Woronora has got the laidback vibe down pat. To get to Wonnie, as it is colloquially known, visitors must circle down from the Woronora River Bridge, where they will find boats sputtering about on a Sunday afternoon, kids doing bombs off a footbridge and locals swimming in the serene waters.

Be sure to set aside time for a chat with the owners of the The Boatshed at Woronora, which has its own plunge pool at the end of the pier in the form of the Woronora River. Start the day with coffee and freak shakes at this off-the-beaten-path café, which acts as a hub for the local community who live in the nearby knot of narrow streets. 

After enjoying a few lusty brunch options – think bagels or breakfast bruschetta – you can hire a kayak as the owners stand at the pier and wave you off. It’s a blissful experience and there are many opportunities for quiet contemplation up-river where you are likely to see birds angling through the sky and ducks pootling by.  

Woronora is the sort of suburb that you need to take in at slow-speed. Woronora is an Aboriginal word that means ‘black rock’ and it’s easy to find the source of this inspiration at Burnum Burnum Sanctuary, where stunning rock escarpments loom like monuments to nature. A few clicks on Google will also tell you there is fairly rugged bushland to explore from Burnum Burnum Sanctuary, which has picnic spots, a playground and wetland area to explore.   

Bushwalkers will also enjoy tramping through Heathcote National Park, which features inviting pools hidden along the rugged gorges that link the river with the bush.   

Life in this low-key suburb, which was once the domain of the indigenous Dharawal ‘freshwater people’ revolves around the river. While the pristine waterways make Woronora a place of great beauty, the grey-green bush is also a drawcard. Treehuggers should head to Prince Edward Park to try and spot ‘Eric the Koala’ in the stand of paperbarks and gum trees. In this patch of paradise, it’s likely you will get up close to blue tongue lizards, black cockatoos and tiny wrens.