Whether you're a local or a visitor to Sydney, we've put together some of the best places to visit and things to do to help you make the most of this magnificent city. Sunny, sexy, stylish - Sydney is undoubtedly one of the shining stars of the southern hemisphere.
From its stunning iconic architecture of the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge, through to its rugged beaches, diverse restaurant culture and relentless night-life, Sydney is truly a world-class city.
Sydney's sparkling harbour is the jewel in the city's crown. Flanked by golden beaches and bushland, it is bisected by the Sydney Harbour Bridge - one of the most famous in the world. Islands sprinkle the harbour's waters, and green-and-yellow ferries ply its waters until late in the evening.
From the ocean you enter the harbour through The Heads, dramatic cliff portals between Circular Quay in the city and the beachside suburb of Manly. The tops of The Heads are covered by Sydney Harbour National Park, which stretches along the rugged harbourside for kilometres. This haven for native plants and birds really surprises visitors.
In the centre of the harbour is a series of islands, the most well known being Fort Denison, with its tiny sandstone castle, which once housed the worst of Sydney's convicts.
At Cadman's Cottage, The Rocks, you'll find the Sydney Harbour National Park Information Centre where you can arrange a visit to Fort Denison and other islands.
Light, bright, cheerful and colourful - Sydney style has an exuberant quality defined by the city's climate, magnificent harbour, luxuriant hinterland and superb beaches. The New South Wales capital dazzles with personality.
Sydneysiders are spoilt for choice with quality restaurants, cafes, bars and beaches. They love to meet friends to eat, drink and be merry. The people of this city possess an energy and boldness that is irrepressible and uplifting. They are urbane, fresh and curious, and excellent hosts.
Stroll up and down Oxford Street, Paddington, to experience the funkiest designers. For more formal fashion, Double Bay is the place to shop. Be prepared to be bedazzled with the shopping to be had at Skygarden, the MLC Centre, Chifley Square and Martin Place.
Down at Bondi, view the best of Australian surf and beach wear that has blazed new trend trails internationally. Shop for a swimming costume in Campbell Parade, and be sure to visit the Mambo store for the latest in surf fashion.
Feast of Foods
Decades of immigration have meant Sydney's restaurants cater for all sorts of tastes from Greek and Lebanese to Japanese and Indian. Fresh ingredients and a fusion of Eastern and Western styles are an Australian trademark, while superb wines and scores of bars and pubs will quench your thirst.
The inner-city suburb of Newtown has everything from cheap Vietnamese and Indonesian food through to African and French cuisine, while another inner-city suburb, Glebe, is famous for both sophisticated and down-to-earth eateries.
Some of Sydney's best restaurants are at Circular Quay, while a whole string of up-market restaurants dot the landscape in the historic Rocks area, the city centre and inner-city Kings Cross.
Sydney is fortunate too to have a healthy cafe culture, with some of the most atmospheric scattered around the suburb of Darlinghurst, a short walk from Kings Cross CityRail station.
They say that Sydney never sleeps, with its endless array of all-night pubs, cutting-edge dance clubs, and gay reviews on trendy Oxford Street.
Oxford Street, Kings Cross and the area around Darlinghurst is the part of Sydney that never sleeps. Around here you can find dozens of bars, cafes, restaurants, pubs and nightclubs with some of them open 24 hours.
If it's jazz you fancy then try Soup Plus on George Street, where you can tuck into bistro food as you listen to talented musicians. Another hive of activity is The Basement near Circular Quay, which manages to squeeze in blues, folk and funk as well as world-class jazz acts.
The area around Taylor Square is the epicentre of Gay Sydney. Here, once a year, the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras passes by, a gaudy, giddy, gyrating parade that has become the focus for the lively arts and lifestyle culture created by the active gay community of the city.
See drag shows and dance late into the night at the Imperial Hotel in Erskineville. Otherwise try a local gay-orientated nightclub, like the Taxi Club or Midnight Shift on Oxford Street.
All flights to Sydney arrive in the international airport: Kingsford Smith (Code: SYD). For more details see our Sydney Airport page.
Getting to Sydney
Find the best deals on flights to Sydneyfrom most major Australian cities including:
Sydney has a wide variety of accommodation on offer, including hotels, bed and breakfasts and motels, as well as self-catering styles for families and hostels for backpackers. Find hotels in Sydney to suit your personal or business needs.
Car rental in Sydney is available right from the airport, so you can kick-start your own self-drive itinerary straight away. Choose from a range of cars, from comfy sedans to more luxurious four-wheelers, and book your Sydney car hire from leading brands including Hertz and Budget.