Thanks to its strategic location surrounded by the South Pacific Ocean, Sydney, or rather Australia, enjoys an abundance of fresh seafood from both local and international sources. If you have read my previous posts, I have done a post on Sydney Fish Market where you can get a great variety of fresh seafood in one place. Fish and Chips is one of the most iconic food of Australian cuisine. Before my Sydney trip, I did a lot of research on the best Fish and Chips restaurants in Sydney. Due to time constraint, I only got to try one of the Fish and Chips restaurants – Manly Fish Market.
I chose Manly Fish Market for a variety of reasons:
- proximity to Sydney central, 30-minute ferry ride from Sydney’s Circular Quay
- a chance to explore this popular beach in Northern Sydney
- rave reviews on TripAdvisor
- TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence Winner 2017-2018
How to Get to Manly Fish Market
The 30-minute ferry ride from Circular Quay is the original and still the best way to travel to Manly Wharf. The 7-nautical miles journey goes via the magnificent waterway of Syndey Harbour, giving you an unparallel view of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Harbour. Manly Fast Ferry Service operates from Circular Quay wharf 6 and it will get you to Manly Wharf in 17 minutes.
Manly Warringah Cabs is a reputable taxi company that has been servicing the Northern beach since 1953.
Bus routes E71 (Express), E70 (Pre-Paid), 169 and 151 gets you to Manly Wharf from Wynyard and Queen Victoria Building.
It takes approximately 40 minutes to reach Manly Wharf from the Sydney (Kingsford Smith) Airport. Flamin’ Galah Sydney Tours and Airport Transfers, Manly Airport Bus and Manly Express runs airport transfer services to Manly Wharf.
You can also drive to Manly and the Northern beaches. There are several council and private car parks available.
My Trip to Manly Fish Market
I decided to take the ferry to Manly Wharf. From my Airbnb in Darlinghurst, I took a pleasant 10-minute stroll to Circular Quay. The wharf going to Manly Wharf was packed with families and groups of teenagers. I didn’t know that Manly Beach is so popular. When the ferry arrived, everyone boarded the ferry in a calm and orderly manner.
Head to the upper deck if you want to take picture of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Harbour. The 30-minute ferry ride didn’t feel long at all.
Manly Beach is a short 10-minute walk from Manly Wharf. Just follow the directions to The Corso and you are on the right track. When you have reached the end of The Corso, you should be facing the sea. Manly Fish Market is in the next street to your right, next to Ben & Jerry’s.
Manly Fish Market was established in 1994. It cannot be considered a restaurant because there are no tables to sit down and dine. It is more of a takeaway shop but it is supposed to served the best fish and chips.
I have read numerous reviews on TripAdvisor that this shop’s fish and chips and calamari are the best, so that’s what I got. You place your order with one of the counter staff and you will be given a numbered ticket. Do listen out for your number because the numbers may not be called in sequence.
Fish and chips used to be wrapped in yesterday’s newspaper, but thankfully the food is put into clean paperbags now. The paperbag is printed with their slogan “where the locals go”, which makes me feel that I am eating real local Australian food.
The Fish (Hake) and Chips [AU$14.50] is definitely the best fish and chips I have ever had. Hake and cod are fish from the same family, so the texture of the meat is very similar. The hake is lightly battered and fried, breaking off into pieces at the touch of the fork. The meat is extremely fresh, you can tell by the firmness of the flesh. The freshness of the fish and the utter deliciousness will stay on my mind for years.
Calamari [AU$8.50 for 6, AU$14.90 for 12] is just as good as the Fish and Chips. The squid rings are definitely much thicker than the ones I am used to having in Singapore. A light coat of batter coats the squid rings and these are then deep fried till golden-brown. The crunchiness of the outside and the tenderness of the inside creates one of the most memorable calamari experience I have ever experienced. Forget about the 6 pieces, just get the 12 pieces, you won’t regret it.
There are plenty of tables and benches along various parts of the beach. Guard your food carefully or else the seagulls will try to eat your food.
There are many shops and restaurants that specialize in fish and chips around Manly Beach. As I was making my way to Manly Fish Market, I saw many other fish and chip shops with snaking long queues. Manly Fish Market May not be the best fish and chip shop in Manly, but it’s delicuous food has certainly left a lasting impression on me.
As the saying goes “once you have had a taste of excellence, you cannot go back to mediocrity”. After tasting Manly Fish Market’s fish and chips, I simply cannot stomach the mediocre fish and chips we have in Singapore anymore.
Is it just me or does the fish and chips we have in Singapore always have a weird metallic taste?
Manly Fish Market
Address: Shop 1, 29 Wentworth Street, Manly, New South Wales 2095
Telephone: +61 2 9976 3777
Opening Hours: Daily 8am – 8pm”