All The Things I’ll Miss From Living On Bondi Beach

For the rest of my life, I’ll be waxing poetic about “the time I spent two months living in Bondi Beach”. It’s like the lifelong dream I never knew I had.

I mean, I knew I loved beaches and islands and really anyplace involving hot weather and beautiful scenery – but I never specifically thought I’d someday be living at the world-famous Bondi Beach. Then a wonderful opportunity fell into my lap and I said yes: I began my first-ever HelpX gig and moved into a house just a 7 minute walk from the beach to live and work with a bunch of strangers I’d never met. Seems like a pretty simple act of surrendering, but I’m someone who likes to have a sound idea of what I’m getting myself into at any given time (read: I’m a mild control freak). I had close to zero idea how this next phase of my life would play out, but I felt very strongly in my gut that it was the right move.

So I leapt. The two months that followed were just… beautiful, in so many ways. So much growth, so much love, so much joy.

As for tangible beauty, Bondi Beach did not disappoint – ever.

Living on Bondi Beach Australia
living in Bondi Beach Sydney

Here are all the things I miss about living on Bondi Beach —

The fact that it’s just as common to witness someone walking down the street toting a handbag as it is a surfboard.

Bondi Beach surf

And how, when someone’s carrying a surfboard, they are always running with it.

I swear they’re always running, not walking, which befuddles me since it’s quite contrary to the laidback ‘no worries’ mantra. Is it because they want to maximize their time out on the water? Or is there a very tiny window of time where the waves are ideal which they don’t want to miss? Or are they just that excited to catch a wave that they can’t wait a minute longer? Either way, it always makes me chuckle.

Bondi Beach surf
Bondi Beach surf

Early evening and cloudy day runs on the beach.

The best runs are at low tide, when the sand is smooth and flat – even better when the sky is just starting to turn colors before sunset. My favorite workout routine in Bondi was to run from my house to the outdoor pull up bars, do some bar work and other body resistance workouts there, run a few laps barefoot across the beach, return to the outdoor pull up bars for more working out, and then run back home.

Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi Beach Australia

Being the only girl working out at the bars.

Also: shamelessly checking out the male specimen at the bars ;)

Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi beach park

Getting work done at Chapter One Cafe & Wine Bar.

This cafe slash wine bar became our go-to work space during our last month in Bondi. With free wifi, delicious coffee, and a view of the beach, I pretty much wanted to make my permanent camp here.

Bondi Beach Australia

How it sounds like you’re in a rainforest.

Every single morning I’m woken up by all sorts of birds chirping outside my window, and every single night I hear the deafening hum of crickets chirping from god knows where. If I were blind, I’d think for sure I was living in the rainforest – but nope, this exists in a beach town, and I’m not over it.

Bondi Beach road

Having my pick of nearby beaches to swim at, lay out on, or frolic around on any given day.

Bondi’s great, but it’s fun to change it up once in awhile and hang out at a neighboring beach. Walking south along the coastal path there’s tiny Tamarama, chilled Bronte, unique Clovelly, and fun Coogee – all within 6 km.

Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi Beach

Bondi Beach Australia
Tamarama Beach

Bronte Beach Sydney
Bronte Beach

Bondi Beach Australia
Clovelly Beach

Coogee Beach
Coogee Beach

… and ocean pools to swim in when the waves are too rough.

Bondi Beach Australia
Icebergs Pool at Bondi Beach

Bondi Beach Australia
Bronte Pool

Eye candy for DAYS.

You know that image of a tanned, toned Aussie surfer boy we all have engrained in our minds? Yeah – it’s real life at Bondi Beach. There are plenty of average slash “normal” boys around as well, but I’ve never been graced with such a high proportion of beach bum hotties. All I want to know is: where do they hang out when they’re not on the beach, and why have they not popped up on my Tinder yet?!

Bondi beach rowing
Photo credit: Mona Lisa Photography

Bondi Beach surf
Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi Beach surf

Nonstop street art lining the beach.

Ok, so it’s not Brooklyn street art, or even Montreal street art, but just the fact that there’s this much street art at one of the world’s most beautiful beaches is pretty nuts. Every time I walk by I’m tempted to stop for a photoshoot; sometimes I give in.

Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi Beach Australia

The sunsets.

Given that the sun actually rises over the ocean, Bondi is probably better meant for sunrises. However, I’m not a morning person so sunsets are more my jam. The best is when I’m running laps across the beach, and then turn around on the north end to head back and see the sun doing crazy colorful things from behind me.

Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi Beach sunset

But other times the sky directly opposite the sun gets some action at sunset, too.

Bondi sunset
Bondi Beach Australia

Having one of Australia’s best coastal walks right in my backyard.

All the travel guidebooks cite the Bondi to Coogee coastal walk as a Sydney must-do, and guess what? They’re damn right. This 6km stretch of coast is downright glorious. If the beaches aren’t enough to distract you, there’s seemingly infinite lookout points, outdoor workout stations, a massive cemetery, and fascinating rock formations and caves to perch in along the way. The Bondi to Coogee coastal walk fast became my go-to for meeting up with friends or going on a lengthy run, and it may be the #1 thing I miss from living in Bondi Beach.

Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi Beach Australia

… and a natural playground right on my doorstep!

I don’t know what it is about Bondi Beach that makes it so accessible and fit for all sorts of activities, but I’ve done all of the following and more on this beach in the two months I’ve lived here: picnics (complete with wine that didn’t have to be brown-bagged – take that, America!), runs, naps, workouts, makeout sessions, tanning sessions, sunset watching, stargazing, reading, writing, swimming, drinking, photoshoots. I can scarcely imagine a more beautiful setting for doing these or any other activities, can you?

Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi Beach Australia
Bondi Beach swimming

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Bondi Beach - Sydney, Australia

Lindsay Buckley is the photographer and travel blogger behind Frugal Frolicker. She's a New Yorker currently based in Sydney, Australia, documenting outdoor travel experiences Down Under and beyond. Follow along with Lindsay's travel photography on Facebook and Instagram, and be sure to sign up for the monthly Frugal Frolicker newsletter!

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  • These pictures are MAGNIFICENT! I love how the water is just so BLUE. It’s not at all like that here in North Carolina. And ocean pools?! What a brilliant idea. I need that in my life. I’d be sad to leave too!

    • lindsaypunk

      Aw, thank you Rachel! It’s crazy how different (read: much better) the beaches are in Aussie vs in the US. After living Down Under in 2006, I pretty much couldn’t take most American beaches seriously anymore. Though I must say, the Outer Banks ranks high up there for me even if it’s not as colorful! :D

  • Melissa Trinidad

    You got anymore hot guy pics?

    • lindsaypunk

      HA I wish! Our roommate Mona took a bunch more of the Bondi rowing team (check out ml-monalisa.com under ‘men’ ;)

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  • You pictures are wonderful and capture the facets of bondi beach. I’m hoping you can help me, on a recent trip to Australia I took a photo of Bondi Beach. To my surprise I noticed I captured a wedding proposal. I’m trying to unite the couple with picture. If know anyone that was engaged on April 9-11, 2015 between 4-9pm on the rocks at Bondi Beach have them get in touch with me http://www.kphotoblog.com/?p=2259. I’ve posted a picture of the proposal on my blog.

  • Minna

    Hi Lindsay, your stay sounds wonderful… planning a trip myself. Are there any downsides to Bondi living?

    • Gosh, I’d say just the cost of living! Rent, eating, and drinking are pretty pricey there. There aren’t really any big supermarkets in the area, so for groceries at IGA or Harris Farms you’ll pay a little more than normal.

  • Thanks! :) Yeah Bondi is a bit of a pain to get to by public transport: you can either take the 333 express bus to the city, or take a bus to Bondi Junction and then a quick train into the city. It didn’t bother me too much because I loved spending most of my time in the eastern suburbs and am a bit of a granny when it comes to going out (aka I don’t do it much!).

    It depends on your priorities I think. If you want to be by the beach, Bondi is where it’s at. But if you anticipate spending a lot of time in the city, maybe consider Bondi Junction or a closer suburb like Surry Hills.