Sydney Travel Guide
Introduction to Sydney
As Australia’s largest city, Sydney is its most culturally and economically influential centre. As a visitor from abroad, it is highly likely this city will be your first destination in Australia.
With top-notch cultural institutions, an iconic bridge, and amazing beaches, Sydney will serve as an excellent introduction to the Land Down Under.
Cultural Attractions in Sydney
Unquestionably, one of the most significant cultural attraction in Sydney (if not Australia) is the Sydney Opera House. Boasting an iconic design and serving as Oceania’s most important centre for the performing arts, this place is more than just a box to tick off on your Australian travels.
With more than 40 shows going on here per week, chances are good a play, opera, or concert of personal interest will be going on during your time in Sydney, so be sure to inquire about them at the box office after you have gotten all the shots you want of its glorious exterior.
Fans of visual art will want to include the Art Gallery of New South Wales in their Sydney travel itinerary. It first opened its doors in 1874 and has been a cornerstone of the local arts community ever since.
Admission is free of charge, making it easy for budget travellers to take in its expansive collection of Australian, European, and Asian art. With works by the likes of Pablo Picasso, Peter Paul Reubens, and Ford Madox Brown, this place is a can’t miss attraction for cultural travellers.
If you are visiting Sydney, there is a good chance you will be moving on to other parts of this grand country at some point. Learn more about the history of Australia by spending part of a day exploring the Australian Museum.
Founded in 1827, it is Australia’s oldest museum. Featuring exhibits which focus on natural history and anthropology, you’ll learn how this continent’s plants and animals evolved in isolation from most of the rest of the world, and how the story of the Aborigines and European colonization unfolded.
Specific displays to look out for including its collection of minerals, dinosaur bones, and its spider exhibit, which features all the eight-legged insects you’ll be afraid to come across during your travels in Australia.
Other Attractions in Sydney
Want to get some of the best views of Sydney’s skyline? Cross or climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge. As the world’s largest steel arch bridge, the span itself is a photographic attraction, as it is one of this country’s most frequently captured landmarks.
While you could snap photos of Sydney’s skyline from the bridge’s pedestrian deck, we recommend paying extra to climb its girders with a guide. With a harness and safety wire, you needn’t fear falling over the edge, so there is nothing to be afraid about even if you have a fear of heights. Once you get to the top, the view will be your reward, so give it a go.
Experience some of the best dining, bars, shops, and historic structures in Sydney within a neighbourhood known as The Rocks. Initially, home to one of Australia’s first convict settlement, it became partly gentrified in the 1970s after a plan to demolish all of its brick and stone structures was opposed by local resident groups.
Two bars in this neighbourhood claim to be the oldest continuously run pubs in Sydney, so if you are jonesing for a drink during your time in The Rocks, drop by the Fortune of War and/or Lord Nelson to get a taste of this city’s history.
Burn off the calories you ate or drank while you were in The Rocks by going on the Bondi to Coogee Beach Coastal Walk. A scenic trail connecting two of the best-loved beaches in Sydney, it is a six-kilometre-long jaunt which traces its way atop cliffs and grants access to three smaller beaches and tidal pools along the way.
Once you get to Bondi, take a swim in its famous saltwater swimming pool. If the surf is up when you go, you may get splashed by crashing waves along its edge, adding to the experience.