We spent 5 days in Sydney and Bondi Beach, which is way too short if you want to experience everything Sydney has to offer. We didn’t have time to explore beyond Circular Quay and the city center.

Circular Quay area

Our favorite thing to do in Sydney was to walk around Circular Quay (which we did a lot!) and take in the surroundings. The major highlight of this area is of course the Sydney Opera House.

Circular Quay in Sydney

Sydney Opera House

The first time we saw the Opera House in real life we were totally mesmerized by its beauty. Of course, we had seen it in pictures before, but we couldn’t stop taking pictures of it ourselves any time of the day. Walk around Circular Quay to find the perfect photo spot. It’s beautiful any time of the day, but during sunset it’s breathtaking. The Australian sunsets never disappoint, and the Opera House really shines when it’s lit up by the setting sun.

Sydney Opera House

Sydney Harbour Bridge

The Sydney Harbour Bridge is a beautiful bridge and is a very nice photo subject. Walk along the shore for different perspectives. If you have some extra cash, you can also climb the bridge. From up high you’ll have an amazing view over Sydney and the Opera House, but it’s an expensive activity. We had to save climbing the bridge for a next visit to Sydney.

Sydney Harbour Bridge

Cruise ships at the harbor

Every day there’s a different huge cruise ship in the harbor of Circular Quay. It’s lots of fun to check out the cruise ships (too bad you can’t board them). One evening the ship left the harbor relatively early during sunset, which offered a ‘new’ perspective of the Sydney Opera House.

Cruise ship at Circular Quay in Sydney

Museum of Contemporary Art

The Museum of Contemporary Art is located at Circular Quay and is a nice museum to check out when in the neighborhood. Their collections frequently change and there is a very nice rooftop bar with views over Circular Quay, the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge.
There’s no entrance fee.

Opening hours:
Thursdays – Tuesdays: 10.00-17.00
Wednesdays: 10.00-21.00

Royal Botanic Garden

The Royal Botanic Garden is a huge park close to the Sydney Opera House. You’ll find lots of people walking and jogging in the park or having picnics on the fields. It’s a very nice area to walk in and the view of the Opera House is beautiful from the water side.

View from the Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney

View from the Royal Botanic Garden

Shopping

Sydney is a nice city to do some shopping. George Street, Pitt Street and the surrounding streets are perfect for your shopping needs.

The Strand Arcade

The Strand Arcade isn’t only perfect for your shopping needs but also for your photography ones. The interior of the Arcade is beautiful and there are pretty tiles all over the place (even in the toilets). This place is a must if you’re into taking photos.

The Strand Arcade in Sydney

Getting around

We were staying in Bondi Beach and went to the city center of Sydney daily by either bus + train or bus + ferry. We bought a pass for public transport at the airport (Opal) which was very easy to use, you just had to make sure enough money was loaded on your pass before traveling. We used Google Maps for time tables of public transport and it was always accurate (even the delays were mostly accurate).

There is so much to see in and surrounding Sydney, five days isn’t nearly enough. If you have the time and the money, we would definitely recommend you stay longer in the Sydney area. We will for sure be back one day to explore more of Sydney!

Have you ever been to Sydney? Let us know in the comments below!

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