As one of the most desirable urban locations of the world, it’s no wonder that Sydney is visited by millions of tourists every year. The typical tourist perspective of Sydney includes visiting famous spots such as Bondi Beach, Sydney Opera House and Royal Botanical Gardens, all of which are worthy of a trip, but the city hides so many amazing places hidden from the limited tourist view.
If you crave authentic experiences, a taste of true life of the places you visit, and a glimpse into their unique culture, then read on to discover which places hide in the streets of Sydney and experience the city like a true local!
The hidden gems of the coast
While the famous walk from Bondi to Coogee is a must-see for most tourists, there are so many smaller, tucked away beaches that are equally, if not even more alluring with their serene scenery and less crowded nooks. With a few pointers from the locals and a map of the city, you’ll be ready to spend your days in sun-bathed sand cushions, and away from the hectic buzz of the tourist-filled beaches.
Hop on a boat or take a bus to Milk Beach in Hermit Bay, and you can spend a few hours admiring a breathtaking view of the city. Also, you can bring a few snacks for a picnic or swim to your heart’s content. For an even more diverse experience, visit Gordon’s Bay for a mesmerizing underwater nature trail, calm waters and beautiful walking paths.
Where to stay
With more than a few high-end hotels at your disposal, it’s difficult to take your pick and find the ones that have kept and polished the spirit of the local life and learned how to bring the best of Sydney to their visitors. You should look for the place which has an authentic charm yet blends in so well that you might walk right past its entrance.
No place feels more like home than a boutique art hotel in Sydney that includes the finest dining the city can offer, and accommodation that resonates with the local spirit and tradition, thanks to its marvelous architecture and refined hospitality.
Rise and shine
Although Sydney is always awake, alert and abuzz, the residents’ pace of life is somewhat different from what you’re probably used to. An early morning in Sydney will give you more than just a few extra hours of exploring. In fact, there are few places in the city that will not offer a perfect sunrise view, and every morning will be a unique palette of soft sunny hues that will make you fall in love with this corner of the world.
Another refreshing trend that has become a staple of Sydney lifestyle is brunch. Skip your regular snacks and treat yourself to an early brunch in some of Sydney’s hip restaurants and bistros, all of them with distinctive menus and a mixture of international and local cuisine. A bus ride away from CBD, there is one of the famous Bill’s restaurants, where you can enjoy some of the finest local dishes. Also, save another day for a visit to Three Blue Ducks and try something from their eclectic menu.
Try the local wine
Australia is known for its pristine wilderness and incredible wineries, so make sure you don’t miss out on their finest wines. When you’re in Sydney, you’re only a couple of hours away from their most breathtaking wine regions. They deserve a weekend of exploring, so take your time when visiting McLaren Vale, Audrey Wilkinson vineyards or the award-winning Tallavera Grove.
Combined with their gourmet dishes and delicious desserts, your wine tasting trip will likely be the highlight of your visit to Sydney. Try their soft Semillon, their crisp and refreshing Sauvignon Blanc, or take a sip of their luxurious Chardonnay.
Spend a Sunday on Cockatoo Island
The Sunday session is another Aussie trademark, and you haven’t been to Sydney if you haven’t hopped on a ferry to a full day of fun, relaxation and barbecue on Cockatoo Island. Placed in the gorgeous Sydney Harbor, this island is an oasis perfect for camping. However, if you are not into it, there are plenty of available houses for an overnight stay.
You can fill your time with sports such as kayaking, basketball or tennis, or you can visit numerous tours available on the island, the most curious one being the Haunted History Night Tour that will ensure a memorable history lesson in only an hour and a half. Then you can move on to your solo exploration endeavors and continue your journey like a local.
From the moment you step foot onto the streets of Sydney, you’ll get lost in the fusion of modern, ancient and traditional architecture, their unique mixture of superb urban buildings and breathtaking parks. No matter where you go and which places you visit, you can rest assured that your trip will be filled with adventure. But if you dare experience the city like a local, you will enrich your journey with a unique glimpse into this city’s captivating life.