If you don’t already know it, Palm Beach is one of Australia’s most famous beaches for two very good reasons. It’s where the fictional soap/drama Home and Away is filmed (extremely popular throughout the UK and Europe) and it’s quiet, pristine and usually reserved for the wealthier class of people.
Approximately 90 minutes North of Sydney it is a piece of heaven and it’s something that should be on every persons bucket list whilst visiting Australia especially when it’s so easy to get to.
Whether you just want to take some photos, have a quiet sunbathe with a good book or watch some filming of Home and Away, Palm Beach is worth a day trip. One of the best things about Palm Beach is that despite it being used for filming, it’s open to the public and it’s free so all you need to do is get yourself there and explore for yourself.
Palm Beach ‘starts’ at the entrance of Governor Phillip Park and the Palm Beach Golfclub and after a five minute walk along the road parallel to the golfclub you will see the Boathouse restaurant on your left and on the right hand side a little further on, you will see the Palm Beach Surf Club; this is when you start to see the real beauty of the place.
One of the best things about Palm Beach is that you can climb the headland to the lighthouse to see the real view of the peninsula!
Sadly, due to a bushfire at the end of September (the rumour is that it was started deliberately and they have two men for it), the headland itself doesn’t look too photogenic currently but it’s still worth the climb due to the view and for the peace and quiet you experience.
To get on to the track for the lighthouse stay on the beach with the Boathouse restaurant. Walk all the way down to the bottom of the beach and you will see this sign:
What you face then is a short but VERY steep track for the next 15-20 minutes. It’s recently undergone a $800,000 renovation to make the path easier to walk etc which makes the headland fire and even sadder affair but once you start getting to the top, you know it’s worth it.
Unfortunately, you can’t currently reach the ‘tip’ of the headland to the West of the lighthouse as it needs to be allowed to grow back from the bushfire but it’s worth a walk up. It’s so quiet and if you go on a weekday, you are likely to be the only person up there allowing for some quiet contemplation 🙂
Don’t forget that after your walk, you can try and watch some of the Home and Away filming:
Or get a photo with some of the actors:
So, is it worth visiting Palm Beach? Absolutely! Whether you’re a fan of Home and Away, beaches or just nice scenery, this is the place to spend a few hours with your camera, a good book and your thoughts 🙂
How to get there:
From the city centre you can drive there in about an hour if the traffic is good or you can jump on the L90 bus from the city centre (it has limited stops so check the route map and timetable here) which will take you between 90 minutes and 2 hours depending on the traffic.
The bus ticket costs approximately $10 return and you’ll need to buy the ticket in advance at a convenience store. It leaves from the city (and Palm Beach) approximately every 30 minutes so make sure you arrive at your bus stop in time unless you don’t mind hanging around (though let’s face it, there are worse places you could be stuck!).
Home and Away information:
Filming usually occurs Tuesday to Thursday and you are allowed to watch it happen as long as you follow a couple of common sense rules:
- don’t talk or take photos once they’ve said ‘action’ as the microphones will pick it up.
- stand where you are told.
- remember that they are working and be respectful accordingly.
You are allowed to take photos of them setting up the scenes and usually after each scene, crew will ask if you’d like to have a photo taken with the actors (who are more than happy to do so) so don’t be afraid to get your camera out!