5--> Coogee Beach
From Circular Quay Stand C(45 minutes) take any bus to Bondi Junction then 313, 314, 372, 373, 374
Full of backpackers and Uni kids, Coogee is a gorgeous beach with plenty of cafes, bars and hotels, though it is definitely a cut below Bondi on the popularity front. But what it lacks in sizzle it makes up for in bargains. There is a nightlife scene here, so you can enjoy both day and night at Coogee.
4--> Manly Beach
From Circular Quay Wharf 3 (35 minutes) hop on the Manly Ferry then walk down the Corso
Probably the ultimate tourist beach because of its proximity to Circular Quay. Yes, you have to put up with a somewhat cliche beach shop walk on the way, and yes it lacks the beauty of the less accessible Northern beaches, however, the ferry ride over will afford you some of the most picturesque shots of Sydney's CBD (Central Business District) so keep your camera at the ready. Swimming, surfing available.
3--> Bronte Beach
From Circular Quay Stand E (1 hour) take any bus to Bondi Junction then 313, 314, 372, 373, 374 take the beach walk
The far end of this beach, near the pools, gets quite a family crowd probably because of the safe (read: contained) swimming options. Plus the park has BBQ pits at the edge of the beach. The near end of the beach is sparsely populated, but mixes in a good deal of locals. Swimming is possible, but the current is rough and the waves do not always accommodate surfers.
2--> Bondi Beach
From Circular Quay Stand E (35 minutes) take any bus to Bondi 333, 380, 381, 382, 389
Everybody's favorite "sceney" beach. Bondi is a sprawling gorgeous beach that usual attracts quite good crowds in nice weather -- weekdays and weekends. There are a ton of bars, hotels, and shops nearby, plenty of room for both surfers and body surfers in the water and enough room for you to take a good size beach walk. While Bondi is trendy and fashionable, it doesn't come with the snobbery that you may find at some of the other world famous beaches.
1--> Tamarama Beach
From Circular Quay Stand E(50 minutes) take any bus to Bondi 333, 380, 381, 382, 389 take the beach walk
Tamara is a small, deep beach with great sand and surf, plus just enough simple amenities. There is a park at the back of the beach and one solo beach cafe. Though the current is strong here, the water provides opportunities for swimmers, body surfers and surfers. If you do body surf, be ready for a short, fast ride. As long as it's not overcrowded it's an absolutely stunning beach.