Sailing & Dining on Sydney Harbour

As a lover of both Sydney Harbour and good food and drink, I thought I would post my inaugural blog on exactly this! As strange as it seems the choice of venues on the Harbour to actually berth a yacht and eat are quite limited.

Boasting relatively deep water and LOTS of berthing options Middle Harbour and surrounds tops the list for me as the place to head for good hassle free dining. The Spit has really developed in the past 5 years thanks to the growing infrastructure and importantly lots of new berths.

Plonk Beach Café – located on Fergusons Marina on the downstream side of the Spit Bridge and caters for small groups and families. There is a great beach area for kids and the menu has recently been upgraded and is fantastic ! Berthing arrangements can be made with the restaurant booking.

Harbourview Bar and Bistro – located at Middle Harbour Yacht Club is also on the Spit. This upstairs hideaway is open for lunch Wednesday – Sunday 12 noon – 3.00pm and Dinner Friday & Saturday 6.00pm – 9.00pm. Good food and spectacular views! Berthing arrangement are made separately with the club; for more details see here.

Middle Harbour 16’ Skiff Club – there are few places on the Harbour where a beer tastes as good as on the deck at this club. A great food menu and $4mill renovation in 2012 makes this place a great find. Berthing isn’t available, but a tender can be pulled up on the beach right out the front.

On the Eastern shore of Sydney Harbour are also a number of great venues to tie up and have a bite.

Cruising Yacht Club of Australia – on New Beach Road, Rushcutters Bay, the “CY” has an open dining area serviced by the L’ Eat in both a bistro style surrounds or a more formal dining room setting. Hosting the 70th Sydney to Hobart in just over a month, the CYCA is buzzing at the moment, although if you were thinking of arriving by boat, best to check berth availability with the Marina manager. Outside December casual berthing opens up and becomes easier!

Doyles on the Beach – a bit left field and slightly harder to berth, but worth the effort ! Doyles is an institution in Sydney for top end Seafood. Perched on the beach at the Northern end of Watsons Bay, there is plenty of beach to store the tender and a good anchorage in most wind directions.

Watson Bay Hotel – directly next door and also well worth a visit is another equally famous landmark. The “Wato” is a great venue with huge views and better food !

The Darling Harbour/Cockle Bay precinct is arguably the most populated dining option, however the Pyrmont Bridge will stop nearly all yachts larger than 20’ in length. Details on securing a short-term marina berth at Cockle Bay Wharf can be found here.

– Tim Vine

Tim is a Director of YOTI and is based in our Sydney Harbour office.