If you take a right turn at an inconspicuous fork along the Cremorne Point walking track you will find, surrounded by a picket fence painted fir-green, one of Sydney’s best-kept secrets: MacCallum Pool – a harbourside, two-lane pool with ocean views.
This idyllic spot, with Sydney Harbour for a backdrop, has been enjoyed by locals since the 1920s. What started out as a rock pool created by former Olympic swimmer Fred Lane, quickly became a place where the local community could come together to escape the summer heat. The pool’s namesake, Hugh MacCallum was a Cremorne Point resident charged with maintaining, renovating and expanding the pool. He also devised a badge of honour emblazoned with the letters CBP (Cremorne Bathing Pool) to be sewn onto members’ swimming costumes.
While Sydney-siders of yesteryear had to pay five shillings for their badge, today entry is free. Lying poolside, a sense of connection to the pool’s past is almost tangible, and dipping your toes in the blue water feels like being let in on a decades-old secret. Framed by timber decking and shaded by trees, it’s an ideal place to relax, sunbake and fritter away a summer’s day.
The Cremorne Point walk is often overlooked thanks to the hype around the more glamorous and – certainly busier – alternatives such as the Bondi to Bronte walk. But for killer views and quiet, sloping lawns that look over Sydney’s harbour, this private spot seems too good to be true.
Milson Road, Cremorne Point