Top 10 Places to never miss in traveling to Sydney
Sydney is world renowned for its stunning harbor, busy yet laid back lifestyle and glorious golden sand beaches. Sydney is very multicultural and a must see for any traveler. There is much more to do here than you can imagine. No matter what your budget is, you will still have the time of your life.
Sydney is world famous for its stunning harbor, busy yet laid back lifestyle and glorious golden sand beaches. Sydney is very multicultural and a must see for any traveler. There is much more to do here than you can imagine. No matter what your budget is, you will still have the time of your life.
Here are my top ten things to do in Sydney:
1) Sydney Opera House
The Sydney Opera House is one of the most famous architectural landmarks in the world and no matter how many photos you have seen, it will still amaze you. when you see it for the first time. Spend the morning strolling through the Opera and taking great photos with the glorious harbor in the background.
If you want to learn all about the history of this famous monument, you can book a guided tour. They offer two tours that can be easily booked online. The first tour is a standard one hour tour and very popular with tourists. The second tour is a very in-depth tour that offers backstage access, but is very expensive.
Once you've seen everything you want about the Opera, take a stroll down Circular Quay. Here you will find excellent cafes and restaurants where you can enjoy your meal with spectacular views of the harbor. One of the best bars in the area is the Opera Bar. This is a great place for a drink, but it can get very crowded on the weekends.
2) Blue Mountains
The Blue Mountains are a world heritage site and here you will really feel in harmony with nature. These mountains are so named because the evaporation of eucalyptus oil leaves a blue haze.
There are many tours operating from the city center so you can choose the best tour for you and your budget. Most tours stop en route at Featherdale Wildlife Park for about forty minutes. This isn't a huge wildlife park so forty minutes is plenty of time to see it all.
Once at Heritage Park, you can hike through the rainforest and take the steepest train in the world. There is also a large cable car so you can see great views of the mountains.
3) Bondi Beach
Bondi Beach is Australia's most famous beach and is well worth a visit. Bondi Beach is a great spot for surfers, swimmers, or those who just want a day in the sun.
Bondi Beach is very accessible from all parts of Sydney by train and it shouldn't be much more than a twenty minute ride. Once in Bondi Junction you have to take a bus to the boardwalk, the fare is very reasonable and you can buy a bus and train ticket at the same time.
If you fancy shopping before hitting the beach, there is a large Westfield shopping center in Bondi Junction. All the major Australian chain stores are there and there are some great places to have lunch.
4) Sydney Harbor Bridge
The Sydney Harbor Bridge world's largest steel-archedis an amazing sight, if you choose not to climb the bridge, walking the trail is a must.
Booking to participate in the bridge climb is easy to do online, but is a bit pricey. The climb takes three hours if all the safety preparations are included. The climb is not too tough so all fitness levels can participate. Once you reach the top you will be greeted with incredible views of Sydney and this makes the price worth it. You are not out loud to take cameras with you on the climb, but you are given a souvenir photo of the entire group at the top of the bridge.
If you are interested in learning about the history of the bridge, head to the Pylon Museum located on the Harbor Bridge. The museum is full of facts and there is a short video on the construction of the Harbor Bridge. There is a charge for entry, but if you participated in the bridge climb, you will receive a free pass.
5) Taronga Zoo
Taronga Zoo is a huge zoo in front of the Opera House and it's a great day out for all ages.
To get to Taronga Zoo, you need to take a ferry from Circular Quay. You can buy a joint ticket at the ferry terminal that includes round-trip ferry trips and admission to the zoo. This is worth doing as you can avoid queuing for tickets when you arrive at the zoo.
The zoo is full of different types of animals and you can also participate in an animal encounter for an additional fee. All information related to animal encounters will be on your guide map along with costs. The zoo also has a great restaurant that offers a wide variety of hot and cold food.
6) The Rocks
The Rocks is an old part of Sydney with cobbled streets and lots of character.
The Rocks is full of quirky souvenir shops, great cafes, and plenty of bars with great beer gardens. This is truly one of the best places to spend a lazy afternoon in Sydney. On weekends you can also ride around the area in a horse-drawn carriage.
The best time to visit the rocks is on weekends when they have a local market. The market operates on Saturdays and Sundays from nine to five. You can pick up some really great handmade goods here and if space in your box is an issue for you, some stalls will post your purchase at home for you.
If you are into ghosts and demons, book to go on The Rocks Ghost Tour. You can book the tour at the Tourist Information Center located at The Rocks, the tour may be busy so you will need to book in advance. Taking part in the tour is a great way to spend the night, all of the hosts are actors so be prepared for some laughs. The tour is great because you discover a lot of facts about ghost sightings, but also about the local area.
Manly is a perfect little seaside town just a short ferry ride from Circular Quay.
Ferries run all day from Circular Quay and the prices are quite reasonable. Once there, you can swim in the ocean, sunbathe, take a scenic drive, or spend the entire afternoon basking in the sun in a great beer garden. Manly has a great laid back vibe and it's a fun day out for everyone.
For more information on marine life and reptiles, visit Oceanworld. This aquarium is not as big as the one in Sydney, but it is still a good way to spend a couple of hours.
8) Darling Harbor
Darling Harbor is a great place just a short walk from the city center and has tons of things to keep all ages entertained.
The port has all the hustle and bustle of city life, but in a much more pleasant setting. Here you can visit an aquarium, a wildlife park, see a show at the IMAX theater, shop, or just relax in the afternoon in a great cafe or bar.
The Sydney Aquarium is one of the main attractions in Darling Harbor. The aquarium is huge and it could easily take you an afternoon to see it all. The aquarium is very educational, which is great if you go with children. The shark tank is amazing and they have touch pools so you can get up close to nature yourself. When purchasing your ticket, you can also purchase a combo ticket for the Wildlife Park.
9) Pitt Street Malls
Pitt Street Malls Sydney city center is a shopping haven and a real must for any serious shopper.
You could easily spend a whole day looking around all the malls and not go to all the stores. Here you can find all the major stores, plus some quirky stores for balance. Shopping is not the only thing to do here, they have Chinese massage shops, beauty therapists and a great selection of hairdressers.
Eating in the city center can be all you want from the market. There are many great restaurants offering all kinds of food, but for those on a budget, head to the food court for some great cheap meals.
10) The Royal Botanical Gardens
The Royal Botanical Gardens Head to the lush Botanical Gardens for a quiet morning where you really need to feel in harmony with nature after living the city life.
Take a leisurely walk and admire the beauty of what nature has to offer. The gardens are splendid and there are many great places to have a picnic or sit and watch the world go by.
Mrs. Macquarie's chair was carved in 1816 so you can soak up a bit of history at the same time. This is a great place to take photos of the Opera House and the Harbor Bridge. The area can be quite crowded before and after business hours, as it is a popular place for locals to go for a run.
Entry to the gardens is free, but if you want to make a contribution, there are donation boxes around the park. There are also free maps around the park which are a good idea as it can be easy to get lost due to the size of the gardens. In the heart of the gardens there is a great cafeteria, but it can be a bit pricey, so if you are on a budget, bring your own food.