Sydney City Guide Introduction
Sydney is a big, vibrant, pleasure laden city. With her glittering harbour, stunning beaches iconic bridge and postcard darling Opera House, she’s hard to resist as a holiday destination.
Yes, yes, Sydney knows she looks good, but that’s part of her charm. Once you explore a little deeper you’ll soon discover all she really wants is for visitors to have the time of their life.
Measuring up the same size as London, and twice as big as New York, there’s a world of adventures for families, couples and friends to explore - from five star luxury to penny pinching budget getaways.
Best time to visit
Sydney is comfortable to visit at any time of year, but while summer time is party time the 30C weather is tropical these days with high humidity broken by the odd torrential downpour. March-May and September-November (around 25C) brings milder weather, ideal for seeing the sights and attending internationally and nationally significant events.
Major events in Sydney
Summer is nothing if not eclectic. You’ll find BBQs on the beach, cricket at the SCG, the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras prancing along Oxford Street and free music events in The Domain, while the Sydney Festival brings international acts, film and entertainment to the harbour and CBD.
Families will love the Royal Easter Show in April.
For the gourmands, July is the Aroma festival, full of coffee and chocolate as well as Manly Food and Wine Festival and October is Good Food Month.
Winter in Sydney isn’t quite as chilly as southern cities. You can still work on your UV rays outdoors to look your best for August’s Rosemount Sydney Fashion Festival.
In October, there’s no better venue for sultry romantic fun than salsa dancing at the Darling Harbour Fiesta. And even mums and dads get down time while the kids enjoy the live acts, music and storytelling at the Sydney Children’s Festival.
Getting around Sydney
Travelling around is easy. You can bus it, train it, stroll or catch a ferry - where getting from A to B means soaking up one of the planet earth’s most gorgeous views - such as the trip from Circular Quay to Manly, right around Sydney Harbour.
The Sydney Pass links ferries, buses and trains for cheap travel to attractions and venues such as Taronga Zoo, Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney Olympic Park, Luna Park, Sydney Aquarium and many more.
Hotel.com.au Staff Favourites
The Hotel.com.au team have road-tested some of our Melbourne hotels and here are a few personal recommendations of their favourite places to stay.
With a stay at Four Points by Sheraton Sydney, Darling Harbour, you'll be centrally located in Sydney, steps from Wildlife Sydney and Sydney Aquarium. This 4-star hotel is close to Sydney Opera House...more
Conveniently located next door to the historic 19th-century Capitol Theatre in the Sydney CBD (Central Business District), Capitol Square Hotel offers budget accommodation. Darling Harbour, Chinatown...more
Novotel Sydney Central is in the heart of Haymarket, walking distance from Railway Square and University of Technology Sydney. This 4.5-star hotel is close to University of Sydney and Sydney Opera Hou...more
Located in trendy Potts Point, Devere Hotel offers air-conditioned accommodation with flat-screen TVs. It features a restaurant and a business centre. Kings Cross, Sydney’s nightlife capital, is a 5-m...more
With a stay at Harbour Rocks Hotel Sydney - MGallery Collection, you'll be centrally located in The Rocks, steps from Susannah Place Museum and Museum of Contemporary Art. This 4.5-star hotel is close...more
Located in the historic Rocks district, Holiday Inn Old Sydney boasts a rooftop swimming pool offering views of Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge. It offers modern rooms featuring a bathtub...more
With a stay at ibis Sydney Darling Harbour, you'll be centrally located in Sydney, steps from Harbourside and minutes from Australia National Maritime Museum. This hotel is close to Sydney Opera House...more
Located near the waterfront in Sydney's desirable location of Barangaroo, Ibis Sydney King Street Wharf features 91 rooms to enjoy a visit to the city of Sydney. Located just minutes from the exciteme...more
Centrally located between Darling Harbour and Sydney CBD (Central Business District), Mantra on Kent offers modern self-contained apartments with a flat-screen cable TV, a DVD player and a CD player....more
Located opposite Manly Beach, one of Australia’s most beautiful and popular beaches, Novotel Sydney Manly Pacific is just 15 minutes' ferry ride from Circular Quay and the Sydney city centre. Guests e...more
With a stay at Larmont Sydney by Lancemore in Potts Point (Potts Point - Kings Cross), you'll be minutes from King Street Gallery and Fitzroy Gardens. This 4-star hotel is close to Sydney Opera House...more
Vibe Hotel Rushcutters offers stylish accommodation renovated in January 2017, just 5 minutes’ drive from Sydney city centre. The fitness centre features views of the rooftop heated swimming pool and...more
This luxury hotel features an outdoor heated pool and sundeck that overlooks Sydney Harbour and Circular Quay. The award-winning restaurant and bar offers views of the Royal Botanic Gardens. Situated...more
Located in the heart of Sydney CBD (Central Business District), The York by Swiss-Belhotel offers air-conditioned apartments with a private balcony and free WiFi. Guests have access to a fitness centr...more
Located close to Sydney Harbour and Circular Quay, Mantra 2 Bond Street is just a 1-minute walk from the heart of the Sydney CBD (Central Business District). The Rocks, with its mix of restaurants, pu...more
Located in Sydney’s landmark World Tower on floor 61 and above, these luxurious suites feature floor-to-ceiling windows offering panoramic city views. Guests have access to an indoor pool, a hot tub,...more
Located in the heart of Sydney CBD (Central Business District), Meriton Suites Pitt Street offers 178 luxurious modern suites. Guests have access to an indoor pool, a hot tub, a sauna and a fitness ce...more
Offering modern luxury apartments in the heart of Sydney CBD (Central Business District), Meriton Suites Kent Street boasts an indoor swimming pool, a fitness centre, sauna and hot tub. Many suites of...more
APX World Square offers spacious apartments with a private balcony and full kitchen in the heart of Sydney CBD (Central Business District). APX World Square is a 5-minute walk from the shopping and en...more
Offering free WiFi and a fitness centre with a sauna. Fraser Suites Sydney features luxury apartments with modern furnishings, kitchen facilities and views of the city skyline. Located in Sydney CBD (...more
Travelodge Sydney offers self-contained accommodation just 2 minutes’ walk from Hyde Park and trendy Oxford Street. The property features a fitness centre. All air-conditioned rooms have a kitchenette...more
Wake up to breathtaking views of the iconic Sydney Opera House, the Harbour Bridge or Darling Harbour each morning. You will be spoiled for choice at the Shangri-La Hotel, with a day spa, fitness cent...more
Overlooking Darling Harbour, Oaks Goldsbrough Darling Harbour offers stylish accommodation with cooking and laundry facilities. Situated in a historic 19th century building, many apartments offer stun...more
This award-winning 5-star luxury hotel in the heart of Sydney offers stylish accommodation, along with an indoor heated swimming pool, sauna, Jacuzzi, steam room, day spa, complimentary WiFi and 24-ho...more
Just 3 minutes’ walk from the Powerhouse Museum, Metro Aspire Hotel Sydney offers refurbished rooms with private balconies. It features a restaurant and bar, function rooms and a tour desk. Guests rec...more
Offering spacious rooms with scenic views of Sydney Harbour Bridge or the city skyline, The Sydney Boulevard Hotel is just 5 minutes' walk from Hyde Park. It features a fitness centre, sauna and a res...more
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