The Essentials: Sydney

What can I say about Sydney? The city holds a special place in my heart like a second home I have never lived in. I think at least once a year I say to Thom “that’s it, we’re moving to Sydney” when they get blessed with a 30℃ day in winter and we are shivering through 9 degrees in Melbourne. Sydney definitely has the weather of my dreams. There’s so much more to Sydney than the Opera House and Harbour Bridge, it’s truly a unique, historical and exciting city, with some of Australia’s best beaches right on its doorstep.


New South Wales, Australia

Time Zone

Australian Eastern Standard Time UTC +10, with Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time UTC +11  in effect generally from October to April.

Getting There

The only airport in Sydney is Sydney Kingford Smith Airport (SYD) which is located about 25 minutes away from the city, depending on the traffic conditions. Sydney offers a regular train service, to and from both the domestic and international airport or a taxi should cost you around $30AUD.




Mild winters and hot summers.

Getting Around

Sydney has a great train system that can get you around the whole city, as well as out to the wider suburbs such as Bondi Junction. Would definitely recommend renting a car to make your life easier, many of Sydney’s attractions are quite spread out and car can be the best way to get around. Just look out for toll roads.


Currency is Australian Dollars $AUD. ATMs available and credit cards accepted everywhere.

Internet Access

Hotels often offer free wifi in their rooms. Free wifi can often be hard to come by around the city. Keep an eye out for free wifi signs on restaurants and cafes to make your life easier.

The Main Streets

Definitely changes depending on what part of Sydney you’re visiting. In the city, George Street and the surrounding streets are considered the city centre. When you move out to the beach suburbs, generally the main streets run towards or parallel with the beach front.

Best Time To Go

October – April when the sun is shining and the weather is warmer. However, Sydney generally has mild to warm weather all year round, it’s not uncommon to have a beach day in winter!

Can’t Miss

+ Meet the famous lifeguards dressed in blue at Bondi Beach, but make sure you swim safely so you don’t end up on an episode of Bondi Rescue
+ Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge – or if heights aren’t your thing there is a pedestrian lane you can walk across on the road
+ Make friends at the Toronga Zoo
+ Take the ferry across to Manly Beach for a laid out beach vibe only half an hour from the CBD
+ Take the Bondi to Coogee Coastal Walk for some epic views and beautiful landscapes while getting a workout
+ Visit the Rocks Historical District to see some of Sydney’s oldest buildings and their stunning architecture
+ Catch a show at the Sydney Opera House, or just take pictures out the front
+ Explore Circular Quay & Darling Harbour, there’s always so much going on
+ Check out the perfect view of both the Opera House and Harbour Bridge at Mrs Macquaries Chair

Good To Know

Sydney’s city centre can be very difficult to drive in, with one way streets all over the place and toll roads that run right through the city. Recently there has also been road closures and detours due to construction and road works right in the heart of the CBD. Make sure you’re aware of where you’re driving before you leave to avoid confusion along the way.

Read more about our Sydney adventures hereFor more travel tips and to keep up to date with our adventures make sure you subscribe to our newsletter today

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Emma Shaw

Emma is a travel photographer and blogger, living in Melbourne, Australia with her husband Thom in between adventures. She started A Make Believe World to share her experiences, travel tips and destination advice, and to inspire others to travel the world and their own backyard whenever they can.

1 Comment

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