As new bars and eateries pop up, Bondi continues to hold its own in the cool stakes. Here are some of the best reasons to visit Sydney’s iconic beach. By Renate Ruge
Sydney’s beautiful people jog along the cliff walk from Bondi to Tamarama, enjoying gorgeous ocean views all year round. The surf crashes in as the Bondi Rescue surf lifesavers keep an eye on things and the natural pool at the north end provides sanctuary for swimmers from the big swell. At Bondi beach, the vibe is cool and walls are covered in graffiti art, which adds to its raffish charm.
Bondi Beach has lots of gelato (sorbet) and super-chilled yogurt bars in Hall Street and along Campbell Parade for the figure-conscious body beautiful. Choose your favourite flavour and topping and wait for it to be swirled together. Hit Pompeii’s for an Italian cone with a double scoop of chocolate-flaked vanilla ice cream, “stracciatella”.
Pompeii’s, 126-130 Roscoe Street Sydney 2026 (02) 9365 1233
The Bucket List is slap bang on the beach, its lime-coloured sofas and tables fashioned out of wooden palettes, crates and pin wheels sprawl outside The Pavilion. Decent Aussie beers are served on tap, along with chilled tunes and a mini bucket of spicy nuts. Brightly painted wall murals echo the graffiti art down on the beach. Try a Toasted Bikini with prosciutto, manchego and truffle for a tasty snack.
The Bucket List, Bondi Pavilion, Queen Elizabeth Drive, Bondi Beach, 2026 02 9365 4122
Drinks at icebergs can go two ways: business class or economy… One: flash the cash at the upscale Dining Room & Bar and crack open the champagne. Two: cheap date? Go for a lemon lime bitters at the RSL one floor down. Same spectacular view!
Bondi Icebergs, 1 Notts Avenue, Bondi Beach (02) 9365-6262
Dinner & Drinks
“It’s the spice in Spice Islands. It’s Dutch courage. It’s the passion, the journey unleashed: it’s the kiss of night.” Just get the bar tender at Rum Diaries waxing lyrical about rum… It’s complex and so are the heady, exotic cocktails you’ll find here. Getting stuck into the list means starting with creations from the 1500s to classics and adventuring with rum every which way. Chandeliers, a moodily lit wood-paneled room with tables and chairs cosily jammed together make you feel welcomed into an intimate gathering. Musicians strum guitars and sing, filling the room with cool tunes and adding to the party atmosphere. Choose nibbles with friends and like the hip Bondi locals, share bulgur wheat Arancini balls with carrot hummus and tempura zucchini flowers, stuffed with pine nuts and haloumi, all served up on slates for plates. Doing dinner for two? Then go all out and try the five-course degustation menu wine and cocktail-matched to perfection. Highlights of this culinary journey start with seared scallops with zesty yuzu lemon puree, edamame beans and a refreshing nashi pear salad, and include “main” dishes like delicate rum-smoked barramundi with a genius vanilla and onion puree and roast chicken breast with sweet corn, asparagus and a popcorn praline. The sultry finish to the meal matches the Old Cane cocktail with a delicious chocolatey dessert, the chef’s chocolate marquise with rum and allspice Chantilly with bitter orange sherbet, which fizzes on your tongue. Delicious, and, the best place to be after-dark in Bondi.
Rum Diaries, 288 Bondi Road, Bondi NSW 2026 (02) 9300 0440