Sea, Sand & Sunshine: A Local's Guide To Manly

Just across the bay from the bright lights and bustling streets of Sydney CBD sits Manly; a beautiful suburb taking things just that little bit slower. Boasting gorgeous beaches, tonnes of fun things to do and a charming selection of independent restaurants, it's no surprise that the oasis is such a popular destination. Uncover our favourite spots with our local's guide to Manly.

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Relax On Manly Beach

Manly Beach is arguably the suburb's most famous feature - and it's not hard to see why. Bordered by an iconic line of pine trees, this sandy stretch runs for a generous 3km and attracts a crowd of sunseekers or surf fanatics. Pitch up camp here to spend a balmy afternoon soaking in the rays or try one of the many watersports on offer.

Manly Beach

After free things to do in Manly? Bring your own picnic right here.

Eat Tasty Pastries At Rollers Bakehouse

If you've got a penchant for flaky pastries - I mean, who doesn't? - then Rollers Bakehouse have got to be on your list of places to eat in Manly. The croissant connoisseurs are serving up a daily-changing selection of sweet and savoury mouthfuls; from patatas bravas to cinnamon scrolls and moreish monkey bread. 

Rollers Bakehouse Manly

From classic scran to quirky nibbles, Rollers Bakehouse are making all your dough-filled dreams come true.

Go Kayaking Around The Bays

For a real taste of Manly, be sure to go kayaking. This is a great way to see the area and is brilliant for uncovering hidden coves that can't be reached on foot. Take to the waters and explore the various bays with this exciting seafaring activity. Whether you're looking to go solo or want to take a guided tour, there are plenty of cool options.

Manly Kayking

If you're wondering what to do in Manly for a day, this hands-on experience is a great choice.

Brunch At Market Lane Cafe

Market Lane Cafe are serving up the best meal of the day across the laid-back space. Enjoy a spot of people watching on the outdoor terrace, all while tucking into a healthy spread of corn fritters, grilled halloumi and chilli masala scrambled eggs that are sure to fuel you up for the day. Plus, there are also a few brunchtime cocktails on the menu if you're looking to ramp things up.

Market House Cafe Manly | DesignMyNight

Get your brunch in the centre of all the action at Market Lane Cafe.

Sip On Pints At 4 Pines Brewery

Fancy a pint? Of course you do. And where better to get one than at Manly's very own 4 Pines Brewery? Originally set up in the area and named after the well-known beach feature, the now-famous beer company are pouring up frothy sips from their waterside taproom as well as at their Brookvale Truck Bar. Grab a seat on the balcony and enjoy a brewski alongside comfort food.

4 Pines Brewery

If you're seeking things to do in Manly on a rainy day, grab a few coldies inside right here.

Check Out Manly Market

Selling everything from artisan trinkets and vintage clothes to freshly baked goods and local produce, Manly Market sees swathes of shoppers come through its open-air bazaar every weekend. Perfect for a leisurely mid-morning amble, the beachside stalls are interspersed with buskers to provide mellow tunes as you dawdle and find some truly unique pieces.

Manly Market

Shopping in Manly doesn't get any better.

Grab A Slice At Pocket Pizza

As one of the best restaurants in Manly, Pocket Pizza are an obvious choice for a fun and tasty meal out. Head to the charming Pittwater Road spot for your fix of mouthwatering cheesy slices, pasta dishes and antipasto plates, suitable for both meat-eaters and vegans. Alternatively, join them on a Friday or Saturday afternoon for two very happy hours of $10 spritzes and $5 on-tap beers.

Pocket Pizza Manly | DesignMyNight

For things to do in Manly at night, these margherita maestros serve up delicious dishes throughout the evening.

Do The Manly To Spit Coastal Walk

A stunning 10km coastal jaunt, the Manly to Spit walk is taking you on a scenic adventure past secret beaches and incredible 1,000 year-old Aboriginal rock engravings. Whether you fancy doing the whole trail or ducking onto a sandy haven midway, this activity is ideal for those of you wanting to get out in nature and take the lesser-trodden path. 

Manly to Spit walk

Trade in the Manly ferry for this seaside hike and discover some historical spots.

Want more? Check out our roundup of things to do outdoors in Sydney or sign up for our future newsletter here.