10 great things to do in Sydney
1. Sydney Opera House: As synonymous to Sydney as Buckingham Palace is to London, this is a great place to immerse yourself in the local culture of your new home town. Whether it be watching one of the many performances, viewing some of the art on display or simply just walking around the grounds and exploring the harbour, there’s always plenty going on here to keep you entertained.
2. Taronga Zoo and Sydney Aquarium: Other than a trip to the Outback, these are probably the best ways to experience the widest range of Australia’s native wildlife in all its glory. A great day out for families who are looking to entertain children and introduce them to their new surroundings.
3. Bondi Beach: No move to Sydney would be complete without spending a day on one of the most famous beaches in the world. Whether you fancy trying your hand at the local sport of choice – surfing – or simply just want to take a picnic and relax on the glorious golden sand, this is one of the simplest ways to soak up the Aussie atmosphere.
4. Whale watching: If you’re after a more relaxed sightseeing experience then why not book yourself onto one of the many whale watching cruises that run throughout the harbour? Best seen between June and November, the Humpback and Southern Right whales are definitely worth the trip, plus you’ll get to familiarise yourself with the rest of the harbour’s landmarks from the comfort of the boat.
5. The Blue Mountains: If you’re craving a break from city life already, then a trip to the Blue Mountains could be just what you’re in need of. Accessible by car, you can either opt to drive the scenic route yourself, or there are plenty of coach tours that will do the hard work for you and allow you to sit back and take in the stunning views.
6. Hunter Valley Wineries: Roughly a three hour drive from the city centre, the Hunter Valley Wineries make for a great weekend escape. A guided tour of the wineries includes the obligatory wine tasting, plus lunch and the chance to shop for some of the best local produce in the area. Perfect for those looking to unwind from a busy working week in the city!
7. Sydney Tower Eye: If boat tours aren’t for you then one of the best ways to get your bearings across Sydney is from above ground – 250m above ground, to be precise. Located almost in the centre of the city, the Sydney Tower Eye is the tallest building in Sydney, offering amazing panoramic views right across the city from its observation deck. For the daring, there’s even the opportunity to do the Skywalk – stepping outside the tower for the ultimate adrenaline rush.
8. Royal Botanic Gardens: Stretching over 30 hectares, the Royal Botanic Gardens are a fantastic way to lose yourself for a day. Located on the shores of the harbour, within walking distance of the Opera House, the gardens are open pretty much all year round. Take a picnic and enjoy the gardens at your own leisure, or opt for one of the free, guided tours that run on a daily basis to learn more about the history of the beautiful surroundings.
9. Darling Harbour: A 10 minute stroll from Sydney’s Central Business District, Darling Harbour is one of the most vibrant and interesting places in the city. With the Australian National Maritime Museum, Chinese Garden of Friendship, Madam Tussauds, the Harbourside Shopping Centre and Sydney Wildlife World located here – as well as a plethora of shops, restaurants, cafes, bars, a cinema, bowling centre and even a casino - there really is something for everyone here, so it’s well worth a visit.
10. Shark Island: Just a short ferry ride from Circular Quay, Shark Island is a great place to while away the day swimming, surfing, fishing or simply relaxing with a picnic on one of the many beautiful beaches. Nestled within the city, but secluded from the hustle and bustle, Shark Island is a favourite for those who want an escape, but don’t want to travel far to get it.
For more information on moving to Sydney or anywhere else in Australia, check out the rest of our guide to moving to Australia