Sydney bars

Highlights

Discover a vibrant bar scene

Whether you like vine or grain, cocktail or craft, there’s a bar out there ready to pour you something to love - and probably introduce you to something new along the way. On the brewing front, there’s much to be said for going straight to the source.

  • Hero of Waterloo, The Rocks
  • Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel, Sydney

About Sydney bars

Sydney is home to a diverse range of bars, from underground whiskey establishments and classic breweries to stylish wine bars and rooftop venues. 

Absorb spectacular views over a cocktail at the Opera Bar, situated next to the fabulous Sydney Opera House. Watch Sydney Harbour shimmer at the sunset illuminates the brilliant Sydney Opera House sails. View the Harbour from the rooftop of The Glenmore, a historic local favourite in The Rocks.

Opera Bar, Sydney

The Lord Nelson Brewery and Hero of Waterloo are historical local pubs, built from local sandstone in the heart of The Rocks. One the oldest continuously-licensed pub in Sydney, The Lord Nelson brewery offers a substantial range of hearty brews alongside old favourites.

For a gutsy stout, head to Manly favourite Four Pines Brewing Company or try the real ale at Young Henrys tasting room in Newtown. Marrickville’s Batch Brewing Co plays host to food trucks, so you can pair tacos with your Vienna lager or a jaffle with your coffee-flavoured pint.

Young Henrys, Newtown

Sports bars come alive for competitive events in Sydney. Live local and overseas matches can be caught at the 24/7 sports bar at The Star, or you can kick back to watch your favourite match at Coogee Bay Hotel.

For a taste of tequila and mezcal, check out Tio’s Cerveceria in Surry Hills and Mr Moustache on Bondi Beach, while visitors can plunge into a range of rum options from Barbados, Jamaica, Cuba and beyond at CBD hotspot, The Lobo Plantation.

Lobo Plantation, Sydney

For an all-round good time, the Swillhouse family of bars puts an emphasis on friendly service and great tunes, whether you’re talking cold tinnies and country music at Shady Pines Saloon; blues, pretzels and whisky at The Baxter Inn; or late-night slices and great rock at Frankie’s Pizza.

If a good drop of wine is preferred, the names to memorise include the bar at Bentley in the CBD and Monopole, their wine bar offshoot in Potts Point. Visit Fix St James for an after-work refreshment, enjoy the quirky laneway vibe at Love, Tilly Devine, or delve into the extensive collection at the Wine Library in Woollahra.

Drinks with a View

Ivy Pool Club, Sydney

The sky’s the limit when it comes to scenic watering holes in Sydney. Pull up a seat and soak up the view. Sydney’s rooftop bars are a highlight summer experience, offering uninterrupted views of the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge and the city skyline - the perfect place to relax and enjoy a chilled beer, wine or cocktail in the sunshine.

Up-close harbour vistas along the length of brand new Cuban-themed Hacienda in East Circular Quay’s Pullman Quay Grand are sure to make the 1950s Miami-inspired space a summer hotspot. Just along the quay, Cafe Sydney’s enviable position on the rooftop of Customs House ensures to-die-for Sydney Harbour Bridge views.

For beachside views you can’t beat Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel’s position at the top of the harbour in the east, or the uninterrupted seascape from the Rooftop Bar on level three of refurbished Coogee Pavilion. If poolside cabanas and cocktails are more your speed, don’t miss Ivy’s Pool Club further along George Street in the CBD.

  • Pocket Bar, Darlinghurst

    Small bars

    Smaller establishments have been dominating the Sydney bar scene for quite some time now. Choose from an impressive list of cocktail and whiskey specialists, tiny speakeasies, inviting wine libraries and hidden laneway hotspots, many of which boast award-winning drinks lists and decorated bartenders.

  • 121 BC, Surry Hills

    Wine bars

    Whether you’re a novice who just loves a tasty glass of red or an oenophile looking to indulge in some top-shelf varieties, Sydney has several wine bars from which to savour the best local and imported drops. There are wine libraries and sleek CBD establishments, late-night hotspots and quieter havens.

  • Socceroos vs South Africa, ANZ Stadium

    Sports bars

    Gathering at a local sports bar to watch a game with groups of excited superfans is the Aussie way. Here you can experience huge LCD screens, 24/7 viewing and live matches from overseas. Multiple screens often ensure you don’t miss a minute of your favourite sports.

  • The Star Sky Terrace, Sydney Festival, Sydney

    Rooftop bars

    Rooftop bars combine many of the best features of Sydney: quality beer, wine and cocktails; stellar views across the CBD and harbour; and an opportunity to take advantage of those balmy summer nights and moderate winter evenings in a relaxed outdoor setting with a friendly crowd.

  • The Australian Hotel, The Rocks

    Craft beer

    Sydney’s craft beer scene has experienced a revolution over the past few years thanks to the city’s emerging breweries and passionate retailers. A favourite amongst the city’s hipster community, craft beer is all about interesting brews created by pioneering, small-scale manufacturers.

  • Sokyo, Sydney

    Cocktails

    Sydney boasts several award-winning bartenders who know a thing or two about combining different liquor profiles with creative and quirky juices, extracts and sweeteners to produce creatively-named cocktails. Visit a range of stylish, sleek or subterranean establishments to get your fill.

  1. Friend in Hand Hotel

    Friend in Hand Hotel

    Just a short walk down Cowper Street from Broadway and Glebe Pt Road, The Friend in Hand looks from the outside like many other Art-Deco era pubs. Step inside, though, and what you’re confronted with is something...

  2. Darlie Laundromatic

    Darlie Laundromatic

    There is only one word for Darlie Laundromatic: kitsch. From the original Darlie Laundromat exterior (complete with flashing neon colours) to the clothes lines that hang across the rooms, Darlie is full of character...

  3. The Little Guy Glebe

    The Little Guy Glebe

    The little guy, your friendly local in Glebe. A comfortable social environment where friends can meet, strangers can become friends and where neighbours are The Little Guy's best customers. Come on down...

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