Unwind in Sydney


From cleansing rock pools to royal tea parties to zen rooftops with a view, no one does ‘take it easy’ quite like a Sydneysider.



Take The Plunge

The Baths & Rock Pools of Sydney | Various

For many Sydney natives, the rock pool swim is a time-honored daily ritual, a christening right of passage that, lucky for us visitors, is open to all. There is something renewing about rising with the sun to meet the sea in rock pool form, finding it carved into the cliffside at the end of most beaches. Each swimming hole has it own legend, color and lore, some require a trek and maybe swimmer’s gear (a one-piece and goggles over a bikini and sunnies). Try a different kind of cleanse at some of Sydney’s best loved water features:

Wylie’s Baths at Coogee Beach: swim with this fishes at this historic, tidal rock pool



Palm Beach Rock Pool: perfect your laps in this 50 meter pool with breathtaking views



Bondi Icebergs pool: take a dip at one of Sydney’s most famous landmarks, and maybe spot a legendary Icebergs member or two




Bronte Baths: bask in the beauty of Bondi’s more private (and some argue, more picturesque) sister



Dawn Fraser Baths: dive into this unique harbor pool steeped in 1800’s Victorian elegance



Ross Jones Memorial Pool: don’t miss a swim at this popular locals spot just a short jaunt from Wylie’s Baths



Tranquility… On The Rocks

Park Hyatt Sydney, 7 Hickson Road, The Rocks | +61 2 9256 1633

The Park Hyatt is one of Sydney’s top hotels, but its spa is second to none. A zen rooftop oasis with sweeping 360° views of the Sydney Harbour and Opera House, the pool and sundeck alone feel like a mini-passport to peace. But plush treatment rooms and tension-melting therapies like the Australian Uplift massage or the Lavender Dreams spa cocoon take the experience to new heights. Book your session with soak-up-the-sun time in mind, or consider nabbing a weekday appointment for a little bonus discount.







Stop And Stroll The Roses (And The Herbs… And The Palm Grove…)

Royal Botanic Gardens, Mrs. Macquaries Road, CBD |
+61 2 9231 8111

70+ acres of pristine, oceanfront green space in the middle of Sydney’s bustling Central Business District, the Royal Botanic Gardens are a calming and well-placed urban sanctum. Peruse the Palace Rose Garden, a colorful feast for the eyes (and the olfactories!) featuring some 1,800 varietals of the beautiful blossom. Stop by the Palm Grove, a spectacular tropical tree collection that floored these California girls. Then on to the peaceful, heady-scented Herb Garden, site of many a lucky Sydney dweller’s wedding. A modernist stone sanctuary showcasing Australia’s native flora, the Edenic Rockery is not to be missed. Commandeer a seat on one of the benches for prime Opera House views. Finally, stop by Mrs. Macquarie’s Chair for a peek at a truly romantic grand gesture.





Spend The Afternoon With Royal-tea

The Tea Room QVB, 3 Queen Victoria Building, 455 George Street, CBD | +61 2 9283 7279

We love a proper English tea – the tiers of treats – the brilliant service – the regal caffeination. The Tea Room QVB goes next-level with its unabashedly girly setting, all velveteen seating, etched glass chandeliers and royal china. The hallowed hall that once served as the Grand Ballroom is now a splendid place to sit back and nibble at the edges of your afternoon (and maybe a perfect little cake or two). This is finery at a gloriously relaxed pace.




Breakfast At George’s

George Giavis at The Blonde Room, 110A Queen Street, Woollahra | +61 2 9328 6700

We are pretty unequivocal about our belief in the restorative powers of a good blowout. (We’ve been known to get up extra early and skip our first meal to sneak one in!) So when we heard that George Giavis was known for his Breakfast & A Blowdry treatment, we were all in. Getting our beauty fix with a triple cappuccino and the paper served on a literal silver platter felt like the ultimate indulgence. Not having to choose between breakfast and a good hair day? That’s what we call relaxing.


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© Where To Unwind in Sydney: Gather’s Guide to the best Sydney spas, Respites and Escapes.