For a family-friendly Sydney Harbour picnic, you need plenty of space and ideally a large grassy area for playing cricket and footie.
Lots of shade is also de rigeur.
If there’s a beach and a playground nearby too, then you are totally set for a long day of outside fun and play.
Top Ten Sydney Harbour Family Picnic Spots
Our favourite Sydney Harbour picnic spots are excellent throughout winter, spring, summer and autumn too. How lucky are we?
These are our top 10 family picnic spots around Sydney Harbour and Middle Harbour. Please do let us know of others in the comments section of this post.
It goes without saying really that all of these picnic spots have the most magnificent harbour views.
Yours for the day at totally no cost.
Here they are, we’re going from the north side of the Bridge around the Harbour to the east and then to south side.
Each picnic place can be read about in more detail by clicking on the link.
Berry Island Reserve
Gorgeous green swathes of grass, a lovely playground and even a child-friendly walk with indigenous rock carvings.
Read all about Berry Island Reserve here.
Blues Point Reserve at McMahons Point Picnics
You’ll find classic views of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House plus lots of space and a lovely small maritime-themed playground. There are accessible toilets on the reserve, plus seats and picnic tables. But our family prefers to throw a blacket at the water’s edge for uninterrupted Harbour views. Blues Point is named after Billy Blue who was granted 80 acres of land on the north side of the harbour in 1817. He ran a rowing boat service between Dawes Point and Blues Point for many years.
Read more about Blues Point Reserve here.
Balmoral Beach Picnics
You can picnic under the ancient fig trees to the south of the playground or on the lawns near the Rotunda at the Bathers pavilion.
When children are older cross the little bridge and picnic on the ‘island.’ There’s the beach, the baths and a playground too. Perfection.
Find out the info you need about Balmoral beach here.
Cremorne Point Picnics
The sloping reserve that runs along Cremorne Point, with its walkway, is ideal for families looking for magnificent views of the City.
You can also have a dip at McCallum Pool. Not so much space for cricket here and not the best for runaway toddlers either, but fab for babies in strollers and sensible kids.
Read more about Cremorne Point here.
Clifton Gardens Picnics
It’s got the lot. Beach, netted baths and a vast playground, all within a huge flat expanse of lawn. Top spot for cricket and soccer games to wear the kids out, should the playground and beach not do the job.
Older kids love jumping from the jetty around the baths.
More info on Clifton Gardens here.
Clontarf Beach and Reserve Picnics
Terrific for toddlers and pre-schoolers and good for older kids too. There’s a divine boat-themed playground very close to the beach and a small netted baths area. There are mud flats too to run and play on and plenty of space for games.
Find out about Clontarf Beach and Reserve here.
Davidson Park Picnics
Higher up on Middle Harbour is a very spacious area alongside Roseville Bridge.
You do need to pay the National Parks entrance fee to park there but it’s worth it for the views and the space.
There’s a very small netted swimming area. Bring your own kayak and explore.
Read more about Davidson Park here.
Watsons Bay Picnics
There’s such a lot of space to play at Robertsom Park and magnificent trees to find shade beneath. There’s also a fenced playground within the park. Down by the water there’s lovely a beach with reserve, plus the swimming baths. And there are great options for takeaway food here so you don’t even need to bring your own picnic.
The beach and the enclosed baths are just a short stroll away.
Check out details on Robertson Park here
Parsley Bay Picnics
Beloved by all who visit, this is a tiny beach compared to most but it does have a nice reserve and playground, plus walks around it.
Parking is the only drawback, so come at a quiet time of the week.
Read all about Parsley Bay here.
Neilsen Park Picnics
An oasis of ancient trees and lovely lawns, with picnic spots higher up as well as by the netted beach.
You do need to pay fees to enter as it is part of Sydney Harbour National Park.
Read more details on Neilsen Park here.
Mrs Macquaries Point
This spot must be included as it’s one of the best viewing spots around Sydney Harbour. There are classic views across to the Opera House with the Harbour Bridge behind.
Older children will enjoy exploring Mrs Macquaries Chair which is carved out of the sandstone rock.
It can be very busy with tourists here but you can move away a little to picnic, or duck into the spacious lawns of the Botanic Gardens. Afterwards, pop over to have a quick swim at the Andrew ‘Boy” Charlton Pool by the Art Gallery of New South Wales.
More on Mrs Macquaries Point here.
Hope you’ve enjoyed this post.
Please do let myself and my readers know in the comments both your very favourite Sydney Harbour picnic spots.