SYDNEY – THE AUSTRALIAN TRAVELLER GUIDE
Sydney is the largest city in Australia with a population of over 4 million. And with a reputation for glamour over substance it is a city that has much more than beneath the surface. The holiday brochures will extol the harbour, with the iconic Sydney Opera House and harbour bridge. But Sydney is also home to some of Australia’s most prominent cultural institutions and museums.
IF you are travelling to Sydney, it most likely that you will be staying in or around the CBD. The majority of Sydney’s main tourist attractions can be found within a 5km radius of the CBD. So choosing to stay in the CBD or a CBD fringe suburb will be advantageous in getting the most out of your time in Sydney.
The CBD is just 10km north of Sydney Airport and – in just 13 minutes – the Airport Link train from the Domestic Station remains the fastest way to get there ($15 adult one way,www.airportlink.com.au). Various airport shuttle bus companies operate (Airport Connect, from $12 one way, 1300 73 72 12), a taxi fare is around $30 (13 33 00) and key car rental companies are represented here and at offices in the city. In terms of driving longer distances from the CBD, Canberra is 3.5hrs southwest, Melbourne a further seven hours and Brisbane around 12hrs north. For further transport information visit the State Transit Website at www.131500.com.au
A spirited Greta Stonehouse braves a new ghost tour at an old house with a frightening past in Sydney's Macarthur. So what exactly is spooking Menangle House? When the new owners of Menangle House arrived home from their holiday, they expected to find their friends house-sitting and awaiting their return. Instead, they found an empty house with the doors wide open, and dinner still laid out on the table. Later, their friends told them their house was haunted and they had fled unable to bare another minute inside. Not even to put the food away or close a door. This is...
With multimillion-dollar views in every direction, this glittering natural wonder needs no introduction, but there is much more to Sydney Harbour than meets the eye - one of Australia’s 16 Ultimate Escapes Hugging the shores of one of the world’s most cosmopolitan cities, the beguiling waters of Sydney Harbour are a blue-green wonderland of sparkling, yacht-studded bays, secluded beaches and coastline framed by parks and native bushland. The green heart is the great expanse of Sydney Harbour National Park, encircling the headlands and entrance to Port Jackson. It is the gateway to a region of natural beauty, rich with Aboriginal and...
Forget over-priced tourist traps – Sydney is packed with hidden flavours of a far more exotic kind, says food critic Stephanie Clifford-Smith. Pack your tastebuds for the city's best ethnic eats... Hong Fu North Eastern Chinese Tangy vinegar is the first aroma to hit on walking into this modern little place in Parramatta’s CBD. Servings are generous, so the mostly Chinese diners at compact tables manoeuvre platters with the precision of chess champs. Bouncy steamed dumplings filled with coarse pork mince and pickled Chinese cabbage are a substantial start and a good contrast to fine strips of burnished pork, wok...
Score: 8.25 The best part about this amazing, world-famous, multi, multi-million dollar event? It’s free. Get yourself to Sydney Harbour, and you’ve got yourself a front-row ticket to an event widely considered at the forefront of the global NYE bucket list. BYO picnic rug. More info: sydneynewyearseve.com Plan your Great Australian Holiday with our sponsors Discovery Holiday Parks Back to the 100 Holidays Subscribe...
Banjo Paterson sure knew his way around a rhyme, but we wonder if he’d have known what to make of the rhapsodic pleasures plated up at Berowra Waters Inn? Nestled under the coolabah trees of northern Sydney’s Hawkesbury region, BWI has long been an ode to Australian fine dining; serving long lunches with a side of sparkling views since first opening some 87 years ago. Now – after a closure in 2012 – the Sydney institution is again offering a reverentially Australian dining experience; this time under the guidance of chef Brian Geraghty who, though not as well known as the...
Megan Arkinstall checks in to QT Sydney, the designer hotel with more personality than a cabaret show, for a bespoke weekend of hanky-panky You don’t check in here to spend the weekend in Sydney. You check in here to spend the weekend here. A fusion of cutting-edge art, bold design, and one-of-a-kind personality, QT Sydney owns the prestige of being the city’s only member of the Design Hotels community, thanks to the genius collaboration from some big-names in the design, art and hospitality industries. Drawing strong inspiration from the two heritage buildings it’s housed in – the iconic Gowings department store and the...
You will be surprised just how close to Sydney these stylish bush retreats are, finds Megan Arkinstall Glamp in the city: Lane Cove, Sydney Just 10 kilometres north of Sydney’s CBD is glamp-site Tandara, where there are boundless activities, such as kayaking, bush walking, bike riding… or kicking back with a wine on the private deck of your luxe tent (and we do mean luxe – the thing comes with a double walk-in shower). But the real highlight here is the locals: kookaburras, lorikeets, tawny frogmouths, possums, owls, sugar gliders, bandicoots... Listen to their evening calls as you cook up a feast in your...
Sydney’s western suburbs is an unlikely spot for a designer stay, but Atura Hotels has dared to go there, writes Alissa Jenkins Let’s be honest, for those who aren’t familiar with the area, much of Western Sydney is oft associated with cautionary tales of ‘don’t leave valuables in your car’, not chic accommodation. Nevertheless, that’s what developers of new hotel chain, Atura, are promising of their first Australian outpost in Sydney’s outer fringes. So it’s with trepidation (and an empty car), that I check in to Atura Blacktown, situated just off the M4 overlooking pockets of bushland, next door to the...
New Sydney-based cellar door, restaurant and bar Nomad has opened with a bang (and a purpose-built cheese and charcuterie room). The restaurant’s star-studded cast includes Nathan Sisi as head chef (previously of Heston Blumenthal’s London restaurant Dinner), resident master of wine Rob Geddes (author of the annual Australian Wine Vintages series), and Al Yazbek (of Toko fame). It’s worth a visit if you like keeping up with Sydney’s latest and greatest – expect sophisticated wine and a lively atmosphere. MORE: On the trail of Australia's foodies......
It seems cities are creeping up on the beach as our favourite summer holiday destination. Forty-seven per cent of Aussies want to book a city escape in 2014, with Sydney being high on the list, according to research from travel website lastminute.com.au. With 2014 summer gently sliding to a close, here are 10 suggestions to help you get your shine on before the autumn falls. 1. The unmissable Sydney Festival You cannot go past Sydney Festival (until 26 January) if you’re looking for a grand way to spend a balmy summer night. Try the free activities in Hyde Park as part...
Sea scooters are futuristic-looking contraptions that motor you along underwater, removing the hard work of kicking your own way while you observe life under the sea. Not only do they look like something 007 would have on his Christmas wish list, they’re also a fun and easy way to explore marine life. You control the hydrodynamic super-toy by shifting your body weight and using the control grips to regulate speed. You’ll feel like a dolphin zooming along under the sea – or, perhaps, an international agent of mystery. Snorkel Safari Sydney offers two-hour Snorkel Scooter sessions (about 1 hour in the...
A trip to one (or a few) of Sydney’s eight harbour islands gives you a whole new perspective on the city, the glittering water and its landmarks. The islands – some more developed than others – offer unique views of icons like the Harbour Bridge and Opera House, as well as historical insights (Fort Denison and Cockatoo islands) postcard-perfect picnic spots (Shark Island) and arts and culture (Cockatoo Island). You can even sleep over on Cockatoo Island, which has evolved from its roots as a place to stash undesirables (read: convicts) from the outpost of Norfolk Island to one of...
Cementing its place as your favourite watering hole for the second year in a row, Opera Bar had a clear lead on other finalists. Famed for its location just outside the Sydney Opera House with front-row seats to the harbour and bridge, many of you gushed over “that view”, and rightly so. Mind you, the extensive drinks list, menu and “overall ambience” also received plenty of mentions, but it was the surroundings that proved the greatest drawcard. As one reader wrote, “it’s the best sundowner location for both locals and tourists alike. It’s the kind of setting that makes you proud to be Australian”. Well, we...
A first in AT Readers’ Choice Awards history, Quay has won the same category three years running. Perched atop the Overseas Passengers Terminal overlooking Sydney’s Circular Quay, the restaurant boasts world-class views with dishes to match. Headed by Peter Gilmore, dubbed “a genius” by one reader, his menu focuses on fresh produce presented as artistic, boundary-pushing masterpieces, including the infamous snow egg dessert. Quay has already been awarded a bulging collection of medals and accolades from the likes of Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide to Gourmet Traveller. However Gilmore’s creations have also whet appetites abroad, as one reader noted...
With Two Feet & a Heartbeat’s new Sydney Small Bar Tour, we spoke to co-founder, Ryan Zaknich, about his city favourites. York Lane This little gem in York Lane only holds 35 guests so you can actually hear conversation. The design is timeless, made from repurposed materials like wall shelves made out of dismantled Ansett airline trolleys and light shades out of teak salad bowls. Try the homemade dips with sourdough and sample the cocktail menu, or come on Saturday night and dance to vinyl. Mojo Record Bar Just below street level on York Street, Mojo is all about rock music....
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