Sydney is surrounded by beaches, with many of them being dog friendly which means it isn’t too hard to find a dog beach near to you! Several of the dog beaches in Sydney are off-leash too, meaning you can really let your pup release some steam and have a good run around and splash in the water. Here is a guide to the best dog friendly beaches in Sydney! It includes some of the most well known dog beaches in Sydney as well as some hidden and lesser known dog friendly beaches too!
You should make sure to always check the timings as some beaches only allow dogs to be off leash for certain hours during the day. Below I have listed the timings of each beach to make it easier for you. I have split up the article into the different areas of Sydney where you will find dog beaches: Eastern Suburbs, Lower North Shore, Northern Beaches and Sutherland Shire. Additionally I have also included some great coastal walks around Sydney you can do with your dog on the leash.
Rose Bay Dog Beach
Rose Bay Dog Beach and nearby Dumaresq Reserve are a firm favourite for many dog owners living in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney. The large 24/7 off-leash dog beach on the Rose Bay foreshore has perfect views across to The Sydney Harbour Bridge and is absolutely stunning! Plus the water is very shallow here and the beach is very flat, meaning it is perfect for dogs of all sizes to enjoy. Rose Bay Dog Beach gets quite popular at peak hours and at the weekends, but the locals here are all super friendly!
At Dumaresque Reserve dogs should be kept on a leash between 8.30am to 4.30pm, but Rose Bay Dog Beach is off-leash at all times. If you take your dog to Dumaresque Reserve it is best to come at low tide as it can get quite narrow at high tide. Check the tide times here.
Kutti Beach – Vaucluse
Kutti Beach is a very narrow beach located not far from Watson’s Bay where you can bring your dog. To get to Kutti Beach you’ll need to head down Wharf Road until you get to Vaucluse Amateur Sailing Club at the end. You’ll see a narrow staircase next to the sailing club – head down and you’ll find Kutti Beach – one of Sydney’s beautiful and undiscovered secret places!
Dogs are supposed to be on a lead both on the sand strip and in the water, but all the locals let their dogs off the leash here.
LOWER NORTH SHORE
Sirius Cove Beach – Mosman
The suburb of Mosman is a stunning part of Sydney and the dog beach is no different! Sirius Cove Beach is Mosman’s charming off-leash dog beach set in an absolutely beautiful and peaceful location not far from Taronga Zoo. Dogs can have a splash in the calm and shallow water, plus there is a grassy area right next to the small beach for them to run around on. There is also plenty shade here which is ideal when your dog gets too hot in the summer and needs to cool down. The playground here is also great if you plan to bring the kids along too.
Dogs are allowed off-leash on the beach at Little Sirius Cove all the time during week days. However if you come to the beach during the weekend (when Sirius Cove Dog Beach is busiest) or Public Holidays, dogs are only allowed off-leash before 9am and after 4pm. From October to March that changes to before 9am and after 6pm.
Clifton Gardens Reserve – Mosman
Another dog friendly beach in Mosman is Chowder Bay at Clifton Gardens Reserve. Clifton Gardens Reserve is really spacious with a big grassy area next to the beach – perfect for picnics whilst your doggie is enjoying splashing in the water. Dogs can swim on the eastern side of the jetty (the un-netted part). It is quite rocky here so be careful with timid or small dogs. Dogs can be off-leash before 9am and after 4pm. From October to March this changes to before 9am and after 6pm.
If you want to swim in the water there is a netted area for humans to swim in. There is also a playground and BBQ facilities here, as well as changing rooms if you need. If you do the Taronga Zoo to Balmoral walk you will pass by Clifton Gardens Reserve. Note that the full walk goes through Sydney Harbour National Park though, so you won’t be able to do this walk with your dog.
Spit West & Spit East Reserves – Mosman
The Spit West & Spit East Reserves, just south of Spit Bridge are great places where your dog can run around and swim in the water. Dogs are allowed off-leash Monday to Friday, but during the weekends and Public Holidays dogs are only allowed here before 9am and after 4pm.
Note that parking here is paid ($4 for up to 2 hours). During the day spaces will fill up quickly so try to get here early in the morning or during the evenings.
Sandy Bay – Clontarf
At the very beginning of The Spit to Manly walk is popular Sandy Bay – a beautiful flat beach right by the Spit Bridge that is perfect for all sizes of dog as the water is very shallow. Clontarf Reserve is the grassy area to the left of Sandy Bay and here you will find a children’s playground, a cafe, toilets, showers, a BBQ area and picnic tables where you can relax after. There is also lots of shade here – perfect for those hot sunny days. Dogs are only allowed on the reserve from 10am to 6pm though, and they must be kept on a lead.
Manly Lagoon, located just behind the iconic Manly Beach and Queenscliff Beach is a great off-leash dog area. The lagoon is very shallow and the dogs can wade through the water here. There is also a dog park right next to the lagoon (Hinkler Park) where dogs can play off-leash 24/7.
North Curl Curl Lagoon (Flora and Ritchie Roberts Reserve)
Located just next to the Flora and Ritchie Roberts Reserve between Freshwater and Dee Why, North Curl Curl Lagoon is really shallow and makes for a great place for your dog to play in the water. The natural lagoon is located on North Curl Curl Beach and dogs are allowed here off-leash 24/7, making it a popular place for people to bring their pups. Plus they can run in the grassy dunes in the reserve right next to the beach if they still need to burn off some energy as this is an off-leash dog park.
From Curl Curl you can walk all the way to Freshwater (around 2km) on the beach, provided your dog is on a lead.
Bayview Dog Beach (Rowland Reserve)
Bayview Dog Beach offers incredible views out across Pittwater. Along with Rose Bay Dog Beach this is definitely one of the most popular and scenic dog beaches in Sydney and is a must-visit if you live nearby. The water is shallow, meaning even small dogs can swim here, the sand is perfect and sometimes you’ll even see little fish in the water (your dog may even try to catch one!). Plus this area is off-leash for dogs 24/7, meaning you can pop down whatever time of the day you wish!
Right next to Bayview Dog Beach is a large grassy area called Rowland Reserve where dogs can play fetch and have a run around.
Station Beach – Palm Beach
Station Beach is located on the other side of the tip of the Northern Beaches Peninsula to Palm Beach and faces into Pittwater and looks out towards Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park. The beach is over one mile long, offers incredible views and the water is very calm.
Officially dogs are only allowed on the southern part of Station Beach on a leash before 10.30am and after 5.30pm from October to April. From May to September they are allowed on the beach on a leash only during the hours before 10.30am and after 4pm. However the locals are pretty laid back here and each time I have been here I seen several dogs off-leash during these times.
Station Beach is also sometimes known as Barrenjoey Beach and is the starting point for the Barrenjoey Lighthouse Walk.
Cronulla – Greenhills Beach
Greenhills Beach at Cronulla is a really spacious beach full of lots of dogs. As this is Sydney’s only ocean facing dog beach, the water can get a little bit rough here so it is ideal for confident swimmers and larger dogs.
Note that the beach at Cronulla is very large and dogs are only allowed on the section known as Greenhills Beach, which is the dog section of the beach between Wanda Beach and Cronulla Beach. Dogs are prohibited on all other parts of the beach. Therefore you will need to walk through Wanda Reserve to get to Greenhills Beach and dogs must be on the leash when going through Wanda Reserve. You will need to take Track 5 and then go north to get to the dog section of the beach. There is lots of parking but it does fill up quickly as this is a popular spot for dog walkers to take their dogs especially on sunny weekends!
From the hours of before 10am to after 4pm every day dogs can be off-leash at Greenhills Beach. At all other times dogs are not allowed on the beach!
Silver Beach – Kurnell
A 20 minute drive from Greenhills Beach in Cronulla will take you to Silver Beach at Kurnell (also called Kurnell Dog Beach). The water here is a lot calmer than in Cronulla with very few waves and low tides. Plus the water is shallower – making it ideal for any type of dog! Kurnell Dog Beach is a really great place to bring your dog and the whole family as there are lots of cafes and BBQ stations nearby as well as playground equipment to keep the children occupied. Silver Beach is really spacious, plus the views across Botany Bay to Sydney are stunning! You can find nearby street parking on Prince Charles Parade.
Dogs are allowed on the beach off-leash Monday to Friday all day. Before 9am and after 4pm on weekends and Public Holidays they are also allowed. On the western part of the beach towards Bonna Point Reserve, between the third and forth jetties you can let your dog swim. Always check the signs if you are unsure as some parts of the beach prohibit dogs.
Horderns Beach – Bundeena
A short ferry ride from Cronulla will take you to Bundeena. West of Bundeena ferry wharf is the popular Horderns Beach which lies just north of Royal National Park. Horderns Beach is an off-leash dog beach and your dog can enjoy going for a swim in the water here.
During the warmer months of September to April, dogs are only allowed off-leash on Mondays to Fridays before 8.30am and after 4.30pm. They are not allowed off-leash on the weekends. During the cooler months of May to August dogs are allowed off-leash 24/7.
OTHER POPULAR WALKS YOU CAN DO WITH YOUR DOG IN SYDNEY:
Many of these walks listed below are nice coastal or Harbourside walks but dogs are not allowed off-leash. There are however parks nearby (I have mentioned the nearby parks) where they can be let off-leash.
- Bicentennial Park in Glebe is a large park where dogs are allowed off-leash 24/7. Plus it is right next to the water so your dog can also swim in the harbour!
- Walk from The Opera House to Barangaroo Reserve (dogs must remain on a leash). Continue down to the dog friendly All Hands Brewing House at King Street Wharf Darling Habour. Dogs are allowed both inside and out and there is even a non-alcoholic beer (Puppy Pale Ale) created from bone broth specially for dogs to enjoy!
- Walk across The Harbour Bridge. It takes about 20 minutes to walk each way and you’ll be rewarded with fantastic views. Remember to keep your dog close to you whilst it is on the lead as there is a lot of foot traffic across the bridge, including many runners. After you’ve walked southbound (in the direction of The Opera House), you can take your dog to Observatory Hill not far from the end of the bridge. Observatory Hill is one of the few off-leash dog parks in the city.
Milson’s Point to Lavender Bay
- On the north side of the harbour the Milson’s Point to Lavender Bay path and Wendy Whiteley’s Secret Garden is another popular walk you can do with your dog. You can do this after walking across The Harbour Bridge if you wish.
Bondi to Coogee Walk
- Sydney’s most popular walk – the Bondi to Coogee Walk is dog friendly (you will need to keep your dog on a leash though). Bondi to Coogee is a really nice coastal walk to do with your dog, however the beaches here are not dog friendly. Nevertheless you will find a couple of off-leash dog parks along the walk, such as Trenerry Reserve in Coogee and Burrows Park in Clovelly. Alternatively, if you just want to do the shorter walk from Bondi to Bronte Beach, then Marks Park at Mackenzies Point in Tamarama offers stunning views out across to Bondi Beach. There is also lots of space here for you to play fetch with your doggie! Note Marks Park is off-leash only from before 8.30am and after 4.30pm.
Federation Cliffs Walk
- The Federation Cliffs Walk (heading up towards Watson’s Bay from Diamond Bay) is another popular coastal walk to take your dog on. Keep your dog on a leash for the walk, but they can run off-leash at the Lighthouse Reserve in Vaucluse.
LOWER NORTH SHORE
Berry Island Reserve
- Berry Island Reserve near Greenwich is off-leash for the majority of the reserve, however you will need to put your dog on a leash when walking through the bushland and when near the playground.
- The promenade along Balmoral Beach is a popular dog walking spot amongst locals.
- Fairlight Beach and the Fairight Walk, very close to Manly Beach is a popular place for dog walkers however it is VERY important that dogs are always kept on a lead here. Fairlight Beach is home to one of the last fairy penguin colonies in Sydney and so dogs need to be kept on a leash to ensure they don’t scare or injure the penguins.
Where are dogs absolutely not allowed?
Dogs are not allowed within National Parks in Australia. Bear in mind that there is even National Park in the centre of Sydney: Sydney Harbour National Park is split up into many different locations around the harbour. If you zoom in on this map you’ll be able to see the green areas where dogs aren’t allowed as they are National Park.
Dogs are not allowed in National Parks in an effort to protect the fragile native wildlife. Also fox poison is regularly laid in the National Parks, which is lethal to dogs if ingested. Fines are given out if owners are seen to disobey the ‘No Dogs’ signs.
Can I take my dog on public transport in Sydney?
Note that Assistance Animals (Guide Dogs, Service Dogs with valid accreditation) are allowed on all transport within Sydney and NSW.
No other dogs are allowed on trains regardless of their size, but they may however be allowed to travel on ferries, buses and light rail if they are confined in a fully-enclosed carrier (which means small-medium dogs only). You must get the permission of the driver first though and always avoid peak-hour if possible.
Ferries can be more lenient with these rules and often you will be allowed to bring your dog onboard providing it stays on it’s leash and on the outdoor deck at all times. Some dogs may be required to wear a muzzle.
The easiest way to bring your dog to the beach is either to walk if you live nearby, or to drive to the beach.
If you need to take a taxi or an Uber make sure you ask if the dog is allowed when you are making the booking. Sometimes they may ask that you bring a carrier, or if not at least for it to remain on the lead and lie on a blanket you provide so the car doesn’t get dirty.
Ferries in Sydney where dogs are allowed:
Palm Beach to Wagstaffe/Ettalong
Palm Beach to Great Mackerel Beach
On the ferry service from Palm Beach to Wagstaffe/Ettalong and Great Mackerel Beach you can bring your dog providing it stays on a lead and on the outdoor deck of the ferry for the duration of the ride.
Church Point (Bayview) to Scotland Island
Dogs are allowed on the ferry from Church Point to Scotland Island. They can play along the waterfront and along the foreshore on the island.
When should I take my dog to the beach?
Winter is the perfect time to take your dog to the beach as you can generally take them at any time during the day as it is never too hot during wintertime in Sydney.
During the warmer months you should take your dog to the beach early in the morning or in the evening as otherwise the hot sand can burn your dog’s paws and the sun can give your dog sunburn if they have a thin coat of fur. Bear in mind some breeds such as Staffordshire Bull Terriers – a very common breed in Australia, are quite intolerant to heat.
What should I bring with my dog to the beach?
- a towel
- a ball and ball thrower
- water bowl
- don’t forget the leash as you’ll most likely need to keep your dog on the lead when walking to or from the beach.