Gordons Bay: Snorkelling and Swimming At A Hidden Sydney Gem



Gordons Bay Australia clear waters

How clear is the water at Gordons Bay? Here’s a lone swimmer whom we saw as we walked


Gordons Bay is a bit of a local hero with Eastern Suburbs residents, but not widely known by Sydneysiders from further afield.

Time it was!

Gordons Bay (no, NOT Gordon’s Bay!) is a marvellous place to swim, snorkel and scuba dive, and to play on the beach and scramble around the rocks too.

It’s one of those Sydney beaches that feels a bit special, because it’s so very pretty and just that little bit harder to get to as well. Plus there’s the Gordons Bay Underwater Natural Trail, a snorkellers paradise.

Gordons Bay snorkelling Sydney

Snorkeller in paradise!

So where is Gordons Bay?

Well, the bay is between Clovelly and Coogee, the Bondi to Coogee Coastal Walk runs along the coast here and that is how you access the beach and bay. There’s no road as such beside the bay.

Check out the map and see below for parking tips.

Gordons Bay Map Here

Sydney,  Gordons Bay Snorkeling, snorkeling Gordons Bay, Gordons Bay Australia, Gordon’s Bay, Gordons Bay Coogee, snorkeling sydney

What you can do at Gordons Bay Coogee

Play on the beach!  There’s a small strip of sand and often there aren’t many people there. It’s lovely sitting there by the tinnies.

The wooden ramps are quite unique along this coastline, there are few places you can launch a boat.

The Gordon of this Bay fame was probably Lewis Gordon who carried out surveying work here in the 19th century and was given a grant of land here.

swim Gordons Bay

Who is that ridiculous swimmer in the pink hat? Oh, it’s me

Go swimming, the water is generally calmer than the beaches around about and the water tends to be very clear.

The waters tend to be calm within Gordons Bay, however there are no life guards or flags so you need to keep a really close eye on the kids.

Learn about fishies, and see them. This handy board is up at the path, well worth studying before a swim or snorkel.

The rock formations and fish make snorkelling at Gordons Bay a treat.

Snorkel!  You can enjoy snorkelling straight off the beach, or go in deeper and follow the train.


The trail starts from the rocky platform sat the north end, close to the car park at Clovelly pool. Read the signs to learn all about the marine life that abounds here.


Getting to Gordons Bay

Parking: The best place to park is at the car park at the end of Clovelly Road, the Bondi to Coogee path goes from the southern part of the car park and is easily seen.

However… like all Eastern Suburbs car parks, this gets busy on hot days and at weekends…. early mornings are usually good and week days.

Otherwise you need to find a park in the streets around Clovelly and Coogee and then get to the Bondi to Coogee Walk path and walk in.

Public Transport: Take buses to Coogee or Clovelly and walk in along the path.

gordons bay walk to beach

The walk in starts from the bottom of the car park here

Gordons Bay the coastal trail

Walking along the Bondi to Coogee path from the car park to the beach

As you walk to the beach from the car park there is one massive hill to go up and down with lots of steps.  This is not a pram friendly walk.  The kids might whinge and you might too… but it’s worth it.

This is generally a great beach for kids to snorkel around, the only downside is having to schlep all the kit in, plus water, picnic etc etc

But it does feel special…. and an adventure.


For other great snorkelling spots in Sydney, try these posts:

Snorkelling At Shelly Beach Manly

Snorkelling at Balmoral Beach

You might want to stop at a cafe afterwards, can we recommend Seasalt Cafe at Clovelly.

Read also Best Kid-Friendly Cafes in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs here.

sydney snorkelling gordons bay

A joy for any family to behold, beautiful Gordons Bay




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Posted on: October 18, 2018


  • Reply October 30, 2018

    Johanna Castro

    Gordons Bay is lovely – yes I have visited! Yay! And I did the clifftop walk and it was so beautiful. I wish I could afford to live somewhere like Gordons Bay with that view and that beach. So quaint 🙂

    • Reply October 31, 2018

      Seana Smith

      Oh me too. I also adore Fairy Bower at Manly, there’s the rock pool and walkway to Shelly Beach. Houses and flats are SO expensive there… maybe I will just go for a holiday one day.

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