From great theatre and beautiful heritage to ‘eat streets’, hip bars and designer boutiques, you’ll discover many fabulous things to do in lively inner Sydney. The events calendar is brimming with evocative shows, sassy cabaret, vibrant festivals and the world-famous Sydney Mardi Gras Parade.
You’ll find delicious restaurants and cafes, too. The hottest dining spots include Kensington Street in Chippendale, King Street in Newtown, Darling Street in Balmain, the beautifully restored Tramsheds near Glebe, and Crown and side streets in Surry Hills, home to the acclaimed Belvoir Street Theatre.
More cutting-edge theatres are in Darlinghurst. The SBW Stables Theatre is in Nimrod Street and the Eternity Playhouse in Burton Street. For alluring cabaret, Slide is on Oxford Street where the two-week Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Festival ends with the glittering parade in early March.
Weekend markets are another delightful drawcard of these charming neighbourhoods. The popular Glebe Markets is on the ‘eat street’ Glebe Point Road in Glebe, near the University of Sydney. You can browse fresh seasonal produce at Carriageworks Farmers Markets in Eveleigh, near Redfern.
The iconic Paddington Markets is in Paddington, home to stylish boutiques at the Intersection and along Oxford and William streets. Like many inner Sydney areas, Paddington has rows of Victorian terrace houses. You can walk to the famous Sydney Cricket Ground from the Paddington Town Hall.
Other attractions include marvellous independent art galleries and the warehouse studio and home in Surry Hills of the late Brett Whiteley, one of Australia’s most celebrated artists of the 20th century. The White Rabbit Gallery in Chippendale displays contemporary Chinese art and has a Teahouse.
For live music and comedy, the Enmore Theatre in Newtown is a popular venue. The Factory Theatre and the Camelot Lounge are two great live music and cabaret venues in Marrickville, where you can also savour multicultural delights. At the Giant Dwarf in Redfern comedians will have you in stiches.
One of the biggest festivals is in the Norton Street Italian Festa in Leichhardt, where restaurants and cafes are dotted along the Norton and Marion ‘eat streets’. In the lovingly converted warehouses and terraces in Alexandria and Rosebery are delicious places to eat, design shops and cool bars.