Sydney is a must see when traveling to Oceania.
Along with the Great Barrier Reef, the outback, and Melbourne.
Wait, what? You only have two weeks?
If this is your first time in Australia, I understand the desire to want to see it all (I mean, I did).
So here’s the ideal itinerary to fit the best of Sydney into just 48 hours!
Day 1, Morning.
Start the morning off right with a perfect walk along the harbor. Catch a taxi to the Pylon Lookout, where you can take in the sight of the harbor and possibly walk the length of the Harbour Bridge. If you choose to walk the bridge, and weather permits it, I recommend you start at the North end and work your way back into the city. The length of the bridge is 2.5 km, about an hours walk.
Keep following the coast line, and you’ll find yourself walking through the Rocks district.
Stop at Pancakes on the Rocks for a quick Aussie breakfast before making your way to Circular Quay.
Keep your eyes open as you walk along the waterfront. Depending on the season, you might just spot whales or porpoise in the harbour. Or, like myself, skip through a row of Jacaranda Trees in bloom.
The Opera House will be just ahead at this point, so be prepared for the hundreds of other tourists.
Tour the Opera House, or just stand outside and bask in its glory. Both options are worth while.
One you’ve soaked it all in, continue along the edge of the harbour to the Royal Botanic Gardens. It is an oasis in the heart of Sydney. Established in 1816, it is the oldest scientific institution in Australia and one of the most important botanical institute in the world. At this point, breakfast would have been hours ago, so stop in at Harry’s Cafe De Wheels for a famous pie.
Day 1, Mid-day.
Next up, choose between art and history. Just up the stairs is the Art Gallery of New South Wales, where you can take in contemporary, modern and indigenous Australian art at no cost. The building founded in 1871, is a sight to see in itself.
Or, history more your style? Head towards Hyde Park, where you will find the Hyde Park Barracks. Opening in the 1800s, this former prison, turned orphanage and asylum, gives you a glimpse into Australia’s past.
Then, if you’re feeling up for it, head on over to the aquarium and walk through glass tunnels surrounded by sharks, dugongs and penguins.
Day 1, Evening.
And to end the night, head over to China Town. Because Australia is so close to many different Asian countries, they are known for having an amazing selection. Try Lotus Dumpling Bar for authentic Chinese dumplings, Mamak for Malaysian curry or Sokyo for Japanese noodles.
After dinner, be sure to stop for some gelato.
Day 2, Morning.
You’ve seen the gorgeous city coastline and the iconic duo. Next up, Sydney’s beautiful beaches.
Grab your hat, sunblock, and a bottle of water before catching the bus to Coogee Beach. Here you will start the Bondi to Coogee (or in this case Coogee to Bondi) walk. Be sure to bring your walking shoes for this six kilometer cliff top costal walk!
Take the whole morning, stop for a swim at one of the beaches, grab a coffee and sit at one of the picnic shelters, and take in the sights off the five beaches along this coast.
When you arrive at the world-famous Bondi beach, don’t be afraid to jump right into that cold water! This is trip is an experience you don’t want to forget, so bask in its glory, stretch out in the sand do everything you can to be present.
Day 2, Mid-day.
For lunch, you could stay at Bondi Beach. Eat at The Bucket List, or try a slice at New York Slice Bondi.
Alternatively, dry off and catch the bus at Campbell Parade to Watson Bay for a long lunch. This picturesque bay is Sydney’s oldest fishing village in Sydney, and the place Captain Cook would have dropped his anchor as he entered the harbour. Partake in the local fish and chips at Doyle’s or (for something more casual) along the water at the ferry wharf.
After your meal, spend some time relaxing in sun. Or if you’re still feeling active, walk over to Camp Cove, where the waters are calm and the cliffs are high.
Day 2, Evening.
When you’re ready, shake off the sand and catch the ferry back to Circular Quay in the city. And finish your 48 hours, with a sunset over the harbour.
Head over to the popular Opera Bar or Opera Kitchen. Here you’ll find live music, good drinks and delicious oysters. With a view of the bridge, this is the perfect way to end your trip in Sydney!