Top 5 Things to do in Sydney – TripAdvisor

28 June 2012

So you’re in Sydney but you only have a few days? Here are the top 5 things to check out while you’re here, as ranked by other travellers on TripAdvisor.

Sydney Harbour

1. Sydney Harbour
Is considered one of the world’s most beautiful harbours. Secluded beaches and quiet coves dot the harbour and on nice days the water is covered in sailboats; then there are the massive cruise ships weaving their way to the docks. Circular Quay is the launch point for ferries to Manly and sightseeing tours around the harbour. To one side of the Quay lays the historic site of The Rocks, and on the other are the iconic sails of the Sydney Opera House. Sydney Harbour forms the backdrop to a number of spectacular events staged on or around this waterway including Vivid Sydney and New Years Eve when light installations are set up from the Sydney Opera House through Circular Quay to The Rocks and Walsh Bay.

Bondi to Coogee Coastal Walk

2. Bondi to Coogee Beach Coastal Walk
This is a well-maintained and wonderful walk for the whole family—but allow an afternoon for it! You can take your time and leisurely stroll along this gorgeous trail (although there are several changes in elevation so being in moderate shape might help on the hills). I would recommend wearing layers because it can vary from being warm enough for shorts and a t-shirt one minute to cool and breezy the next as you move into and out of shady spots. If you get too warm you can always stop for a swim at Bondi, Tamarama, Bronte or Coogee beaches, and there are a number of water fountains and even a few cafes along the way if you get thirsty. It’s approximately a 6km walk which takes around 2 hours at a good pace. Don’t forget your hat and sunscreen!

3. The Opera House to the Botanic Gardens Walk
If you’re looking for a very leisurely and well-maintained walk along the water then this is the one for you. Some people might consider it a bit of a long walk (I’d recommend bringing some water), but on a beautiful day its great to get outdoors! There are spectacular views along the walk and once you reach Mrs. Macquarie Point you have a sweeping view of the Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge —perfect for a photo op. If you do this walk early in the morning or late in the day you might even catch a beautiful sunrise or sunset. Just make sure you grab your comfortable walking shoes!

© M. Fagg Australian National Botanic Gardens

4. Royal Botanic Gardens
You can’t come to Sydney and not check out the beautiful Royal Botanic Gardens ! These gardens are an absolute must-see and are situated on the shores of Sydney Harbour , right by the Sydney Opera House. These are the oldest botanic gardens in Australia. Its collection of plants comes from around the world but there is a focus on species from Australia and the South Pacific. There are plenty of things to do at the Gardens, such as free guided walks that leave from the Visitor Information Centre, daily at 10:30am and Monday – Friday at 1pm.

5. Sydney Harbour Bridge
This Top 5 list wouldn’t really be complete without the Sydney Harbour Bridge , so here it is, the most famous bridge in Australia ! It’s located exactly opposite the Sydney Opera Houseand spans the city centre to the North Shore. This bridge is both functional and beautiful and the more daring can experience a climb to the top with BridgeClimb. If that’s not your thing, take a lovely walk along the bridge or enjoy magnificent views from the Pylon Lookout.

Check outTripAdvisor’s list of 302 things to do in Sydney, as ranked by travellers.

  • Disparaging Diprotodon

    To everyone visiting from overseas, just remember to KEEP TO THE LEFT on all our footpaths, pavements, sidewalks….and roads !

    • AlexH

      I’ve been here 3 weeks, in Sydney. The locals don’t even abide by this. Staying left has gotten me in more almost collisions than staying right. On the sidewalk of course. On the roads, well, that’s a different story

  • Almost a local

    what a lame list. sydney harbour, the bridge, opera house and botanic gardens are all within 500m of each other! How about a slightly more expansive list like: (1) Ferry trip to Manly, walk to little Shelly beach for a swim then trek up North head and check out the views back to the city. (2) Blue Mountains – Three Sisters, Wentworth Falls, scenic railway and cable car to name a few (3) Head out to Lakemba or Cabramatta for a truly cosmopolitan experience! (4) Lose yourself in the Museum of Sydney, NSW Art Gallery and The Rocks Markets for a day (5) Wander out to Hillsong’s 10,00 seat auditorium for an out of this world experience!

    • AJ

      Avoid #5. Hellsong for profit religion is best avoided.

    • sydneyiscool

      Sounds awesome till you get to #5 – Hellsong, really? A totally for profit ‘religion’, give me a break!

  • Sammy

    How about proof read before submitted the article. “Can we please incorporate the length and approximately how long it take ie. 6km and about 2 hours at a good pace. Also add in not to forget your hat and sunscreen” and yes that information would be nice!

    • Sydney Sider

      Thanks for your pick up Sammy. All fixed now!

  • tom

    i just realised how boring sydney is

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  • BRISSIE BOY

    The Harbour Bridge Climb is expensive but worth doing! Gorgeous views of a stunning harbour.

  • VievaGal

    i like to just walk across the bridge for free and save the intensive workout for after holidays ;)

  • usabiliTEST

    For 1/10 of the price climb one of the towers. The view is great!

  • nick

    No its not!!!
    Half the ticket price and may seem affordable

  • pop

    Yep, the bridge climb is far too expensive and a typical example of inflated aussie prices.