Sydney Attractions: The oldest, largest, and most stunning city in Australia is Sydney, which is situated amidst a beguiling blending of land and water. You can understand why this is one of the best cities in the world as you cruise down the sparkling harbour on a boat, take in the white sails of the Opera House shining in the sunlight, and enjoy the beautiful arch of the Harbour Bridge.
It’s difficult to believe that this thriving state capital of New South Wales was once a penal colony. The first British colony in Australia was founded in 1788 at Sydney Cove by Captain Arthur Phillip, commander of the First Fleet. Today, you can experience Sydney’s storied past amid the Rocks’ winding, cobbled lanes and ancient structures while learning about the Gadigal Aboriginal people, the land’s original custodians, on guided tours and in the city’s top-notch museums.
Sydney still exudes the pioneering spirit of its early inhabitants. Climb the harbour bridge, go surfing at Sydney’s golden beaches, or take a spectacular flight above the city. Furthermore, the adventures don’t stop in the city. Wilderness areas teeming with wildlife surround the town, offering inviting day trip options.
With this list of the most significant things to do in Sydney, Australia, you can explore all the main destinations in this renowned harbour city.
Sydney Attractions: See the Sydney Opera House
The Sydney Opera House, one of the great landmarks of the globe and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the main draw on the sparkling harbour. This elegant structure, which resembles shells or billowing sails, is perched on a small peninsula surrounded by sea.
There are various ways to get to the Sydney Opera House. Take a picture as you cruise past on a harbour cruise, unwind at one of the restaurants, explore the outside, or join a guided tour of this spectacular building. Theatres, studios, exhibition spaces, a music hall, and a movie theatre are all located inside.
Sydney Attractions:To find out more about the past of this well-known structure and to get a peek behind the scenes, schedule a Sydney Opera House Guided Walking Tour. This is a flexible ticket that permits you to participate in any of the daily tours, which leave every half-hour from 9 am to 5 pm.
The best photo ops can be found at Mrs. Macquarie’s Chair, where serious photographers should go.
Although the building is getting a $275 million, 10-year makeover, it will still be in use during that time.
Location: Sydney, New South Wales, Bennelong Point
Sydney Attractions: the Sydney Harbour Bridge climb
Sydney Attractions: The Sydney Harbour Bridge, also referred to as the “Coathanger,” is another Sydney landmark. It was constructed in 1932 and is still the largest steel arch bridge in the world. It is supported by enormous double piers at each end. It can be crossed by car, by boat, by train, or by taking pictures from a distance. But climbing to the pinnacle of this 135-meter-high structure is one of the greatest ways to fully appreciate this feat of engineering and take in the breathtaking vistas of Sydney Harbour.
One of Sydney Attractions: Australia’s top outdoor adventures is scaling the bridge, and there are numerous tour options available. Groups are taken on a 3.5-hour climb by Sydney BridgeClimb to the top of the outer arch. Tours take place all day long, starting with a sunrise ascent and concluding with a twilight ascent. The bridge that connects the north and south beaches of the harbour allows for a variety of climbs, including one that takes you directly across the arch and onto the other side.
A pre-climb briefing, safety equipment, and a summit photo are all included in guided ascents of the bridge. You’ll pick up a variety of amusing tales about the bridge’s past along the route. Before he was renowned, Paul Hogan, aka Crocodile Dundee, was one of its most well-known employees.
Visit the museum on the southeast pier to find out more about the intriguing history of the bridge’s construction.
In Sydney, New South Wales, at 5 Cumberland Street
Sydney Attractions: Circulate The Rocks
Sydney Attractions: Want to learn more about Sydney’s past? Explore The Rocks on foot. The Gadigal Aboriginal people previously lived in the historic district of the Rocks, which lies on a peninsula of land that sticks out into Sydney Harbour. It later developed into the first European settlement in the nation.
The rocky coastline on the west side of Sydney Cove, where the convicts set up camp, inspired the name “The Rocks.” Today, more than 100 heritage landmarks and structures compete for space along the winding lanes, including Cadman’s Cottage, Sydney’s oldest surviving home, constructed in 1816.
The Rocks Discovery Museum ought to be the first place you go. You can discover here how this area had an amazing metamorphosis from traditional Aboriginal lands to a convict slum to a popular tourist destination. Additionally, every day at 12:30 and 1:30, a 30-minute free guided tour is available.
Sydney Attractions: After that, explore the winding, cobblestone streets. Purchase some trinkets at the gift shops, purchase homemade goods on Saturdays and Sundays at the market booths, and take in the modern and Aboriginal art in the galleries. There are also a ton of charming tiny eateries and cafés in this area.
You can arrange a nighttime ghost tour if you’re seeking for odd things to do in Sydney. Guided tours range from photographic excursions to Aboriginal cultural walks.
Address: Level 6, The Rocks, Sydney, New South Wales, 66 Harrington Street
Sydney Attractions: At Circular Quay, catch a harbor cruise.
Sydney Attractions: A sightseeing boat on Sydney Harbour is among the most well-liked activities there. Sydney is renowned for its glistening waterfront backdrop. The city’s primary ferry terminal, Circular Quay in Sydney Cove, is where the majority of harbor tours leave from.
Lacking time? Purchase a ticket for the two-hour Sydney Harbour Coffee Cruise, which will take you to some of Sydney’s most picturesque locations, including the Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge, and Fort Denison. Along the route, discover fascinating facts about the major locations, and keep your camera at the ready because there will be numerous photo opportunities.
Sydney Attractions: Would you prefer to see some wildlife while on your tour? The Sydney Whale-Watching Cruise takes visitors out past Sydney Heads to witness these majestic creatures during the annual winter whale migration.
You’re too busy to take a harbor cruise. On a ferry journey around the port, you can still see some of the best attractions. Circular Quay is the departure point for ferries to popular locations like Taronga Park Zoo, Watsons Bay, and Manly.
Insider’s tip: You can reach other popular Sydney tourist destinations on foot from Circular Quay. The Sydney Opera House and the Royal Botanic Gardens are located south of the waterfront promenade, and the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Rocks historic district are located north of it.
Sydney Attractions: Visit Darling Harbour for a Day
Sydney Attractions: Everyone can find something to do around Darling Harbour. This waterfront sector on the western edge of Sydney’s CBD is a hub for both tourists and residents due to its abundance of tourist attractions. Everything is available here, including stores, eateries, entertainment options, museums, a zoo, an aquarium, and an IMAX cinema.
Families will enjoy visiting Madame Tussaud’s, the WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo, and the SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium, which houses the greatest collection of Australian marine life in the entire world. To avoid the lines, purchase a SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium Entrance Ticket.
A replica of Captain Cook’s ship, the HMB Endeavour, can be boarded at the Australian National Maritime Museum, while the Powerhouse Museum features interactive displays on science, technology, design, and history. History buffs with an interest in ships can also visit the Powerhouse Museum. Keep an eye out for vibrant artwork along the Darling Harbour Street Art Trail as you stroll around.
Sydney Attractions: The water park, playgrounds, Darling Harbour Ferris Wheel, and carousel will all be enjoyed by young children. The thrilling activities are rounded up by an IMAX and 9D theater, waterfront jet boat rides, virtual flights, and racing vehicle adventures.
Looking for a peaceful area with greenery? Sip tea amidst the willow trees and koi ponds at the Chinese Garden of Friendship.
Darling Harbour not only provides a one-stop shop of family-friendly Sydney attractions, but it also regularly holds a diverse range of events, such as art exhibitions, film festivals, and music performances at the Aware Super Theatre.
Sydney Attractions: At Sydney’s Royal Botanic Garden, enjoy the rose scent.
Do you need a vacation from the city’s bustle? Relax in Farm Cove’s Royal Botanic Garden Sydney. If you need a nature fix, one of the many calming things to do in the city at no cost is to stop by this peaceful oasis, which is close to the Sydney Opera House.
The gardens are Australia’s first botanic garden, having opened its doors in 1816. They cover 30 hectares of themed gardens with tall trees, palm groves, succulents, orchids, ferns, tropical gardens, flora from the jungle, and Oriental gardens.
Garden enthusiasts will be ecstatic. There are over 1,800 roses in the Palace Rose Garden. The Cadi Jam Ora – First Encounters Garden narrates the tale of the Gadigal people, the region’s traditional guardians, and investigates the interaction between people and plants. The Glasshouse Latitude 23 and Fernery is brimming with tropical foliage, begonias, and orchids.
There are excursions and treks that focus on Aboriginal culture as well as other activities like bush tucker morning teas and picnics. For details, see the website.
Looking to see what’s nearby? The Domain, a well-liked event location with open green space and sports fields, surrounds the gardens. Additionally, you can take in views of Government House, which serves as the governor of New South Wales’ official residence, while you are in the gardens.
Location: Sydney, New South Wales, Mrs Macquarie’s Road
The Queen Victoria Building is a great place to go shopping.
Are you planning to go shopping a lot? Head to the Queen Victoria Building in Romanesque architecture (“QVB”). Even if you don’t intend to make a purchase, it’s worth the trip to marvel at this magnificently restored structure’s vibrant stained-glass windows and mosaic floors.
Built between 1893 and 1898 as a market hall, this magnificent structure is topped by a tall central dome encircled by 20 smaller domes. Early in the 1980s, this great sandstone structure was returned to its original state after years of disrepair and even preparations for demolition.
Today, its light-filled galleries are lined with more than 200 upscale stores. There are several Australian designer boutiques, as well as R.M. Williams, Lorna Jane, and Haigh’s chocolates, as well as homeware shops, gift shops, and art galleries.
Feeling hungry? Popular High Teas are served in The Tea Room QVB under crystal chandeliers.
From Town Hall Station, underground arcades lead to the QVB.
In Sydney, New South Wales, at 455 George Street
The Sydney Tower Eye is enlarged.
The 309-meter-tall Sydney Tower Eye, one of the city’s most iconic structures, soars above the downtown skyline (other than the Opera House and Harbour Bridge, of course). The bustling Centrepoint shopping center is where this golden spire-topped tower rises.
One of the most well-liked tourist activities in Sydney’s central business district is zooming up the Sydney Tower Eye. Visitors can take express lifts to the observation deck at the top or to SKYWALK, an outdoor viewing platform with a glass floor that is ideal for sightseeing. While you’re up here, you may take in the expansive views of Sydney and the neighborhoods nearby or eat something at the café or one of the rotating eateries.
A 4D movie experience is moreover available; it offers a rundown of the main landmarks in the city.
Location: Sydney, New South Wales, 100 Market Street
Beach-bumming on Sydney’s shores
You don’t have to go very far from the CBD to locate a beach with a warm body of water. Less than a 15-minute drive from the city is iconic Bondi Beach, which has superb surf, a lively café scene, and a hip feel. Take the coastal path that runs along the cliffs from Bondi to Coogee Beach for breathtaking ocean views.
Manly Beach is merely a 30-minute ferry journey from Circular Quay, while Cronulla is the only beach reachable by train from the city if you’re taking public transportation. You may take a surfing lesson, swim in the surf, or swim in the netted ocean pool here. You can also stroll along the seaside promenade and visit the top-notch stores and eateries.
Surfers may find some amazing breakers at Collaroy, Dee Why, and Narrabeen, which are further north of the city. The majority of Sydney beaches are great for swimming, especially in the summer, but you should always keep between the red and yellow flags.
Around the Barangaroo Reserve, bicycle or walk
An urban regeneration project that is successful is Barangaroo Reserve. The region, which was formerly an ugly container terminal and was given the name of an important Indigenous woman leader during the time of European colonialism, was transformed and made public in 2015 with a dedication to sustainability and boosting community wellbeing.