Everyone knows Bondi. It’s one of the most famous beaches in the world, and certainly one of the most beautiful too. But once you’ve taken in the sights, had a dip and brushed off the sand, what else is there to do? Here’s our guide to 24 hours in Bondi.
A key element to life in Sydney is its beaches. We’re lucky enough to have some of the best in the country – if not the world – right on our doorstep.
TV shows like Bondi Rescue and Bondi Vet have made this fashionable spot in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney even more famous, and the surf, suntan and sexy culture of Bondi makes this one of the best people-watching spots to come to in the whole city.
But is there enough to do here for a whole day? Taking up the challenge, we’ve put together our guide to spending 24 hours in Bondi.
24 hours in Bondi
Right on Campbell Parade at the south end of Bondi Beach, this is the perfect spot to soak up the view whilst munching down some of the delicious Mediterranean and Middle Eastern food they serve here.
If you’re feeling super hungry, go for the corn fritters. They’re enormous and delicious.
As the old saying goes, ‘when in Bondi, surf.’ And if you’re a newbie to the coolest looking sport there is, why not learn how at the coolest beach?
Let’s Go Surfing is based at North Bondi – the much more laid back and local end of the beach and will have you taking to the waves before you know it. If you’ve got longer to spend at Bondi, you can even book a tour with these guys to get to know this cool suburb a bit better.
Bondi Icebergs Club
A real local icon, Icebergs is a classic local hangout. The club bar looks out over the beach from the south end, and its saltwater pool on the water is one of the most photographed sights of the beach.
The club is very laidback, but the food and service are as good as the view. If you want to go more up-market, the restaurant and bar upstairs is slick and has a price point to prove it. But it delivers to the highest standards. Definitely an alternative option for dinner if you’re here for a special occasion.
Bondi coastal walk
The coastline around Bondi is striking and dramatic, and perfect for a post-meal stroll. You can walk all the way to Coogee Beach if you want to, though I’d probably stop at Bronte before turning back.
Once a year Sculpture by The Sea takes over this coastal walk and crowds of people flock to see the creativity lining the rocks. It’s an amazing sight so if you time it right, this is definitely something not to miss.
Bondi has some great shops right on Campbell Parade. Plus there’s a market here every weekend.
Make sure you don’t miss Aquabumps Gallery at 151 Curlewis St. These guys have been giving surfers the heads-up on the swell since 1999 and their shots of the beach are superb.
Tucked away down Hall Street, Bondi’s busiest street for restaurants, Bondi Hardware is dark and moody, and serves up treat after treat in with industrial chic. It does get pretty busy here though, so make sure you book.
Another Sydney institution, Bill Granger’s mini-chain of great café restaurants is an easy choice. The Bondi venue (there are 2 others in Sydney and several other iterations internationally) is bright, clean-cut and sophisticatedly simple.
If you’ve still got room after dinner or you’ve saved a space for sweets, here are two options to finish your night off with a sugar hit.
First opening in Darlinghurst in 2002, this ice-creamery now has over a dozen venues in Sydney, across the country and internationally. Pick your favourite flavour, choose a cup or a cone and stroll down to the beach to see the ocean in the moonlight.
Pasticceria Papa – or Papa’s to locals – has been going since the Haberfield store opened in 1988. The delicious Italian cakes, pastries, pies and biscuits to eat here are awesome. I just want to smash my face into their baked ricotta cake every time I see it!
Where to stay:
Opening in December 2015 on the sight of the old Swiss Grand in North Bondi is the QT Bondi. True to form, this sexy limb of the QT brand is beautifully designed and very cute indeed.
The rooms are spacious and generously appointed, and they’ve nailed attention to detail – as always with QT. As the front of the building has been turned into residential apartments, the hotel rooms don’t face the ocean, but the balconies and detail inside the rooms keeps your attention.
The next day:
Power Living, Bondi
Make up for all the overindulging the day before with morning yoga with Power Living. The yoga studios here are spacious only a minute or two from the beach. Check the schedule for heated and non-heated yoga options.
Porch and Parlour
You can’t get much more Bondi than this place. Very easy-going, the essence of beachy and staff who make being cool look easy. The food at this tiny North Bondi café is excellent – plus you’re guaranteed to find a healthy option here if you’re still full from the night before.
They also serve lunch and dinner here, which is something to keep in mind for other meals while you’re here. This is our favourite café in Bondi, so don’t miss it.
If you’ve got longer in Sydney or you want to see more than just Bondi, check out our guide to 24 hours in Sydney.
Do you have any other tips for visiting Bondi? Do you have a favourite beach you go to? Tell us in the comments!