How well do you actually know your city? Sometimes, it easy to lose sight of what an awesome city you live in, just because you tend to avoid all the touristy places. There are a lot of very popular and very crowded places in Sydney that I haven’t been to in ages. However, lately I’ve been wondering – am I missing out? I decided to reconnect with my hometown, and try to see it through the eyes of a tourist. After all, almost 8 million people who visit Sydney every year can’t be wrong, right? I decided to treat myself to a tourist’s experience, and pretend I was a visitor spending three days in the Emerald City. Here’s the ideal way to spend 72 hours in this glorious place.
Day 1 – The Beach
What is your first thought when you think of Sydney? Well, duh! The beach, of course! My first day I decided to wake up early and head to Bondi Beach. One of the most famous beaches in the world, with golden sands and waves perfect for surfing, Bondi is surely one of the symbols of Sydney. There’s nothing in the world like watching the sun rise from the ocean, then hitting the waves. Bondi has several surfing schools, for beginners, and if you aren’t into surfing at all, take a dip in the blue waters of the Pacific. Afterwards, have lunch at one of the many cafes and restaurants surrounding Bondi, or take the tram to Bronte and have your meal there. If you’re not too tired, the walk from Bondi to Bronte is around 3 kilometers.
In the afternoon, to balance out the morning’s activities, I opted for a peaceful lunch at a beautiful waterfront restaurant in Sydney with the views of the Northern Harbour, it was truly an amazing end of an exciting first day.
Day 2 – Sights
I spent the second day in Circular Quay. This place is one of Sydney’s most recognizable areas, and probably the one most popular with tourists – and with good reason! After grabbing delicious eggs Benedict for breakfast, true to my intention, I tried to see Sydney through new eyes, and went sightseeing! The spectacular Opera House is truly the eighth world wonder. But the Opera is not all the Quay has to offer. This bustling den of activity sees ferries coming and going every few minutes, connecting different parts of the city. Walking across the Harbour Bridge and looking at the city from that vantage point is an indescribable experience.
The next logical step was to spend my evening in the Rocks. This vibrant, picturesque area is the oldest neighborhood in Sydney. Today it’s chock full of cafés and pubs, hidden among the labyrinthine streets. A great ending to day 2!
Day 3 – Food and Drinks
The morning of my third day, I decided to head to Surry Hills. If Sydney has a hipster neighbourhood, then this is it – our version of Brooklyn! If you happen to find yourself in Sydney on the first Saturday of the month, head to the corner of Crown and Collins. What you will find is a huge open air flea market where you’ll be sure to nab some really cool finds. But Surry Hills is great on any other day too: grab a coffee and a bite to eat, then check out the many vintage shops and galleries.
In the afternoon, I took a stroll through Darling Harbour, the de facto center of Sydney, brimming with shops, malls and restaurants. This is the place where you can find Madame Tussaud’s and the biggest cinema screen in the world. To round off my three-day experiment, I celebrated with a few drinks. Happy hour in Sydney is an experience you shouldn’t miss!
I have to say, I was really chuffed I took these three days off to go back to some places I love, and get to know Sydney better. No wonder it’s such a popular destination, Sydney really has a world of fun to offer.