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SydneyAustralia

Sydney has beaches by the bucket-load, must-see icons and a climate to die-for. But it also has a big brash heart that's certain to bowl you over.

Sydney, the capital of Australia's most populous state (New South Wales), has plenty of eye-candy for the visitor. It sits in geographic wonderland, a submerged ancient river valley that gifted it more than 70 beaches and pretty coves. Its plucky residents have spent the last two centuries building on that natural splendour. The solid arch of the Sydney Harbour Bridge now nicely sews together the two halves separated by the sea. Sydney's cultural coming-of-age is anchored in-place by the sculpted white beauty of the Sydney Opera House. And the needle of the Sydney Tower provides a 30-metre vantage over it all, opening the city out for your viewing pleasure.

But your stay in Sydney really should dip into the less well-known, if you want to find its heart. To take in the charm of the rough-edged diamond of The Rocks, the city's oldest and hardest-done-by district. To share a crooked smile with the Syndeysiders at their beloved Luna Park, an amusement park stuck in a 1930s time-warp. Or to pick up a board and test the surf at one of Sydney's two iconic beaches: the trend-setting Bondi Beach on the south shore. Or the scene-defining Manly Beach to the north, where surfing was born, and men (apparently) are made.

Sydney has also done a superb job at helping conserve Australia's wildlife, with two innovative zoos and a world-class aquarium. Taronga Zoo shows how zoos should work, with a wide expanse of bush-land for its denizens to roam, and ground-breaking conservation projects. And the Sea Life Centre, located next to Sydney's window on the sea, Darling Harbour, does its bit too. Both by astounding and educating its thousands of visitor to the wonders of Australia's rivers, seas and oceans. And by making them aware of their vulnerability.

With its sun, sea and sand, there's no shortage of reasons to come to Sydney. And it's pretty easy to sum up Sydney in a few snapshots. This is a city that wears its icons on its self-cut short-sleeves, after all. But Sydney is far more than just a folder in your photo album. It's an attitude. A brash prankster with a devilish glint in its eye. A caring custodian of the spectacular (and quirky) natural world that this continent has bred, in its 100-million years of isolation. A big-hearted bloke that welcomes the world in, with a barbie and a tinny. Look Sydney in the eye with a smile, and you'll be paid back ten-fold.

Sydney Travel Guide Video

Where to stay in Sydney

Darling Harbour featuring night scenes, city views and a bay or harbour

Darling Harbour

4.5/5Wonderful!(3,097 area reviews)

Known for its captivating waterfront views and popular shops, there's plenty to explore in Darling Harbour. Check out top attractions like SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium and Star Casino, and jump on the metro at Pyrmont Bay Light Rail Station or The Star Station to see more of the city.

Darling Harbour
Manly showing general coastal views, a coastal town and landscape views

Manly

A noteworthy feature of Manly is its stunning beaches. While you're in town, be sure to stop and check out Manly Beach and Shelly Beach.

Manly
Parramatta showing general coastal views and a city

Parramatta

Travellers come to Parramatta for its abundant dining options, and you can see top attractions like Westfield Parramatta Shopping Centre and Bankwest Stadium while you're in town.

Parramatta
Surry Hills

Surry Hills

Travellers come to Surry Hills for its abundant dining options, and you can see top attractions like Crown Street and Castlereagh Street while you're in town.

Surry Hills
North Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

North Sydney

The ample dining options and captivating waterfront views are top of the list for many visitors to North Sydney. A stop by North Sydney Oval or St. Leonards Park might round out your trip.

North Sydney

Top hotels in Sydney

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Four Seasons Hotel Sydney
Four Seasons Hotel Sydney
5 out of 5
199 George St., Sydney, NSW
The price is NZ$263 per night

This family-friendly Sydney hotel is located in the historical district, just steps away from Circular Quay and Museum of Contemporary Art. The Rocks Markets ...

4.6/5Wonderful! (2,049 reviews)

"Amazing amazing amazing!!! Staff go above and beyond and ensure during covid that mask and sanitiser are provide in your room. Rooms are so clean and lovely with a comfortable bed! Spa was enjoyable if you did want to treat yourself! Great location nearby gateway where plenty of choices to eat plus ..."…"

Reviewed on 9 Aug. 2020

Four Seasons Hotel Sydney
Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney
Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney
5 out of 5
176 Cumberland Street, The Rocks, NSW
The price is NZ$322 per night

Located in Sydney Central Business District, this luxury hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Museum of Contemporary Art and Circular Quay. The Rocks Markets and ...

4.4/5Wonderful! (2,541 reviews)

"Some of the best hotel service I have ever experienced"…"

Reviewed on 22 Jul. 2020

Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney
Oaks Sydney Goldsbrough Suites
Oaks Sydney Goldsbrough Suites
4 out of 5
243 Pyrmont Street, Darling Harbour, Pyrmont, NSW
The price is NZ$91 per night

Located in Darling Harbour, this apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Harbourside, Australian National Maritime Museum and International Convention ...

4/5Very Good! (6,419 reviews)

"Nice rustic experience, clean well equipped rooms. A plesent stay."…"

Reviewed on 11 Jul. 2020

Oaks Sydney Goldsbrough Suites

Popular places to visit in Sydney

Sydney Opera House
Image for Sydney Opera House

Sydney Opera House

4.5/5(3,486 reviews)

The bold lines of the Sydney Opera House speak more about Sydney than any other part of this cosmopolitan city of four million.

Circular Quay
Image for Circular Quay

Circular Quay

4.5/5(4,882 reviews)

Trains, buses and boats all make a bee-line for Circular Quay, a place at the heart of Sydney's journeying – and so should you.

Sydney Harbour Bridge
Image for Sydney Harbour Bridge

Sydney Harbour Bridge

4.5/5(3,601 reviews)

A colossus of engineering, the Harbour Bridge brings the pieces of Sydney together, and offers you a different perspective on the city's wide-angle drama.

Taronga Zoo
Image for Taronga Zoo

Taronga Zoo

4.5/5(778 reviews)

The bush-land Zoo-in-the-city that is home to an amazing Australian wildlife experience

Bondi Beach
Image for Bondi Beach

Bondi Beach

4.5/5(1,556 reviews)

Locals and travelers from all over the world come to worship the sun, sand and clear blue waters of Australia’s most famous beach.

Manly Beach
Image for Manly Beach

Manly Beach

4.5/5(1,614 reviews)

Lying just a ferry-ride away, on the north shore of Sydney's harbour, Manly will soon have you surfing and swimming – or just watching others getting all-manly.

Top activities in Sydney

Sydney Hop-On Hop-Off Big Bus Tour
Image for Sydney Hop-On Hop-Off Big Bus Tour

Sydney Hop-On Hop-Off Big Bus Tour

NZ$63
Per adult
84% of travellers recommend
Sydney Attractions Pass including SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium
Image for Sydney Attractions Pass including SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium

Sydney Attractions Pass including SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium

NZ$58
Per adult
84% of travellers recommend
Go Sydney Explorer Pass: 3, 4, 5 or 7 Tours & Attractions
Image for Go Sydney Explorer Pass: 3, 4, 5 or 7 Tours & Attractions

Go Sydney Explorer Pass: 3, 4, 5 or 7 Tours & Attractions

NZ$128
Per adult
92% of travellers recommend
Official Home and Away Tour to Summer Bay
Image for Official Home and Away Tour to Summer Bay

Official Home and Away Tour to Summer Bay

NZ$144
Per adult
86% of travellers recommend
Canberra Full-Day Tour from Sydney
Image for Canberra Full-Day Tour from Sydney

Canberra Full-Day Tour from Sydney

NZ$170
Per adult
92% of travellers recommend
Sydney Harbour Short Cruise
Image for Sydney Harbour Short Cruise

Sydney Harbour Short Cruise

NZ$435
Per adult

Reviews of Sydney

4.4

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
2928
5 - Excellent 50.18854988001371%
4 - Good
2424
4 - Good 41.54953719574906%
3 - Okay
426
3 - Okay 7.302022625985602%
2 - Disappointing
40
2 - Disappointing 0.6856359273225917%
1 - Terrible
16
1 - Terrible 0.2742543709290367%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

8 Jun. 2020

Good vibe, great restaurants

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

3 Jun. 2020

Beautiful city, heritage and modern

3/5 - Okay

Henry

26 Apr. 2020

Dont book at APX Darling Harbour

3/5 - Okay

Verified traveller

11 Apr. 2020

Looking forward to restrictions being lifted so we can come and visit

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

6 Apr. 2020

Always liked Sydney

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

24 Mar. 2020

Unfortunately we had to cut our holiday short as there were travel restrictions coming into place the following day but we enjoyed what time we did spend there.

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