Month: February 2016

Cockatoo Island Swim Enclosure 27.02.2016

Swimming is allowed in ‘Slipway One’ on Cockatoo Island. The concrete slipway is netted at the entrance to keep the bull sharks out. The gradual incline provides a ‘soft entry’ and at high tide it’s about 3.5m at the net. A sign states that footwear must be worn. Don’t know about you, but I don’t like swimming in footwear. Never-the-less,  there are old oyster shells attached to the concrete and care needs to be taken for barefoot swimmers.

Concrete being what it is, the surface is slippery, especially at low tide. Swim at high tide and the experience is much more pleasant.


Not too bad as a cool-off exercise, but frankly the swimming quality is low. The island, on the other hand, is a treat. It’s full of history, great facilities, child friendly and a nice place to visit … wouldn’t go out of my way to swim here though.

Wild Swimming #5

Location – Cockatoo Island can be reached by ferry service. Enter the GPS coordinates into Google -33.8474  151.1698

Child friendly 4/5

My rating 2/5

Dawn Fraser Baths 28.02.2016

This place is a rare slice of history. I love the idea that it still exists in close-to-original design. As you would expect the facilities are basic, but that is part of its charm. Being a fair way inside the harbour, the water loses its crystal clarity and blue tones.

If you love history a swim at the Dawn Fraser Baths is an experience not to be missed. I know of no other pool like this in Sydney and I fear that it won’t last forever.



Lots of water polo is played here and has been for well over a hundred years.

Dawn Fraser Baths is located directly across the water from Cockatoo Island. The area is rich in history … a bit like Dawn I suppose, a little older these days, but still a delight.

Wild Swimming #4

Location – enter the GPS coordinates into Google -33.8535  151.1731

Child Friendly 4/5

My rating 2/5 for swimming (5/5 for history and style)

Giles Baths 23.02.2016

Giles Baths is located at the northern end of Coogee Beach. Walk up off the beach into the park, past the Bali Memorial, which is located on the site of the old Giles Gymnasium and Baths. The Baths are located down a steep set of stairs which lead to this beautiful public rock pool.

It’s safe most of the time, however in a heavy swell extreme caution should be taken. If the swell is up, just stand at the top of the stairs for about twenty minutes to get the full picture – also consider the negative effect of a rising tide.

Local kids sometimes jump from the rocks, near the top the stairs, into the pool, but this is quite dangerous, as the pool is tidal and quite shallow in parts.


Take a mask and snorkel for added value.

There is a nice park and walks above the pool. If you need exercise and have the time, take a walk to Clovelly (north) and have a swim there or in Gordon’s Bay (between Clovelly and Coogee).

Facilities are in the park and there are lots of places to eat.

Wild Swimming #62

Location – enter the GPS coordinates into google   -33.9201  151.2605

Child Friendly 4/5

My rating 4/5