a KLA. Embark on a learning journey of Aboriginal culture from pre-colonisation to now.
  • Dharawal Resting Place track Walk the short track to Dharawal Resting Place to discover this important La Perouse Aboriginal site, that’s also steeped in Sydney’s colonial history.
  • La Perouse first contact tour Explore La Perouse on an Aboriginal cultural tour in Sydney's Kamay Botany Bay National Park. Take part in a traditional ochre ceremony, try bush tucker and learn about first contact with Europeans.

Historic heritage

Bare Island Fort, Kamay Botany National Park. Photo: Andrew Richards

Two of Australia's earliest European explorers landed in Botany Bay here—James Cook in 1770, and the Comte de Laperouse in 1788. Cook's botanists, Joseph Banks and Daniel Solander, first explored Australia's natural world here. After the reports of Cook and Banks, Botany Bay was recommended as a suitable site for settlement. But upon inspection by Captain Arthur Phillip it was found unsuitable as it had no secure fresh water or suitable anchorage. Sydney Cove was set up as the penal colony instead. You can also explore the fascinating history of Bare Island Fort on a guided tour, see World War II military remnants at Henry Head, or learn more at La Perouse Museum.

  • Bare Island and Cape Banks ultimate day tour Uncover the wealth of history along the shores of La Perouse, Kamay Botany Bay National Park. From a shipwreck to the Henry Head fortifications, there's plenty to delve into on this guided tour.
  • Bare Island Fort guided tour Join this guided tour to hear about the unpredictable history of Bare Island Fort at La Perouse. We'll cross a 130-year-old wooden bridge and enter a world of fine engineering and great deception.
  • Bound for Botany Bay In 1770, James Cook and his crew aboard the Endeavour were bound for Botany Bay. Their 8-day stay would have a dramatic impact on the future of Australia. This Stage 2 (Years 3-4) history excursion explores the first British landing on Australian soil.
  • Cape Banks walking track Cape Banks walking track is a beautiful coastal walk in La Perouse with views across Sydney’s Botany Bay. Start at Congwong Beach and take a swim along the way before passing Henry Head. Continue to Cape Banks, a fantastic spot for whale watching.
  • Dharawal Resting Place track Walk the short track to Dharawal Resting Place to discover this important La Perouse Aboriginal site, that’s also steeped in Sydney’s colonial history.
  • La Perouse first contact tour Explore La Perouse on an Aboriginal cultural tour in Sydney's Kamay Botany Bay National Park. Take part in a traditional ochre ceremony, try bush tucker and learn about first contact with Europeans.
  • La Perouse Museum La Perouse Museum is a Stage 5 (Years 9-10) school excursion in Kamay Botany Bay National Park, which focuses on history as a KLA. On 26 January 1788, the French explorer La Perouse arrived in Botany Bay, six days after the First Fleet. It was to be the last port of call before the expedition vanished forever.
  • La Perouse Museum Housed in a heritage building at La Perouse in Sydney's south, the La Perouse Museum documents the expedition of French explorer the Comte de Laperouse.
  • La Perouse Museum La Perouse Museum is a school excursion for Stage 3 (Years 5-6) students in Kamay Botany Bay National Park which focuses on HSIE. On 26 January 1788, the French explorer La Perouse arrived in Botany Bay, six days after the First Fleet. It was to be the last port of call before the expedition vanished forever. Housed in the historic Cable Station building, many relics and artefacts retell this fascinating tale.
  • Stories of a different time at La Perouse Stories from a different time is a fascinating Stage 1 (Years 1-2) history excursion at La Perouse. Students will learn about the first contact between the Aboriginal people, traditional custodians of the land, and the new British arrivals.
Show more

Biodiversity

Wildflowers in Kamay Botany Bay National Park. Photo: John Spencer

Much of the park’s unspoilt flora give an idea of the plants that were present pre-1770. A conservation effort to protect and rehabilitate rare and threatened species and ecosystems is underway to preserve this heritage-listed Sydney park. Henry Head walking track leads through the rare eastern suburbs banksia scrub now listed as an endangered ecological species.

  • Cape Banks walking track Cape Banks walking track is a beautiful coastal walk in La Perouse with views across Sydney’s Botany Bay. Start at Congwong Beach and take a swim along the way before passing Henry Head. Continue to Cape Banks, a fantastic spot for whale watching.
  • Jennifer Street boardwalk Jennifer Street boardwalk is a short, wheelchair-accessible walking track in La Perouse. The smooth, boarded path is popular with all ages looking for an easy weekend walk in Sydney.
  • La Perouse first contact tour Explore La Perouse on an Aboriginal cultural tour in Sydney's Kamay Botany Bay National Park. Take part in a traditional ochre ceremony, try bush tucker and learn about first contact with Europeans.

Visitor experiences

La Perouse Museum, Kamay Botany Bay National Park. Photo: Andrew Richards

La Perouse offers a real escape just minutes from the city and close to cafes and public transport. Take a day trip to go bushwalking, whale watching or fishing. Learn more about the early European explorers, and Aboriginal stories, at the fascinating exhibits in La Perouse Museum tell. Enjoy a picnic, cafes and fish ’n’ çhips and watch the sun set over the bay. Keep an eye out for guided tours of Bare Island Fort.

Plants and animals you may see

Animals

  • White-bellied sea eagle. Photo: John Turbill

    White-bellied sea eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

    White-bellied sea eagles can be easily identified by their white tail and dark grey wings. These raptors are often spotted cruising the coastal breezes throughout Australia, and make for some scenic bird watching. Powerful Australian birds of prey, they are known to mate for life, and return each year to the same nest to breed.

Plants

  • 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/OEH

    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.

  • Old man banksia, Moreton National Park. Photo: John Yurasek

    Old man banksia (Banksia serrata)

    Hardy Australian native plants, old man banksias can be found along the coast, and in the dry sclerophyll forests and sandstone mountain ranges of NSW. With roughened bark and gnarled limbs, they produce a distinctive cylindrical yellow-green banksia flower which blossoms from summer to early autumn.

  • 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 area

School excursions (6)

View of beach, with people and seagulls, and historic tower in the distance.  Photo: Stacy Wilson/OEH.