Sydney

Sydney Travel Guide

It's all about the water in Australia's most popular city. There's the harbor, of course, but also sunbathing on the beach. Other notable things to do in Sydney include checking out the burgeoning art scene, taking advantage of the great shopping, taking part in the lively gay subculture, or joining in on some of the city's cultural festivals. Every January for the last 40 years or so, for example, there is a massive cultural celebration known as the Sydney Festival, which lasts three weeks and features almost every artistic and musical genre you could imagine. Each mid-November, the cliffs along Bondi Beach are transformed into a sculpture garden with works by Australian artists; it's free and makes for a great walk along the shore. Another point of interest is St. Patrick's Church, which may be the first Catholic chapel in Australia. The church is still used as a site of worship, but you can also take a guided tour to learn more about its history. Tip: The courtyard chapel has been turned into a coffee shop.

The Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS) enables you to claim a tax refund on goods purchased in Australia.  

To claim a refund you must:

Head to this encyclopedic drugstore for pre-flight essentials, such as paracetamol (Tylenol), eye drops, lotion, and dissolvable Berocca tablets, Australia’s hangover miracle-cure (trust us, it works!).

Additional Locations in Sydney Airport:

The Woolloomooloo neighborhood location of Bambino Trust Restaurant has an old-world interior with ornate, wrought-iron chandeliers and stone floors. Open for breakfast, lunch, dinner, this eatery focuses on European fare and has an extensive wine list including 40 by-the-glass choices.

At the separate Qantas Domestic Terminal, check out the slick, Scandinavian-style (but all-Aussie) designer stationery and gifts chain.

Men shouldn't miss this downtown boutique with its updated classics, including easygoing suits, shirts, and sweaters.

Part fresh produce retailer, part dry goods warehouse, and part café, this is the store Sydney foodies flock to for superbly fresh gourmet ingredients.

This lovely coastal walk begins at Ben Buckler Point, on the northern end of Bondi Bay, and winds south for two miles along sandstone cliffs and white-sand beaches, ending at Waverley Cemetery.

The city’s best-looking baristas bring the most meticulously sourced beans to dark, mellow perfection in the vintage house roaster. Try brewed coffees from the café’s new high-tech Clover machine.

Australia is renowned for its sheepskin products, and this boutique is a smart spot to stock up on the country’s coziest exports: Ugg boots and slippers (the ultimate Christmas gift), hats and gloves, and even rugs.

Tucked down along the waterfront of the Rocks district, this hip modern museum has a strong Aussie bent.

Some of Sydney’s best beaches lie just across the harbor from the main part of the city. Although they’re easily reachable by car (just drive across the Harbour Bridge and head north along the coast), it’s much more fun to get to them by ferry.

Sydney Theatre Company, as the premier theatre company in Australia, has been a major force in Australian drama since its establishment in 1978.

With regular live music and stunning Harbour Bridge views, Opera Bar draws a steady crowd of opera and theater patrons and foot-weary tourists.

The boutique stocks block-printed tube and tunic dresses come in colors as bright as the Sydney sun.