Clothing optional beaches? Not really. Choose a naturist beach in Sydney and you're usually choosing unclothed swimming. Here's where to go. And if you're looking for a place to stay, including close to beach or harbour, find Sydney hotels and compare rates here.
The body beautiful at Sydney's Beaches
What is it?   A gay rendezvous or a family beach?
In Sydney Australia they tend towards the former rather than the latter. But not exclusively so.
Most are shared by singles, couples, young families. Men predominate but the overall feeling is freedom rather than sleaze.
There are a few pick up spots but they're not hard to avoid.
So don't hesitate if you like the idea of unclothed swimming. The climate's right and the spots are beautiful.
In all the Sydney inner harbour beaches you need to be comfortable in your skin because there are always and inevitably sightseers. You'll never be alone.
Boats sailing Sydney harbour explore all the little inlets. Some come specially of course, others will just happen upon your little cove.
If you want privacy you need to seek out an ocean naturist beach. A couple are listed below.
Beach naturist taking life easy
On Sydney's north shore, on the south side of Middle Head, this quiet little naturist beach gives you lovely views across the harbour to South Head.
To get to it you go through Mosman, all the way along Middle Head Road until it turns right into Chowder Bay Road. There's a public carpark here.
Look for a signpost on the right side of the road and follow it down the steps to the sand.
To get there by public transport you need to take the 244 bus to Chowder Bay. It runs more or less hourly from Carrington Street in downtown Sydney. After a half hour journey it's a five minute walk to the seafront.
Cobblers is another (very small) cove for your inner beach naturist. It's also close to Middle Head.
Skinny-dipping - nothing nicer
Follow Middle Head Road almost to the end then turn left down Cobblers Beach Road. There's a bit of a steepish track down to the sea.
By public transport you take the same 244 bus as to Obelisk. At the end of the line you stroll across Middle Head Oval and follow the track to Cobblers.
Cobblers is known for good snorkeling. It also seems to attract more boats than the other naturist beaches.
It's part of Sydney Australia's National Parks system so you'll need to bring your own food and drink. On summer weekends there's a boat that sells drinks and snacks.
Lady Jane beach is in Lady Bay and you'll hear both names used to refer to the same naturist beach. It's in Sydney Australia's eastern suburbs, a short walk around the clifftop from Camp Cove.
Combine a swim at Lady Jane with a great fresh fish lunch at Watsons Bay for an unbeatable Sydney day.
Cliffs protect Sydney's Lady Bay beach
As well as sightseers in boats, from time to time this cove has visits from tour groups who line the cliffs above.
They're quite a way away though, and more a cause for amusement than alarm.
Being an eastern suburbanite I know this free beach better than the others.
It's a great spot when you just want to get rid of your clothes and bathe, or tan without marks.
Yes, it's a predominantly gay male beach. But who cares? It's not an exclusive club. And the stickybeaks in the boats and on the cliffs don't really matter either. One feels a little sorry for them, that they think this is something special or even a little risqué.
Public transport options to get to Watsons Bay are by ferry (my preferred transport) or by buses 324 and 325. All depart from Circular Quay. It's a short walk from Watsons Bay, through Camp Cove, across the clifftop then down to Lady Jane. It's easy going.
If the full body is a bit too far for you, check out nearby topless Bondi beach Australia.
If you want a less public family naturist beach, then these next two spots are for you. They're both away from the harbour and a little further out of Sydney proper.
Little Congwong Bay beach is a secluded spot by La Perouse in the Botany Bay National Park. You can get there on the 391 bus - just ride it to the very last stop.
Congwong Bay with Little Congwong Bay Beach on the right
La Perouse is an interesting place to go with the family.
There's lots to see and do there - an old fort to explore, a local museum to visit and a great old boatshed cafe where you perch out above the water.
To get to little Congwong go down the steps to Congwong beach, just north of Bare Island, and take the walkway across the rocks to your left.
You'll find this lovely small, sandy, traditional clothing optional beach. It faces Botany Bay rather than the open ocean so there's no surf to speak of and it's very safe for swimming.
You're likely to find it relatively unoccupied during the week, but it's busy on warm weekends. Lots of locals and families go there. And it really is one of the few Sydney beaches where you'll see clothed and unclothed together.
If you really want a hidden beach, away from it all, go to Werrong beach in the Royal National Park in Sydney's south. You're likely to have this one all to yourself, almost certainly during the week.
You can drive to the southern end of the park or take the train to Otford (South Coast Line). From the Otford lookout it's about 1.5 km walk through coastal rainforest. This includes a pretty steep climb down to the seashore (it seems even steeper on the way back!).
Secluded beaches in Sydney's Royal National Park
Although it's a lovely walk it's not easy, especially if you need to carry picnic food and children's paraphanalia.
Allow at least 20-30 minutes to get down, double that to return.
Once on the sand, the closest you're likely to get to other people are the passengers in the planes high above as they make their descent into Sydney Australia.
Think of them as you lie on your free beach surrounded by peace and beauty. Their airline rewards cards can't buy what you're getting.
It's Australian slang for a nosey parker.
Someone who pokes his nose (beak) into other people's business.