The Sea Cliff Bridge is located just south of Sydney on the New South Wales South Coast and forms part of the Grand Pacific Drive that runs 138km from the Royal National Park at Loftus in South Sydney to Nowra on the South Coast.
Opened in 2005, the Sea Cliff Bridge was built as a replacement road for the existing dangerous stretch of road that ran from Coalcliff to Clifton. The old road was notorious for being closed due to landslides, mud slips and rock falls caused by high rainfall, weak rock and marine erosion.
The 665m bridge runs out over the water away from the rock face and is held up by concert pylons that are buried deep in the sea bed below.
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Getting to the Sea Cliff Bridge
Getting to the Sea Cliff Bridge is simple by car from Sydney by two routes.
First travel along the Princes Hwy where you can either turn off into the Royal National Park at Loftus and take the Grand Pacific Drive.
Alternatively you can continue along the highway and take the Helensburgh turn off. Once off the highway at Helensburgh just keep following the road until you see the sign for the Grand Pacific Drive.
If you go straight at the intersection for 100m you are at Bald Hill or turn right and head down the hill into Stanwell Park and from there it’s just a few minutes to the bridge.
If you are without a car it is just as easy to get from Coalcliff Station to Sea Cliff Bridge. Trains run from Sydney’s Central Station to Coalcliff and then the walk is just 15 minutes to the start of the bridge.
Finally there are a number of tours from Sydney that include a stop at the Sea Cliff Bridge. You can find more details about these tours below.
Sea Cliff Bridge Parking
I recommend you drive over the bridge first and park the car in the spaces provided at the south end of the bridge.
Alternatively there are some spots before the bridge, but I always find them to be already taken as most people who visit the Sea Cliff Bridge are coming from Sydney.
Sea Cliff Bridge Walk
Once you set off for the walk across the bridge the footpath runs along the ocean side of the road with a four and a half foot barrier stopping you from plummeting over into the churning sea below.
The bridge twists and turns around the cliff faces offering incredible views looking up, north towards Bald Hill and out to the sea.
The Sea Cliff Bridge walking distance is about 15 minutes each way giving you lots of time to make a few stops along the walk.
Make sure you take a good look over the edge at the waves crashing against the rock below, turning to sea foam and spilling over the rocks.
About three quarters of the way along is an information board telling the history of the area, the original road and its dangers and the building of the new bridge.
One interesting fact you’ll learn by reading this is that the original road was built in the 1860’s and was named after the aviation pioneer Lawrence Hargrave.
Other Places to Visit Near the Sea Cliff Bridge
A great place to start your visit to the Sea Cliff Bridge if you are coming from Sydney is at Bald Hill overlooking Stanwell Park.
Here you will find great views of the Sea Cliff Bridge, coastal towns and as far south as Port Kembla 40km away. It is always packed with people enjoying the sunshine and amazing view on a perfectly clear day.
Drive a little further south of the bridge and you will find Austinmer headlands, another great look out, and Austinmer Beach, one of the best beaches on the NSW South Coast.
A great place to stop for lunch or a drink is the Scarborough Hotel, just a few hundred metres south of the bridge. The view from the beer garden out the back is stunning and the food is above average pub style with a great special board.
Accommodation Near the Sea Cliff Bridge
You could easily make a weekend of your visit to the Sea Cliff Bridge, staying the night in one of the nearby towns and hitting up the beach during the day. Here are two options that I recommend in the area.
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4 thoughts on “Walking the Sea Cliff Bridge”
We’ve not had quite as blue skies over here in Auckland this bank holiday! Looks like you picked the perfect day to take a drive south of the city. We drove that route back in 2012 just after we’d bought our campervan in Sydney. it was the first day of an epic 12 month road trip!
Great place to start a road trip Charli. Hope you get those blue skies soon, Auckland only gets better when they do!
Stunning photographs! I love beaches 🙂