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A local's guide to Bondi Beach

Leah Simmons in BondiCREDIT: Destination NSW

Leah Simmons resting after exploring the Bondi to Bronte Coastal Walk

#ilovesydney

A local's guide
to Bondi Beach

Leah Simmons in Bondi CREDIT: Destination NSW

Leah Simmons resting after exploring the Bondi to Bronte Coastal Walk

#ilovesydney

Hashtags #ilovesydney

As well-known as Sydney icons, the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House, Bondi is a magnet for visitors and locals alike, who are drawn in by the beach, laidback but on-trend lifestyle and its vibrant village atmosphere. 

A mecca for all things health and wellness, activewear is the norm here, not the exception, so it’s little surprise why the fitness world’s newest guru and founder of KAAIAA, Leah Simmons, calls the beachside suburb home.

Here Leah shares her top tips to exploring some of the best of what Bondi has to offer.

Known globally for its beach and surf scene, trendy bars and eateries, as well as its hip locals, there is much to love about Sydney’s most iconic beachside suburb. What is it that you love most about Bondi? 

I love the community of Bondi - it’s like a village. Everyone knows everyone and I love that the focus is on an outdoor lifestyle; it’s perfect for me with two kids. Whether it’s the skatepark, the kids pool or just throwing a frisbee in the park, there is a beautiful laidback feel to Bondi. The people here are smiling, and you always feel welcome.

Bondi is renowned for being a mecca for fitness aficionados. Being one yourself, tell us where is your favourite spot in Bondi for a green smoothie?

Cali Press on Hall Street does an amazing array of juices and smoothies. My go to is The Fields of Green – coconut water, avocado, pineapple, mango, baby spinach, chia and maple syrup.

Bondi has a great dining scene, with everything from casual brunch spots to fine dining with a view. Do you have a favourite restaurant in Bondi?

There are so many delicious restaurants in Bondi to choose from, but some of my favourites are CicciaBella for great Italian, Lox Stock and Barrel for a killer salad, and Bills for brunch. You also can’t go past Icebergs Dining Room and Bar - the food and views are a 10 out of 10.

What’s your ultimate way to spend a weekend in Bondi?

My ultimate weekend in Bondi starts with a Saturday morning shop for fresh produce at the Bondi Farmer’s Market followed by a hang at the beach or the park with the kids. In the evening, I love to enjoy fish and chips on the grassy knoll with the kids while watching the sunset. To close out the weekend, Sunday is a late breakfast followed by the Bondi to Bronte coastal walk and afternoon drinks and dinner at Icebergs Dining Room and Bar. Heaven!

You teach KAAIAA classes indoors at your studio on Gould Street. Where is your favourite outdoor spot for a sunrise yoga session in Bondi?

The south end of Bondi on the concrete step is perfect for an early morning yoga session.

What are your top three must dos in Bondi that you would recommend to visitors?

If you are visiting the Bondi area, I recommend adding these to your itinerary: 

  • Heading off on the renowned Bondi to Bronte Coastal Walk
  • Visiting the Bondi Markets – Saturday (farmers market) / Sunday (art, clothes, homewares etc)
  • Booking a lunch or dinner at Icebergs Dining Room and Bar. Iconic.

If you had to recommend a hike or a beach in Sydney, what would it be?

It depends if you’re a bush person or a beach person, there are so many amazing beaches and national parks in and around Sydney that to narrow it down to one is almost impossible. Bondi Beach is a MUST-SEE for anyone visiting Sydney (but maybe I’m biased).

Do you have a favourite Secret Sydney experience you can reveal?

I was recently introduced to a gorgeous little cluster of communities only accessible by ferry just off Palm Beach. Coaster’s Retreat, Bonnie Doon is the name. I highly recommend packing a picnic and heading off for the day. Or better yet… rent an Airbnb and stay for the weekend. It’s amazing what having no cars around does for the soul.

 

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