Along the shores of Mackerel Bay below the tree-lined ridge of Ku-ring-gai National Park, this beach house in Australia sits along its craggy edge, with uninterrupted views of Mackerel Beach, Pittwater, Barrenjoey Headland, Palm Beach and beyond.
Built in the 1930s from local timber and sandstone, and restored using all recycled and repurposed materials, the owners are on the way to creating a fully sustainable eco-retreat, with passive cooling, solar energy and natural water catchment.
The north east orientation lets you wake to the sunrise over the headlands with fresh sea air and bright, natural light throughout the year.
The open plan living room, dining area and chef’s kitchen open out onto a small covered balcony with a window seat spanning the full length of the room overlooking the stunning views of the bay.
The main bedroom has access to a private lawn and garden and is elevated to take full advantage of the views while the second bedroom is reached by a short set of stone steps in front of the house. Built from the original sandstone and lined with timber, it’s a cozy nest with a private stone terrace, and a grassy shaded area with a hammock to admire the panoramic views.
The house features an eclectic mix of antiques and collectibles gathered from travels around the world and forages along the beach, as well as recycled and handcrafted furniture built specifically for the house.
The outdoor pergola is the spot for open air dining on the stone terrace or on either of the two decks with a wood-fired oven, an outdoor sandstone kitchen, and a camp-style BBQ.
Guests can help themselves to fresh herbs from the kitchen garden.
Launch the kayaks, or dive right in to the crystal clear waters from your very own private beach below.
Wifi, large flat screen TV with Blue-ray DVD (no cable), Bose surround sound Wifi stereo system with speakers in both bedrooms and the outdoor areas, extensive library with area guides. Kitchen and bath amenities. Two kayaks, fishing rods and tackle plus bait in the freezer, crab traps, snorkeling gear and beach umbrella provided, outdoor shower.
Ninety minutes north of Sydney with the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park at your back, Mackerel Bay is one of the loveliest, protected stretches of coastline in New South Wales. The main sandy beach fronts the house where you can dive right in, snorkel, fish or grab the house kayak to explore the many crystal clear waters of the local coves and bays.
You’ll find friendly locals (including wallabies and bush turkeys), ancient Aboriginal carving sites, and some original fibro beach cottages along with incredible bush walks to secluded beaches and lookouts including The Basin Lagoon all within walking distance.
Should you feel the urge to head back to the mainland, an old timber ferry departs every hour for the ten minute ride to Palm Beach wharf where you can dine at the local restaurants, pubs and cafes, browse the shops, galleries and local markets, and make the trek up to Barrenjoey Lighthouse. The quaint beach town of Avalon, is also just a few minutes drive.
Mackerel Beach, Pittwater, New South Wales, Australia. Nearest Airport: Sydney International. It’s a 90 minute drive to Palm Beach from Sydney and a short ferry/water taxi ride from Palm Beach to Mackerel Bay
BEST TIME TO VISIT: Each season has its own unique charms. Lovely and breezy in Spring through Fall, with a cozy fireplace for cool winters.
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