Having lived in over 10 cities on 5 continents (and spent almost an entire year bouncing around Australia), I still believe Sydney is one of the beautiful cities on earth. Sydney remains one of the most famous and recognisable cities in the world, and it has so many must-see attractions that it can be overwhelming for a first-time visitor. That said, I believe it’s entirely possible to explore all the best bits Sydney has to offer in just 48 hours! Crazy, eh? Here’s a look at how you can fit in the best of this city in 2 days without missing any of the essentials.
You’re going to need to get around fast, so be sure that you choose one of the hotels in Sydney that are close by to everything. Like most large modern cities, Sydney has an extensive network of public transport options including commuter rail, buses and ferries to help you get around the city. On the whole, these services are regular and most often, very reliable.
Let’s start with the one thing everyone wants to see: The Sydney Opera House. But how best to see it? Head for the Sydney Harbour Bridge for a view of not just the Opera House, but the whole harbour, in great style. You will want to walk up the stairs at the foot of the bridge to go to the footpath – it may be tempting to drive across, but you can’t see much from there. Come down and head to the Royal Botanic Gardens at the foot of the bridge, and right next to the Opera House, for a morning stroll. When I lived in Sydney I would go here almost every morning I had free and just spend hours reading a book! Felling peckish? Head for lunch in a nearby café or restaurant.
After lunch, head across to the WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo, only a short distance away. It’s next to the Sydney Sea Life Aquarium, which means a double dose of fun if you want to visit both. I realise there are Zoo’s in many of the worlds cities but nothing beats looking at giraffes with the Sydney Opera House in the background!! There are plenty of exotic animals here to admire and be amazed by.
You can eat at the zoo or head back out onto the streets – and if you are up for a late night with lots of entertainment, you can also go around the corner to the Sydney IMAX theatre and catch a movie on the world’s biggest screen before returning to your hotel. I saw some wildlife movie here and while expensive it was a crazy cool experience!
Head out early to get a good start on Bondi Beach, before the rest of the tourists roll in! And I seriously do mean early as you will need to get there in good time – Bondi is the kind of place you want to visit for a few hours at least, not just a passing walk. Grab a takeaway meal from a café near the shore (so not to break the bank!) and eat your lunch on the sands.
I loved watching the surfers, people watching locals and tourists and best of all watching the Bondi Rescue crew do their thing – live from the beach! If you visit in winter you can actually go ice-skating on Bondi Beach! Madness.
If the weather is good, stick around for surfing lessons. If not, you can head back onto dry land and visit the Bondi markets for a taste of Aussie culture. You can also take the Bondi to Bronte coastal walk if you have enough energy to see all the great views. You will pass some of the best inlets and beaches in this part of Australia and you might even spot the house I lived in for 3 months right by the shore of Bronte Beach!
Your visit to Sydney may be rushed, but that’s no reason to miss out on the big sights. These are the best that the city has to offer (at least in my opinion!) and it’s definitely possible to fit them all into just 2 short days. If you are looking for more tips on travel in Australia, check out my post on wine tasting un Hunter Valley!