What we love about Willoughby

  • Perfect location for families with children 
  • Village-type suburb with positive community atmosphere 

At some point, we’re sure we’ve all wondered the same thing: where in the world do movies capture stunning neighbourhood wide shots? Certainly, not everyone’s seen a movie-worthy neighbourhood; often, we see quite the opposite.

The good news is, such a neighbourhood exists. In the Lower North Shore of Sydney, you’ll find a four square-kilometre neighbourhood characterised by its vibrant colours: Willoughby. 

More than its colours, it presents a welcoming atmosphere, along with a strong sense of centredness—precisely what we’ll be detailing in this guide. 

Family life in Willoughby

Willoughby is an attractive option for families for four key reasons:


You can liken Willoughby to a gated village, sans the restrictions. Its streets and parks are safe day and night, and you can guarantee that you and your neighbours are always looking out for each other, and especially, the kids. 

Proximity to CBD and Chatswood

No matter how safe the community is, parents would always want to be near their children. Those of you who worry that moving houses might mean choosing between your current job or being close to home needn’t worry. The trade-off doesn’t exist. 

Proximity to good schools

Willoughby Public School (Photo: NSW Dept of Education)
Willoughby Public School (Photo: NSW Dept of Education)

Willoughby has a number of public and private schools, and even day care centres, for your kids. Examples of public schools are Willoughby Public School and Willoughby Girls High School, and East Sydney College and St. Thomas Primary School for private. 

For more information on public schools and their catchment zones, you can check out the Schools search tool.

Good public parks

Ever wished for your kids to go out and play more instead of staring at screens? In Willoughby, they’ll want to do it. The suburb has a number of parks where kids (even adults, actually) can play and make new friends. 

Willoughby Park (Photo: Jason Baker)
Willoughby Park (Photo: Jason Baker)

Check out:

  • Willoughby Park – huge space and dog-friendly 
  • Hallstrom Park – great playground equipment
  • Sanders Park – also with great playground equipment and BBQ facilities 

Shops at Willoughby

Willoughby itself doesn’t have a big shopping centre, but its neighbour Chatswood has a couple. Within the suburb, however, you’ll find supermarkets where you can buy essentials and fresh produce like Harris Farm Markets and Willoughby Fresh.

Harris Farm Markets (Photo: Belle Property)
Harris Farm Markets (Photo: Belle Property)

You’ll find other stores—bookstores, furniture shops, crafts, and everything else—along Willoughby Road and Penshurst Street. These streets also contain most of the suburb’s cafes and restaurants. 

Nightlife in Willoughby

So far, we’ve only covered fun for kids and families. But adults (parents included!) need to have some time off as well. 

For a much needed winding down, you’ll want to check out the following bars:

  • Bridgeview Hotel – for great cocktails and bar food 
  • Willoughby Hotel (North Willoughby) – for happy hours, trivia night, live sports and music at their bistro 
  • Flat Rock Brew Cafe – for locally made cider and craft beers. They have a solid food menu, too!
The Willoughby Hotel (Photo: Facebook)
The Willoughby Hotel (Photo: Facebook)

For bowling and KTV, you’ll want to take a quick trip to nearby suburbs Chatswood and Willoughby East.

St Stephens Anglican Church, Willoughby (Photo: J Bar)
St Stephens Anglican Church, Willoughby (Photo: J Bar)

Willoughby is more than its pretty facade. It’s dynamic, complete, and (dare we say) full of surprises. Its popularity the neighbourhood to beat is just getting started; better strike while the iron is hot!

To find out more about Willoughby including the Demographics of the neighbourhood, recent Property Sales, Listings, Public Transport options etc., check out our Area Profile of Willoughby.

Also published on Medium.