Everyone knows about the Bondi to Coogee Coastal Beach Walk in Sydney, Australia. It is impossible to miss. Even Google tells you where it is at. However, what if you are coming from Maroubra and want to do a nice walk? Do the coastal walk from Maroubra to Coogee (or Coogee to Maroubra, whichever way you go). It is just as beautiful and less touristic than the Bondi to Coogee walk. I am not saying you should not do the Bondi to Coogee walk, but if you are staying around the Eastern beaches in Sydney and are up for another coastal walk, you will definitely like this one.
The road to Coogee Beach
On your way to Coogee Beach, you will find rock pools, cliffs, parks, some natural wildlife, and two great beaches. Some say you might even spot whales or dolphins swimming while you walk along the coast. The walk is fairly easy, with concrete and boardwalk most of the way and only a few kilometres long. Before you start walking, do not forget to bring sunscreen and swimmers. I do recommend wearing sneakers for this journey, so take your flip-flops if you want take a dip at any of the beaches or rock pools along the way. Read on to discover the highlights of the walk and how to get there.
Start off at Maroubra beach, where it is always buzzing with surfers. Be sure to watch some surfing in action when you are there. Maroubra beach is probably best known for the giant multi-coloured Rubik's cube lying on the sand. Funnily enough, this cube is not a piece of art, but simply a storm water drain cover, as reported in The Daily Telegraph
Mahon Rock Pool
The track starts up on the left side of Maroubra beach, if you are looking straight at the ocean. Head up the path along the cliff. Soon you will find yourself walking past a parking lot. A short, few hundred meters later you will realize why there is a parking lot. You have found the first rock pool: the Mahon pool. It is much roomier than other Eastern Sydney pools and provides more relaxation thanthe ones around Bondi and Coogee. If you do not want to swim, you can easily relax on the sandstone rock formations, some of which are shaped like perfect seats for you to sit in. The Mahon Pool is so great, it has even got its own café just across the road: Pool Café. Do not forget to grab a coffee, or have some brunch or lunch before you head on out for the rest of your walk.
Continue to follow the path and you will soon find yourself at Mistral point, a large cliff area with beautiful views of the upcoming beaches and bays you are about to see. For the bird lovers, Mistral Point is a great place to see some rare birds flying past. Be sure to make that Instagrammable Mistral Point photo before you continue along.
Mahone Rock Pool and Mistral Point view
Rob Walker Rock Pool
From Mistral Point, continue following the path down. At a certain point, you will reach a few steps going down to a rocky area. There you will find a second rock pool: Rob Walker Rock Pool. The rocky area itself looks a bit like a moon landscape, with big rocks piled on each other and puddles of sea water along the way. This means that the waves do reach these rocks sometimes, so please be careful as you walk since it may be wet and slippery. On a good day, it is perfectly fine to walk along these rocks. Locals even take their dogs out for a walk there. At the other side, you will see a long wooden stair; that is your destination. Nevertheless, this moon-like landscape is worth a few photo shots too. Look out for the holes where the sea sprays up as it hits the sides of the rock.
The Local South Coogee Neighborhood
Climb up those long wooden steps at the end of the moon-like landscape, and you will find yourself at the end of Liguria Street in the middle of a neighborhood. You can choose to travel up Liguria Street or head on over to the next street going up, Edgecliff Avenue. Both roads are quite hilly, but you must go up to continue to Coogee. This part of the walk might seem boring, but it shows you how local Australians live in the Eastern suburbs. Some houses are quite impressive, with balconies overlooking the ocean. Once you hit the main road, Malabar Rd at the end of either street you climbed up, continue right until you hit Cuzco Street on your left. Make a left turn and walk all the way down. There is a sign saying “No Through Road”and it will seem like a dead end, but go down the steps, and turn left. You will find a small passageway for pedestrians.
Rocky landscape and the small passageway
Ivor Rowe Rockpool
Within no time, you will see the third rock pool of this trip: Ivor Rowe Rockpool. This pool is one of the smallest rock pools in the area and is quite shallow compared to the Mahon Pool. Go ahead and wade in if you’re feeling exhausted or just hang around and enjoy the view. There are enough benches to take a rest here.
The path should be clearly indicated now. At a certain point, it turns into a wooden boardwalk. Follow this and you will even be provided with some interesting history facts on the way.
Ivor Rowe Rockpool and the Boardwalk
Along this boardwalk you will probably hear some small frogs and may even see an ibis or two chilling at the coast. Find yourself in a big green park called Trenerry Reserve. It’s a great place to read a book, fly a kite or just have a picnic.
Shortly after leaving Trenerry Park, you will come face to face with Wylie’s Baths. This “bath” is a seaside swimming pool, with magnificent views of the Pacific Ocean. Look out in the ocean at the famous Wedding Cake island while swimming laps. Other than swimming, you can enjoy a massage or take a yoga class here. Do note that there is an entrance fee here.
Grant Reserve & McIver's Baths
Right after walking away from Wylie’s Baths, you will arrive in a smaller park, the Grant Reserve, which has a little more personality than the previous Trenerry Reserve if you ask me. It hosts a children’s playground, a few BBQs and picnic areas. At the end of this park, you can find McIver’s Baths, a seaside pool for women and children only. Do pay the small entrance fee before entering though.
Once you pass McIver’s Baths, you are practically at Coogee Beach. You did it. Just head on down the path, pass by the Coogee Surf Life Saving Club, and … voila! You are at the beach! Coogee Beach is family-friendly and a nice place for a relaxing swim. Unlike Maroubra, it does not host as many surfers. Be sure to chill out and get yourself some rewarding lunch or a simple smoothie at one of many restaurants and cafés around the area and give yourself a pat on the back. You deserve it.
What to do afterwards?
If you are tired or have had enough walking for the day, catch bus 353 back to Maroubra beach. Otherwise, you have two options: walk back to Maroubra beach (either via the road or coast) or if you are feeling sportive enough, head on to the famous Bondi beach via the Coogee to Bondi Coastal walk.