First time in Sydney? Sightsee for free in and around the CBD!

You don’t need to spend huge amounts of money to experience Sydney’s city life. Just make sure you purchase and top up an opal card to use on the public city transport. Circular Quay makes for a good starting point with many sights in walking distance.

1. Visit the Sydney Opera House at least once during the day, and return for a sunset or sunrise viewing.  

2. Walk across the Sydney Harbour Bridge for panoramic views of the city including Port Jackson natural harbour.

3. Picnic and relax in The Royal Botanic Garden Sydney or The Domain Sydney.

4. Sit on Mrs Macquarie’s Chair and soak in the views.

5. Complete the Coogee to Bondi coastal walk.

6. See the Darling Harbour Fireworks display on every Saturday at 9 pm across the waterfront.

7. Relax on Bondi Beach or Coogee beach.

8. Stroll around The Rocks and Circular Quay.

9. Admire Sydney’s architecture including the Government House, St Mary’s Cathedral and Queen Victoria Building.

10. Visit the Sydney Olympic Park.

11. Admire Sculpture by the Sea exhibitions.

12. Wander through Hyde Park Sydney.

Sydney Opera House
Sydney Opera House Quote

Visit and explore top markets in Sydney city

13. Sydney Fish Market open 7 am every day of the week.

14. Paddington Markets for all variety open every Saturday 10am-4pm.

15. Glebe Markets for all variety open every Saturday 10am-4pm.

16. Bondi Markets always have stalls open near to the beach with exclusive markets all year round.

17. Paddy’s Markets variety market provide a free shuttle bus loop in certain areas.

18. The Rocks Markets open Saturday’s and Sunday’s and easy to reach from Circular Quay.

Top beaches and coastal sights to visit in and around Sydney

19. Bondi Beach with the chance to spot the Bondi rescue team.

20. Manly Beach from Circular Quay via boat.

21. Coogee Beach a short bus ride from Circular Quay.

22. Spot the Sydney Heads.

23. Hire a car for the day and visit the following: Watson’s Bay, Botany Bay, Bronte Beach and Palm Beach.

24. Plenty of coastal walks along Sydney Harbour National Park.

Bondi Beach Coastal Walks

Bondi Beach Coastal Walks

Evenings on Bondi Beach

Evenings on Bondi Beach

Looking to visit museums in Sydney?

Some are free whilst others require entry or individual exhibition tickets. A Museum Pass will allow you to visit multiple museums at a cheaper price across a number of days.

Art Museums:

25. Art Gallery of New South Wales.

26. Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA).

27. White Rabbit Contemporary Chinese Art Collection.

28. Powerhouse Museum – Applied Arts & Sciences.

29. Australian Artist Brett Whiteley Studio (Surry Hills).

Historical & Modern Museums:

30. Museum of Sydney.

31. The Australian Museum

32. Australian National Maritime Museum including HMAS Vampire.

33. Rocks Discovery Museum.

34. Sydney Jewish Museum.

35. Sydney Mint.

Extra cash to burn? A few added things to do in Sydney, especially if you’re in a group, with family or kids.

36. Take a tour or see a show at the Sydney Opera House.

37. Watch the sunset over the water whilst you enjoy a drink at the Opera House.

38. Climb the 200 stairs to the Pylon Lookout at the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

39. Brave the height and climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

40. Visit Darling Harbour for the following attractions: IMAX Studio, Madame Tussauds Sydney, Sea Life Sydney Aquarium, Chinese Garden of Friendship, Wild Life Sydney Zoo.

41. Spend the evening at The Star Sydney casino.

42. Visit Luna Park Sydney.

43. Enjoy dinner and drinks by the waterfront at Darling Harbour or Circular Quay.

44. Take a boat from Circular Quay and whale watch off the coast.

45. Take a surfing lesson at Bondi Beach.

46. Sydney Observatory recommended for sunset views and night city skyline.

47. Visit the koalas at Taronga Zoo Sydney.

48. More city views? Try the Sydney Tower Eye.

49. Explore Chinatown and grab some delicious food.

50. See Vivid Sydney light show May – June.

51. Hot day but don’t fancy the beach? Head to Wet’n’Wild Sydney Waterpark.

52. Manly Sea Life Sanctuary for conservation and marine life experience.

53. For wildlife head to Featherdale Park.

Manly to Sydney Boat

Love Sydney but want to head to the outskirts? Some top things to do outside city life in Sydney include driving the coastline and heading out to the hinterland areas for the national parks.

Blue Mountains National Park

Blue Mountains National Park

54. The Blue Mountains National Park for some insane views including the Three Sisters.

55. Cockatoo Island.

56. Auburn for the Auburn Botanic Gardens.

57. The Figure 8 Pools in the Royal National Park Trail.

58. Visit Hunter Valley for wine tours and incredible views.

59. Wollemi National Park not too far from the Blue Mountains National Park.

60. Lane Cove National Park river walks.

61. Kamay Botany Bay National Park walks by the coast and across the bridge.

62. Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park.

63. Visit the Home & Away 'Summer Bay' TV soap setting, Palm Beach.

Home & Away 'Summer Bay', Palm Beach, NSW

Home & Away 'Summer Bay', Palm Beach, NSW