Bongin Bongin Bay

Mona Vale

A residential suburb in Sydney's Northern Beaches area, Mona Vale has developed into an administrative and commercial centre for the region, with most business activity centred around the intersections of Pittwater Road with Mona Vale Road and Barrenjoey Road.

Location: 28 kilometres north of the Sydney central business district, to the immediate south of Pittwater and Barrenjoey Peninsula.

Mona Vale sits at the southern extremity of Pittwater, a large ocean inlet with sits to the south of Broken Bay and west of Barrenjoey Peninsula. Pittwater Road follows the southern shoreline of Pittwater through the picturesque suburbs of Bayview and Church Point, with Scotland Island across the water. Beyond Church Point the road becomes McCarrs Creek Road, and follows a twisty, narrow, but very scenic route up through McCarrs Creek valley to Terrey Hills. The access road to the main entrance to West Head in the eastern section of Ku-Ring-Gai Chast National Park is off McCarrs Creek Road near Lower Gledhill Falls a few kilometres from Church Point.

Click on or tap an attraction to read the description. Click or tap again to hide the description.


Mona Vale Beach: Protected from suburbia by a golf course, this beach is popular with families as there are many facilities for children. Rips are commonplace so swimming between the flags is essential. Otherwise, swim in the sheltered rock pool between Mona Vale and Bongin Bongin beaches. Bacteria levels are the highest of all the beaches of the peninsula, particularly after rain, because of a nearby stormwater outfall.
Facilities: patrolled by lifesavers, changerooms, toilets, showers, shops at cnr Mona Vale and Pittwater Rds. UBD Map 138 Ref L 6. Surfview Road, Mona Vale.
Public transport: train to Milsons Pt.; bus No. L84; or train to Chatswood, bus No. L60; or bus No. L84, L85 from Wynyard. Alight at cnr Barrenjoey Rd & Darley St. Walk east down Darley St East to beach

Basin Beach: Also known as Bongin Bongin, a well protected ocean beach on Bongin Bongin Bay which generally has low swell and is therefore ideal for less strong swimmers. Rips are rare here though the water depth does increase sharply as you move away from the beach. An ocean pool is located on the rocks at the southern end of the beach. UBD Map 138 Ref N 3. Surfview Road, Mona Vale.
Facilities: not patrolled by lifesavers, changerooms, toilets, showers, park, shops at cnr Mona Vale and Pittwater Rds.
Public transport: train to Milsons Pt.; bus No. L84; or train to Chatswood, bus No. L60; or bus No. L84, L85 from Wynyard. Alight at cnr Barrenjoey Rd & Seareach Ave. Walk east down Seareach Ave. to beach.


Pittwater is a wide inlet to the south of Broken Bay and the entrance of the Hawkesbury River, and is located some 30 kms north of Sydney. A boat owner's paradise, it is now part of the Sydney metropolitan area. The suburbs built on its shores are all fashionable residential areas which benefit from expansive views towards Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park on its eastern shore and the inlet's calm waters. To its east is the Barrenjoey Peninsula, to its west, Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park. Ferries, hire boats and houseboats make the park s intricate shoreline totally accessible, its deep waters being ideal for boating. Small communities made up primarily of of holiday shacks, cling to the shoreline.

Prior to British colonisation, the Pittwater region was occupied by Kuring Gai-speaking Aborigines. Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park contains the largest collection of aboriginal art in the Sydney region. Over 200 groups of engravings are recorded. The Port Jackson and Broken Bay Aborigines had developed considerable skills in canoe-making, utilising the bark from Bangalay trees to make canoes.

Sighted by Lieut James Cook in 1770, Pitt Water was earmarked though never used by Capt. Arthur Phillip as an alternative settlement site for the First Fleet if Botany Bay proved impractical. It did, but on his way to Pitt Water, he discovered Port Jackson (Sydney Harbour) which Cook had not bothered to explore, and chose Sydney Cove as the site for the new colony. Phillip explored the area in February 1788, describing it as "a great inlet ... the finest piece of water I ever saw, which I have honoured with the name of Pitt Water." Pittwater's name recalls William Pitt the Younger, Prime Minister of Britain when it was named by Gov. Phillip in 1788.

Winnererremy Bay

Known amongst locals as Winnererremy Bay Park, it is also known as Flying Fox Park because of the Flying Fox Cafe located near the playground. Facilities include electric BBQs, picnic shelters, toilets, walking track, enclosed playground with a dry creek bed/adventure trail that contains stone carvings of sea creatures, flying fox, space net, skate areas, snakes and ladders, spica poles and spring rockers. The play equipment is suitable for toddlers as well as older children. The southern inlet at the head of Pittwater, once known as is Pitt Inlet, is today known as Winji Jimmi , itself a corruption of the native name of Winnereremy.


Immediately north of Mona Vale, at the southern end of Pittwater is the blue-ribbon residential suburb of Bayview. Whoever named it couldn't have picked a more apt name - it perfectly identifies the major reason why anyone would want to live here. Climbing up the hillside to the high ground above the southern end of Pittwater, the views from most residences are quite spectacular - the view north is along the length of Pittwater towards Lion Island and Broken Bay in the distance.

Early records show that one of the first settlers in Bayview was Patrick Bryan, who built a house in 1821 on the current site of the Bayview Golf Links. In the 1820s more white settlers came, with timber getting, shingle making and shell digging, followed by farmeing and orchards. Bayview became a holiday destination when the coach service from Manly extended there in the 1880s. It was also reached by boat from Sydney. Visitors stayed in guesthouses, and it was around that time that the name Bayview came into common use.

Bayview's development as a suburban area came gradually after World War I. Bayview played a role in the NSW defence strategy during World War II. A number of tetrahedron tank traps can still be found off Pittwater Road on the water side in Bayview  a little-known remnant of Australia's defence along Sydney's Northern Beaches.


The nearby inland suburb of Ingleside was named after Baron Von Beiren's Ingleside House. Baron Von Beiren was a Dutch/American industrial chemist who built a house high on the forested hillsides of Mona Vale in the 1880s which he called Ingleside. Specialising in gunpowder and explosives, he established the Australian Gunpowder and Explosives Manufacturing Company on what was to become Powder Works Road. Losing credibility as an experimental chemist, Baron Von Beiren's business began to suffer. In 1924 he feigned bankruptcy but his plot was uncovered. He was gaoled for just under three years, which led to him having to close his gunpowder business.

Built in 1961, Sydney's Baha'i House of Worship towers over Sydney s northern beaches hinterland from the area's highest point, its grand white dome visible in all kinds of weather. The Baha'i faith was founded in 1863 by Baha'u'llah, a Persian follower of an earlier prophet, known as the Bab, and brought to Sydney in April 1920. Despite its visual prominence and beauty, few people bother to visit the temple, or to look inside it and to marvel at the sheer beauty. The temple, designed by Sydney architect John Brogan, is one of only seven in the world. The temple is open to the public from 9am to 5pm every day and services are held every Sunday at 11am.

According to the Bureau of Meteorology, Ingleside receives the highest rainfall of any Sydney suburb, with an average of 1,414 mm per year. Turramurra and Frenchs Forest vie for second place with an annual recorded average of 1,404 mm. Camden is at the opposite end of the scale with just 750 mm.


Warriewood lies between Mona Vale to the north, Ingleside to the west and North Narrabeen to the south and extends east to the ocean at Warriewood Beach. Narrabeen creek flows through the middle of Warriewood valley and Mullet creek at its southern edge. The wetlands of Warriewood are important as a habitat for many birds, including migratory birds, native mammals and frogs. There are also a significant number of Swamp Mahogany trees.

Turimetta Headland is the most southerly of the string of rocky headlands of the northern beaches, the most prominent of which is also the most northerly - Barrenjoey Headland. Turametta Head separates Warriewood Beach from Mona Vale Beach.
Bilgola Beach

The neighbouring suburb of Bilgola lies on Barrenjoey Peninsula on Sydney's Northern Beaches, between Newport to the south and Avalon and Clareville to the north. Bilgola Plateau crowns the peninsula, rising 164 meters above the ocean beach to 169 metres. The ocean side of Bilgola, like all the suburbs on the peninsula, features sweeping surf beaches punctuated by high, rocky headlands; the west side faces the calm waters of Pittwater, though suburban boundaries show that Bilgola does not reach the Pittwater shoreline.
Mullet Creek Falls

Mullet Creek passes over a series of three falls and cascades on its way to Narrabeen Lakes from the high ground of Ingleside at Warriewood, in Sydney s northern coastal suburbs. The most easily accessed is the lower falls which is a short level walk from the corner of Irrawong Road and Epworth Place, Warriewood. Featured is a rock overhang which provides shelter for picnickers and a pool which for years has been a popular swimming hole for local children. UBD Map 138 Ref A 11

Scarred trees are along the length of Mullet Creek, denoting it was a sacred place to our original custodians as well as a source of abundant food and fresh, pure water. The area itself is marked as swamp  on early nineteenth century maps but it was and is part of Warriewood s Wetlands and home to more then 170 species of birds, some migratory, with Dusky Moorhens and wood ducks sheltering in its reed beds or lyrebirds and bush turkeys in its heathlands and forests. Frogs and native mammals such as echidnas, swamp wallabies, gliders and bandicoots also flourish along its lengths.

Mullet creek is formed from two flows, one from the north which runs from Mona Vale Road via the Westpac Training Centre and Ingleside Park and the other from the south, originating at Monash Golf club. The northern branch has a waterfall that flows very quickly after heavy rains. Both become one through the Irrawong reserve and form the southern border of Warriewood. The creek accounts for 18% of the water that flows into Narrabeen lagoon. Mullet creek is the largest remaining sandplain wetland in Sydney and supports the largest remaining stand of Swamp Mahogany (eucalyptus robusta) in Sydney. Cabbage trees were once predominant on the flat areas, Melaleuca ericifolia (Swamp Paperbark) still grows in the scrubland, while Swamp Sclerophyll Forest, Freshwater Wetlands and every wildflower these varying areas support bloom in their due seasons.

Elanora Heights

Elanora Heights is a mainly residential suburb, situated immediately south of Warriewood on the hill above Narrabeen, overlooking Narrabeen Lagoon and the Tasman Sea. The northern side lies next to bushland, which runs to Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, and the south-western side adjoins Garigal National Park. Native wildlife is common in the area, with bandicoots, blue tongue lizards, possums and many birds being seen. A rare quoll has been found in the suburb in recent years, and rock wallaby are commonly seen on the course at Elanora Country Club. Elanora Heights is home to some of the largest homes in Pittwater.

Elanora Heights is derived from an Aboriginal word meaning "home by the sea" or "home by the water" and the word Heights meaning "Up high". Elanora Heights takes its name from the geographical location, on the hill near the lagoon. The suburb came into existence as the Elanora Heights Estate in 1929. Earlier settlements had taken the form of an attempted coal mining camp. Members of Royal Sydney Golf Club purchased a large parcel of land about 1920 which laid the basis for Elanora Country Club which opened in 1922. The name was officially abbreviated to Elanora in the late 20th century, however the full name has continued to be used.

North Narrabeen

North Narrabeen Beach has a reputation for having the most consistent waves of any Sydney beach and is therefore considered somewhat of a surfer's mecca. It has the feel of a rural holiday resort thanks to the caravan park behind the beach. The surf is at its most dangerous in the north, a rip called The Alley offering a challenge to the more daring surfers. Swimming between the flags, or in the rock pool which is affected by water crashing over the rocks, is highly recommended.
Facilities: patrolled by lifesavers, changerooms, toilets, takeaways, shops nearby.

Bicentennial Coastal Walkway

This walk consists of a series of headland pathways and lookouts connecting the ends of each beach form a continuous coastline route which stretches along Sydney s northern coastline between Manly and Palm Beach. It can be walked as a whole or in individual sections. The links on this page focus on the northern sections of the walk that fall within the Pittwater Council area. The walk begins at Barrenjoey Headland, just beyond Palm Beach, Sydney s most northern coastal beach. The track exhibits the coastal heath ecosystem that used to be spread all over the Warringah area, and has been extensively regenerated since 1991.

As most access to Pittwater was by ship, Barrenjoey Headland and Palm Beach were a focal point during the early settlement of the area. During the early part of the nineteenth century, it was mainly being used by fishermen. However a number of smugglers also called it home.

Katandra Bushland Sanctuary
A reserve dedicated to the study and preservation of native flora and fauna, particularly in the Sydney region. It features 10 ha of pockets of rainforest, open forest and heathland. The reserve is open for bushwalks every Sunday July, Aug, September & October and every 3rd Sunday of March, April, May and June.
UBD Map 137 Ref Q 2. Lane Cove Road, Foley's Hill.

History of Mona Vale
The area was known as Bongin Bongin by Aborigines. The first land grants in the district of Pittwater were not made until the 23 April 1813. The land that now comprises Mona Vale was granted to Robert Campbell (1769-1846), and was surveyed in May 1814, and was originally part of 700 acres (2.8 km2) that extended from Mona Vale to the end of Newport beach. The village grew around the intersection of Mona Vale Road and the road to Palm Beach and became a centre for market gardens established in the area in the 1850s. Among its early settlers was a Mr. Foley, who took over Robert Campbell's original grant. The area's first market gardener, he enjoyed great success, Mrs. Foley's butter being in great demand at the Sydney markets.

The name Mona Vale first appeared about 1858 and these events were referred to as the Mona Vale outrages. These were a reference to a series of robberies, cattle theft, accidental death and even murder occurred in the district beween 1849 and 1870 arising from disagreements between Foley and another local farming family, the Collins. The victim of numerous thefts, Foley informed the police who made an arrest, but before the trial, Foley was fatally shot and the trial was abandoned. Foley's farm remained abandoned until James Therry, the nephew of Rev. JJ Therry, began working it. Therry had his horses stolen, his cattle shot, and an attempt was made to burn his house down. Sergeant McGlone, somewhat of a hero for his part in the capture of a bushranger named Gardiner, was put on the case and he soon found and arrested the man responsible.

The Shaw family had a boat-building and blacksmith shop at the head of Winnererremy Bay. At Machons timber yard in Waratah Street enormous locally felled trees were milled. Sir Edward Hallstrom was a member of the Taronga Zoo Park Trust from 1941 to 1959, its president from 1948 to 1959 and honorary director until 1967. He believed that animals should have fresh food of the highest quality and to ensure this, in 1947 he purchased 40 acres of farm land at Mona Vale for which he paid 32,000 pounds. The land fronted Bassett Street, Mona Street and Darley Road. The farm each year produced tons of green feed, such as lucerne, corn, elephant grass, banana shoots, clover, oats, sweet potatoes and carrots, all to feed the zoo s herbivorous animals. Sir Edward had his personal sanctuary of animals and birds, the area with many koalas and at one time had nine white kangaroos, all albinos and two rare sets of white wallaby twins.

Some of the Zoo Farm paddocks retained names linking them then with their former owners  for instance Blackman s Block  and Chinaman s Paddock . Analysis of the production and transport costs had led to the conclusion that the operation of the farm was uneconomic and farming finally ceased at the end of 1976. The land was sold off in a series of subdivision sales until the final parcels were disposed of in 1984. Reminders of the farm today are streets on the site named Taronga Place and Hallstrom Place and in Bassett Street near the bridge over the stormwater drain is a stone plinth with a plaque.

Mona Vale became a residential and commercial suburb in the second part of the twentieth century. In 2005, Mona Vale became the administrative centre of Pittwater Council after the council chambers moved from Warriewood. Many streets in some subdivisions of Mona Vale are named after scientists.

  • Get Directions

  • Pittwater and Lovett Bay from Flagstaff Hill

This website is published as information only. Please direct enquiries about places and services featured to the relevant service provider. | About Us | Email us

Design and concept © 2019 Australia For Everyone | W3Layouts