Mackerel Beach Reserve


Ross Smith Pde , Mackerel Beach

Type of Park

  • Beach Reserve
  • Bushland Reserve
  • Foreshore Reserve

Park Features

  • Pathway
  • Walking Track Easy
  • Walking Track Medium
  • Walking Track Hard
  • Native Birds
  • Wildflowers


Great Mackerel Beach Reserve covers most of the headland between Currawong Beach, also known as Little Mackerel Beach, and Great Mackerel Beach. The Reserve occupies 16 hectares and has residential properties along the northern boundary. The Reserve provides panoramic views and is accessed from above via the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park fire trail or from below by a track linking the two beaches.


Walking Tracks & Access

The Reserve is accessed via an informal path linking Great Mackerel Beach and Currawong Beach. An informal path leads up the slope to the ridgeline, where it joins the Mackerel Trail, a fire trail in the National Park. There are panoramic views of Pittwater and Barrenjoey Headland along the length of the track.


Vegetation communities found are:

  • Hawkesbury Sandstone Open-Forestdominated by Smooth-barked Apple (Angophora costata) and Red Bloodwood (Corymbia gummifera).
  • Red Bloodwood-Scribbly Gum Woodland with associated tree species including Smooth-barked Apple (Angophora costata) and Yellow Bloodwood (Corymbia eximia), which has a limited distribution in Pittwater.


Great Mackerel Beach Reserve is a large expanse of bushland which adjoins the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park. It provides a range of habitat types conducive to the presence of a wide range of fauna species. The numerous She-oaks provide a food resource for the threatened Glossy Black Cockatoo. Tree hollows are used by arboreal mammals, bats and a variety of birds, whilst rock outcrops and thick undergrowth providing niches for frogs, reptiles, and small terrestrial mammals.


  • Great Mackerel Beach Reserve protects an example of bushland that is on the foreshore of Pittwater and is continuous with Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park
  • it protects examples of a locally significant plant community, namely Red Bloodwood - Scribbly Gum Woodland, and includes a species of limited distribution, namely Yellow Bloodwood
  • it contributes to the landscape quality of Pittwater's foreshores with panoramic views to Barrenjoey Headland and Pittwater
  • it provides a record of the original landscape and the changes wrought by urban development
  • it protects numerous Aboriginal sites, which demonstrate the link between the land and its original human inhabitants
  • it is an educational resource and a contact point with nature for residents
  • it allows urban residents to undertake informal recreational pursuits in a bushland setting

Source: Pittwater Council

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