29 Best Things to Do in Sydney


Syd­ney, locat­ed on the Pacif­ic coast in the south­east­ern part of Aus­tralia, is famous for its beau­ti­ful bays, nation­al parks and muse­ums.


What to do in Sydney

Syd­ney is the cap­i­tal of the Aus­tralian state of New Wales. The first res­i­den­tial areas of the city were built in 1788. For many years, the British Empire reg­u­lar­ly sent crim­i­nals here. Because of this, after fifty years, the pop­u­la­tion was 40% pris­on­ers.

Today, lit­tle reminds of these unpleas­ant pages of his­to­ry. Syd­ney, right­ful­ly con­sid­ered the cra­dle of Aus­tralia, is a pop­u­lar resort city with mod­ern avenues, beau­ti­ful squares, and sky­scrap­ers. In the his­toric cen­ter, old colo­nial hous­es with gabled roofs, veran­das, wood­en columns in the style of rus­tic Goth­ic, Vic­to­ri­an Revival, Renais­sance have been pre­served.

There are many pri­vate and munic­i­pal beach­es. Glama­ra­ma Beach, Bon­di Beach, Man­ly Beach enjoy a good rep­u­ta­tion. Res­cue teams work on these beach­es, there are show­ers, indoor pavil­ions, cafes, water rides, vol­ley­ball courts.

Syd­ney offers an inter­est­ing cul­tur­al pro­gram. Peo­ple go surf­ing, scu­ba div­ing, sport fish­ing, go to con­quer the Blue Moun­tains, cut by canyons. There are many fern and euca­lyp­tus forests in the vicin­i­ty, among which hik­ing and horse trails are laid.

The menu in Syd­ney restau­rants sat­is­fies even picky gourmets. Mod­ern Aus­tralian cui­sine com­bines the tra­di­tions of dif­fer­ent coun­tries and is dis­tin­guished by its exquis­ite taste. Pop­u­lar treats at local restau­rants include lay­ered meat pie, kan­ga­roo steak and baked sea fish.

Rest in Syd­ney gives a lot of pos­i­tive emo­tions for the whole fam­i­ly. Par­ents with chil­dren enjoy spend­ing time in the city zoo, on rides, in the nation­al mar­itime muse­um. For those who wish, excur­sions by sea on a glass-bot­tom boat, yacht­ing, div­ing cours­es are avail­able.

Interesting places

Darling Harbor

darling harbor

Syd­ney’s cen­tral har­bor is named after the gov­er­nor of New South Wales, Ralph Dar­ling. The pedes­tri­an area con­sists of res­i­den­tial, busi­ness com­plex­es, cafes, restau­rants, shops. On the embank­ment there is a spi­ral foun­tain by Robert Wood­ward, which is includ­ed in the state her­itage reg­is­ter.

Near­by are the Zvez­da enter­tain­ment com­plex, a chil­dren’s play­ground, the Syd­ney Aquar­i­um, and the Dar­ling Spa Hotel. Many sights of the city are con­cen­trat­ed around the har­bor: the Chi­nese Gar­den, Madame Tus­sauds, Wildlife World.



There is a scenic area at the south­ern end of the har­bor based on the ear­ly col­o­niza­tion of Aus­tralia. Many of the old hous­es here were destroyed dur­ing the con­struc­tion of the Syd­ney Bridge, but those that have sur­vived give the streets a spe­cial fla­vor. Now they are open beer pubs, elite restau­rants, art exhi­bi­tions, antique shops. Walk­ing in the Rocks, you can go to a large mar­ket, a muse­um of mod­ern art, a sailors’ church or the First Fleet Park.


chinaski quarter

Chi­na­town was formed by Chi­nese immi­grants dur­ing the Aus­tralian Gold Rush. The entrance to it is dec­o­rat­ed with a gate made of wood­en pil­lars, dec­o­rat­ed with intri­cate pat­terns and cal­li­graph­ic inscrip­tions. Today it is a pop­u­lar tourist area.

The main street of Dixogn Street is lined with tra­di­tion­al Chi­nese style hous­es. Inside there are Asian restau­rants, antique shops, shops with orig­i­nal Chi­nese goods. In the cen­ter of the quar­ter there is a wood­en sculp­ture “Gold­en Water” by Lin Li. It is believed that it brings good luck.

Port Jackson

port dgekson

A leg­endary place — it was here that James Cook land­ed in 1770, and 18 years lat­er the set­tlers found­ed the British colony. The har­bor of the port is built up with mod­ern build­ings and is famous for its rich infra­struc­ture.

Impor­tant archi­tec­tur­al objects are the Opera House, the Har­bor Bridge, the road tun­nel under the har­bor. Fer­ries, yachts, boats, cruise lin­ers moor in the port. Those who wish can book excur­sions to Fort Deni­son and Goat Island.


Opera theatre

operni teatr

The Syd­ney Opera House is list­ed as a World Her­itage Site and is under the pro­tec­tion of UNESCO. The orig­i­nal build­ing of rein­forced con­crete frames has an expres­sion­ist design. The walls are lined with shell tiles, glass and gran­ite pan­els.

Inside there is a con­cert hall for 2679 seats, a the­ater stage, a record­ing stu­dio, a walk­ing plat­form, a cafe, a restau­rant, a sou­venir shop. The Opera House is the hall­mark of Syd­ney and one of the most icon­ic build­ings in the world.

Elizabeth’s farm

ferma elisaveti

The estate of 1793 has been well pre­served to this day. The future hosts, John and Eliz­a­beth MacArthur, arrived in Aus­tralia with the Sec­ond Fleet, deter­mined to start a new life. They built a farm near the Par­ra­mat­ta Riv­er, raised sheep, grew olive trees.

Aus­tralian Colo­nial style brick cot­tage sur­round­ed by an orchard. Today it is a house-muse­um illus­trat­ing the life of the aris­to­crats of the colo­nial era. A 200-year-old olive tree, Chi­nese elm, and pine trees grow in the manor park.

government house

dom government

The Viceroy­al Res­i­dence in the cen­ter of Syd­ney was built in 1847. The two-sto­ry Goth­ic Revival build­ing fea­tures bat­tle­ments, ele­gant tow­ers, arch­es, bal­conies and veran­das. Now the gov­er­nor’s office is locat­ed in the inte­ri­or of the palace.

The archi­tec­tur­al com­plex is sur­round­ed by a large gar­den with exot­ic trees, man­i­cured lawns, flower beds, foun­tains, green­hous­es. An Aus­tralian star anise grows next to the house, plant­ed imme­di­ate­ly after con­struc­tion was com­plet­ed. The huge tree reach­es a height of 30 meters.

Harbor Bridge

harbor bridge

A steel arch bridge across Syd­ney Har­bor links the North Shore and down­town Syd­ney. The object, designed by a British com­pa­ny, is the sixth longest arch bridge in the world (1149 meters with a width of 48.8 meters).

The arch with a span of 504 meters ris­es above sea lev­el at a very high alti­tude of 134 meters. The bridge pro­vides road, rail, bicy­cle and pedes­tri­an traf­fic. Har­bor Bridge is a his­tor­i­cal mon­u­ment of the coun­try. On New Year’s Eve, col­or­ful fire­works are launched from here.



The his­toric Cus­toms House stands proud­ly off the Syd­ney water­front. It was built short­ly after the found­ing of the colony to reg­u­late the import and export of goods. The Gre­go­ri­an man­sion is dec­o­rat­ed with columns, arch­es, ter­races. A round clock is mount­ed in the cen­ter of the facade. The inner walls are fin­ished with plas­ter and dec­o­rat­ed with plas­ter mold­ings.

In 1990, the cus­toms ser­vice moved to a new office. The old house was restored and began to be used for exhi­bi­tions and cel­e­bra­tions. Tourists are wait­ing for a muse­um, a cafe, a restau­rant of nation­al cui­sine.

sydney town hall

town hall

The Vic­to­ri­an City Hall on George Street stands where the ceme­tery of the ear­ly set­tlers used to be. Dur­ing con­struc­tion, not all the graves were reburied, so sev­er­al tombs of unknown peo­ple can be seen in the court­yard. The mon­u­men­tal stone struc­ture includes a vestibule, front rooms, wide cor­ri­dors, and offices.

The con­cert hall hous­es the world’s largest pipe organ. The rich­ly dec­o­rat­ed man­sion with an intri­cate roof has an orig­i­nal clock tow­er. At its top hangs a bell.



At the entrance to Syd­ney Har­bor stands the old­est light­house in Aus­tralia — Mac­quar­ie. The first build­ing was built of wood in 1791. For a hun­dred years, it fell into dis­re­pair, and the author­i­ties decid­ed to build a new light­house, which replaced the old struc­ture. The white stone struc­ture is a beau­ti­ful round tow­er with a bal­cony. At the very top is a dou­ble-leaf Fres­nel lens. The light­house works offline.

sydney tower


The Syd­ney Tele­vi­sion Tow­er is one of the largest in the South­ern Hemi­sphere. The height of the met­al struc­ture is 309 meters. The last floor is at an alti­tude of 260 meters.

There are three high-speed ele­va­tors inside the tow­er. Any of them takes tourists to the top in 40 sec­onds, where the main obser­va­tion deck of the city, a sou­venir shop and a restau­rant for 200 peo­ple are locat­ed. In the evenings, the Syd­ney TV Tow­er is illu­mi­nat­ed with bright lights and looks very beau­ti­ful.

Temples of the city

Cathedral of the Virgin Mary

sobor devi marii

St. Mary’s Cathe­dral, built in 1821 in the Eng­lish Goth­ic Revival style, is rec­og­nized as a nation­al shrine. The church has the shape of a cross, and its facade is framed by two tow­ers. A bell tow­er was erect­ed above the inter­sec­tion of the transept and the nave.

The inte­ri­or walls are dec­o­rat­ed with paint­ings illus­trat­ing the Way of the Cross of Jesus Christ. The can­vas­es were cre­at­ed in Paris and spe­cial­ly select­ed by Car­di­nal Mor­gan for the cathe­dral. There are 40 col­ored stained-glass win­dows inside, and in the trans­verse nave there is a copy of Michelan­gelo’s Pieta.

St. James Church

cerkov st dgeimsa

There is a small church on King Street, con­se­crat­ed in 1824. The build­ing, designed by Fran­cis Green­way, is a gem of Syd­ney. Its spire is fea­tured on Aus­tralian ten dol­lar bills print­ed from 1966 to 1993.

The inte­ri­or of the tem­ple is aus­tere and beau­ti­ful. The pews for wor­shipers are made of red cedar, the ceil­ing is dec­o­rat­ed with stuc­co, the altar is framed with organ pipes and dec­o­rat­ed with paint­ings depict­ing the Sev­en Gifts of the Holy Spir­it.

Church of St. Andrew

cerkov st andreya

Andrew’s Cathe­dral on George Street is one of the main Goth­ic build­ings in Syd­ney. It is the offi­cial res­i­dence of the Angli­can Arch­bish­op and Met­ro­pol­i­tan of New South Wales.

The facade is dec­o­rat­ed with beau­ti­ful octag­o­nal tow­ers, open­work stuc­co, lancet win­dows, arch­es. The floor is paved with mosa­ic tiles. Stone sculp­tures are installed along the walls, and mul­ti-col­ored stained-glass win­dows are insert­ed into the win­dows. The north transept con­tains an 1866 pipe organ.


australian museum

Australia Museum

Syd­ney is home to the old­est muse­um of anthro­pol­o­gy and nat­ur­al his­to­ry in Aus­tralia. The col­lec­tions con­tain numer­ous objects grouped into dif­fer­ent depart­ments. Exhi­bi­tions ded­i­cat­ed to zool­o­gy, min­er­al­o­gy, pale­on­tol­ogy, intro­duce the his­to­ry of Aus­tralia and the cul­ture of its indige­nous peo­ple.

Tourists can explore the skele­tons of extinct ani­mals, archae­o­log­i­cal finds, rare min­er­als, gold nuggets, and jew­el­ry.

Art Gallery


The first pub­lic art gallery appeared in Syd­ney at the end of the 19th cen­tu­ry. It was locat­ed in the Gar­den Palace, built for an inter­na­tion­al exhi­bi­tion. After the fire, the palace col­lapsed, and new build­ings were picked up for the gallery.

The muse­um col­lec­tion presents Aus­tralian, Euro­pean and Asian art. Among the select­ed works are “Land­scape with Goats” by John Con­sta­ble, “Port Gul­far, Belle-Ile” by Claude Mon­et, “Head of a Peas­ant” by Vin­cent van Gogh, “Thea Proc­tor” by George Wash­ing­ton Lam­bert.

National Maritime Museum

sea ​​museum

The Mar­itime Muse­um in Dar­ling Bay con­sists of gal­leries that tell about the dis­cov­ery of Aus­tralia, the rela­tion­ship between natives and colonists, the navy, the flo­ra and fau­na of the world’s oceans. On the tour, you can learn inter­est­ing infor­ma­tion about the First and Sec­ond British Fleets and see maps of the coast­line com­piled by nav­i­ga­tors 200 years ago.

Muse­um ships are dis­played on the pier: the bar­que James Craig, the destroy­er Vam­pire, the repli­ca HM Bark Endeav­or and even the real Onslow sub­ma­rine.

Museum of Power Plants

musei elektrostancii

The Pow­er­house Muse­um in Syd­ney is a great place for fam­i­ly out­ings. It is an advanced sci­ence cen­ter cov­er­ing dif­fer­ent kinds of tech­nolo­gies. Unique exhibits are pre­served here, includ­ing an old rotat­ing steam engine, pas­sen­ger steam loco­mo­tives of 1854, a copy of the Stras­bourg astro­nom­i­cal clock, cre­at­ed in 1887.

Per­ma­nent exhi­bi­tions tell about the devel­op­ment of trans­port, the steam rev­o­lu­tion, space explo­ration, as well as con­tem­po­rary envi­ron­men­tal issues.

Madame Tussauds museum

musei madam tusso

The Dar­ling Har­bor Wax Muse­um, opened in 2012, is the only one in Aus­tralia. It hous­es a large col­lec­tion of wax fig­ures. The sculp­tures are life-sized, all the details are care­ful­ly worked out, so the faces look like they are alive.

Mel Gib­son, Mar­i­lyn Mon­roe, Jack­ie Chan, Bruce Willis, Lady Gaga, Michael Jack­son meet guests at the Syd­ney Muse­um. The Dalai Lama, Queen Eliz­a­beth II, James Cook, Albert Ein­stein and the incom­pa­ra­ble Madame Marie Tus­sauds are espe­cial­ly pop­u­lar.

House of Vaucluse

dom voklus

A colo­nial manor near Syd­ney built for the Went­worth fam­i­ly in 1839. The archi­tec­tur­al ensem­ble in the Goth­ic Revival style con­sists of a man­sion, sta­bles, a kitchen wing, barns and gar­dens. The estate is equipped with a muse­um that intro­duces the colo­nial inte­ri­or and the life of immi­grants. The tour shows the premis­es in which cot­tage cheese, cheese, but­ter were pre­pared, a cel­lar for stor­ing food and wine, the own­ers’ rooms, a library, a liv­ing room.

Elizabeth Bay Manor

usadba elisabet

An aris­to­crat­ic vil­la in east Syd­ney is a prime exam­ple of Aus­tralian colo­nial Empire style archi­tec­ture. The man­sion, erect­ed for Alexan­der Macleay in the 19th cen­tu­ry, is famous for its cen­tral oval-shaped front hall, high lantern tow­er, and orig­i­nal stair­case.

The decor of the house clear­ly reflects the way of life in colo­nial Syd­ney. Guests are shown the pri­vate cham­bers of the own­ers, the recep­tion hall, the library, and antique fur­ni­ture. But the main high­light of the muse­um-estate of Eliz­a­beth Bay is the col­lec­tion of insects col­lect­ed by A. Maclay.

Nature and parks

Chinese Garden of Friendship

chinese sad

Chi­na­town Park, mod­eled after the pri­vate gar­dens of the Ming Dynasty, opened to the pub­lic in 1988 as part of Syd­ney’s bicen­ten­ni­al cel­e­bra­tions. The entrance to the gar­den is dec­o­rat­ed with large mar­ble sculp­tures of lions.

The ter­ri­to­ry is plant­ed with flow­ers, Chi­nese plum, pine, bam­boo trees. The cen­tral ele­ment of the gar­den is an arti­fi­cial lake with lotus­es and a water­fall. Near­by are a tea house and pavil­ions for relax­ation. In one of them there is an exhi­bi­tion of Chi­nese porce­lain.

Tumbalong Park


The park area in Dar­ling Har­bor is designed for out­door walks and city events. Decid­u­ous, conif­er­ous trees are plant­ed here, foun­tains, bench­es, lanterns are installed. In the mid­dle there is a play­ground with inflat­able slides, carousels, and a sand­box. For ath­letes there are sim­u­la­tors and tread­mills.

Wildlife World

mir dikoi prirodi

The Wildlife Park opened at Wild Life Syd­ney in 2006. The large zoo is locat­ed on sev­er­al lev­els of a mod­ern build­ing. The micro­cli­mate inside is sup­port­ed by pow­er­ful air con­di­tion­ers. There is no roof on the upper tier — the exhibits are in the open air.

The Syd­ney Zoo has 10 zones inhab­it­ed by croc­o­diles, koalas, trop­i­cal but­ter­flies, kan­ga­roos, and echid­nas. Dur­ing the tour, guests get acquaint­ed with Aus­tralian ani­mals and take col­or­ful pho­tos.



Dar­ling Har­bor Aquar­i­um is one of Syd­ney’s top attrac­tions. Inside the mod­ern com­plex, water tanks are installed, where rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the riv­er and marine fau­na of Aus­tralia live. Tourists can see the Great Bar­ri­er Reef fish, sharks, Aus­tralian fur seals, lit­tle pen­guins, dugongs, rays. Croc­o­diles, snakes and tur­tles live in a sep­a­rate zone.

Royal Botanic Garden

bot sad

The gar­den, found­ed by the first set­tlers under the guid­ance of the botanist Charles Fras­er, was intend­ed for plant acclima­ti­za­tion and sci­en­tif­ic work. This is 29 hectares of land plant­ed with trees from dif­fer­ent parts of the globe.

The ter­ri­to­ry is divid­ed into sec­tions rep­re­sent­ing the Aus­tralian, Euro­pean, Asian and Amer­i­can flo­ra. The park has a palm grove, a rose gar­den, a gar­den of suc­cu­lents. Pavil­ions, foun­tains, a research cen­ter and a shop have been built among the trees.

Western Sydney Conservation Area

sapovednik sapodni sidnei

Pre­vi­ous­ly, the area around Syd­ney was used for graz­ing and gar­den­ing. Now it is a nation­al wildlife park, 27 km long.

The reserve includes euca­lyp­tus forests, plains, moun­tain ranges, rivers. Par­rots, gray-haired bats, fox­es, rab­bits live in the pro­tect­ed area. Hik­ing trails are laid inside the park, camp­ing and pic­nic areas are equipped.

Blue Mountains National Park

nac park

The park, with an area of ​​270 hectares, is locat­ed 80 km from Syd­ney. This is the most vis­it­ed reserve in the state, receiv­ing mil­lions of tourists a year. Here you can see pic­turesque mead­ows, rare Wolle­mi pines, rocks and grot­toes.

Sandy moun­tains of the Three Sis­ters, Bridal Veil water­fall, Bur­rago­rang lake are very pop­u­lar. Trav­el com­pa­nies offer inter­est­ing excur­sions in the park, includ­ing rock climb­ing, canyon­ing, moun­tain bik­ing.


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