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Shark Island ocean swim
Sun, 4 Feb 2018
Shark Island ocean swim
Don’t let the name put you off, the Shark Island swim classic is a fantastic journey swim around a tiny little island tucked around the headland south of Cronulla Beach.
There are other swims that call themselves a ‘classic’, but few can really claim it like this swim can. The first event was run back in 1988, and quite likely to lay claim to being the first to offer two swim distances.
There aren’t many of these journey swims that round an island, and there aren’t many in south Sydney, so it really is one to add to your season tally.
Apart from the main 2.8km swim, there’s also a 1km option for those looking for something a little more manageable. You won’t round the island, but if you look south as you swim out to your turning buoy you’ll get a glimpse of the waves lapping up against the rocky reef.
Stick around after your swim for the presentation then try a local cafe or head over to the peaceful village of Bundeena on a ferry for an afternoon adventure.
A simple triangle-shaped course leaving the front of the surf club, out through the breakers and around two buoys directly off the club. Round them to to the left and swim clockwise till you end up back at the beach and to the applause of the cheering crowd on the beach.
Don’t let the name put you off, this swim is not with the sharks, it just takes you from Cronulla surf club out and around Shark Island clockwise and back.
While you’re there
With a beach vibe and an outdoor lifestyle, Cronulla is a laid back area with loads of things to do.
The outdoor cafe scene offers a great vantage point where you may be able to spot dolphins (or even whales) popping up in the adjoining waters. Sealevel is one of the most popular restaurants near the beach, Bread & Stone offer a healthy yet wallet-friendly breakfast and Grind Espresso, down a little laneway, is hugely popular with the locals.
Just south of Cronulla lies the peaceful village of Bundeena, accessible via a ferry ride across Port Hacking River. The ferry will allow you to explore one of Sydney’s unspoiled waterways on a three hour cruise where you can learn about early explorers of the district, local Aboriginal sites and culture, historical settlements and deer farming in the nearby reserve.
Travel and parking
It’s perhaps the Shire’s greatest asset… free beach parking! As per usual, you need to either get there early or chance your luck later in the morning.
The train goes all the way to Cronulla beach, so that’s a legitimate option – after a long day in the Shire you’ll be sleeping on the 1-hour journey back to the city.
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