Top 5 sights in Sydney
UPDATE NOVEMBER 2020: After my time teaching English in Thailand and South Korea, I managed to organise my Australia working holiday visa quite easily and moved straight to Sydney to work and save some cash. It changed my life, I started my blog with the money I saved, lived in Sydney for over a year on that visa, and put away enough cash for my epic trip overland trip across Africa from Cape Town to Cairo. Also, I loved living here, there are so many sights in Sydney to keep you occupied, whether as a tourist or as someone based there.
So yeah for sure, it may be expensive but it has so much to offer, have a look at my 5 top sights in Sydney:
The Sydney Opera House (and the Sydney Harbour Bridge)
I know, I know it’s obvious on any list of sights in Sydney, but this place is an icon! It plays host to many of the world-class shows, from symphonies like the Sydney Symphony to the Australian Ballet and the Opera. When you arrive in Sydney, get yourself down here and check out if there are any shows on, it’ll be a great experience if you manage to score some tickets. I’m proud to say I saw the ballet here a couple of years ago (i was trying to impress a girl, I don’t think it worked).
The Bridge is an amazing site too, you can walk across it and get great views of the Opera house OR if you’re feeling rich you can climb to the top of it ($200).
The Sydney Tower
Bang in the city centre, the tower will give you a view of Sydney like no other. It costs around $20 to get to the top and once up there or you can pay $60 and leave the tower, onto the skywalk. Here, you’re in the open air, twice the height of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and with glass floor sections it can be pretty scary.
There are also 2 revolving restaurants inside, one à la carte and one buffet. Prices are around $60 for lunch and $90 for dinner. Ouch!
TOP-TIP: Get a discounted ticket AND skip the queue if you book online here in advance!
Second only to the Opera house in the most famous sights in Sydney. People love Sydney because it offers all the highlights of city life PLUS you can chill on the beach within 20 minutes too. Some of the popular choices are Cronulla, Balmoral but it’s the iconic Bondi that gets all the column inches (there are also countless more quality beaches too, I wrote about 5 less known beaches in Sydney here, including one nudist beach so if you’re dying to let it all hang out, have a read)!
Check out the ‘Rock Pool’ for a cocktail and a dip when you make it to Bondi Beach, it’s gorgeous.
Walking distance from the city centre, Darling Harbour contains many of Sydney’s tourist attractions. This include Sydney Wildlife World, Sydney Aquarium, National Maritime Museum, Chinese Garden of Friendship, IMAX Theatre etc. The whole place is designed so you can walk around, chill, eat at the nice cafes, bars and restaurants. If you’re looking to party check out Bungalow 8 and Cargo Bar, they’re always raging!
The city skyline and city views in Darling Harbour make you realise why Sydney is often voted one of the most beautiful cities in the world. When there are sights in Sydney like this one, it’s easy to see why.
Found on the western side of Sydney Cove, it’s popular with tourists because it’s wedged between the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. You can check out the Wharf Theatre and Sydney Theatre here if you’re looking for a little culture. Or you can nail some vodka red bulls at the Rock’s best bar/nightclub The Argyle. The general vibe here is peaceful serenity during the day and happening bar scene at night – both of which you should avail of!
Top 5 Sights in Sydney – 1 Day Itinerary
You can easily do all these sights in Sydney in 1 day. It just depends which way around you’d like to do them. Personally, I’d tackle a 1 day Sydney itinerary like this:
Off to Bondi Beach. Take the underground there, and spend the morning on the beach. There are endless coffee shops and cafes for brunch too, so take your time. And bring plenty of sunscreens, once you’re on the beach, there’s very little shade!
As mid-day hits, make your way back to the city centre. Check out the Opera House. And then climb Sydney Harbour Bridge like a proper tourist (honestly it’s really fun, and the views are great). With a spot of lunch and those 2 activities, you’ll already be in the late afternoon. So grab a drink at the famous Opera Bar beside the Opera House.
Hop up Sydney Tower before the sunsets for epic city views. If you time it well you can see it in the day and night time. Gorgeous. Then stroll from there down to Darling Harbour for some cocktails on the water. Your day is complete.
Final thoughts on the top 5 sights in Sydney
There are a million and one other things to do in and around Sydney but if you want to stay central, you won’t be disappointed with this little lot I assure you. If you have a little more time though, check out Sydney indoor skydiving. It is EPIC! Sydney is one of the top 10 cities in the world for a reason, and even with just 1 day in Sydney, you’ll agree with the sentiment. I miss it already.
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