Sydney Tourist Attractions

Sydney Tourist Attractions

This sprawling city on the east coast of Australia surrounds the biggest natural harbour in the world.  With a population of over 5 million people it is also one of the most multicultural cities on the planet. A city I would love to return back to. Here is my list of Sydney tourist attractions to consider if you ever find yourself down under.


Sydney Harbour Bridge

The Sydney Harbour Bridge, nicknamed ‘The Coathanger’ for it’s unique design, was built in 1932 and is one of the most iconic bridges in the world.  It connects the northern and southern  shores of the harbour.  The top of the arch is 134m (440ft) above the water below.

There are many ways to experience the bridge.  You can walk over it, ride a train over it, ride a boat under it and even climb it!  The best photo opportunities are from a boat but you do get a lovely view of the bridge in all it’s glory from the opera house too.

Walking the Bridge
The access stairs on the north side are located in Broughton street near junction of Burton Street.
The access stairs on the south side are located in Cumberland street near junction of Argyle street.

Train across the bridge
If you want to take a train across the bridge, you can get the T1 train between Wynard Street on the south and Milson street station on the north.

Climbing the bridge and viewing by boat is covered in other sections below.



Sydney Opera House

The Sydney Opera House with it’s famous white shell roofs is a multi-venue building for the performing arts. It was opened in 1973 and was based on a 1957 competition winning design by Danish architect Jorn Utzon.

This remarkable looking building has a main concert hall, theaters and studios. Worth experiencing a concert in the main hall or you can take a walking tour of the building.

If you sit outside of the Opera House by the harbour wall at dusk, you’ll see a nightly display of fruit bats flocking from the the botanical gardens, off to feed.  A great site that you don’t see every day.




BridgeClimb Sydney

Climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge is something that everyone should experience once.  The view from the top is simply stunning.

The whole experience takes around 3.5 hours.  They run you through health & safety checks, prepare you for the climb and even take a breath test.  So no drinking before the climb!

It looks scary but is really quite exhilarating, expecially once you get to the beginning of the arch.  They also now do these climbs at night which gives me a reason to go back and do it again. A must on my list of Sydney main attractions.

The BridgeClimb office where you start from is located at 3 Cumberland St, The Rocks (shown on the map at the end of this post)




Harbour Ferries

Ferries in Sydney are cheap, regular as clockwork and everywhere. You can buy a ticket and stay on the ferry for an all round trip, taking you to all the different stops. Your own little tour of the harbour via public transport.

There are nine different routes that will take you all over Sydney from Circular Quay.  A great way to travel and enjoy stunning views along the way.

One of the cheapest and most unique ways to get around the Sydney main attractions.




Taronga Zoo

This Zoo is located on the north-east side of Sydney and can be accessed via a ferry from the city.  The main entrance is actually on the other side of the zoo. So when you get off the ferry, you can board a cable car that takes you straight into the zoo (included in the ticket price).

It has an amazing array of different animals including some native animals I had never even seen before. Loved the wombats and the grumpy Tazmanian Devils. There are also staff members walking around holding animals such as reptiles that you can see up close, which is a nice touch.

You also get a fantastic view of the city across the water.

Nearest Ferry (from Circular Quay)
Taronga Zoo Wharf (Watsons Bay Ferry)

Nearest Bus Stop
Taronga Zoo  (238)




Darling Harbour

This precinct of Sydney is a bustling waterfront containing restaurants, bars, museums and other attractions.

We stayed here when we visited Sydney and found it to be a great base for exploring the city.

With China Town at the north end and all manner of different food establishments surrounding the water, we had some of our best meals here.

Nearest Ferries
Darling Harbour Pier 26 (CCDH Circular Quay, Fort Denison, Lane Cove, Shark Island, Watsons Bay)
Darling Harbour Convention Jetty (CCDH Circular Quay)

Nearest Bus Stops
King Street Wharf/Kings Street (252, 261)
Maritime Museum (389)




Blue Mountains

Just 31 miles north-west of Sydney are the Blue Mountains and it’s National Park.  The dramatic scenery boasts rugged steep rock formations, eucalyptus forests, waterfalls and gorges. There a different areas that can usually be incorporated into an excursion from the city.

Echo Point
A cliff top viewing platform that gives stunning views of the famous three sisters rock and the mountains.

Katoomba Scenic World
Here you can take a cable cars across the gorge.  Ride the steepest incline railway in the world down to the Jamison valley floor. Walk the 2.4k scenic walkway.

Wildlife park
An award winning park where you can interact with the animals.

Getting there
Excursion by bus from the city
2 hour train journey from Sydney Central rail station to Katoomba station




Other Sydney tourist attractions to consider

Sydney Aquarium

A local aquarium filled with fish, sharks, seals, penguins & dugons to name a few.

Sydney Zoo

A local zoo featuring native animals including Koalas and Kangaroos.

Sydney Tower

Great views from a 1,014 ft tower with observation deck and rotating restaurant.

Royal Botanical Gardens

A nice escape from the hustle & bustle. Wonderfully kept gardens full of nature.

Hyde Park

A city centre park. Haven for  picnickers, sunbathers and the beautiful Archibald fountain.

Luna Park

An old theme park with retro rides. Great fun across the bridge on the north side.


Other Cities in this list

Chicago Tourist Attractions

San Francisco Tourist Attractions

Vancouver Tourist Attractions


  1. Hi, I was looking for a Sydney guide. I saw a lot of complicated articles, I cannot really think what to do and what to see. Thanks to you, I know what is my must see and what I can skip. Finally, Sydney looks more friendly than used before. I hope that the Blue Mountains are as beautiful as you described it.

    • The Blue mountains are indeed beautiful and not to be missed. We found Sydney to very friendly too. Thanks for your feedback

  2. I’m serious eager to visit this great city called Sydney. It’s really blessed with nice places and beautiful scenery! I really want to know about Sydney Opera House, does it have a museum inside of it? And what’s the size and capacity of the opera house? Thanks for the wonderful piece of information you have given to us. Nice post

    • It holds 2,000 people but doesn’t have a museum. You can take a tour which will give you all the history of the building anyway. Thanks

  3. So many places to visit and things to do in Sydney! The main attractions are most certainly enough to get me to add this city to my bucket list, and I have wanted to travel to Australia for years. I have a lot of connections there through the many friends that I have met and worked with over the years in many places.

    As a matter of fact, we just celebrated Australia Day recently and it was a blast. Things got a bit out of hand, but nothing too bad. They are always showing me pictures of their adventures in that area and urging me to get there as soon as possible. These images and your write up of the attraction points are compelling.

    Thanks for a great post on Sydney and its hot places to see, and I am sure that you have sold a couple of tickets for people that stop by to learn more about what they can see and do once they get there!   

    • There is so much to do on Sydney and her surroundings, but hopefully my list will help whittle them down. Thanks for your feedback.

  4. Goodness! I cherish Sydney even more with this review. Most likely the city makes for a standout amongst the best summer vacation spots anyplace on the planet considering its practically ceaseless bright climate and serene blue beaches. For first-time guests to Sydney an incredible base for touring is The Rocks, the city’s architecturally significant area, with its awesome harbor views, heritage-listed buildings, exhibition halls, shops, displays, and adorable courtyard cafés.

    • Nice to hear other people enjoy this city as much as us. Need to get back again soon! Thanks

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