Sydney might not be Australia’s capital city, but it’s certainly sitting pretty, right at the top of Australia’s wide-cast metropolises. Stretching either side of the crinkle-cut waters of Port Jackson – and the famed Sydney Harbour – Sydney undoubtedly has a stunning setting. But while the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Opera House shout out their visual appeal, this city has a lot more going for it than just sight-seeing.
Home to that epitome of Oz charm, the big-hearted Sydneysider, these days Sydney is also known as a cultural jewel in the Pacific – and one of the most diverse cities either side of that vast ocean. However, with a jigsaw puzzle of districts, each with its own charm, choosing a hotel or accommodation for your Sydney-side experience is no easy matter.
That’s why we’ve carefully selected our hotels from among the best-located districts in town, whether close to the heart of Sydney’s buzz, or in areas geared to your particular needs as a traveller. The obvious place to start is the CBD – the Central Business District – on Sydney’s south-side. This is the true centre of all things Sydney, and rubs against its top-drawer attractions like the Opera House and Harbour Bridge.
The CBD is where you’ll find most of Sydney’s high-class, modern hotels soaring skywards. But it’s also where you’ll discover some real hotel gems, housed in some of the city’s most historic of buildings. It’s also an ideal place to stay for business travellers who want to be close to the action of the financial district.
For somewhat cheaper – and some would say more characterful – lodgings, try The Rocks area, just to the north of the CBD. Here you’ll find a charming dock-side district steeped in the city’s working-class history. There are some character-filled, and relatively inexpensive hotels here, but also a few at the luxury end of the scale too. Some of the harbour-side hotels in The Rocks are reckoned to have the best views in town.
Another exciting sea-facing district is the Darling Harbour area. It’s packed with entertainment like aquariums, museums and board-walks. It is also well endowed with some great mid-priced hotels. Further west is the Inner West strip, a well-to-do neighbourhood that hugs the harbour a little further around. Many business travellers choose to stay here, as the hotels are less pricey than in the CBD, while still being in reach of the financial district.
If you’re looking for a place to stay close to some of Sydney’s legendary beaches – like Bondi on the south shore – then you’ll find plenty of ideally-located accommodation in the Eastern Suburbs. And if budget is a factor, the area just behind Bondi Beach itself still has great low-cost hotels, hostels and apartments, many geared towards the backpacker community.
So diversity really is the word here. One thing you can bank on is that, in a city as many-faceted and global in outlook as Sydney, you’re bound to find your particular accommodation needs will be met.